There is no question that Tony Parker will be a Hall of Famer in the NBA. But, with his play on the decline, is it now the time for him to come off of the bench for San Antonio?
We are just five games into the season and Parker has shown signs of his “age” catching up to him. Parker is averaging just under six points a game for the Spurs this season.
Though they are off to a 4-1 start, Parker’s scoring ability is being missed. The Spurs point-guard stated coming into this season that he was looking to be more of a facilitator. There is nothing wrong with that by any means, but he has limited himself to being the player he once was.
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For Parker, he has logged a ton of mileage on his body. He entered his 15th season with the Spurs. Understandably his play may suffer a bit but he still has the skills to position his team to win.
You hate to talk about benching a player as Parker but is now the time to do so before it is too late?
The Spurs have an abundance of guards on their bench and one that has proven this season to make an impact right away is that of Patty Mills.
Oct 27, 2016; Sacramento, CA, USA; San Antonio Spurs guard Patty Mills (8) during the game against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center. The Spurs won the game 102-94. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports
Mills started one game this season for San Antonio and scored 18 points. Though taking the spark from the bench and inserting him into the starting lineup may not be ideal to some, but when in the game, the offense flows.
There are going to be some that disagree but it is what it is. Parker is an exceptional player, but as we saw last season and so far this season, he is on the decline.
In the Spurs’ first loss of the season to the Utah Jazz, Parker had just six points in 32 minutes. He was 3-of-5 from the floor.
His attempts came late in the game. He did have a move that looked vintage Parker as he spun through two defenders before connecting on a layup.
Parker was more aggressive late in the game then he was in the first three quarters. Not to completely kill his game, Parker did have six assists in the game and one turnover.
Mills is averaging 12.2 points per game this season. Mills is playing the way Parker used to, simple as that.