Despite averages of 21.1 points (on 53.4% shooting from the field), 7.6 assists, while leading the NBA’s best and most under-appreciated team, Tony Parker continues to be overlooked. And though Gregg Popovich is still beating the drum for his floor general, he’s fighting a losing battle.
That’s fine by Tony Parker, long as the wins keep piling up.
Per Yahoo! Sports:
Tony Parker spent time in the summer playing basketball in his father’s native Chicago during his youth, but was mostly raised in France. When it came time to decide the next step of his burgeoning basketball career, the San Antonio Spurs’ guard was “very close” to going to UCLA or Georgia Tech before opting to begin his pro career in France. That decision, according to Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, is the primary reason why Parker has seemingly flown under the radar for so long.
Parker is aware of the lack of attention, but he is more concerned about wins.”It’s better late than never,” Parker said. “That’s not what drives me. What drives me is winning championships. I always knew my time would come because Pop always challenged me.” [...] “LeBron is the best player in the NBA, by far. But if you want to give it to someone to change it, why not [me]?” Parker said with a laugh. “Charles Barkley had it one year [1992-93] even though M.J. [Michael Jordan] was the best player. Steve Nash got it [twice from 2004-06] even though Kobe [Bryant] was the best player in the NBA. But for me the most important thing is we win. If it [the MVP] happens, it happens. If not, LeBron is unbelievable. But for me, I don’t think about it. It’s not in my hands.”
Tony Parker is certainly part of MVP debate, but the award this season (and perhaps for the foreseeable future) clearly belongs to LeBron James.
The San Antonio Spurs’ point guard will have to settle for steering his squad towards yet another unexpected title run.