Corporate Knowledge: July 30, 2012

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* Manu Ginobili is an innovator. The San Antonio Spurs Argentine shooting guard is known for inventing new angles and shots on the fly, merging creativity and competitive will with a genius basketball IQ.
While his playing career is winding down, one can only hope he explores a future as the next Spurs player-turned-head coach before vanishing back to Argentina. Judging by his exchange with San Antonio Express-News columnist Buck Harvey, he has a chance to be one of the all-time great coaches given his devious game plan for defending long-time Spurs backcourt partner, Tony Parker:

“Go right up to him,” Ginobili said, “and go ‘whooo!’”

Ginobili blew air out of his mouth.

“That should fog up his goggles,” he said

Manu Ginobili is the greatest.

* The Los Angeles Lakers have the potential to have improved to a veritable offensive powerhouse on par with anything the Spurs built last season. The Thunder, on the rise, bested an aging-in-all-the-important-areas Spurs team in the Western Conference Finals. Despite this, the Spurs appeared to have simply held serve over an offseason in which the Lakers Steve Nash acquisition and Thunder’s natural progression figure to push each team to another level.

And yet there is still optimism from some. In an interview with HoopsHype’s Raul Barrigon, David Robinson proclaimed the Spurs should have won last year—and will return better the next:

It was just the consistency. The young guys kind of got a little bit shaken up and they stopped doing what they did. They were playing so great… We were getting points off the bench, but all of a sudden we got nothing the last four games. Same thing happened to the Thunder. Their bench went south in the Finals. They got no help, it was just [Russell] Westbrook and [Kevin] Durant all the time. You gotta have the balance, especially for an older team like us. We have to have that balance. Our guys will be a year older, a year more mature… I think we’re gonna be better. We’ll be right there again next season.

So long as the gradual descents of Ginobili and Tim Duncan don’t accelerate into a full-on nosedive, the Spurs will return a better team next season. Though they displayed tremendous chemistry last season, the 2011-2012 Spurs were a hodgepodge of new faces and rotation pieces thrown together in a condensed season.

Given a full schedule, training camp, and practice time throughout the season—with a coach and roster proven to make the best use of those advantage—the Spurs will return a better defensive team with more consistent contributions from a more experienced supporting cast.

*Gothic Ginobili’s Alex Dewey with a few noteworthy-for-Spurs fans Olympic recaps, including his thoughts on what one Anderson Varejao might do for a team like the Spurs or Lakers.

*And finally, a non-basketball-related point—Over the weekend we said goodbye to a friend–Jessica Redfield, as she was known in media circles. Jessica was, of course, one of the victims in the Colorado shootings on July 20. She was an aspiring  journalist that we (being Andrew and myself) got the pleasure of knowing while covering Spurs games over the past few seasons.

I didn’t want to write anything about Jessica in the wake of her untimely death, there are far more qualified people that can do her justice. There are plenty of heartfelt stories you can take the time to find and read, all of which are absolutely true. I did, however, want to direct any of our readers to the foundation setup in her memory:

Jessica Redfield Scholarship Fund 
@JRGFoundation

  • DorieStreet

    Will DeJuan Blair make the significant improvements needed so he does not become a spectator again in the playoffs? Will Matt Bonner contribute befitting his experience (8 years in the league, 6 as a Spur) in the postseason and not disappear again as if he was a rookie?