Puff Daddy and Mase topped the Billboard Hot 100 charts with their smash hit “Can’t Nobody Hold Me Down” the last time the San Antonio Spurs missed the NBA Finals.
This is how long it has been – far back in the 1996-97 season.
The final buzzer sounded Thursday night with the Utah Jazz topping San Antonio 1
“It probably means a lot to a lot of people, but I don’t think about the past,” said legendary Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, who captured five NBA titles during this interval. “It is entirely [not] Important; what matters is the moment you do what you have to do then you move on, but looking at the past does not do much good. We’ve had some success because we’ve had some great players. “
The Spurs entered Thursday’s game after winning three in a row despite being projected as the final shot in the NBA’s Walt Disney World bubble. Wins of the Memphis Grizzlies and Phoenix Suns before Thursday’s tipoff officially cemented San Antonio’s elimination, but the Spurs managed to hold on until the end.
“I’m more excited about this than anything you guys are talking about right now, success or failure, because the success of the dash or whatever the hell you’re talking about ended,” Popovich said. “I could care less about that. I’m proud of how they played here.”
He praised the effort from his core of young players after the restart when he came up just before he reaches the play-in round, which starts on Saturday and matches no. 8 Portland vs. No. 9 Memphis.
“They had no shot at getting into this thing and basically wanted to get into it to get this opportunity,” he added. “The development of the young kids who largely play like they did, this is the best we’ve played all year. I really enjoyed it.”
Track guard DeMar DeRozan said the team’s elimination was difficult to swallow.
“I can live with the fact if we went out there and it must come to us to win or lose and we lost,” he said. “I could kind of accept that a little bit more than watching other teams play and their starters not really playing and giving the other team a chance to win, so it was extremely frustrating.”
According to Elias Sports Bureau research, 117 active NBA players were born on April 20, 1997 or later – the last day of the Spurs’ 1996-97 season, when they previously missed the playoffs before this season. It includes players from the eight teams that were not in the bubble, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.
The 22-year-old runoff spot tied the Philadelphia 76ers franchise for the longest in NBA history. The 76ers, who started as the Syracuse Nationals before moving to Philadelphia, went to the playoffs every year from 1950 to 1971.
The Houston Rockets now have the longest active season trim in eight seasons.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.