Jeff McDonald: Among the myriad tidbits from Pop’s Manu-centric 15-minute pregame session: Pop doesn’t believe Manu wants to go into coaching in the future, but could see him getting involved in the managerial/scouting side of the game.
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Jeff McDonald: Pop: “He doesn’t want to sit around breaking down film of pick and rolls. … I know because he’s told me, ‘I don’t want to do that.’ “
Jeff McDonald: Another Manu tidbit from Pop, which I think might be a lie: “He taught me how to curse. I never cursed before I met him.”
RJ Marquez: 👀Spurs announced that Argentina’s Golden Generation will hold a roundtable discussion at halftime of Manu Ginobili’s jersey retirement night. Manu helped lead @cabboficial to 2004 Olympic gold medal…an iconic sports figure in Argentina. #KSATsports #KSATnews #GraciasManu pic.twitter.com/eiiwVvZA4M
The San Antonio Spurs today announced that they will retire Manu Ginobili’s No. 20 jersey on Thursday, March 28 when the Silver and Black host the Cleveland Cavaliers at 7:30 p.m. CDT. A special postgame ceremony honoring Ginobili will take place on the AT&T Center floor and will be broadcast live on FOX Sports Southwest and streamed live on FOX Sports GO. Ginobili will become the ninth player in Spurs franchise history to have his number raised to the rafters, joining Bruce Bowen (12), Tim Duncan (21), Sean Elliott (32), George Gervin (44), Avery Johnson (6), Johnny Moore (00), David Robinson (50) and James Silas (13). In 16 seasons with the Spurs, Ginobili captured four NBA championships while posting a career winning percentage of .721 (762-295), which is the best winning percentage in NBA history among players who have appeared in at least 1,000 games.
On his latest column on Argentinian site Ole, Ginobil gives an update on what he has been up to away from the basketball court and says he is picking up a tennis racquet while staying away from a basketball.
Manu Ginobili: “I enjoy my family time. I started playing tennis and I do not even go near a basketball. I already have plans with some friends to play tennis once or twice a week. I go a lot to the Spurs’ training, to visit my friends and the staff I’ve known for years. It helps me for day to day, because the transition from having a very intense work and social life to having nothing, is not simple either.”
Argentina tennis legend and ESPN commentator, Batata Clerc, says he is up for the challenge of getting Ginobili ready for Wimbledon: “I tell Manu to be patient and to call me, I train him and prepare him for the next Wimbledon.”
Shams Charania: The San Antonio Spurs have waived the retired Manu Ginobili, finalizing their roster, per league sources. @TheAthleticNBA @WatchStadium
Tom Orsborn: Asked about Manu retiring at 41, Mike D’Antoni suggested opponents need to put “a stake in his heart, so he won’t come back.” He then added, “Life goes on, Tim, Tony and then Manu. I just thought this would happen 10 years ago.” #Spurs
After announcing his retirement, former San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili spoke to the media to say goodbye and share some of his fondest memories.”I am very sure about the decision, it’s still awkward,” said Manu on making the decision to retire. “But my finger shaked a lot before hitting that enter (button). It wasn’t an easy decision.”
Ginobili played 16 seasons with the Spurs, experiencing the highs and lows of a NBA season. From the losses to team camaraderie, Ginobili experienced it all and felt it was time to retire during the 2017-18 season. “It was hard to put that last nail in the coffin,” said Manu. “I couldn’t see my body doing through that kind of grind again. When I came back here and came to workout a little bit to lift or bike or whatever, I saw Bryn (Forbes), I saw Dejounte (Murray) and some of the guys working out and preparing for the season and I was so far from that.”
Aide from the physical aspect of playing another season, Ginobili cited his family saying he asked his wife and kids about retiring or not and for his oldest, Nico, it came down to chicken fingers. “When we asked the kids what did they think, if they were excited that dad is not going to be traveling as much … ‘But I don’t want you to retire dad,’ Nico my oldest. Really? Maybe he has a point. Why? ‘Well the chicken tenders in the family room are awesome,” Manu said.
Pau Gasol: “Manu is a magnificent player, exceptional, with an incredible career, which has marked an era, not only in Argentina but in the world basketball. “I have a special affection for him. He is worthy of admiration, who has given absolutely everything, who has played until age 41, an example to follow and I hope he inspires many young people in Argentina and abroad.
Danny Green: Man(u) Oh man(u), where do I start…first I want to congratulate you on a hell of a career. From the time I watched you from home while I was in high school to becoming your teammate, you’ve always been one of my favorite players. It was always an aspiration to be half as good as you. I’ve learned so much from you over these last 8 seasons that made me a better player and person…still trying to get that eurostep in my game, but my hips won’t let me lol! I always hated the fact that you came off the bench and that you subbed in for me because I had the most fun when I shared the court with you. Your approach & passion for every game, practice and everything that you did has inspired so many, including myself. You are the ultimate warrior and a true champion! I’ve been extremely blessed to share a locker room with you and to be able to call you my friend and brother. It sucks to see you go, but a complete honor to have played with you for your last game. I wish you well in your next chapter and tell my favorite guys in the Spurs arena (your sons) i will miss them on the sidelines cheering for us, especially Luca lol. Much Love Gramps and hope to see you on the sidelines again sometime soon! @manuginobili 🙏🏾💯
“I can’t say this was a hasty or unexpected decision,” Ginobili wrote. “I’m 41 years old. I’ve been stretching a little bit this basketball thing, right? In my head, last season was at all times ‘the last one.’ I never said it publicly because I didn’t want to limit my options. I wanted to leave the door open for any changes in my mind or to see if I still felt the physical and mental strength needed to face a new season. “I was sure to make it clear to [Spurs coach Gregg Popovich] this is not a ‘goodbye, I’ll see you,'” he added. “My kids have already started school, and while I’m in town, I’ll be close to the team and the franchise. I can’t help anymore by taking a charge or with a steal, but I’ll try to contribute somehow. I appreciate all my teammates, the staff and all the people in the team. I want the best for the Spurs. If I can help, I will do it with pleasure.”
“I went back and started lifting weights, grabbed the ball, watched the younger ones train and break their backs to be well for the preseason, and I was still hurting from last season,” Ginobili said. “This situation helped me to convince myself of the decision to make.”
Brent Barry who did play alongside Manu for many seasons and won a title with him, spoke about how good Manu was, even with playing alongside Tim Duncan and David Robinson, with SiriusXM NBA Radio. “That’s one of the biggest misnomers about how good Manu Ginobili was, is that as much as Tim [Duncan] was the foundation of the franchise’s success, and David [Robinson] before him, Manu was the guy that players, and coaches, when it was time, would lean the most.”
If retired San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili is looking for a job in retirement, then Terminix San Antonio has a position for him. Recalling his efforts at containing a bat at the AT&T Center during his playing days, Terminix will train Manu in proper bat removal.
Terminix: ATTN: @manuginobili RE: Your Next Act
Look what just popped up in San Antonio. A day after San Antonio Spurs’ Manu Ginobili officially retired from the NBA after 16 glorious seasons, a billboard thanking No. 20 is up off 410-West for all fans to see. Instagram user ultra6k got some video of the tribute to Manu.
Instagram User: #sanantoniospurs #manuginobili #sadtimes @manuginobili
The Vertical: San Antonio mayor @Ron_Nirenberg declares Aug. 30 “Manu Ginobili Day.” ➡️ yhoo.it/2wtvGUF pic.twitter.com/EHSSJAvEOI
Jeff Garcia: Hey Spurs fans….. Manu says he is not going anywhere now that he’s retired! 😃😃 Ginobili says he’ll still be around to help the team, thanks Spurs fans for their support buff.ly/2P80PVi #gospursgo #nba #spurs #NBATwitter pic.twitter.com/QZuUDrAOqh
Kristaps Porzingis: Congrats on an amazing career @Manu Ginobili! Won everything on every level! Unbelievable 🙌🏼🙌🏼 #legend
Ginobili indicated he is open to having some sort of role with the Spurs. “What I made clear to Pop is that it’s not ‘Ciao, I’m leaving,’ ” he wrote. “My children have already started classes and while I’m in town I’ll be close to the team and the franchise. Maybe I cannot help (anymore) by taking a (charge) or (with a steal) or something, but I’ll try to add in what I can. I have a great appreciation for my teammates, for the staff and all the people on the team and I want it to go as well as possible. If I can help from the outside, I will do it with pleasure.”
Chris Paul: Thank you for being a fierce competitor on the court @manuginobili, impacted the game for generations to come! 🙏🏾 #Ginoooooooooobili
“He had this perfect balance to the way he played: confidence, humility, fearlessness, competitiveness and joy,” Kerr said in a text message Monday. “He never shied away from a shot, even on his worst night, and never seemed restricted in any way. “I wish I could have played and felt that way on the court.”
LeBron James: @Manu Ginobili Congratulations on one helluva career brother! It was a pleasure to match up against you over the years. Regular season, Finals, National Team, didn’t matter was always a treat! The game of basketball has you to thank for the most swag move in basketball right now which is the “Euro Step”!!!! God bless you, thanks for the playing the game the right way and for the competition!!!
Chris Paul: Thank you for being a fierce competitor on the court @Manu Ginobili, impacted the game for generations to come! 🙏🏾 #Ginooooooooobili
Justin Anderson: Thank you @Manu Ginobili for all you’ve done for the game! Cold-blooded #Lefty playmaker! #HOF
Marcin Gortat: Amazing carrier @Manu Ginobili ! Being 57th pick in the draft ….. and won 4 rings😳 respect! Incredible role model. Have a great time with ur family and friends. Wake up whatever time u want:))) …. and go for short holidays in December or January 😂😂🔥🔥🔥!
Juan Hernangomez: Gracias Manu!💪🏻💪🏻 #LEGEND
Justin Jackson: Thank you @Manu Ginobili!! An honor playing against a Legend.
Alex Kennedy: I was interviewing Zach LaVine (for an upcoming article on Seattle hoops) when he learned of Manu Ginobili’s retirement. He was in the middle of a quote, stopped, asked someone, “MANU RETIRED?!” He paused and said, “Damn…” This shocked many players (and everyone respects Manu).
Willy Hernangomez: GRACIAS!!! 🙏🏽 @manuginobili @NBA
Enes Kanter: #Respect ✊🏼 @Manu Ginobili
Manu Ginobili’s longtime agent said he believes his client’s decision to retire was “very difficult” for him. “I didn’t ask him how hard it was, but I could tell from talking to him that it was very difficult,” Herb Rudoy said.
The agent said a lot of factors went into the decision, beginning with the fact that it’s “much harder to do it at age 41.” “I think he took a lot into account, his family, his (desire) to travel and that he had done it for a long time,” Rudoy said. “He had a real long career, and it was an outstanding career.”
Nicolas Batum: Gracias Manu 🇦🇷 #legend
Marc Stein: Charles Barkley of the @NBAonTNT tells @nytsports in response to the retirement of @Manu Ginobili: “Today my Manu retired — it’s like losing a family member. It was an honor and pleasure to watch you play. See you soon at the Hall of Fame.”
Mark Berman: Mike D’Antoni on Manu Ginobili who announced he’s retiring: “He was simply a winner. A sure first ballot Hall of Fame player. Remarkable person and player.”
LaMarcus Aldridge: I competed against you for 9 years. I sat through countless pregame meetings discussing how not to let you go to your left hand because when you do, you’re impossible to stop! Then, I became your teammate and got to witness first hand how you bring way more value to a team than pic.twitter.com/JJYbvXNToE
Tom Orsborn: Marco Belinelli on Manu: “An unbelievable player, but most importantly, an unbelievable person outside of the court.” is.gd/zH3t1q
Trae Young: Thank You Manu… SALUTE💯
Shams Charania: San Antonio Spurs legend Manu Ginobili has retired from the NBA. Hall of Famer.
Jay King: Damn. Basketball will miss Manu a whole heap. Not sure anyone has ever played the game with his mixture of flair, daring and cutthroat competitiveness.
RJ Marquez: #Spurs press release on today’s retirement announcement by Manu Ginobili after 16 seasons in San Antonio #KSATnews #KSATsports #NBA #GoSpursGo pic.twitter.com/EHV7A5XFIm
Shams Charania: Statement from Ginobili’s agents Herb Rudoy and Luciano Capicchioni: “It has been our great pleasure to represent Manu. He has not only been an outstanding player, he has also been one of the finest men we have known….”
Shams Charania: Ginobili’s agents continued: “He understands playing for the collective good of his team and will go down in basketball history as one of the best to ever play the game.”
Pau Gasol: THANK YOU for absolutely everything you have done for basketball. A role model for all of us that love this wonderful sport. Fortunate to have shared locker room with you the last 2 years. #GraciasManu pic.twitter.com/HBJDvjIw2j
Evan Fournier: Ugly cry 😭😭😭😭
Jaylen Brown: South American Legend!!!! 🐐 pic.twitter.com/PqNKHucVaj
Wilson Chandler: Ginobili!
Tommy Beer: tough summer for Spurs fans… Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili won 132 postseason games together, the most playoff wins by any two teammates in NBA history.
Manu Ginobili: Today, with a wide range of feelings, I’m announcing my retirement from basketball. IMMENSE GRATITUDE to everyone (family, friends, teammates, coaches, staff, fans) involved in my life in the last 23 years. It’s been a fabulous journey. Way beyond my wildest dreams. pic.twitter.com/3MLCUtmd6K
Jeff Garcia: BIG3 Clyde Drexler said the league will “stalk” Manu Ginobili if he retires. Says the BIG3 is perfect for Manu. #GoSpursGo #Spurs #Nba
The 41-year-old guard has been working out regularly at the Spurs practice facility, but a league source said Wednesday the club still doesn’t know whether Ginobili plans to return for a 17th season or retire and begin the countdown to his induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. The source also said his decision likely won’t be made until he sits down with Spurs coach Gregg Popovich to discuss the situation.
The Spurs would like Ginobili to return after losing fellow future Hall of Famer Tony Parker and swingman Kyle Anderson in free agency and trading former face-of-the-franchise forward Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green to the Toronto Raptors. But the Spurs would not be surprised if Ginobili draws the curtain on his legendary career.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Story filed to ESPN: No final decision yet, but San Antonio’s Manu Ginobili is seriously considering retirement and will meet with coach Gregg Popovich in coming days to discuss future.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Ginobili, 41, has been working out regularly in the Spurs practice facility in preparation for the season, but within almost a month of training camp, he still hasn’t committed to returning for his 17th season.
The older brother of Manu Ginobili hinted Saturday the Spurs guard could announce this week whether he plans to play another season. “The 20th hasn’t even reported if he’s still playing. I imagine there will be news next week,” Sepo Ginobili said at a basketball clinic, per a tweet from Spanish-language broadcaster Carlos Altamirano. Ginobili, 41, is under contract for the 2018-19 season, which would be his 17th season with the Spurs.
Soon, perhaps in the next few days, Ginobili will post a message on the Internet announcing his intentions for next season, and it will be a surprise if those intentions do not include continuing to allow Gregg Popovich to fulfill his vow to squeeze every last drop out of him like a tube of toothpaste. Ginobili has said, over and over again, that his main two criteria for prolonging his NBA career revolve around whether he’s enjoying himself and whether the team wants him around, and both of those boxes still appear to be checked. He played with as much joy in the April playoff loss to Golden State as a rookie, and with Tony Parker and Kawhi Leonard gone, his corporate knowledge is more valuable than ever.
Mike Finger: If anyone is visiting my profile tonight because someone claimed I confirmed Manu Ginobili is coming back, let me assure you I did not. Stop following reckless aggregators. You don’t have to read my columns. But I’d be much obliged if you didn’t twist them to get cheap clicks.
Ginobili hasn’t announced his plans yet, but DeRozan made it clear he wants the future hall of famer to return for a 17th season. “I hope he does,” DeRozan said. “I’ve been a fan of his way before I was in the league. It would be great just to learn from a guy like that and pick his brain.”
Tom Orsborn: DeMar DeRozan’s full quote when asked if he hopes Manu Ginobili returns for a 17th season: “I’ve been a fan of his way before I was in the league. It would be great just to learn from a guy like that and pick his brain.”
Alvaro Martin: The @Spurs’ roster is almost set – with a chance at making the playoffs, but no guarantees. Today, #GreggPopovich said he sent @ManuGinobili a photo of his younger years in the NBA – the coach thinks there’s something left in the tank. It’s Manu’s call – it’ll be good either way.
Chuck Miketinac: Manu Ginobili’s agent, Herb Rudoy, says his client still has yet to make a decision on whether or not to play a 17th season. Over the phone, Rudoy joked, “when Manu knows, then I’ll know.” Last year, Manu waited until mid July until he announced he was coming back.
Do you see him coming back next season? Fabricio Oberto: What I want to see, having a friendship and relationship with him, is for him to be happy. I think at this point he has nothing left to prove, but he is so competitive you see he can still help the team. I would say I always want to see him play, let him play for 100 more years, but I think there are priorities, life changes. We have to wait and see what he’s going to do. It’s a decision so personal that having an opinion about it, even when you have the knowledge and the trust to talk about things, it’s not relevant.
“I’ve been contemplating retirement forever,” Ginobili said with a smile. “Nothing changed. “I’ll let a month or two months go by, and then i’ll see how I feel. I’m not the type of guy that makes decisions on the fly, or when you’re upset or hurt or whatever. “I usually let it sink in and see how it feels.”
The Spurs will have Ginobili as part of their organization for as long as he’s willing to be part of it. They’d love for him to return again next season, as he’s remained an integral part of their bench – even as one of the oldest players in the league.
“I think he should come back two more years,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “I smiled when he made that corner 3 right in front of us at the end of the game. It was just so typical Manu:  years old and 16 points, and hits the clinching 3. He’s Manu. That’s what he does. I know he’s old because he was my teammate, and I’m old as dirt. So, if I played with him, he must be old.”
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September 26, 2021 | 6:15 am EDT Update
“The NBA should insist that all players and staff are vaccinated or remove them from the team,” NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar tells Rolling Stone. “There is no room for players who are willing to risk the health and lives of their teammates, the staff and the fans simply because they are unable to grasp the seriousness of the situation or do the necessary research. What I find especially disingenuous about the vaccine deniers is their arrogance at disbelieving immunology and other medical experts. Yet, if their child was sick or they themselves needed emergency medical treatment, how quickly would they do exactly what those same experts told them to do?”
Irving, who serves as a vice president on the executive committee of the players’ union, recently started following and liking Instagram posts from a conspiracy theorist who claims that “secret societies” are implanting vaccines in a plot to connect Black people to a master computer for “a plan of Satan.” This Moderna microchip misinformation campaign has spread across multiple NBA locker rooms and group chats, according to several of the dozen-plus current players, Hall-of-Famers, league executives, arena workers and virologists interviewed for this story over the past week.
When asked directly about Irving’s vaccination status — or his plans to change it — multiple people familiar with his thinking declined to answer directly. But one confidant and family member floated to Rolling Stone the idea of anti-vaxx players skipping home games to dodge the New York City ordinance… or at least threatening to protest them, until the NBA changes its ways.
“There are so many other players outside of him who are opting out, I would like to think they would make a way,” says Kyrie’s aunt, Tyki Irving, who runs the seven-time All-Star’s family foundation and is one of the few people in his regular circle of advisors. “It could be like every third game. So it still gives you a full season of being interactive and being on the court, but with the limitations that they’re, of course, oppressing upon you. There can be some sort of formula where the NBA and the players can come to some sort of agreement.”
A spokeswoman for Irving declined to respond to a list of questions regarding his vaccination and playing status, and Irving did not immediately respond to a message from Rolling Stone. But as teams return to pre-season training camps next week, fifty to sixty NBA players have yet to receive a single vaccine dose, league sources tell RS. Most are considered merely reluctant skeptics. Some of the holdouts, however, amount to their own shadow roster of anti-vaxxers mounting a behind-the-scenes resistance to Covid protocols — and the truth.
Isaac considers un-vaxxed players to be vilified and bullied, and he thinks “it’s an injustice” to automatically make heroes out of vaccinated celebrities. He rejects the NBA’s proposal for a vaccine mandate and social distancing for players like him during team travel: “You can play on the same court. We can touch the same ball. We can bump chests. We can do all those things on the court. And then when it comes to being on the bus, we have to be in different parts of the bus? To me, it doesn’t seem logically consistent. “If you are vaccinated, in other places you still have to wear the mask regardless. It’s like, ‘OK, then what is the mask necessarily for?’” Isaac continues. “And if Kyrie says that from his position of his executive power in the NBPA, then kudos to him.”
Enes Kanter — the veteran center, devout Muslim and outspoken liberal — senses a creep of the religious right upon his workplace, which just happens to involve players like Isaac sweating all over him and yelling in his face: “If a guy’s not getting vaccinated because of his religion, I feel like we are in a time where the religion and science has to go to together,” he tells RS. “I’ve talked to a lot of religious guys — I’m like: ‘It saves people’s lives, so what is more important than that?’”