Yawn, did you hear that the San Antonio Spurs are in the playoffs once again? And again, for what seems like the 45th season in a row, their point guard is Tony Parker.
You’re well-acquainted with Parker, he’s contributed to four of the franchise’s NBA titles during his tenure with the team. It sounds so weird to say this out loud in this packed cafe, but is Tony Parker one of the greatest playoff players? Hear us out while we make this ridiculous claim.
NBA Trophies, Finals MVP and Top Ten All-Time
When outsiders think of legendary Spurs’ players, names like Tim Duncan, David Robinson and even Manu Ginobili are far more likely to come to mind. But Parker has been as much of an integral part of San Antonio’s storied success as those players, maybe not more than Duncan, but he should definitely be considered.
Of course, it’s no longer his team; Parker has admitted as such saying in 2015: “It’s Kawhi Leonard’s team” or more specifically:
“It’s going to be Kawhi’s team anyway. Like Timmy transitioned to Manu, Manu transitioned to me, now it’s going to be transitioned to Kawhi. I’ll try my best to be aggressive and stay involved, but Kawhi’s going to be the man.”
Though Parker has seen a dip in his offensive production this season, averaging just 10.1 points per game, the fact of the matter is that the Spurs are in the postseason with him as the starting point guard.
Historically, this is the time Parker does his best work. The six-time All-Star has brought home NBA titles in 2003, 2005, 2007 and 2014. Parker also won the 2007 NBA Finals MVP over future Hall-of-Famer Tim Duncan. And um, well Parker just surpassed Larry Bird for tenth on the all-time playoff points leader.
Look at that list. LOOK AT IT! Yes, Tony Parker is top ten in NBA history. He’s now sandwiched between Larry Legend and Jerry West with Dr. J and Karl Malone a couple spots above him. Weird… or not? Not. He has more playoff points than Hakeem Olajuwon, Dirk Nowitzki, and Wilt Chamberlain.
Don’t overlook Tony Parker as one of the greatest NBA postseason performers ever. His nearly 4,000 career postseason points as well as his 878 assists, 539 rebounds and 46.2 percent postseason shooting gives him all the credibility he needs to be surrounded by the greatest who ever played the game.
Consider that Parker is one of eight players in the history of the NBA to score at least 3,000 points, pass for 800 assists, grab 500 rebounds and tally 150 steals during his playoff career. With those numbers he’s amongst legends with names like Michael, Larry, Kobe, LeBron, and Magic, and (also Dennis Johnson and Scottie Pippen) as the only players ever to accomplish this feat.
Consider that in Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals against the Memphis Grizzlies in 2013, Tony Parker registered 37 points, six assists and four rebounds, and went 15-of-21 from the floor. He also bucketed his only three-point attempt and went 6-for-6 from the charity stripe. Parker was immaculate in the 93-86 series sweeping victory and became the first point guard since 2009 to score over 35 points and shoot over 70 percent from the field in a post season game. Guess who accomplished that feat in 09′? You guessed right, the illustrious Tony Parker.
MVP Voting Wagering
The 2017 NBA Playoffs have begun and the best in the world will take center stage battling their way to the NBA Finals and a Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy. It’s not surprising that in Game 1 of San Antonio’s first-round clash with the Memphis Grizzlies, Tony Parker came to play and scored 18 points, hitting both three-point attempts and shooting 61.5 percent from the floor in the 111-82 blowout win. The San Antonio Spurs are poised to make a deep run in the postseason with MVP candidate Kawhi Leonard taking front and center as the poster boy for the Spurs this season.
Although Tony Parker won’t garner one vote for this season’s MVP balloting (and he shouldn’t), he could be a dark horse for grabbing another Finals MVP if the Spurs are able to weather the storm. It could be Parker, with the focus on stopping Kawhi Leonard and LaMarcus Aldridge, that makes the difference if they outlast the favored Golden State Warriors to win the West.
One of the most reputable names in the offshore sportsbook industry is currently dealing odds on the 2016-2017 Most Valuable Player Award and this season it looks to be a two-horse race between Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder and James Harden of the Houston Rockets. Bovada has valuable MVP odds and a number of other NBA futures and prop bets for the guy who likes to put his money where his mouth is.
There is plenty of basketball yet to be played and if you’ve followed Tony Parker over the last 15 seasons, then I suggest you pay attention to his leadership as he helps guide his Spurs through the bracket. And don’t be surprised if Parker comes up big again when it matters most.
And if you decide to do more than just root for Parker and the Spurs and decide to back up your opinion with cold hard cash then make sure you’re dealing with a reputable sportsbook. Bovada is a leader in the industry and gives you all the betting options you need, including MVP odds and futures to win the Eastern, Western and World Championship.