Posted June 21, 2013

Spurs’ Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, Gregg Popovich field questions on retirement

2013 NBA Finals, Ben Golliver, Gregg Popovich, Manu Ginobili, Miami Heat, San Antonio Spurs, Tim Duncan
Tim Duncan says he has no plans to retire from San Antonio Spurs

Tim Duncan indicated that he plans to return for the 2013-14 season. (John W. McDonough/SI)

MIAMI — After losing in the Finals for the first time in his storied career, Spurs big man Tim Duncan indicated that he planned to return for the 2013-14 season.

“I have a contract that says I am [coming back],” Duncan said.

Asked specifically if he planned to retire after falling just one win short of the fifth title of his 16-year career, Duncan said: “Not right now.”

Duncan, 37, averaged 17.8 points, 9.9 rebounds and 2.7 blocks for the Spurs this season. Entering Game 7 on Thursday, he was averaging 17.9 points, 10.1 rebounds and 1.7 blocks in the postseason, and he was a strong candidate for Finals MVP if San Antonio had emerged victorious over Miami.

The 14-time All-Star is on the books for $10.4 million next season. He also holds a $10 million player option for the 2014-15 season.

Spurs guard Manu Ginobili, whose contract expires this summer and who hinted during the Finals that retirement could be a possibility, was noncommittal after San Antonio’s 95-88 loss to Miami in American Airlines Arena.

“It’s not the moment,” he said. “I’m very disappointed. Very upset. I really can’t say anything.”

Ginobili, 35, had an up-and-down postseason, averaging 11.2 points and shooting 39.2 percent in the playoffs entering Game 7.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich seemed to indicate that he would return next season.

“I think vacation is overrated,” Popovich said before the game. “I mean, I’ll take some time, I’ll walk the streets some place and I’ll travel and I’ll spend time with my family in other places. But after a little while just getting up when you want to in the morning and really not having challenges gets a little boring. You can only grow so many tomatoes and read so many books. You want to get busy, get competitive again. When I stop feeling competitive around September, then I’ll hang it up.”

Popovich didn’t elaborate afte the loss.

“I’m going to get a meal,” he said. “I’m not going to think about next season. I’m going to enjoy what they accomplished this season and feel badly about the loss at the same time. I don’t know how you do that, but I’ll figure it out.”

11 comments
Eric70
Eric70

The Spurs were really good this whole series. Ball just bounced to the Heat a couple of times and that was it. Keeping Duncan is key if they want to get back to the finals. For their sake they had better hope he plays out the contract.

ClaytonWalters
ClaytonWalters

Spurs need a backup point guard and somebody to replace ginobili. If they have that i am confident that they can make it to the finals again next year.

Kent W
Kent W

The Spurs need to start thinking about rebuilding. Sure the geriatric ward that the Spurs have become could hang around and maybe win a conference if LA is down and the Thunder have a player go down, but this is a team on the downhill slide that needs to rebuild. Besides as long as LeBron and company are in Miami, they can just mail them the Trophy, because everyone else is playing for 2nd.

JoeyWallace
JoeyWallace

game six is where the spurs got screwed you got 28 seconds left your 5 points ahead and pop sits down tim duncan and no one on the court who can rebound the ball and anyone in town wonders why we lost bad decisions in final seconds for both last games parker shouldnt have sat down manu should have. But in the end it was a awesome series to watch and cant wait til next year now that timmy has a chip on his shoulder 


PanzerDSS
PanzerDSS

Ginobili should retire.  He looked awful and if I'm the Spurs, I think him for his effort over the years and let him go.

cb512tx
cb512tx

btw kawhi leonard was avergaging 10.9 rebounds a game so there was someone on the floor who had been rebounding exceptionally all series. the one rebound that got away 3 spurs were going after it at once and the ball gets tipped out of kawhi's hands and goes to the heat. dont soon forget all the times late in games during THIS postseason that duncan or tony parker were on the bench in final minutes / key moments. game 3 is a great example. pop was doing exactly what he had been doing all season and majority of the seasons before.

cb512tx
cb512tx

@JoeyWallacewell if duncan was on the floor at that time, miami would have ran a screen on him to force him to cover someone on the perimeter, then the shooter would have had an easier look and then everyone would have been saying ,"why was duncan out there if they had 5 shooters on the floor". if we would have made our free throws *cough* manu, kawhi, tony *cough* game 6 would have been over before the last minute. we had at least 2 chances at the free throw line late in game 6 to lock it up.

WCoastPro
WCoastPro

@PanzerDSS Pop overplayed him throughout the series out of loyalty! He actually looked really good on offense in the first half.  Didn't look like he needed to retire at all then. Also in game 5 he was sensational. I blame coach for not limiting his minutes. These vets can't be playing more than 35 minutes with all the wear & tear. Down the stretch is when he faltered, it wasn't all game. 

This series is when they actually missed having Stephen Jackson - someone else they could trust with ballhandling and shooting. They replaced him with McGrady whom Pop couldn't trust to play a minute in game 7 due to rust. 

PanzerDSS
PanzerDSS

@WCoastPro @PanzerDSS And look what that loyalty got him.  Also, the game is down to your final possession and you put Ginobili in, who had about 15 turnovers in the last 2 games, and keep Parker on the bench? 

If you're the Spurs, are you going to pay Ginobili "Big Three" money when he had 3 good halves of basketball in a 7 game series?

cb512tx
cb512tx

@PanzerDSS @WCoastPro obviously ginobili will not make that money if he comes back this year, but don't overlook all the late game winners ginobili gave us this year including a HUGE one over golden state (if he doesnt make that shot i'm not sure the spurs make it to the finals) yes he hasn't played his best ball at all in the finals but most of the postseason he was great. we didn't loose the series because of  "overplaying" ginobili. also why does nobody ever question pop ever about his rotations and rest time on bench for players until the last 2 games of the season and then its like the only reason people give for us losing. he was doing what he had done all season and postseason. they always say don't forget how you got there. I have 0 problem with how pop coached this year and postseason, finals included. we lost, we had a chance to win game 6 if we made key free throws which we didn't.