Manu Ginobli is a 40-year-old basketball star who is older than most of his fans, and I bring that up because he is older than I. Being 39 reminds me that I am far too old to play professional basketball, and Manu plans to play until he is 42. I know that he is more than capable of playing, but he will not be able to play that much, and I must ask what the Spurs get from this transaction.

He is a legacy

Manu is a legacy player in San Antonio, and he is so beloved that it is hard to imagine him doing anything else. We want to see him in that uniform because he has been with Gregg Popovich from the beginning.

Manu was the beginning of the international player craze that took off with him and Dirk Nowitzki, and he is proof that skill will outlast toughness in most cases. Players such as Shaquille O'Neal have not lasted nearly as long, and it is because the sheer amount of skill makes up for Manu's lack of physical ability at his advanced age.

He is a leader

Manu is a leader who can teach younger players how to work in the San Antonio system. They have a few younger players who will become a part of the San Antonio culture that could go on forever. They have the right structure with the Spurs, and they will continue to repeat with players such as Manu. He is an elder statesman that other players respect, and he will be the first to admit when he is wrong.

He is a stellar point guard

Is Manu the best point guard in basketball? No. Is he one of the best overall guards in basketball? No. Would you bet against him? No. He is more important to the Spurs as a funnel for offense in tough times than he is as a scoring machine. He will come off the bench to score 25 points a few times a season, and he will hit the clutch shots for the Spurs that no one else can hit.

We cannot count the Spurs out because they have so many weapons. I personally believe that the Warriors will win another title, but they are going to be tested by a strong San Antonio club once again.

The Spurs have a place for him

The Spurs would have asked him to retire if they did not have a spot for him on the roster, and I believe that Manu will be given something to do that benefits the team.

He will likely need to retire once this contract is up, and I hope that he is not hurt before that happens. He is prone to injury, but I believe that he will survive because the Spurs know how to control minutes and keep their older players in good shape. Keeping Manu around with Tony Parker allows them to close out their careers together if they like.

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