‘Great days for the city’: Popovich, players reflect on Spurs’ return to Alamodome, 50th season ahead

Spurs set for season long celebration to mark 50 years in San Antonio

The Spurs officially opened the franchise’s 50th season in San Antonio on Monday with their annual media day. It is the start of a season-long celebration to commemorate the franchise’s move to the Alamo City in 1973.

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The Spurs officially opened the franchise’s 50th season in San Antonio on Monday with their annual media day, starting a season-long celebration commemorating the franchise’s move to the Alamo City in 1973.

As part of the celebration, the Spurs will return to the Alamodome for a home game for the first time in 20 years when they face off against Golden State on Jan. 13.

San Antonio strives to break the NBA’s all-time attendance record for a regular season game by filling the Alamodome with Silver and Black fans.

The league’s current record stands at 62,046. The configuration for this year’s Alamodome game will utilize the entire stadium and hold the capacity to reach over 65,000 fans.

“Those were great days for the city. The place was always pretty much packed,” said Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich. “I think it moved with every dribble. It was like you never knew it was going to happen there.”

Popovich and the players spoke Monday about what it meant to revisit history and pay homage to former Spurs teams.

“It’s great to see how historic and legendary it was, see how many legends played there. I think, given the opportunity, I can’t wait,” said Spurs forward Keldon Johnson.

The franchise will have special nights this season to honor each of the five championship Spurs teams. They will also host an origins night to honor former greats like George Gervin.

During opening night on Oct. 19, the franchise will honor Spurs legend Manu Ginobili’s 2022 Basketball Hall of Fame induction.

The Spurs will also play home games in Austin and Mexico City this season to expand the brand and organization’s reach.

“I’m hoping the fans in Mexico will really enjoy it. I love going to Mexico City. A lot of people don’t realize how beautiful it is -- the museums, the restaurants. It’s a great place to spend time. So we’re looking forward to it,” said Popovich.

“Being able to just expand and go to different cities, and go out of the country and be able to play in front of our fans is going to be huge,” said Spurs guard Devin Vassell.

During media day, Johnson said the connection to the city and fans makes the Spurs franchise special.

“Since day one, I’ve been accepted, and I feel like this is my family. I feel like I belong here,” said Johnson. “The fans show up 100 percent of the time, and that’s amazing. It means so much to me and my teammates.”

Click here for more information on the Spurs’ 50th season celebration.

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About the Authors:

RJ Marquez is co-host of KSAT News Now and reports for Good Morning San Antonio. He's been at KSAT since 2010 and covered a variety of stories and events across the San Antonio area. He also covers the Spurs for on-air and digital platforms, including his Spurs newsletter. RJ has reported stories for KSAT Explains.