MEXICO CITY — The last time that the San Antonio Spurs visited Mexico to play a regular-season game, the contest was canceled because of smoky conditions from a malfunctioning generator.
So probably it’s not surprising to find out that coach Gregg Popovich had only one wish ahead of the Spurs’ game Saturday against the Phoenix Suns, set to be played on the same venue.
“I just want the game to come along. It felt horrible the last time we were here, everybody did so much work and everybody was excited to see the game and then it didn’t happen,” said Popovich upon his arrival at the team’s hotel in Mexico City.
On Dec. 4, 2013, the Spurs were warming up, around 45 minutes before their game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, when the lights went out in parts of the arena and smoke began coming out of vents in the upper deck. The court quickly became cloudy and players and coaches were rushed outside the arena.
The game was rescheduled and played at Minnesota.
“It was nobody’s fault but it was kind of depressing for everybody so hopefully this time we get it done and put on a show for everybody”, Popovich said.
The Spurs have been doing that in the NBA recently. On Thursday night, they beatthe Los Angeles Lakers 134-94 for their largest margin of victory this season. The game was so lopsided that the starters didn’t play in the fourth quarter and every player on the roster scored at least two points.
“All of our players will not score every night, I can promise you that”, Popovich said.
San Antonio arrives to Mexico boasting a 31-8 record, the second-best mark in the NBA just behind the Golden State Warriors (34-6).
The game against the Suns will be the fifth regular season game played in Mexico. Phoenix also played in Mexico City on Thursday night, falling 113-108 to the Dallas Mavericks.