Oklahoma City Thunder v San Antonio Spurs - Game Five

Manu Ginobili and His Impact on South American Basketball

Throughout basketball’s history, there has been a plethora of men and women who have paved the way for future basketball players. Not only here in America, but around the world as well.

The San Antonio Spurs’ very own Manu Ginobili is one of those men.

The Argentine basketball player has become one of the most prominent and famous players to step foot on the court – he is the only player to have won an NBA title, an Olympic gold medal, and a Euroleague championship.

This year was the first in a long time that Ginobili did not play with Argentina in the FIBA World Cup. He had a stress fracture in his leg and was forced not to play in the FIBA World Cup by his current NBA championship team, the Spurs. The Spurs are trying to invoke a clause in an agreement between the NBA and FIBA that prohibits players from playing in the summer internationally when there is an injury present. At the tender age of 37, it is safe to say that Ginobili should be resting before the new NBA season -especially if the Spurs are making their “Race for Seis.”

Ginobili made a comment with La Nacion in Argentina, “I can say for almost certain, 98%, that I won’t play any more (for Argentina).” Ginobili then stated that if he had played in the FIBA World Cup this year, it would have been his last.

Looking back on Ginobili’s time with the Argentina national team, it’s crazy to see how far a man of his caliber has come. Ginobili has led the way for many international players, such as fellow Argentine players Luis Scola, Carlos Delfino, Walter Herrmann and Fabricio Oberto.

Not to mention the amount of basketball players that have arisen from other South American countries like Brazilian players, Nene and Tiago Splitter.

Ginobili has made a huge impact in the South American basketball world, and many recognize his hard work and passion for the sport. Because of his reckless and unconventional style of play, I could see Ginobili calling it quits in the next couple of years. He just won his 4th NBA title with the infamous Spurs, not to mention his newborn son, Luca who was born in April.

So, his life is at its peak, but I’m not sure his basketball play is. Manu has proven to be one of the best players to step foot on the court, and his relentless effort to keep pushing to be better is what makes him the player he is.

There will be plenty of men that will continue to come from these South American countries and it is only a matter of time before another Manu-esque player shows up on the TV screens again. So many players already look up to Ginobili, and to think a player like him, from the Spurs, is a huge celebrity in Argentina says a lot.

Ginobili has made an incredible impact in the South American basketball world.

Now we just have to wait and see what will happen next.

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