Tony Parker is 28

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Earlier this summer, someone published a why-the-Spurs-will-stink preview that included the statement that Tony Parker was “past his prime” as part if its argument. NBA.com is currently running an article under the title, “These players could be looking at a big decline this season“.  The article includes Tony Parker in its list of (potentially) declining stars, although its author takes a moderating approach in his discussion of Parker.

Meanwhile, Tony Parker has spent much of his summer working on his game with Spurs coach Chip Engelland, carefully following an intense summer regimen designed by the Spurs coaching staff.

Tony Parker is a 28 year old NBA All-Star heading into a contract year — talk of decline seems silly, at best.

Tony Parker is coming off a bad season, but it was also a season when he was hampered by injury from first to last, and those injuries were exacerbated by the emergence of George Hill. In other words, even when healthy, Parker’s role was shifting beneath his feet. It’s surprising he played as well as he did.

Players get injured. Numbers decline. That’s the way it goes. But when said players are 28 with only one subpar season in their history, it’s premature to park a hearse outside the practice facility. In fact, in the case of Parker, one could just easily put together an argument that his best basketball is ahead of him. If we’re identifying outliers in Parker’s career, last season comes complete with an “Outlier” badge pinned to its lapel.

2009-10 wasn’t a trend, it was an aberration. Prior to last season, the trend with Parker was up, up, up. Two season’s ago, he was one of the best players in the league.

Parker’s summer regiment is one of many indicators that the Spurs expect to improve from within this season.  How hard is it to imagine Tony Parker, George Hill, DeJuan Blair, Garrett Temple and Alonzo Gee playing better basketball this season. Who isn’t expecting Blair and Hill to take the proverbial next step during the upcoming campaign?

And this without discussion of Tiago Splitter, James Anderson, Gary Neal and Richard Jefferson Year 2.

The Spurs are improved, except for the sobering reality that Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili are a year older, and each of them was already an old man in basketball years.  But even this hard truth works in Parker’s favor.

When needed, Parker is able to pick up the slack on offense. The Spurs may want him to assert himself early to prevent Duncan and Ginobili from carrying an unnecessarily heavy burden prior to the All-Star break.

There is also this: if Tony Parker comes screaming out of the gate, the Spurs will get better trade offers for their All-Star, 28 year old, former Finals MVP point guard.  In short, Tony Parker is more likely to break out than decline this season.  The smart bet says his October through February numbers will rival his career highs. It’s the one scenario in which everyone wins.

  • ITGuy

    Let all the “trade Tony now” talk begin (again).

    Happy B-Day TP!!

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Timothy Varner

    ITGuy,

    I wasn’t trying to kick up a trade dust. I was just trying to point out that under every conceivable scenario, it’s in the Spurs/Parker’s best interest to let him get his alpha male on. And, more importantly, that talk of decline is silly.

  • ruth bader ginobili

    Agree with you Tim. But if the devil’s advocate had a blog, he would point out that small point guards who don’t shoot threes and rely on speed tend to decline quicker, as do players who have been in the league since they were 18.

    But you’re right, there’s plenty of reason for optimism too.

  • ITGuy

    Timothy Varner,
    I agree with you that talk of decline is silly.

    People have spent a lot of time commenting on how the Spurs should trade Parker and I disagree with them on that. I think he will get a contract extension and someday have his jersey retired (it’ll hang even if he does get traded or leaves the team) but, I don’t post my feelings on every story as the “trade TP” crowd seems to do, even after RC himself said that TP is not going anywhere.

  • DaveMan77

    I Just think the years of Manu and Tony taking those hits going to the lane has taking affect on them. Tony had that bad hip last year which really limited him but even still he played tough. I think TP is a warrior and he’s very smart player. Also don’t forget this year he’s not playing international ball and working out with spurs coaching staff. It just tells me he’s commited and he’s a true pro. I mean all this trade talk, the improvement of George Hill and TP still keeps it pro. How could you not like that. Every year it’s the same the big three need to be healthy and it hasn’t happened for a long time, maybe that’s the front office’s biggest mistake. But I’m really excited about the young talent they’ve brought in the last three years to keep the hope for another championship alive. Go Spurs Go.

  • zainn

    I just can’t wait to see what happens when duncan retires and see the BEASTLY numbers blair will put up, with splitter at center. We’ll be like the thunder for a year, and then back into contention, with tony leading the team with his veteranship. tony hill anderson blair splitter in three years, is gonna be a beastly lineup.

  • DieHardSpur

    Tony Parker will retire a Spur, plain and simple.

    Before last season, there was a ton of talk about the torch being passed from Tim to Tony, in that he would be the focus of the offence. Had Tony not had to fight with Plantar Faciaitis (sp?), I believe we would have seen career numbers.

    Tony Parker has what it takes to win; Heart, Determination, Skill, and Prefessionalism. He is a proven CHAMPION and as shown in the 2008-2009 season, he can carry a team that doesnt have another go-to player (No Manu 3/4 of the season; Only a piece of Tim Duncan).

    At the end of the day, TP is the best finisher under the rim, one of the fastest guys in the league with the ball in his hands, a professional, a leader, and most of all, a CHAMPION at heart. Barring injuries, I will say that Tony’s numbers look something like 22/7 with at least 33 mpg on 50%+/- from the field.

  • Jim Henderson

    Anybody that would suggest Parker is in decline is a fool. He has a least three stellar seasons in front of him. That said, I doubt we can afford to keep him after this season. We’re going to need some more young, athletic talent and length on the front line with the continuing decline of TD. TP may need to be used for that, plus he himself might want to head somewhere like NY anyway.

  • quincyscott

    I think the words you were looking for were “regimen” and “exacerbated.” Not trying to be all snooty and elitest, but these misuses bugged me a little.

  • vikombe

    I could not agree more, all the talk of TP’s decline is premature.

    I don’t understand the trade TP talk. Why would the spurs think of trading a top 5 point guard? Pop and RC have indicated that they’re not interested in moving TP but this has not stoped the trade talk. If TP were to be traded, the spurs would most definitely be the looser in the trade, especially when you consider our closing championship window. Trading TP would be a devastating loss of corporate knowledge.

    The TP and George Hill debate does not have to be an either/or debate. The Spurs can have both players and thrive.

    I’m betting TP will bounce back and average 20+ ppg, 6+ apg and sign and extension mid-spring.

    As currently constituted is this the most talented Spurs team ever? Or were the 2003 or 2005 Spurs teams more talented?

  • rob

    Parker is not on a decline. Though I do believe he has peaked. I do not believe he will improve upon what he already has done. And it would take a team with another all star caliber player on it for him to perform at the best he’s already performed.

    If Parker were the only all star type of talent on another team…I would expect it to be difficult for him to repeat the mvp year he had with the Spurs.

    Parker’s talent lends itself to creating for himself before being a distributor. Though his speed easily allows for such situations…it’s also easy to limit Parker from being effective by closing the lanes and forcing him to take bad shots and/or make errant passes.

    Simply put…he’s still very one demensional in his play. He’ll have to improve in a couple of areas during the course of his career to not become “pass his prime”. But I agree with Jim Henderson. The time to get something of equal value for Parker might be before the end of this season when…like Mr. Varner eluded to… I’m sure he’s going to come out like gang busters early this season October through February and put up great numbers helping to disperse the burden placed upon Duncan and Ginobili.

    But there might be Parker’s career statistics that may lend some credence to this report. And though it may not be skill decline that would warrant such a statement…there is proof that Parker can’t play an entire season without injury. Tony hasn’t managed to play a full season since 05-06 with the last 2 years having significant departure from an 82 game schedule. And the last time he played in 82 games was his sophmore season with the Spurs in 02-03.

    Can he manage to stay healthy enough to last 82 games? If this trend (injury) continues I can see how that can equate to being past his prime. For what good is it for a team to have such a dynamic player if they can’t stay healthy to get you through the playoffs?

  • john

    i agree that parker will have a good season – good article.

    btw, that finals mvp was pure crap – duncan should have won that. iirc, if you added their numbers for points, assists, and rebounds, tp is about the same as td. however, td’s defense was again under-rated, while parker was taking many possessions off.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Timothy Varner

    quincyscott,

    No doubt. I should have caught both mistakes. Thanks.

  • Tyler

    @ rob

    “there is proof that Parker can’t play an entire season without injury.”

    I wouldn’t go that far. I wouldn’t define a player’s durability by how many seasons he has played all 82 games. Really, what % of players actually plays all 82? I would guess it’s between 10 and 20% of all NBA players (and that still might be high).

    I would define having played 72 games as pretty durable. In that case, TP has played at least 72 games in 7 out of 9 years (and one of those years, 07-08, he played 69).

    I wouldn’t call TP injury-prone (he broke his finger last year – that’s not exactly an injury I worry about long term, as opposed to an ankle or knee). Is it a concern? Of course, especially because we rely so heavily on him. But Pop has done a pretty good job over the years managing minutes (see Manu and TD).

  • rob

    Also…This may not be a popular observation…And I hope it not be true…but I find it odd that Duncan wasn’t on that list of players apt to have possible decline.

  • Greyberger

    “Also…This may not be a popular observation…And I hope it not be true…but I find it odd that Duncan wasn’t on that list of players apt to have possible decline.”

    Indeed, considering that in most respects (minutes and games played being a notable exception) Duncan’s game has refused to decline much at all.

    We were told going into last season to expect a drop-off from Tim. And beyond some grumblings about his quickness and screen and roll defense, the decline never materialized.

    At some point age is going to catch up with Tim Duncan, but after last season it’s hard to say when.

  • rob

    @Tyler

    I would agree with you that playing in at least 72 games would not constitute concern.

    But what is a trend since 05-06 is the inability to play at least 80 games at his young age. Parker physically breaks down because of the way he plays. That alone..as he ages…is going to be a trend if he does not improve in other areas. His body simply won’t be able to take it. And if his only attribute…which it is…is the speed at which he plays…that will decline each and every year from this point on.

    05-06 Parker played in 80 games. 06-07 it declined to playing 77 games. 07-08 it was down to 69 games. 08-09 it increased slightly to 72 games. Last season, 09-10 56 games.

    The trend is there. He won’t be getting any younger. He must improve in other areas of play in order to remain as significant as his past because his speed will not always be there and his body will not continue to take the abuse associated with his current style of play.

    In that regards…in correlation to his current skill…we could possibly see a decline.

  • Jim Henderson

    vikombe
    September 3rd, 2010 at 11:37 am

    “As currently constituted is this the most talented Spurs team ever? Or were the 2003 or 2005 Spurs teams more talented?”

    Definitely not. All of our teams between 1999 & 2005-2007 were more talented, with star players young and/or in their prime, and great, clutch role players.

    Greyberger
    September 3rd, 2010 at 1:05 pm

    “At some point age is going to catch up with Tim Duncan, but after last season it’s hard to say when.”

    Actually, on the defensive end their has been a noticeable decline, and defense has been a big part of TD”s greatness. Other than more difficulties guarding the pick & roll, his bpg. have tailed off considerably, dropping from an average of 2.5 bpg. between 2000 & 2006, to 1.5 bpg. last year, his career low.

    rob
    September 3rd, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    “And if his only attribute…which it is…is the speed at which he plays…that will decline each and every year from this point on.”

    No, I’m afraid you’re overstating your case concerning Parker’s skill-set/versatility, or lack thereof. He does a lot more out there other than just using his speed to get to the rim. I’m not going to bother listing them all, but just think about it for a moment. And all players have to adjust their games as they age. I believe Parker will be as successful as other all-star players in making such adjustments.

    “05-06 Parker played in 80 games. 06-07 it declined to playing 77 games. 07-08 it was down to 69 games. 08-09 it increased slightly to 72 games. Last season, 09-10 56 games.”

    There is a trend lower, in his last three years. But I think last year was an exception, with the broken hand. That injury’s not due to wear & tear. Thus, the trend is really in the direction of about 5-10 games lower than his average up until 06-07. As a result, I expect to see him up in the low 70′s again this year, and to average that over the next 3-5 years (needs to for the most part continue to reject international play opportunities).

  • rob

    Jim Henderson

    “No, I’m afraid you’re overstating your case concerning Parker’s skill-set/versatility, or lack thereof. He does a lot more out there other than just using his speed to get to the rim. I’m not going to bother listing them all, but just think about it for a moment. And all players have to adjust their games as they age. I believe Parker will be as successful as other all-star players in making such adjustments.”

    I don’t think I overstated the fact that his speed is what makes him so good at the things he does. And let me make it clear that I love Parker’s game. I was one of the few when he first started playing for the Spurs that he would be an all-star when many thought he might only be versitile enough to play back up.

    I too hope he can adjust his game. He’ll have to as the years go by. But make no mistake…his speed is what allows him to do what he does. The pounding he takes in the lane will take it’s toll quicker than anything else he does.

    If he can develop some other attribute in his game that allows him to be as lethal as his speed…he’ll definately prolong his career and be a top player for years to come.

  • bduran

    I’ve seen some age performance analysis on wages of wins and a couple of other sites. The consensus seems to indicate that TP is past his prime … barely. Also, in the next several years after a players peak they decline very slowly until they hit their early 30s. So I’m not too worried about TPs performance last year. He was hampered by some injuries, but should return close to peak form this year.

  • Man In Black

    I’m of the opinion that the trade Tony contingent is being led and publicized by the NY Media who are longing to get some back the luster they haven’t had since Riley left. If you think about it, Other than talking about Madison Square Garden, what can one say about the Knicks that is positive. Bringing in Stoudamire was a good move, but him alone isn’t going to get them any shot at the title. You get an elite PG, then…you have the makings of a contender.
    At the end of the day, I think it will be CP3 that makes the move to Manhattan and that TP will retire, when ready, just like the other 2/3rds of the Big Three will.

  • Jim Henderson

    rob
    September 3rd, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    “And if his only attribute…which it is…is the speed at which he plays……”

    Rob, in response to this comment, you are indeed overstating your case. “Speed” is not the “only” attribute that TP has. It may be the main attribute that makes him an all-star, but TP would still be a very good player even if his speed was more “normal”. The fact is, he’s a better than average passer, ball-handler, shooter inside the 3 point line, finisher in traffic (speed or no speed), clutch player, “winner”, mental toughness, attitude, and “team” defender (for which he’s underrated). The two things for which he’s a bit below average is 3-point shooting & play-making (creator), and any other categories that I haven’t mentioned, he’s probably about average for an NBA level PG.

    bduran
    September 3rd, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    In my view, TP will not begin to show gradual, yet noticeable decline until at least age 31-32. I expect him to, even with limited minutes (32 mpg. ?) to some extent because of Hill’s emergence, to get about 18.0 ppg. & 5.8 apg., which is right at his in prime averages. I don’t think he’s in decline at all yet, and therefore should still be pretty good trade value at the end of this year.

  • Patrick

    Tony stays with the spurs. Plain and simple. We have the money to resign him. What are our options without him? George Hill is not a point guard. Look Deron Williams and Chris Paul will opt out and be traded to teams. Tony will stay because he knows we have a good chance of winning a championship. Unless he goes to the Lakers. I doubt that will happen. Tony will be the cornerstone of the future.

  • L-Man

    I agree with you Patrick. I want to see Parker on the Spurs for years to come. He played well in the playoffs which everyone forgets for some reason?

  • rob

    Jim Henderson

    “It may be the main attribute that makes him an all-star, but TP would still be a very good player even if his speed was more “normal”. ”

    If you’re saying he would still be an all star without his speed…I don’t agree. And I’m sure he would be no where near all star status if it wasn’t for his speed.

    His speed (the danger of it) is what sets up his other attributes. If his speed were “normal”…teams could (and would) play him different. He would not be the Tony Parker we know now. And there’s a huge difference between being an all star and “very good”.

    So his speed IS what gives him the opportunity to do other things. And I never said he couldn’t do other things…I just said he would need to improve in other areas once his speed starts to wain.

    And as far as decline. I don’t think he is in decline as far as talent is concerned at this point. Read above and you will see I mentioned that.

    Again…What I was pointing out was that his speed is what allows him to do what he does now. But the pace that he plays will start taking it’s toll sooner than later. And because of the toll his body will suffer from the pace he plays now,
    he will have to excell another way/avenue/style of play in order to hopefully maintain all star status in the near future (after 2 years?)

    And again…the trend does not lie…he has become less available throughout an entire season over the past 4 years. Last year being an anomoly…but none the less a downward trend for being available throughout an entire season.

    I would even surmise that if Tony should miss significant games again this year…his trade value declines in the eyes of other teams. Let’s hope he has a great (minimal injury) season.

  • SpursfanSteve

    I just have a random, off topic question.

    Where the hell is Graydon?

  • Gary

    I might be the biggest Spurs fan, but yes, he past his prime.. his prime was all the rings he got us :P

  • rob

    It would be great if somebody could find Tony’s shot percentages based on penetration layups and floaters….jump shots…and 3 point.

    I know his 3 point percentage has not been above 30% over the past 3 to 4 years.

    And I may not be recollecting properly…but I don’t think he is that good of a jump shooter percentage wise.

    So again…if that be true…if it were not for his speed…where else would he excell in percentages that would place him above average?

  • BALLHOG

    LMAO

    Speed and quickness are nice, but not the reason that Tony Parker is an NBA beast. Its what he has inside.

    Tony has killer instinct. That unwaivering desire to conquer. This is the stuff that true players are made of. The Jordan’s and Wades of the BB world.

    Parker is a keeper and I, for one, hope the Spurs keep him in thier plans. He is a winner.

    As for Duncan declining….Get Serious!

    Even though this guy is battling bad knees and high mileage, Tim is still putting up awsome numbers on a consistent basis. He is still a beast in the low post. He will be in better shape this year and hopefully have some help in the low block. Huge difference maker if Splitter can actually play with the big boys and Coach Brainiac Popovich figures out how to properly utilize D. Blair…

    That lil 13-9 game that Splitter put up againt Chandler, Odom, and company means nothing.

    Once we see him against the BEASTS….The likes of Garnett, David West, Carmello, Dirk, Shaq, Yao, etc…then we can paint the picture. Then we will know if this kid has the moxy to stand up to the NBA’s elite Centers and Power Forwards and hold his own.

    Until then, He’s just another unproven rookie who has yet to play an NBA game. Keep all fingers and toes crossed.

    Going to be an interesting season for sure………..

  • Hobson13

    BALLHOG
    September 3rd, 2010 at 7:34 pm
    “That lil 13-9 game that Splitter put up againt Chandler, Odom, and company means nothing.”

    You’re certainly entitled to that opinion, but both of those players are on Team USA for a reason. You can’t simply ignore his nice performance against a good team only because you don’t think it should count. Splitter held his own against guys who are getting paid a hell of a lot more than he will be paid next year.

    “Once we see him against the BEASTS….The likes of Garnett, David West, Carmello, Dirk, Shaq, Yao, etc…then we can paint the picture.”

    I agree that it would be interesting to see Splitter play against bigger and better competition (even though we would take Odom and Chandler on our team in a heartbeat), but many of these players you named are either WAY past their prime (Shaq, Garnett) are over rated (David West) or won’t even match up against Splitter in ANY game (Carmello).

    rob
    September 3rd, 2010 at 6:54 pm
    “His speed (the danger of it) is what sets up his other attributes. If his speed were “normal”…teams could (and would) play him different. He would not be the Tony Parker we know now.”

    I agree 100%. If Parker were blessed with only average NBA PG speed, then he would be an average NBA PG. He doesn’t have a deep ball nor does he possess any semblance of a post of game. Sure Parker has other attributes that are of high quality just like Jim said. However, all those (like you said) are set up by his ability (or threat) of him blowing by his opponent.

    Patrick
    September 3rd, 2010 at 6:15 pm
    “Tony will be the cornerstone of the future.”

    If Tony were 24 years old, I would agree. However, at this point, Tony is the not the future, but the present. His best years are right now, not 3-5 years in the future.

    My final analysis on Parker is simply this: If the team is struggling come late January and Parker’s trade value is up, I would expect him to be moved for 2-3 good young pieces. My thoughts are mixed on Parker. On one hand, for nestalgic reasons, I hate to lose him. I also believe he has 2 or maybe even 3 years left of playing high level baskeball. However, I don’t want this to turn into a Stoudamire situation where he has 2-3 prime years left and we have him signed to a max level contract for 5 years. Let somebody else overpay for Parker and mortgage their future for him (if his contract demands are outrageous), just not us.

  • Jim Henderson

    rob
    September 3rd, 2010 at 6:54 pm

    “If you’re saying he would still be an all star without his speed…I don’t agree.”

    No, I was saying that he would still be “a very good player” without top-notch speed, but not an all-star.

    “And there’s a huge difference between being an all star and “very good”.”

    No, there’s not a “huge” difference, but it is meaningful, or perhaps even significant. In fact TP would probably still start on the Spurs even if his speed was dialed back a notch. It would probably force him to work harder on his shooting (develop more range) & defense though.

    “…..And I never said he couldn’t do other things…..”

    Well, you did say this:

    “….And if his only attribute…which it is…is the speed at which he plays…”

    Now, maybe you didn’t mean it that way, but that assertion clearly suggests that Tony’s “only” attribute is his speed.

    “I would even surmise that if Tony should miss significant games again this year…his trade value declines in the eyes of other teams.”

    I agree with that, but I assume that he’s focused on getting in top shape during the off-season, with no international play, and heading into a contract year. I expect TP will play at least 70-75 games this year. I think he’s plateaued in the low to mid 70′s as opposed to the mid to upper 70′s in games played, and that should continue for the next 3-5 years. I do expect his minutes to be limited to about 32 per game, about 2-3 mpg. less than during his peak years, in an effort to preserve his body because of the way he plays.

    rob
    September 3rd, 2010 at 7:23 pm

    “I know his 3 point percentage has not been above 30% over the past 3 to 4 years.”

    Four years ago it was (not for the past three). 2006-07 was actually his career year in threes, at 39.5%, but he only put up 38 attempts. His attempts are way down since 2004-05.

    “And I may not be recollecting properly…but I don’t think he is that good of a jump shooter percentage wise.”

    I don’t have the data in front of me, but that aspect of his game has become much more reliable during the second half of his career. I think he shoots a pretty good percentage on jumpers inside 20 feet. Not great, but pretty good.

    “……if it were not for his speed…where else would he excell in percentages that would place him above average?”

    There’s a lot more to a player than just basic stats. Thus, from my previous post:

    “The fact is, he’s a better than average passer, ball-handler, shooter inside the 3 point line, finisher in traffic (speed or no speed), clutch player, “winner”, mental toughness, attitude, and “team” defender (for which he’s underrated).”

    BALLHOG
    September 3rd, 2010 at 7:34 pm

    “As for Duncan declining….Get Serious!”

    He has in fact declined on the defensive end, in particular. You do remember TD in his prime, right? He cannot guard the pick & roll as well as he used to, and he cannot block shots anywhere near where he used to. Last year he blocked HALF the shots he blocked in his best year, 8 years ago, when he was in his prime. Even during our last title run 3 years ago in 2006-07 he had 40% more blocks than he did last year, which was his career low. TD can still play. Nobody’s questioning that. But he is indeed in decline because at his best he was at such a high level.

    Plus he simply doesn’t have the stamina now. He’s hampered by that chronic knee problem. We can’t go to him 40 mpg as our go-to guy anymore. Those days are over. We tried to do it just in the short stretch of games during the playoffs against the Mavs and it burned him out. He played heavy minutes against the Mavs, played pretty well, and then his minutes & performance tailed off more against the Suns. The sustained intensity level was just too much for his body to hold up under for very long. That’s why we need to still improve our front line. We’re going to have to win by committee on the front line. We’re not going to be able to go to Duncan a lot, or consistently night in and night out, including during the playoffs. I would plan on limiting his minutes to 28 mpg. during the regular season, and 33-34 mpg. during the playoffs. We cannot afford to burn him out in the middle of a playoff run because we need him to be able to remain efficient in several aspects of the game when he is on the floor. He can still be very valuable for us if we use him in this fashion. But you can’t do things like play Blair 9 mpg. in the playoffs like Pop did last year. We’re dead if we don’t deliberately game-plan to spread the minutes of our front line in the playoffs. It’s got to be win by committee. The days of Duncan domination night in and night out are over.

  • rob

    Jim Henderson

    “Now, maybe you didn’t mean it that way, but that assertion clearly suggests that Tony’s “only” attribute is his speed.”

    Yeah. I should have stated that phrase better.

    Tony does have the intangibles you mentioned.

    But his speed is his dominant attribute. I just haven’t seen him improve significantly enough in other areas that allows me to believe that if his speed should wain that he would be a better than an average to possibly really good pg in this league.

    Thus my belief he has peaked. Still a top 7 PG in this league at this time. But his 180 lb. frame cannot take the constant abuse it endures from the way he plays and expect to hold up much longer than another 2 to 3 years without seeing noticable decline in it’s ability to perform at the speed we’re accustomed to watching or have the ability to sustain.

  • GitErDun

    If it weren’t for George Hill, TP would be playing for France again this year.

    Why would as one of you said “In a trade we would be the loser”. Why would the Spurs come out on the short end of a trade IF TP is really as valuable a player as many say he is??

  • Gary

    ok cmon, cut the crap…
    the only reason TP9 is that good is his speed

    don’t you remember how much he sucked last year when he couldn’t run ????

  • GitErDun

    If he goes anywhere, my guess (and also my choice) would be to see Parker go to the Nets. The Nets in the last 3 days have stated that only Lopez is untradable. That leaves Derrick Favors and draft choices. I’d take Favors and a 1st round draft choice, and whatever else makes the money work out.

  • The Beat Counselor

    Alright, crunched some #s.

    According to the NBA Hotspots page, in 2008/09 TP shot a combined 46% for 2 pointers (roughly) 15 ft out or more.

    In 2009/10, TP shot 36% from the same area during the regular season and 37% during the playoffs (which is surprising to me since he seemed to have performed well during the playoffs, but I guess it wasn’t his mid-range game that improved).

    It’s hard to tell how much a decline in speed would effect Tony’s midrange game (and his teardrop/floaters) because the threat of his speed makes his defender play off of him which of course opens up the midrange aspect of his game. One could hypothesize that Tony playing with plantar fasciitis last year could be similar to how he would play with diminished speed, but playing through injury has got to have a different mental impact on one’s game than aging.

    Of course Tony had nothing resembling a mid-range game early on in his career, so it’s not inconceivable that he will continue to add to his artillery as he loses his main weapon.

    Side notes (I haven’t posted in a while, so forgive me if these are tagential):

    As for TD, bless his heart, his offensive numbers look amazingly similar last year as they do every year and in some cases are even more efficient (if my memory serves correctly), but let’s not forget that he was double teamed SIGNIFICANTLY less last year so his offensive numbers should have gone UP actually (except for maybe his assists) if he were indeed not declining. And of course he struggled to defend the pick and roll and was usually so exhausted by the 4th qtr that his offensive production would drop off drastically and of course he couldn’t hit a damn free throw.

    Jim’s right, get Amundson. We need more depth up front and more rest for Timmy.

    As for my pick for a backup wing defender? I’m going to go out on a limb and say Lance Thomas from Duke. Undrafted and no offensive game to speak of, but a smart, quick defender with good size that can be had for practically nothing. Chip would just have to teach him how to hit that corner 3 (he already knows how to pass). As is, I think he could be similar to a Tony Allen or a Thabo Sefalosha. Of course I’ve haven’t heard anyone mention this guy since March, so what do I know…

  • spursfanbayarea

    Parker will come out like a bat out of hell this year. Contract years will do that to you. Parkers trade value will never be higher than it will be for this year. Either we ride with parker and commit to him long term, or we trade him for multiple pieces. With Hill and Colo developing overseas it may be time to consider getting talent at other positions. I would not be opposed to trading Parker to the Nets for Brook Lopez. That would give us a solid front line for years to come. Splitter could develop and be duncans successor. Front line rotation in the future would be Splitter, Lopez and Blair. That would be a great front court, and we would have Hill in the backcourt. Also having lopez now would give us a very formidable frontcourt that would be tops in the league. Ill take duncan, lopez, splitter, and blair. Im not saying the nets will do that trade, so I dont want anyone to have a hissy fit over it. Just mentioning what I would want back in exchange for Parker.

  • Jim Henderson

    Gary
    September 4th, 2010 at 8:07 am

    “ok cmon, cut the crap…
    the only reason TP9 is that good is his speed

    don’t you remember how much he sucked last year when he couldn’t run ????”

    Number one, he didn’t “suck” last year. He was injured. Number two, nobody is disagreeing that his “speed” makes him “all-star caliber”. But TP certainly does not suck, even with less speed. That’s ridiculous.

  • http://48minutesofhell.com/2010/09/02/death-of-tradition anonymous

    Parker is young and has been improving every year. He just had alot of injurys last year. Like it often happens, he is worth more to his current team than to any other because the fans have an attachment to him after all these years which means ticket sells. Ginobili, same thing. No other team apparently was willing to pay him 40 except the Spurs. He was worth that to the Spurs who will more than make that up on tickets alone, not to mention wins. Breaking up the core of a this dynasty wouldn’t be prudent. They didn’t break up Bird, mchale and Parish until he was in his mid fortys. It might be the same thing with the Spurs. Another thing, the vintage core of this dynasty attracts other good players and also fans.

  • TD fan for Life

    Why does everyone love TP…. If we trade him we can win now….. if we keep him its another year in the HoF carrer of TD wasted on the worlds Man cursh of the little Frenchmen…….. Hill is a better fit…. PERIOD. he can play without the ball and allow RJ and Manu become more of a focus…… look at TP in his prime. HE is a volume shooter who can’t hit 3′s, shoot free throws, or get And 1′s…… Why do we need him… We have Manu and Rj who are better at all phases of the game. If RJ takes the 17 shots a game TP takes, he will get 5-10 more points a game than TP……. PERIOD….. thats why anyone with half a brain wants to see TP gone for a couple of really good role players that can round out our team and stop letting TD’s title chasing dream die slowly

  • rob

    anonymous,

    “Another thing, the vintage core of this dynasty attracts other good players and also fans.”

    Regarding good players…Maybe 3 years ago. Not today.

    We’ll have to see what the new core of young “role” players the team has. This admin has always been able to find diamonds in the rough. It’s probalby why they have guaranteed or given extended guaranteed contracts to who they have now.

    I mentioned this earlier in another title. The Spurs may be planning for the near future now. Having secured some young and promising role players will allow them at the time of Duncan and Ginobili’s retirement to focus more in acquiring one or two franchise type players and already having a core of support to help entice that/those types of players.

  • rob

    Sorry for some of the spelling on some words to be dislexic. I have a tendacy to do that every now and then.

  • Jim Henderson

    The Beat Counselor
    September 4th, 2010 at 8:48 am

    “According to the NBA Hotspots page, in 2008/09 TP shot a combined 46% for 2 pointers (roughly) 15 ft out or more.

    ….In 2009/10, TP shot 36% from the same area during the regular season….”

    I looked on HotSpots at just the last regular season, 2009-10, and only looked at shooting percentages between the second and third ring (for the other top-ten ranked PG’s), which correct me if I’m wrong but I believe that area borders 15 feet out to 22 feet, just inside the 3-point line. For TP alone, I averaged his shooting percentage between 15-22 feet over 3 years (2006, 2007, 2008-09), because you can’t use last year as a valid comparison due to his chronic foot problems, and you also can’t use just his “career year” in 2008-09. Here’s what I found for ten of the best PG’s in the league (I left out rookies):

    Chris Paul – 89/188 = 47.3%*
    Steve Nash – 129/277 = 46.6%
    Derrick Rose – 216/488 = 44.3%
    Deron Williams – 119/272 = 43.8%
    Tony Parker – 478/1121 = 42.6%
    Chauncey Billups – 77/190 = 40.5%
    Mo Williams – 97/241 = 40.2%
    Jason Kidd – 40/105 = 38.1%
    Jameer Nelson – 62/164 = 37.8%
    Rajon Rondo – 53/150 = 35.3%

    * probably a career year for Paul in shooting percentage before his season ending injury.

    In my view, ranking 5th in the league out of the top ten PG’s, means that the mid-range jumper is clearly a strength of Tony Parker’s. A lot of these other PG’s use quickness to get open for their mid-range jumper as well (Rose, Rondo, Paul, Nelson, M. Williams), or they get open in transition or a motion offense. Parker is not dead losing some of his speed anymore than many of the other better PG’s in the league. And Parker has more intangibles than most. I still say that we probably need to seriously consider trading TP, but certainly the case can be made that he’s worth some good pieces back. Also, TP will not get as good of a new contract unless the Spurs are satisfied with what they can get in a sign & trade (bird rights advantages).

    anonymous
    September 4th, 2010 at 12:52 pm

    “Breaking up the core of a this dynasty wouldn’t be prudent.”

    I disagree. The “dynasty”, as you put it, is over. We need to get some more young talent for one or more of the big three while we can.

    “They didn’t break up Bird, mchale and Parish…..”

    That was a mistake in my view.

    spursfanbayarea
    September 4th, 2010 at 9:08 am

    “I would not be opposed to trading Parker to the Nets for Brook Lopez.”

    I agree, but I’m not as sanguine as you appear to be without Parker. I think we will need to upgrade at the PG as well. Also, a straight up trade might not offset properly because of the imbalance in salaries.

    How about Parker, Splitter, & Gee, for Harris, Lopez, & T. Williams.

    Harris would keep us in pretty good shape PG-wise (they would have Farmar to back-up TP), and Terrence Williams is a poor man’s Iggy with upside still remaining (but they have Travis Outlaw in front of him, plus their 1st round pick, Damion James), and he could also solve our back-up SF issue.

    Without TP signing a 3-4 year extension, NJ would not do this deal, in my view.

  • spursfanbayarea

    @Jim Henderson
    The trade you offered sounds great. I would do that trade in a second. And if we are just speaking hypothetically then yes its great. If we are speaking about realistic trades, then I don’t think it would happen. IMO it is heavily favored to the spurs. That trade nets us 2 proven starters for 1 proven starter and a potential starter for splitter. And as you have posted previously you do not believe that splitter will necessarily translate to a starter in this league. Also throwing in Gee for Williams is also heavily balanced toward the spurs. If the spurs were offered that trade, I would jump for joy! As you point out they would not do the trade without an extension from parker. It would also put the Nets into a complete rebuild mode and at this stage I don’t think parker would sign an extension to be with them. But I like your suggestion, unfortunatley I do not think it is realistic.

  • rob

    Jim Henderson

    “How about Parker, Splitter, & Gee, for Harris, Lopez, & T. Williams.”

    I can’t see giving up more for less. Especially if we don’t know enough about Splitter. That said…I don’t see the Nets giving up Lopez for the same reason.

    You are right Jim when mentioning ad nauseum about acquiring a player like Amundson. This team does not need a complete make over. It needs a couple of vital parts/role players. A viable backup SF and a specifically talented Big to be exact.

    I know I have mentioned a few trade scenarios over the past month involving Parker. But as I look at this deeper…I can see the Spurs standing pat with more of an ability to get what they want for the future than making a trade at this time.

    The talent they have acquired are not going to be franchise players. But they do have high potential at being prominent role players.

    Say Tony doesn’t decide to be a Spur after this year. That’s 13 million dollars the Spurs have to attract another franchise type of player. Say the CBA limits teams and players to earning less than they currently garnish. That means the Spurs have even more financial lee way to sign such talent.

    Duncan retires after 11-12…and that gives the Spurs financial utopia depending on the new CBA.

    I think the Spurs are looking much further ahead than what many of us are hoping regarding the here and now. And the here and now doesn’t look so bad with Parker, Ginobili and Duncan if any two of the young players develop into above average to really good players in this league.

    Does it mean they have an above average chance of contending for the title now? It’s the gamble they obviously are taking with who they have now. That said…another security player at one of those positions you and I have mentioned would be the best bet. And perhaps before the season begins..this team and it’s fans will get so lucky to have that happen. But I contend the Spurs are rebuilding…Just opposite in the way we think they need to rebuild.

    Have the role players already established…and when the time comes…have the resources and role talent to surround one or two NEW franchise players when our current franchise players retire.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    Tony might have a year, maybe two, before he starts his decline. He is absolutely not worth $14-15 Mil/ yr for 4-5 years. I love what Tony has done for the Spurs, but let’s not let emotions cloud business decisions.

    Maybe, he’ll want less money than I think. Actually, I hope he does. I hope he’ll “settle” for a 4 yr $40 Mil contract and stays in SA. That would be 1-2 years of peak Tony and a couple more years of declining Tony. Fair contract considering what he’s meant to the Spurs during the championship years. Anything more than that and he burdens the Spurs.

    BTW, Tony is not a good ball handler; He is an average ball handler at best. Sorry guys, but that is an overestimation.

  • spursfanbayarea

    @rob
    Just because Tony parkers contract expires, it doesnt mean that we have that cap space to sign other players. You have to remember that teams are allowed to exceed the soft cap to keep players with their bird rights. Just like this year when Jefferson opted out we did not have his 15 million dollars off the books to go after the max players. Just to clarify your point on open cap space. Next year we still have duncan at 21million, ginobilli 13 million , jefferson 8, splitter 3, blair 1 , g.hill 2, anderson 1.4, mcdysess 5. That alone puts us close to the cap. If Parker were to walk we would probably have 4 million of cap space on current CBA. The next CBA may be more strict with a hard cap and smaller cap. If you want to get a franchise player with his 13 million you need to do a sign and trade to acquire such players. Or pray that we get another duncan/ robinson in the lottery. Much more likely to get the player you want with a sign and trade.

    @Lenneezz
    Being that parker is in his peak at 28. I do not believe he will settle for a short contract which will be his last generous contract under the current CBA. Secondly he will not take a large pay cut to stay with the spurs. Parker is 28 years old and will be looking for a 5-6 year contract with possible opt outs. Ginobilli at 33 was able to get a 3 year 39 million dollar deal. Parker who is 5 years younger will want at minimum same money but probably throw on a few years. If you do not believe parker is worth that money then you should hope for a trade of tony parker while his trade value will be at his highest.

  • spursfanbayarea

    Open question to the forum. What about a trade of Parker and Splitter for Carmelo Anthony? Any takers on that proposition? The numbers work in the ESPN trade machine. Carmelo isnt happy with Denver and would welcome a trade to a winner. Splitter would get to play with country man Nene, and Denver would get all star pg in return. Granted this would drastically change the makeup and system of the spurs. But would anyone be open to it? Dont really know if parker would accept an extension to denver(therefore dont know how realistic the trade is), but would be fun to discuss if people would do the deal if offered.

  • Jim Henderson

    spursfanbayarea
    September 4th, 2010 at 7:10 pm

    “But I like your suggestion, unfortunatley I do not think it is realistic.”

    No question the deal I suggested is on the optimistic side of the spectrum. Avery Johnson would have to REALLY like Parker (and get a long-term extension), and be confident that Splitter can be an effective starter at the center position, with Petro & Zoubek in the back-up role.

    Parker, Farmar
    Morrow, Ross
    Outlaw, James
    Murphy, Favors
    Splitter, Petro

    Lenneezz
    September 4th, 2010 at 8:17 pm

    “BTW, Tony is not a good ball handler; He is an average ball handler at best.”

    He is an “above average ball-handler”, no question. You must be confusing “ball-handling” with creating/passing off the dribble, but they are two different things. If this is not the reason for the above assertion, I’d like you to tell me who on the above list of the better PG’s in the league is a “BETTER ball-handler” than TP. Not Mo Williams; not Billups; not Rose; not Rondo, and not Nelson. And not many other guards in the league, for that matter, and that clearly makes him above average. TP doesn’t make a lot of fancy moves off the dribble, but he’s a very solid ball-handler, even under pressure.

    spursfanbayarea
    September 4th, 2010 at 10:16 pm

    “If you want to get a franchise player with his 13 million you need to do a sign and trade to acquire such players. Or pray that we get another duncan/ robinson in the lottery. Much more likely to get the player you want with a sign and trade.”

    Yes, that’s essentially correct.

    spursfanbayarea
    September 4th, 2010 at 10:24 pm

    “Open question to the forum. What about a trade of Parker and Splitter for Carmelo Anthony? Any takers on that proposition?”

    First of all, are we in essence exchanging one year rentals of TP & Melo in this deal? Is that the purpose? If so, I don’t see the point, particularly for Denver because of the overlap with TP & Billups. And I don’t really like the idea of giving up Splitter to just have Anthony here for one year. As far as I’m concerned, a deal like this could only work if Billup’s was put into the deal (with additional piece(s) from the Spurs), and both Parker & Anthony were amenable to signing long-term extensions with their respective new teams.

  • spursfanbayarea

    @Jim
    Yes it was meant to be with extensions(I should have been clearer). In my post I put up the statement that I dont know how likely parker would do an extension to denver. But the scenario ideally would be both putting up extensions.

    Realistically you are probably right in that they would want to get rid of billups. But I dont believe they would absolutely have to. Billups has a team option after this season. So he could be used to acquire other talent as a salary dump which is the rage these days. If nuggets did trade melo, they could use billups as a trade chip to surround parker with other players.

    It would gut our team to take on billups and melo. 31 million of cap space at current salaries. We could let billups go at the end of the year, but then we would have sacrificed all of our key young role players. Unless they were willing to take back richard jefferson and matt bonner.

    Or we would have to hope we could trade him for some other pieces for a team looking to get rid of some long term contracts. But that would leave the team learning to play with 3 new starters in a year and that usually doesnt produce championships(Celtics were exception).

    If we are not able to get any suitable trades, then in essence we are just left with duncan ginobilli and melo and a bunch of cba players. Now if duncan and ginobilli were on the right side of 30 it would be a risk worth taking. But thats not our reality.

    Now the scenario if we could just trade one year rentals of parker and garbage for melo for a one year rental I would definetly consider that. It would in essence put us much closer to a championship in duncans and ginobillis closing window. And if melo wanted to leave at the end of the year, he would have to do a sign and trade to get max contract. That big 20 million dollar trade exception can be used to fill out the roster and would be larger than a trade exception gained from letting parker (roughly 14-15million)go. But you are right we can not include splitter for just a one year rental.

    Trades are so complicated its no wonder they barely ever happen.

    Trade Scenario
    Parker, Bonner, Jefferson, McDyess for Billups and Melo?
    Would you do that?

    Or
    Parker McDyess for Melo as one year rentals?