San Antonio Spurs: When is Tony Parker’s return game with the Hornets?
By Rob Wolkenbrod
When will Tony Parker return to the AT&T Center and play the San Antonio Spurs as a member of the Charlotte Hornets in the 2018-19 season?
The San Antonio Spurs faced an overhaul of offseason changes, including the trade of Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green to the Toronto Raptors and Kyle Anderson signing with the Memphis Grizzlies. None of them had the length of stay and impact as Tony Parker, however.
Parker departed San Antonio to sign a two-year, $10 million contract with the Charlotte Hornets just days into free agency. This marked the first time any “Big 3” member of the Spurs (Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili as the others) left to play for another NBA franchise.
In the 2018-19 season, the Spurs will face the Hornets twice, one of which will take place at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, TX, and mark Parker’s first game back in a different uniform. It’s set for Monday, Jan. 14 at 8:30 p.m. ET, and just weeks after Leonard and Green will face the Silver and Black for the first time.
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Parker’s return is bound to be emotional, especially after his heartfelt piece on The Players’ Tribune that thanked the organization and the fans. A standing ovation before the game, a video tribute and the potential impossibility of jeering at his baskets for the Hornets may be in line when he steps into the AT&T Center and become a night to remember.
One day, Parker will come back as a member of the Spurs, except to have his No. 9 jersey retired and placed in the rafters. After four championships, an NBA Finals MVP award and other accolades, he stands near the top of the franchise’s all-time greats.
First, it will take Parker in a different jersey for at least one season for everyone to get used to. It transpires in January and on Tuesday, Mar. 26 in Charlotte.