June 16, 2013
Tony Parker deserts French legion for Spurs medical

The San Antonio Spurs are taking no chances with Tony Parker's troublesome ankle, calling him back mid-tournament from duties with the French national team after the point guard injured both his right thigh and ankle in a game with Austria.

Parker reluctantly boarded a trans-Atlantic flight for the Spurs medical staff to give him a full examination, after he ended up on crutches when he collided with an Austrian player in a qualifier for the European championships on July 23. A subsequent MRI exam, while negative, was apparently not good enough for the Spurs organisation, who it must be said have the small matter of a $66 million investment over six years into Parker.

The French national team put out a statement containing some comments from Parker. "Honestly, I don't understand this decision, because of all the tests done with the French doctors and the Spurs," he said.

"I am obligated to follow what my club wants me to do, but I hope to come back as soon as possible to participate in the qualification with the French national team."

Parker has had previous injuries to the same ankle. He will return in time for the start of a six-team tournament that will decide the last qualifying team for next September's Eurobasket event in Poland.