The juggernaut known as the San Antonio Spurs that is currently running through the NBA Playoffs was almost dismantled last offseason.
The New York Post's Peter Vecsey reports that the Spurs included both point guard Tony Parker and sixth man Manu Ginobili in trade talks after their season ended at the hands of the eighth-seeded Memphis Grizzlies.
Vecsey reports that everyone minus Tim Duncan was available for the right price. Vecsey feels it's necessary to specify what exactly that means:
Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili, I must reemphasize, were available for the appropriate equity.
The Spurs, however, weren't impressed by any offer they got for either Parker or Ginobili. Probably a good thing, considering their 20-game steamroll of a winning streak through the end of the regular season and playoffs ended just the other night at the hands of the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Parker was a hot rumor last offseason, but this is the first mention of Ginobili in trade talks. Parker was the Spurs' lucrative trade bait for them to shed Richard Jefferson's hefty contract. Ginobili too, apparently, was available, though the wrist injury he suffered at the end of last season likely hampered any offers the Spurs got for him.
The moves on which the Spurs eventually did pull the trigger, both last offseason and during the year, helped make them the force they are now. They traded guard George Hill to the Indiana Pacers for the first-round pick that became small forward Kawhi Leonard, who is averaging 8.6 points and 5.6 rebounds per game this postseason. His value as a player stretches beyond those numbers. In March, they finally shipped off Jefferson in exchange for Stephen Jackson, who has fit into his role with the Spurs.
Vecsey summarizes it as such: "The Spurs hit a home run."