Tony Parker on playing with Pau Gasol: “It’s great to finish like that! I played against him since I was 14 years with the national team: cadets, juniors and seniors… Then in the NBA, it’s great fun! He’s such a good player, a good passer. I hope we will have a great season.”
This statement, which was directed to migrants, spawned much controversy in France, and not only. It didn’t come out of nowhere though since Sarkozy hopes to be a presidential candidate for the 2017 elections. It’s not hard to understand why the San Antonio Spurs superstar reacted the way he did when hearing these words. “It made me laugh more than anything else. Well, I was born in Belgium from a Dutch mother and an American father. So I am the perfect example of the fact that French may come from anywhere,” he commented for the French RTL Radio.
Parker has also big plans about Asvel Villeurbanne, the French club which owns and is president. “I’d love to play four or five years in the NBA to make it to 20 seasons. After that I have already prepared my new role as full time president of ASVEL. I want to develop its academies, new players. This is also an important part of being an athlete, to think about the future.”
After the defeat of the French national team by Spain in the Olympic quarterfinals, Parker announced his retirement from his international career. “It’s a decision I still maintain. I won’t go back on it. Still, it will be different from now on.”