Tony Parker prioritizes getting “back in rhythm” during Spurs’ 101-104 loss to Magic
After playing majority of the preseason under reduced minutes on the bench just like the other veterans, Tony Parker got a chance to dust off the rust at Amway Center. Prior to the game, Tony Parker convinced San Antonio Spurs coach Greg Popovich that he needed more minutes in the game.
While Greg Popovich let his star point guard test things out on the court, don’t expect the results to bear a resemblance to Tony Parker’s stats from last season.
Tony Parker logged 31 minutes in and 42 seconds in the game, but despite the abundant time allotted to him, the 3-time NBA champion only managed to score 10 points and three assists in San Antonio Spurs’ 101-104 loss to the Orlando Magic.
The 30-year-old Tony Parker continued through his preseason struggles, scoring on 3 of 13 shots. This was by far Tony Parkers’ most minutes this season after he exceeded the 20 minute mark only once before during the preseason loss to Denver Nuggets on 12th October.
However, the All-Star guard wasn’t sucked in by his below-par performance and instead to focus on getting back into form with the regular-season opener against the New Orleans Hornets closing in on 31st October.
“I felt like I still have to work on my conditioning, get my rhythm back,” expressed Tony Parker. “I felt short on all my shots. It’s my second game playing, really, in the preseason. So that’s normal.”
Tony Parker led the San Antonio Spurs averaging 18.3 points and 7.7 assists per game last season. However, hasn’t contributed in a major sense this preseason, partly due to the team’s own planning.
Greg Popovich is given increased minutes to the young point guards to from a decision on the deserving backup at point guard to Tony Parker.
Consequently, Tony Parker has averaged a low six points and 3.4 assists during 18.4 minutes per game so far in the preseason.
As disappointing as Tony Parker’s performance on the court and lack production, both the player and Greg Popovich believed they’d achieved something from Sunday’s loss.
“He couldn’t make a shot, but he wanted to play,” stated Greg Popovich. “We got him some minutes. He wanted to get in shape and do a little more.”
However, Greg Popvich had gotten all the feedback he needed by the end of the fourth quarter and turned down Tony Parker’s request to be put back in the game.
In further good news, San Antonio Spurs guard Patrick Mills, who sat out the last four games due to a sprained ankle, returned against the Orlando Magic. Patrick Mills scored six points on 3-of-9 shooting from the field and 0-of-3 shooting from the arch during 17 minutes in the game.
“You can do as much bike and treadmill as you want, it’s not a game situation,” stated Patrick Mills, who’s also contesting for the backup. “Just to get on the floor was good.”