By Jose Grijalva, Project Spurs.com
This young 2012-2013 season started off with a familiar note: Manu Ginobili being injured. His first game of the season came against the Utah Jazz on November third after tweaking his back during practice. The guy plays tough, even against his teammates in situations that aren't really competitive. With injuries, come slow starts especially for a guy who needs to continually keep playing to stay in a groove. For most fans, that might not be a good enough excuse. He's been plagued by injuries for most of his NBA career and those injuries may have cost the Spurs a championship (notably 2006 and 2008). One thing is for sure: you can't easily replace a guy who plays with heart and passion, even to a fault because he puts his body on the line for every game. In an article for the Alamo City Beat, the subject was brought up: Should the San Antonio Spurs go a different route from Manu or does he have one last run in him?
The subject is really easy to bring up and I've had many discussions with people talking about the same topic. Interestingly enough, most of them have the same solution when it comes to replacing Ginobili with another player: nothing. Fans can try to bring up possible players to replace Manu's production, but where they match or exceed Ginobili in one category, they greatly lack in the others. Anyone remember when the Spurs traded for “the most athletic small forward since Sean Elliott” in Richard Jefferson to replace the dependence they had on Ginobili in case of injury? Jefferson matched or exceeded Ginobili's points per game stat before he was traded to the Spurs, but we all know how much he struggled while wearing the silver and black.
Is Ginobili replaceable? Absolutely, anyone is. The problem isn't replacing Manu Ginobili the person or player on the team, it's replacing his skills and intangibles with a single player.
for the complete article at Project Spurs.