Growing up in San Antonio from the age of 5, all I’ve known is the greatest era in Spurs franchise history and one of, if not the greatest trios of all time in NBA history – Tim, Tony, Manu, led by Coach Pop. Those three and Pop could be known as the Four Horseman.
While all three players have made an impact on the city of San Antonio on and off the court, only one has truly made a lasting impact and that’s Manu Ginobili. Manu has brought the Latino community together in San Antonio like no others have. He’s a Euro League Champion, Olympic Gold Medalist, 4 time NBA Champion, and Sixth Man of the Year Award winner. And he modernized the modern euro step move that so many superstars perform in games today like Russell Westbrook, James Harden, and Stephen Curry.
With his rightful place in the rafters at the AT&T Center next to his friend and former teammate, Tim Duncan, he is immortalized in Spurs history.
I could list every single accomplishment, stat, important charitable participation Manu has ever done in San Antonio and in Argentina, but we’d be here all day.
He’s more than just the awards and statistics. He’s Manu Ginobili. He’s the guy who played practical jokes on the sidelines on teammates and on Spurs TV broadcasters Bill Land and Sean Elliot. He’s the guy who spoke Spanish at the championship parade in 2003 for Spanish speaking fans. He’s the guy who made kid’s days at the children’s wing at Christa Santa Rosa hospital. To me, he’s the guy who made my grandmother smile and laugh through every tough period of time, until her last day, and for that I am forever grateful.
Manu was and still is a symbol of hope and accomplishment in the Latino community of San Antonio. And while Tim Duncan is forever Mr. Spur, Manu will always be the heart and soul of Spurs Nation and the city of San Antonio and for that, we will be forever grateful. Gracias Manu!