San Antonio Spurs: Tony Parker wants to stay despite free agency
By Rob Wolkenbrod
Tony Parker will be a free agent this offseason, but he still wants to remain with the San Antonio Spurs.
The 2017-18 season started strange for San Antonio Spurs point guard Tony Parker and continued from there. He missed the first month due to recovery from a torn quadriceps that was suffered during the 2017 NBA Playoffs. Following this, he started a handful of games while receiving a “return from injury management” designation for the matchups he missed.
Things took another turn for Parker in January; head coach Gregg Popovich replaced him in the starting lineup with Dejounte Murray, the team’s sophomore guard that started the season at point guard. This moved the Frenchman into a bench role for the first time in his 17 NBA seasons.
After the 2017-18 season, Parker’s $15.4 million will come off the books and make him a free agent. The possibility will be there for another team to acquire his services, but the 2001 NBA Draft pick has every intention of remaining in San Antonio, according to Jabari Young of the San Antonio Express-News:
“I want to stay,” Parker told the Express-News. “My priority is to stay here. I want to stay here for sure.”
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This comment ties to Parker’s words from the 2017 offseason, when he expressed interest in playing with the Spurs for three more seasons. This would take him through the 2020-21 season and make it 20 years in the NBA. Whether the organization fulfills this desire remains to be seen, and probably will not be known until the offseason.
If the 35-year-old guard returns for the 2018-19 season, he will likely stay as the backup point guard, pending the Spurs do not keep Murray as the starter or decide to revert the depth chart. His experience, mentorship and championship pedigree, similar to Manu Ginobili, would be important to this young roster and its continued turn from the Tim Duncan era.
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Will Parker remain a Spur after the 2017-18 season? What kind of contract would he deserve?