Playing in the NBA is a grueling grind. Gregg Popovich knows this. He's been coaching the San Antonio Spurs for more than three decades now. He knows just how big fatigue can affect both teams playing in a game.

So when Popovich was asked about the Denver Nuggets' brutal schedule after the Spurs won against them on Thursday, he responded with no sympathy at all. His response to the question was quintessential Pop behavior (via Mike Singer).

“I don’t care. We just had the same thing. Everybody has it. They know it. We all go through it. We are all going to have those nights where the schedule is against us. We had that the other day.”

It's a brutally honest answer, but the Spurs coach only speaks the truth. The Nuggets are in the second game of a back-to-back road trip. Compounding to their woes is the fact that their most recent game last night ended in overtime. However, fatigue isn't an excuse in the NBA, not when every other team experiences that same fatigue.

Nuggets coach Michael Malone also had the same thoughts as the Spurs guru:

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“We have to be mentally tough to fight through that, and not use that as a readily-available excuse.”

In the end, though, the Spurs will gladly take the win. They are in the midst of a rebuild after they traded DeMar DeRozan to the Chicago Bulls in free agency this offseason. Wins like this are an encouraging sign for a young team like the Spurs.

As for the Nuggets, well, the loss is just another disappointment in what is an underwhelming season. Despite missing two of their top guys, they should still be able to win games like this against inferior opponents, even in the midst of a back-to-back.