To get another shot at LeBron James, the San Antonio Spurs may have to go through Dirk Nowitzki, then Dwight Howard and James Harden, and finally Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.
Survive all that, and maybe they can avenge that NBA Finals heartbreak.
The Spurs host Dallas in their first playoff game Sunday, right before James and the Heat begin what they hope is a run to a third straight championship. Miami’s path seems much easier, but James’ team also appears more vulnerable than the one that was an overwhelming favorite in last year’s playoffs.
The NBA postseason begins Saturday with four games: Top-seeded Indiana hosts Atlanta, and Brooklyn visits Toronto in the Eastern Conference, while the West series openers include Golden State at the Clippers, and Oklahoma City against Memphis.