Tony Parker has no plans to retire, wants to play 20 seasons with Spurs
Tony Parker may be 35 years old and in the twilight of his NBA career, but that doesn’t mean he intends to ride off into the sunset just yet.
The San Antonio Spurs veteran point guard even envisions playing well beyond the 2017-18 NBA season. In fact, Parker hopes to sign an extension with the Spurs so he can play a full 20 seasons with the only NBA team with which he has ever played.
Parker, currently recovering from surgery for a torn quadriceps, broke down his outlook during an interview with French publication RMC Sport, via News 4 San Antonio.
“I hope that the Spurs will offer me a final contract, Parker said. “I will be entering my final contract year, it will be the first time in my career that I will be free agent. I’ve already said it several times, I want to play three more seasons, do the 20 seasons with the Spurs, and I think it’s two decades. I want to continue to perform well on the floor.
“Mentally, you must be strong to come back from an injury like this. I do not want people to think it was my last game, that I was not going to come back, because in my head, I will come back.”
Parker isn’t expected to return to action until sometime around January. Such a late debut certainly would save on some wear and tear on Parker, who likely will also continue to benefit from Gregg Popovich’s penchant for resting players.
The Spurs, should Parker prove himself fully healthy, likely would demonstrate loyalty and offer the guard a new deal after he’s paid $15.45 million for the 2017-18 season. But how much can the Spurs expect out Parker, who has considerable wear and tear on his body from a long NBA career not to mention frequent international play during those years? And how much could they pay him without jeopardizing roster stability?
While it would be nice if Parker realized his goal of playing 20 seasons with the Spurs, at this stage it certainly seems like a long shot.