During the Las Vegas Summer League, Spurs GM R.C. Buford chatted on the sidelines about lots of issues facing San Antonio — a team that won 60-plus games in the last two seasons yet met early playoff exits. (An injury to MVP candidate Kawhi Leonard doomed the Spurs last season against the Warriors.) Buford talked about wanting to retain the burgeoning services of Jonathan Simmons, a free agent who subsequently got away to Orlando. (Simmons’ exit may be, ironically, Buford’s fault — he’s made the Spurs so deep that Simmons, great as he’s been, wasn’t guaranteed a lot of playing time.) The other main item Buford brought up without being asked was the future of Manu Ginobili, the dynamic super Spur who’d just finished his 15th season with the team. Would Manu be back?
“We’re waiting for Manu to come off the beach and tell us,” was Buford’s reply to his own question. Well, Ginobili is off the beach evidently. Or at least he shook the sand from his toes long enough to inform Buford and coach Gregg Popovich that he’ll be back for NBA Season No. 16. Ginobili will be 40 this summer.