Spurs news and notes: Gilmore to invite Obama, Spurs financially efficient, and more

• Former San Antonio Spurs center and soon to be Hall of Famer Artis Gilmore hopes to have President Obama in attendance during his Basketball Hall of Fame induction:

“I haven’t selected anybody as of yet,”Gilmore told the Tribune Friday from his home in Jacksonville, Fla. “I am just taking a little bit of time and it certainly has to be a Hall of Famer… but I thought I would extend an invitation to President Obama.” (chicagotribune.com)

• SI.com says the Spurs are one of the most financially efficient teams in the NBA:

3. San Antonio Spurs, $1.13 million per win. The Spurs are under the luxury tax despite the $18.8m salary of Tim Duncan, along with the $13.5m that goes to Tony Parker and the $11.9m to Manu Ginobili. Almost two-thirds of their payroll goes to those three stars, which is how it should be. Richard Jefferson’s revised $8.4m (he opted out of a deal that would have paid him $15.0m, which gave him long-term security and enabled the Spurs to drop under the tax threshold this season) and the $4.9m to Antonio McDyess also makes sense for San Antonio management, as does virtually every salary on this payroll. Note that contributors DeJuan Blair ($918,000), George Hill ($854,389) and Gary Neal ($565,000) are all making less than $1m, which goes with the Spurs’ long-successful model: Rotate inexpensive role players around the big three.

• The SaltLakeTribune.com casts its vote for Spurs’ Gregg Popovich for the 2011 NBA Coach of the Year:

The Spurs have run away from their Western Conference rivals when many in the preseason projected them to finish third — or worse — in the Southwest Division.

Actually, it’s the perfect recipe for a coach of the year candidate.

• However, the TorontoSun.com says Denver Nuggets head coach George Karl deserves the Coach of the Year honors:

The unmentioned criteria that may land you the annual award is dealing with adversity and finishing the season better than anyone would have imagined. This is precisely what makes George Karl of the Denver Nuggets a leading candidate for the honour.

• ESPN.com talks about small-market NBA teams and the Spurs.

• RedsArmy.com goes on “Spurs watch” as the playoff near.

• Express News’ Tim Griffin talks about the Spurs perimeter defense.

• Former Spurs 2010 Summer League coach Lance Randall is now the head coach at St. Leo University:

He also served on two notable summer coaching stints, first with the Nacel Open Door Team America in 1999 and, most recently as a coach with the San Antonio Spurs Summer League team in July of 2010. (baynews9.com)

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