Report: Manu Ginobili likely to return and Pau Gasol could join him with Spurs
San Antonio is going to be strong again
It looks like the San Antonio Spurs are going to be contenders again next season. While Tim Duncan's decision about retirement is still up in the air, The Vertical's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Manu Ginobili is likely coming back and Pau Gasol could be joining him.
"There's a strong belief that Manu Ginobili is probably going to play another year," Wojnarowski said on The Vertical podcast with Chris Mannix. "I think he's not tying himself to Tim, what Tim does. It's not like, 'Hey we're going to go out together.' I think Manu feels -- if he feels like he has more in him, he's going to play."
Ginobili will turn 39 in a month, and he's going to play for Argentina at the Olympics in Rio. He officially opted out of his $2.9 million salary for next season, but that was just a formality. He averaged the fewest minutes of his career this past season, but was still effective as a playmaker and shooter off the bench.
Gasol is reportedly done with the Chicago Bulls, and San Antonio has always seemed like a natural landing spot for him. He'd be a perfect fit with the Spurs' style and system, whether Duncan is in the lineup or not.
"I'm told that Pau Gasol is a real priority for them," Wojnarowski said. "They tried to get him before he signed with Chicago. The Bulls were able to offer him a little bit more than the mid-level that year, I think the Spurs had a mid-level for him. They can maneuver in San Antonio and probably be able to offer him market value. We'll see what that's going to be."
The Spurs will chase Kevin Durant and they know that they need to get younger and more athletic, but that doesn't mean they're going to throw out all the success they've had with heady veterans. If Ginobili wants to return, they will welcome him, and Gasol, who turns 36 next week, would be a smart signing.
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