Photo by IJM HD Productions
Imagine San Antonio adding even more days to Fiesta, but instead these events occurred in June and you come close to yesterday’s pandemonium downtown.
Spurs fans lined the River Walk trying to get any sliver of concrete to see their favorite champs on parade. Five hours before the main events at the Alamodome, an almost endless line started forming at the at the stadium doors.
Photo by Anthony Estolano
Fans rushed to their seats as the doors opened, most trying to get as close as possible to the stage. As the stadium population grew bigger in size, so did the cheers while live feed of the parade was put on the big screens.
The event was scheduled to start at 9 p.m., and fans were still filing in until stadium officials closed the doors at 8:00 because the Dome reached it’s maximum capacity of 72,000.
To keep the spirit alive, fans started the wave around the Dome, and if a section failed to do its job, they were booed. Other pre-festivities included shirts being tossed into the rabid crowd.
As the beginning of the event neared, fans were treated to a re-run of Game 5 starting at the second quarter. You probably would not be able to tell the difference between the cheers of the actual game and the cheers of those in the stadium. As the game ended fans erupted as they re-lived the championship win.
The stadium lights then turned off and we knew what was coming next. To get the crowd pumped up, the Spurs Coyote came out on a motorcycle and made his way on stage where the crowd again went wild. Then, there was the long-awaited introduction of each player. Each made his way to the stage where five golden championship trophies stood at the end. Fans cheered thunderously, and well, if the Dome did not have a roof, Miami would probably have heard them.
Kwahi Leonard, Photo by Anthony Estolano
Spur’s Point Guard, Patty Mills welcomed and gave thanks to the crowd. Like most of the players he talked about why the team had a successful year.
“We are all friends before we are teammates,” Mills said.
An emphasis was put on the Spurs family and community that supported the team. Mills then went on to introduce all of the players by telling a funny or embarrassing story. Kawhi Leonard’s sarcastic answer when Mills asked him what he was dressing up as for Halloween last year? “Kawhi Leonard, superhero.” Among Matt Bonner’s many nicknames is Ranga, short for orangutan. Mills wrapped it up by introducing the city’s favorite “Big 3” Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili. Their family spirit, Mills noted, reverberated throughout the team.
At the end of it all, the Spurs champion team promised to be there next year, same place and same time.
The event ended with team saying to be there next year at the same place and same time.
Photo by IJM HD Productions