Tony Parker Rumors: Spurs Interested in Re-Signing Veteran to Contract

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJuly 4, 2018

San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker walks upcourt during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the New Orleans Pelicans, Thursday, March 15, 2018, in San Antonio. San Antonio won 98-93. (AP Photo/Darren Abate)
Darren Abate/Associated Press

The San Antonio Spurs reportedly have interest in re-signing veteran point guard Tony Parker, according to ESPN's Michael C. Wright.

Wright noted that the Spurs would like Parker back in a mentorship role "if the numbers work for both sides."

He also reported that Parker's camp is "shopping for a deal," which means a return to San Antonio isn't guaranteed.

Parker has spent his entire 17-year NBA career with the Spurs, but he made it clear in May that he is far from done.

Per Wright (h/t ABC News), Parker said he wants to play 20 seasons in the NBA even if it means leaving San Antonio:

"It is not yet sure that I'll stay with the Spurs. I am open to all proposals. I would like to make my entire career in San Antonio. The sport remains a business, and we will have to make choices. I have been 17 years with the Spurs. I would always be nostalgic, but it's not the end of the world if I change my club. I say two or three years more [I can play if] I can go somewhere else, I'm 50-50. I do not see myself outside of basketball yet. I want to stay three more years to do the 20 seasons."

The 36-year-old Frenchman is coming off his worst NBA season from a production standpoint, as he averaged 7.7 points, 3.5 assists and 1.7 rebounds in 55 games in 2017-18 while shooting 45.9 percent from the field and 27.0 percent from long range.

Parker made just 21 starts last season, which was by far the lowest mark of his career.

He primarily came off the bench and gave way to Dejounte Murray, who made strides in his second NBA season and was named to the NBA All-Defensive Second Team.

Parker is no longer a star-caliber player, and injuries have been an issue in recent years, but there would still be a great deal of value in re-signing him for the Spurs.

He is a six-time All-Star, four-time NBA champion and one-time NBA Finals MVP, which makes him the ideal mentor for young players such as Murray and 2018 first-round pick Lonnie Walker.

Also, if the Spurs end up trading Kawhi Leonard and bringing in additional young talent, Parker could be key in showing them the "Spurs way" and helping maintain a winning culture.