“Tony Parker believes the window has closed for the Spurs.”
It was a headline that was published everywhere between the Mediterranean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico this summer after the San Antonio Spurs point guard talked to L’Equipe in France early last Summer after the Spurs were booted in the first round of the playoffs.
Parker talked to L’Equipe once again recently, but the tone of that interview seems to be the polar opposite of his headline read ’round the world.
As teammate Manu Ginobili said in an interview that was reported on here at Project Spurs yesterday, Parker is also among those thinking the injury to Ginobili could end up as a positive.
The absence of Manu Ginobili was ultimately a blessing in disguise. This allowed some of our young players to get game time and show what they can do. For example, I did not think a player like Danny Green could also quickly elevate his level of play Kawhi Leonard also made some very nice benefits. The absence of Manu was compensated, but his return is also great news for us.
With Ginobili likely to make his return to the starting lineup soon, Parker says the Spurs will have one of the deepest benches in the NBA.
Knowing that we can count on the players bench is essential. Given the particular format of this season, fatigue and possible injury of some key players, it is essential to have a great rotation. Anyway in the NBA, there is no secret: no team can claim the title without some bench depth. This season more than another given the time frame that we were put in place, the team with the best bench will go to the end.
With Ginobili back, and T.J. Ford soon to follow joining a second unit most likely made up of Leonard, Green, Gary Neal and Tiago Splitter, Parker thinks the Spurs will be among some of the NBA’s top teams competing for the 2012 NBA Championship.
When playing on a team like the San Antonio Spurs, there is no objective other than the title. It is in the DNA of this club. We will give everything to try to get a new “coronation”. The competition will be tough with Oklahoma City and Miami who are, for me, the best teams in the league right now but we have the weapons to get to the end. Even if some estimate that we are too old, it will be necessary, like every year, to count on Spurs in the fight for the title.
It looks like, according to Parker at least, that the Spurs’ proverbial championship window has been thrust back open, and all due to the result of an injury.
For Parker’s thoughts on his player of the week award, all-star selection and the Olympics, read the full interview at L’Equipe.