Manu to Argentine media: ‘I’d like to go back to Bologna’

Don’t panic, Spurs fans. Fan fave Manu Ginobili isn’t headed to Italy just yet, especially after tweaking his right ankle in a pickup game in Bahia Blanca, Argentina on Tuesday. But if the NBA lockout drags on long enough, the competitive urges that make Ginobili one of the world’s best players and his fondness for an Italian city where he became a star of the Italian League are apt to get the better of him.

Speaking to reporters at Bahiense del Norte, the club where he began his basketball career more  some 20 years ago, Ginobili acknowledged that he has fond memories of his days playing in the Italian League for a team in Bologna and that he would like to return there if circumstances dictate.

Here’s the key quote from the interview, with a big assist from Fabian Garcia, of BasquetPlus, one of the Argentine journalists who were so kind to a visiting writer from San Antonio during the FIBA Americans pre-Olympic tournament in Mar Del Plata in September: “When the Pre Olympic was over I was excited [about playing in Italy]. I wanted to. But soon after I thought about it more: I have a family, and to do such a thing and then have to come back [to the NBA] when the lockout is over… It’s not what I like to do. I don’t rule it out. We don;t know when it’s going to end. As I’ve always said, Bologna is a place where I have great memories and I would like to go back there.”

What likely would move Ginobili to change his mind would be an announcement that a larger chunk of Spurfs games  has been canceled. The first two weeks of cancellations cost the Spurs only their first  six regular season games.

Negotiators for the owners and the players’ union will re-convene next Tuesday under the auspices of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.

Leave a Reply