It could be weeks before the Spurs know whether Duncan and Ginobili will return for a 20th and 15th season, respectively. It’s also uncertain what the Spurs will do in free agency. They’ve been linked to Durant and Memphis Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley, but salary-cap space would have to be cleared for the Spurs to be major players again in free agency, meaning some core players would have to be traded. No matter what happens, Parker suggests that, in the end, how far the Spurs advance in any season is entirely up to the “basketball gods.” “Look at Oklahoma City,” Parker said. “Last year, they had all the injuries and bad luck, but this year the basketball gods went their way. Every tough play, every big basket, they made it.
Fred Katz: Gregg Popovich on helping Tim Duncan with retiring choice: "I haven’t talked to Timmy in about 11 years and Manu stopped talking to me about 3 or 4 years ago. They’re just going to come in and say, ‘Pop, this is what I’m doing.’ Then, whatever they say, that’s what I’ll do."
Ginobili, meanwhile, said he plans to "take my time as always" in making a decision about whether to return to the Spurs for another season. "Of course, it's been an amazing run," said Ginobili, 38. "We all enjoy playing with each other. I'm so proud of having played with those guys for so many years and winning so many games, and even playing with the new guys. If there's a reason why you always want to come back and keep being part of this, [it's] because of the amazing chemistry, the good times and the good people that you play with and spend time with. It's not always about winning a game or winning a championship. But you learn from losses, and it's important to enjoy every day. Being a part of this team, I'm very proud of it, even if sometimes it doesn't go our way."
Duncan — who will turn 40 a day after Game 4 — and Ginobili, 38, have modest player options for next season (Duncan’s for $5.5 million, Ginobili’s for $2.94 million). Both players plan to think long and hard over the summer before exercising them.
Since joining forces in 2002-03, the trio of Duncan, Parker and 33-year-old point guard Tony Parker have teamed up for an NBA-record 692 wins, including 117 in the postseason, as well as four championships. Bettors have gone broke projecting the end of the Spurs’ Big Three era before. Still, Ginobili said he plans to enjoy this ride as if it could be the last. “For sure, there’s a sense of urgency,” Ginobili said. “You want to win. You don’t want to go home after two weeks.”
But there Ginobili was once again, lean and rejuvenated for another campaign, with absolutely no interest in calling it quits until he absolutely has to. “I don’t know,” Ginobili said of his retirement plans. “Why should I make the commitment now? It’s ten months away, so I don’t have to. The last few seasons, I’ve been going day by day, seeing if I enjoy it. If I keep feeling the same thing, before games, after games, the same feel, and so far it’s been happening. I’m not going to say before. It doesn’t make any sense.”
August 15, 2022 | 6:14 pm EDT Update
Adrian Wojnarowski: ESPN Sources: Ben Simmons and the Philadelphia 76ers have reached a settlement agreement on the grievance the All-Star guard filed to recoup a portion of the nearly $20 million withheld him as a result of his failure to play games in the 2021-2022 season. Story soon.
Adrian Wojnarowski: 76ers maintained Simmons breached his contract upon failing to show up for the start of training camp and refusing to play in preseason and regular season prior to trade to Nets. Simmons cited his mental health for the reason his participation in team activities was so limited.
Christos Tsaltas: Jeremy Sochan will not travel to Greece for the Acropolis Tournament with Polish National Team. He will not join Poland ahead of Eurobasket 2022. Big loss for Polish national team. Sochan has all the tools to shine in the NBA. #Gospursgo #KoszKadra
August 15, 2022 | 5:45 pm EDT Update
Andre Iguodala gave his perspective on Kevin Durant’s situation on the Point Forward podcast, naming the reasons why the two-time NBA champion Durant, who won both titles together with Iguodala on the Warriors, should stay in Brooklyn. “I think he should stay in Brooklyn, it’s such a big market, it’s good for the game and just figure out how to make it work like everybody grow up and make it work. That’s how I feel about the situation,” Iguodala shared his perspective.
Another reason why Durant should stay according to Iguodala is the length of the contract the 12-time NBA All-Star Durant is still on with the Nets. “This is a situation where it’s either, look, man just come out here and play or don’t play because you got 4 years, we got you for a while so it’s not like you’re on an expiring contract and then you can just take off a year and we just give up a year,” added Iguodala.
Though he sustained a lower right leg fracture that required surgery, the Nuggets have no intention of parting ways with two-way guard Collin Gillespie, a source said. Even though Gillespie will be out indefinitely as he recovers, the Nuggets were thrilled to reach a deal with him on draft night and intend to support him throughout his recovery. Gillespie had a productive Summer League and was a favorite of coach Michael Malone.
The Nuggets are hiring a slew of pro and college scouts, sources told The Denver Post. Drew Nicholas, a former scout for the Sixers and Celtics, will be the Nuggets’ new director of scouting and oversee the department. Mike Penberthy, formerly an assistant coach for the Lakers, will join the organization as a pro scout and shooting coach. Chad Iske, an assistant coach for the Charlotte Hornets, will also join as a pro scout, as will Jarrett Stephens.