Manu Ginobili implied that he’s considering retirement after a season that brought him injuries and uneven play but also a chance to go out on top.
Ginobili struggled with a host of ailments this year. There was a hamstring strain that kept him out for a long stretch, back spasms, a left quadriceps bruise, and a thigh bruise.
The two-time NBA All Star is also at a crossroads after this season, in the final year of a three-year, $39 million contract.
When asked if this could be his final season, Manu Ginobili said he didn’t know.
“All season long I kind of knew that I was going to play one or two more years. But when you are 36 [years old] — I’m going to be 36 pretty soon — everything is a day-by-day basis. Once the season finishes and I see how I feel, I can’t imagine me not playing at least one more year here, but time will tell. We’ll see.”
Ginobili admitted that he considered quitting as he was in the midst of his rash of injuries.
“For three quarters of the season it was the physical part,” Ginobili said. “I’d say, ‘No, I can’t deal with this anymore. I’m tired of rehab and trying to be in shape all the time.’
“But at this point I’m fine physically, so you are a little more optimistic. But you know, it’s been 18 years doing this. You kind of get tired and you want to enjoy a little more time at home sometimes. You go back to Argentina to see your people, and you think about it. I’m going to have time for that too.”
The San Antonio Spurs management said they are committed to keeping Manu on the team, but it’s ultimately up to him.
And Manu just isn’t sure.
“Sometimes I do think about retirement,” he said. “But then I say, ‘No, no. I love what I do. I’m very lucky to be in a franchise like this. So I really can’t picture myself being retired already.
“There’s a small chance. It’s not that I’m really considering, but I can never say ‘no’ for sure, because I sometimes consider it.”
Manu Ginobili could still go out on top. He and the Spurs are tied 2-2 with the Miami Heat, with the final home game of the season — and possibly Ginobili’s career — on Sunday night.