Manu Ginobili will be 37 by the 2014 World Cup. That isn’t an age usually conducive to success at the international level.
But he’s Manu Ginobili and that means he can accomplish things most people simply cannot. Carving up defenses and firing pinpoint passes to his teammates certainly applies.
He has already written about the possibility of representing Argentina for presumably the last time. Now he offered a subtle hint to FIBA.com that he may play though he is keeping his options open.
“I never said I would continue, and I never said I would quit,” Ginobili said.
“There are still two years, it’s a long time. I don’t know how I will be and everything will depend on that. But I do know that I will be 37 and it’s not the same at that age as another age.”
Argentina has carefully cultivated an entire offense predicated on the pick-and-roll prowess of Ginobili and another final stand will likely give their fans a transient taste of greatness before they inevitably fall from grace. As Luis Scola, Andres Nocioni, Pablo Prigioni and Carlos Delfino make their way out of the collective psyches of basketball fans, they will be the last liaisons between the Golden Generation and the younger generations that have a lot to live up to.
Those younger generations will look to Ginobili, especially, and realize that international greatness can be achieved even without elite athletic ability. You just need heart and a cool bald spot.