The San Antonio Spurs have been pretty silent after losing their bid in this year’s playoff, but they are rumored to keep forward/center Boris Diaw. The 34-year old Frenchman is reportedly staying with the Spurs in a bid for another title run next season.
In an interview with Basket-Infos as reported by Jeff Garcia of News4San Antonio, Diaw stated that the Spurs have told him that they will keep him and would love to see him suit for next season with the team. It could end speculation that he would be used as a trading chip to lure some prospective free agents from other teams.
“They [Spurs] told me that their wish was to keep me. I do not worry about my future, but it is not a question that I control. It is an option that the team has to decide if it was my last year or not. I’ll see June 31, but they told me that it’s their wish to keep me and continue next year,” Diaw said.
— HoopsHype (@hoopshype) June 6, 2016
Diaw signed a five-year contract with the Spurs worth $28 million and this season, Diaw has a base salary of $7 million and an incentive bonus of $500,000. For next season, Diaw will be getting $6.5 million base salary while his last year in the contract will give him a $7 million base salary. Keeping him for the next season will be expensive for the Spurs and in using him on the trading block would unload the Spurs of a total of 13.5 million in total, but knowing the Spurs they value the word “loyalty” and most likely Diaw’s word of the team bringing him back will stand.
Diaw has been intense pressure to lose weight that has affected his mobility in both ends of the floor. This fact has been also a pressing concern for Spurs coach Gregg Popovich that he would often times joked around with Diaw, but the truth of the matter, it also motivates him to shed some weight to be able to dominate the shaded area.
— Spurs Report (@spurs_fanly) June 7, 2016
But one thing is sure, Diaw has championship experience that he brings to the Spurs roster that could be best demonstrated in their 2014 Championship run when they defeated LeBron James and the rest of the Miami Heat in a 4-1 count. In Game Three of that series Diaw was inserted into the starting lineup that created more ball movement, as the Spurs achieved the first 70-point first half in the Finals since the Los Angeles Lakers‘ 75 from Game 2 in 1987 against the Boston Celtics.
Since then, Diaw was a game changer in the series as the Spurs went on to win their fifth championship title behind their “Big Three” of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili. Not to mention Diaw’s contribution both in defense and offense as well that saw the last game wherein the Heat’s “Big Three” of James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh played together.
Photo Courtesy: U.S. Army/Wikimedia