When did you know this Sonics season was going to be special? At what point did you start believing this team had a chance to not only make the playoffs, but possibly do some damage once they got there?
Sonics players and coaches pointed to that Spurs/Dallas road trip as the time they knew they had something special going on. That was incredible, but it was so early in the season that I'd say it was more of a great confidence builder that was a big reason they did well this year.
I started getting excited when they went on that road trip through the east and there were newspaper reports that this team really got along. They played cards together, ate together, and the team huddles after games were cool.
Maybe the game that stood out to me as the game where I knew this team had something special going on for this season was the Feb. 25th home game after the All-Star break. The word at the break was that the TWolves were going to start playing like the defending WC Finalist from the previous year and that Seattle would fold down the stretch. We had lost our last two at home and even though we had just won a great game down in Houston (Lewis' breakout game?), Minnesota came in on a Friday night, on national TV, and they were doing pretty much whatever they wanted for two and a half quarters.
But the formula for success kicked in. Yes, Garnett had been incredible to that point, but the wear and tear of Seattle beating on him all game took its toll and when he tired, Seattle already had clamps on the rest of the team and the game was over.
We went up in the division by 12.5 that night and essentially won it right there. Almost a month to the day prior, Minnesota had come into Seattle and sent warning that the season wasn't over by beating them on their home court, but Feb. 25 was a differnt night, and I think, one that defined the season and set the Sonics on course for a special run.
What a great season.