Manu Ginobili seemed to be moving just fine during the NBA Finals — he had 19 points on 6-of-11 shooting in the closeout Game 5 — and not long after the season ended he committed to play for his native Argentina in the World Cup this summer.
But he apparently was doing that with a stress fracture in his right leg, one just diagnosed that likely will keep him out of the World Cup this summer, reports Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports.
Ginobili, 36, was diagnosed with the early stages of a stress fracture in his exit physical with the Spurs. It’s an injury that appears to have developed late in San Antonio’s championship season, sources told Yahoo Sports.
Ginobili is seeking a second medical opinion before proceeding, sources said.
The Spurs had their exit physicals on June 17 and three days later he was talking about playing for Argentina, so this was unexpected.
The recovery time for this kind of injury is expected to be two months, which could have him back in time for the World Cup if he pushed, but that/s not really the Spurs way. Gregg Popovich and everyone else will pressure him to take the summer off. Rest and recover.
Last season he averaged an efficient 12.3 points a game (true shooting percentage of .590 and a PER of 20) in 68 games, mostly off the bench.
After two straight trips to the Finals, the Spurs are getting the band back together for one more year and are the bar to clear for all the other teams that fancy themselves contenders in the West.
Tristan Thompson is a man without a contract. By not signing the qualifying offer with the Cleveland Cavaliers he put himself in limbo, the rare NBA holdout. Right now his options are to sign the deal on the table (the Cavs still have the five-year, $80 million offer out there), get the Sixers or Blazers to offer him a max contract (which neither team has shown any interest in doing), or hold out and hope the Cavaliers make a better offer. If he holds out for the entire season he becomes a restricted free agent again next summer — exactly like he is right now.
Without signing the qualifying offer and the threat of leaving, Thompson hurt his leverage.
But he has a little leverage. He and his agent Rich Paul had one other card, and it got played Saturday.
LeBron James and Thompson share an agent in Paul. LeBron has largely remained silent through this process but if he wants something in the Cleveland organization, he usually gets it. And he wants Thompson back at practices.
LeBron’s leverage is going to be put to the test. The Cavaliers have let it leak they are not that concerned about LeBron leaving them next summer over this — and they’re right. The damage to LeBron’s brand if he broke the hearts of Cleveland fans again would be crushing, unless he leaves for a very good reason. Overpaying Thompson is not that reason.
However, LeBron’s comment could push the Cavaliers to try to find a compromise.
For the Cavaliers, a lot of how they view all this comes down to their tax bill. The Cavaliers already have $94.9 million in guaranteed salary on the books, putting them $10.2 million over the luxury tax line, at a cost of more than $16.25 million. What this means if (or when) they sign Thompson is his first $10 million in salary would cost them $28.75 million in tax and every dollar above that for the next $5 million costs them $3.75-to-$1. Look at it this way, by my count $14 million this year to Thompson would cost $43.75 million in tax — the total for Thompson at that price is $58 million. While that’s not all on Thompson it’s a lot of cash, and Thompson wants a max deal that starts at more than $16 million a year.
Owner Dan Gilbert is already going to pay the highest tax bill in the NBA this season, but if he balks at those figures it’s hard to blame him.
Mario Hezonja, the No. 5 pick in this year’s draft, has never lacked for confidence. The Croatian guard made his pro debut in the Magic’s preseason game against the Hornets on Saturday and did this:
Between Hezonja, Elfrid Payton, Victor Oladipo and Aaron Gordon, the Magic have a nucleus of young players that has the potential to be a lot of fun. Even if they’re still a few years away from contending, they’re definitely going to be a League Pass favorite this year.