After putting off retirement this offseason, San Antonio Spurs' Manu Ginobili is turning in another solid season through 24 games. Off the bench he is averaging 8.3 points, 2.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists, and 41% field goal shooting in 20.7 minutes per game.
In the team's recent win over Detroit, Manu recorded 12 points including three timely three-point shots to help the team put away a tough Pistons squad.
Not bad for a player in his 16th season and at the ripe young age of 40 years old who still comes through for the Spurs when things get tough on the court. And it's enough to remind Head Coach Gregg Popovich that nothing should come to a surprise from Manu.
“I don’t know how we can be surprised anymore, we keep seeing it. It’s not a surprise anymore," said Popovich after the win over the Pistons.
In the last two games played, Ginobili is averaging 11.5 points and 50-percent shooting from the 3-point line in wins for San Antonio.
Said Popovich, "Maybe it was at the beginning of the year, but he takes really good care of himself and we’re trying to be smart on how we play him.”
The numbers alone don't really capture Manu's impact on the team this season. He is a positive force in the locker room, a reminder of the team's championship run, and an inspiration for the younger players on the team.
And that's not a surprise to anyone.