Manu Ginobili’s Emotional Standing Ovation In GM4 & Funny Postgame Presser
Manu Ginobili — the greatest Sixth Man of the past couple of decades and one of the three best ever, along with John Havlicek and Kevin McHale — was given an emotional standing ovation by the San Antonio crowd and even the visiting Golden State Warriors as he checked out of his last game of the season and possibly the last NBA game of his career.
“He’s a special player, special human being.” Said Popovich after the series-ending loss about the 39-year old Ginobili, who had 15 points, a team-high 7 assists and 3 steals in his first playoff start in four postseasons. “I’ve probably said it many, many times before. He’s one of those guys who becomes the heart and soul of your team because of his exemplary competitiveness.”
Pop then compared Manu to a few all-time greats.
“He’s really an anomaly in that regard. He has that same foot-on-your-neck attitude that Kobe and Michael had, those types of guys. Magic and Larry. He’s got the same attitude and plays with that same fire. He always has. He’s been a huge part of any success that we’ve had. To see him at this age, giving us games here and there that take you back. It’s just a thrill.”
Ginobili’s postgame interview started off with a couple of questions and answers in Spanish, which led to a great first question in English.
“Manu, you didn’t just retire in Spanish?”
The question got a big laugh from the man with four championships and one bat on his NBA resume.
“No, no I haven’t.” Replied Manu, who isn’t sure if he wants to hang up the sneakers yet.
“I do feel like I can still play, but that’s not what’s going to make me retire or not, it’s about how I feel, if I want to go through all that again.
“It felt like they wanted me to retire, like they were giving me a celebration night. I always said that I wanted to let it sink in for three weeks. Whatever I decide to do I’ll be a happy camper.”