In an era where few players stick with only one team, Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker have spent their entire careers with the Spurs.
Parker appreciates that continuity, that loyalty.
He thinks it says a lot about the Spurs and what they stand for.
Asked if more teams should try to rebuild around an aging core, as the Spurs did compared to the Celtics, Parker said Sunday:
“I can’t talk for other teams, but the Spurs have always been very loyal to their guys. You see George Gervin, David Robinson, Sean Elliott.”
Parker might be unaware the Spurs traded away two of them, Gervin and Elliott.
Well, that’s awkward.
The Spurs dealt Gervin to Chicago, where the Iceman retired. They also traded Elliott for Dennis Rodman, though Elliott’s loyalty to San Antonio still irks Pistons fans who believe the forward sulked through his lone season in Detroit before re-signing with the Spurs the following offseason.
Now, the Spurs have helped Gervin and Elliott after their playing careers. Gervin is the team’s Community Responsibility Representative, and Elliot is an analyst on Spurs’ broadcasts. But those positions don’t mean San Antonio will retool around Parker once the older Duncan and Ginobili retire.
If the Spurs believe keeping Parker suits their interests, they’ll keep him. If they believe they can get more for him in a trade, they’ll trade him.
This is just another example of the Spurs getting a benefit of the doubt other teams don’t.