While the San Antonio Spurs and Manu Ginobili get over their slight conflicts of interest about the FIBA World Cup, Tony Parker is doing the exact opposite – staying away from basketball this summer.
After participating in competitive basketball for the past three years without a break, Parker has made it very clear to the Spurs and his national team in France that this summer will be different. This was the first summer since 2010, that Parker has put basketball to the back burner. He played an astounding 91 extra games on top of the regular 82-game schedule – just remarkable.
Not only did he just participate, but he led his French National Team and the Spurs to championships in their respective leagues. Parker may have seemed like an iron-man at times, but it caught up with him this season. The variety of maladies that plagued the point guard for most of the season almost cost him and the Spurs a chance to a hoist the Larry O’Brien trophy above their head.
Now with his new found freedom you could say, Parker has time to focus on getting his body back to full strength, spending time with his newborn son and finance, and getting away from the game for awhile. Hopefully his unusual break from basketball will leave him refreshed mentally and physically. Parker has been the driving force for the Spurs’ offense for a good time now, and his reemergence as the most underrated (best) point guard in the league will be one of the biggest reasons for a sixth championship in the Alamo City.
Parker isn’t getting any younger, but if he can learn anything from teammate Tim Duncan, it’s that rest is going to be his best friend for the rest of his career. At only 32 years old, Parker can easily extend the lifespan of his career by just a summer off here and there.