San Antonio Spurs GM R.C. Buford is in Argentina for the first time, and while he made the long trek all the way to another continent, Buford is still not allowed to talk to #5 on the host team at the FIBA Americas Championship in Mar del Plata.
Lockout regulations prohibit team staff from any contact with players, including Manu Ginobili.
Buford would have as much luck consulting Ginobili on Argentina’s haunts as he would asking the late Eva Perron. So don’t expect to see Ginobili playing tour guide to Buford and showing him his favorite asado restaurants or wineries.
When asked by Ole‘s Julian Mozo about the purpose of his trip, Buford said it gave him a chance to watch players in general.
Buford also commented (via Google Translate) on the Argentine selection, saying they play very well because they know each other well and you can appreciate how they play together.
“I can see the love people have for this wonderful selection,” Buford told Mozo.
Buford also talked about Argentina coach Julio Lamas, who has spent some time with Buford and the rest of the Spurs brass in the past.
“I love watching him lead this team. I remember when I started with these guys in 97 and after much success, completing the process is exciting,” Buford said. “Also, Julio is a very good friend who has visited our project in San Antonio and has been a pleasure to follow.”
Ginobili and Argentina will play Puerto Rico tomorrow in the FIBA Americas Championship semifinals. If they win, they will qualify for the 2012 London Olympics and go on to play the winner of the Brazil vs. Dominican Republic game in the final round.