Argentinian newspaper, Olé, recently spoke to San Antonio Spurs’ all-star guard Manu Ginobili about the Spurs’ season, Tony Parker’s recent comments about the team and the myth of the Spurs being too old.
After a successful 61-21 regular season, Ginobili chalked up the Spurs’ first round playoff loss to the Memphis Grizzlies wanting it more.
‘It’s simple. Memphis played hard, defended well and had a very inspired Zach Randolph,” Ginobili said.
Ginobili also said the Spurs slump at the end of the season was due to the Spurs peaking too soon, not a matter of the Spurs’ age catching up to them.
“I do not think it was physical. We reached the top in February when the rest is done more slowly or as happened to us in other seasons, when we gave up in the playoffs. This time it was not.”
Before last season, Ginobili’s backcourt-mate Tony Parker said last season would be the Spurs’ last chance at winning a title with the current nucleus of Parker, Duncan and Ginobili.
Parker made news recently when, according to the French media, he said the Spurs’ championship window was closed.
“Closed-no, but it is closing. I’m going to be 34, Duncan is 35 and this is not forever. But we won 61 games and in six months…Boston, two years ago, played the final and was a veteran team more than we do today. It depends if you play well, you put it when it counts and not suffer injuries. Fortunately, in our case we do not injure this year.”
Ginobili also said that the Spurs have been called “old” even when they won the title in 2007 and that he feels like he is better than he expected at this age, but will look to transition his game a bit because a physical decline is inevitable and he has to become “better, smarter and more reliable.”
After averaging 17.4 points, 4.9 assists, 3.7 rebounds and 1.5 steals in just over 30 minutes per game last season, and then improving on those numbers in the playoffs, I doubt anyone in San Antonio has any problems with Ginobili’s reliability, but it’s good to know that he has the future in mind and that he sees continued success with the Spurs.
Since Olé is a Spanish newspaper, Ginobili’s answers are a rough English translation as provided by Google Translate.