Manu Giniboli Says Announcing Retirement Was Tough, Sensitive Situation

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistSeptember 15, 2018

Former San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili talks to the media at the NBA basketball team's practice facility, Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018, in San Antonio. Ginobili recently retired at age 41 after 16 seasons with the Spurs and helping them win four NBA championships. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Eric Gay/Associated Press

Manu Ginobili went through a long, delicate thought process before announcing his retirement last month. 

Speaking to reporters about walking away from the NBA, Ginobili went into specifics about how he came to the decision. 

"I'm telling you, it wasn't an easy decision in the sense that after so many years, 23 seasons of doing this, it was kind of hard to put the last nail in that coffin," Ginobili told ESPN.com's Michael C. Wright. "It was an intense situation that was a little bit sensitive. So I wanted to wait a couple weeks before facing you and responding to your questions."

Ginobili added he went through the 2017-18 season with the San Antonio Spurs as if it was going to be his last. 

"I took last season mentally as my last season. So every place I went, every situation, I kind of knew it was going to be the last one. But I left the door open, just in case. Slowly, the door started to close more. I couldn't see my body going through that kind of grind again. I felt that I had a good season, that I left everything I had in that previous season both physically and mentally."

The 41-year-old knew it was over when he came back to the Spurs' facilities during the summer to do some work and saw some of his teammates getting ready for next season. 

"And I was so far from that," he told reporters. "That's when I said, 'For sure, this is it.'"

Ginobili announced his retirement on Twitter, calling his 23-year EuroLeague and NBA career a "fabulous journey" that exceeded his "wildest dreams."

A key piece of the Spurs' dynasty, Ginobili won four NBA titles and was named an All-Star twice in 16 seasons from 2002-18. 

Related

    After Losing Dejounte, White Gives 7th Seed Spurs Hope

    NBA logo
    NBA

    After Losing Dejounte, White Gives 7th Seed Spurs Hope

    Andy Bailey
    via Bleacher Report

    Derrick White, DeRozan Lead Spurs Past Nuggets in Game 3

    San Antonio Spurs logo
    San Antonio Spurs

    Derrick White, DeRozan Lead Spurs Past Nuggets in Game 3

    San Antonio Express-News
    via San Antonio Express-News

    White Is Spurs' Next Hidden Gem

    San Antonio Spurs logo
    San Antonio Spurs

    White Is Spurs' Next Hidden Gem

    Paul Kasabian
    via Bleacher Report

    KD Let His Game Do the Talking

    NBA logo
    NBA

    KD Let His Game Do the Talking

    Scott Polacek
    via Bleacher Report