20 Reasons Why San Antonio Will Forever Love Tony Parker 

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Though many San Antonians and Spurs fans alike are still heartbroken by the fact that Tony Parker left the Alamo City team in 2018, there's no denying that so many of us will forever have a soft spot for the Frenchman. Ahead of his jersey being retired on November 11, here's some reasons by Spurs fans love TP.
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He said playing basketball isn’t the same without Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili.
When asked if his choice to retire was based on Timmy and Manu already being out of the game, Tony had this to say: “I thought I was going to play my 20 seasons with the Spurs. But talking with Timmy and talking with Manu, that helped a little bit, like, ‘OK, I’m ready for this. Timmy and Manu are not playing, it’s not the same.’”
Photo via Facebook / Tony Parker
His relationship with Gregg Popovich is so endearing.
Tony leaving the Spurs has not at all changed his relationship with Coach Pop. Even after the trade, the longtime coach has gone one to call TP a “friend for life” who he says is “like a son.” We’re not crying, you are!
Photo via Facebook / Tony Parker
He took his acting in the H-E-B commercials very seriously.
Like the rest of the team, Tony has absolutely delivered in his various roles for the store’s TV spots. The “Cooking with Tony” segment? A classic that will stand the test of time. This season, TP was inducted into the Legends club among the other Big Three members as well as David Robinson, George Gervin and Sean Elliot.
Photo via Instagram / _tonyparker09
His buzzer-beater during the 2013 Finals.
While Spurs fans are still bitter about how the 2013 championships ending, Game 1 of the series will always be a positive memory. At the end of the first game, Parker — through LeBron James, no less — scored the winning shot. Never forget.
Photo via YouTube / NBA
His goodbye letter to San Antonio that he wrote when he signed with the Hornets.
“And while I won’t try to define who I’ve become, over these last 17 years, in a single letter … I can say this for sure: I have the Spurs and I have San Antonio to thank for it. And I will carry that with pride.” Aww!
Photo via Facebook / Tony Parker
His heart is in San Antonio.
Having joined the Spurs at the young age of 19, and only being 37 now, Tony Parker has spent much of his life in San Antonio. So it only made sense that he move back to the Alamo City after retiring. He’s done one better as he works at Northrock Partners as head of the sports, arts and entertainment division. He’s even said that San Antonio will always be home. He really likes us!
Photo via Instagram / _tonyparker09
He’s part of the Big Three.
A lot of fans may have a better liking to Tim Duncan or Manu Ginobili, but there’s no denying that Tony Parker has earned his keep in the hearts of San Antonians and Spurs fans alike. On top of being extremely lovable, the Big Three is the winningest trio in NBA history.
Photo via Instagram / _tonyparker09
He put out an entire rap album.
In March 2007, just months before the Spurs won a championship, Parker released a rap album cleverly named TP. The songs range from club anthems that seem tailored for European discos to introspective ballads where Parker reflects on his life choices. We respect it.
Photo via Instagram / 210_spursnation
He named cubs at the San Antonio Zoo.
When you’ve got as much pull as Tony Parker does, it only makes sense that you get to do cool stuff — like name lion cubs born at the local zoo. Ok, he won a bid to do so at a zoo fundraiser, but that’s what his wealth is for, right? In 2015, he took the opportunity to name a trio of cubs after his family: TP (himself, duh), Axelle (his wife) and Josh (his son). The following year, Tony got to name jaguar cubs born at the zoo, christening them Milan and Liam.
Photo by @hisnherphotography via Instagram / _tonyparker09
He worked for his role on the team.
After the Spurs tried — and failed — to acquire Jason Kidd from the New Jersey Nets in 2003, Tony took the opportunity to step up to the plate. He eventually told Coach Pop that he wanted to be the team’s starting point guard and that he’d work to achieve that. And that he did.
Photo via Instagram / _tonyparker09
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He completely earned the Finals MVP award in 2007.
On top of winning his third championship with the Spurs, Tony had a lot to celebrate in 2007 as he was the Finals MVP at age 25. While he had been with the team for a few seasons, this was when he really came into his element and showed the basketball world just how badass he was. With the feat he also became the first international player to win the award.
Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/Getty Images
He had a career-high score of 55 points in a single game.
In November 2008, the Spurs had a thrilling game against the Minnesota Timberwolves in which the matchup resulted in a double overtime. For Parker, it was one hell of a game as he scored a career high 55 points, some of which came from a game-tying bucket that forced the second overtime. Thankfully that was the case, and the Spurs went on to win the game.
Photo via YouTube / VintageDawkins
He gives back to his home country.
Earlier this year, TP opened a basketball academy, The Tony Parker Adequate Academy. The international school, located in Lyon, is his way of giving back to France and inspiring a new generation of athletes.
Photo via Instagram / tonyparkeradequatacademy
He funds stuff that matters.
Tony Parker may not delve into the arts often, but he did to support 2016 film The Birth of a Nation. Parker was an executive producer for the film, which centers upon the revolutionary tale of Nat Turner, a literate slave and preacher.
Photo via Facebook / Tony Parker
He owns a DeLorean.
Do we even need to say anything more?
Photo via Instagram / _tonyparker09
He came from humble beginnings.
Despite being the son of a professional basketball player, Parker didn’t grow up spoiled. In fact, it was quite the opposite. Tony has said on record that he remembers there not being food in the house, and even times where people would come into the home and take items when his parents didn’t pay bills.
Photo via Instagram / _tonyparker09
He didn’t insist on a farewell season.
Like the other members of the Big Three, Parker didn’t announce his retirement until after the season. He said he didn’t see the point of having a “farewell season” since it wasn’t with the Spurs.
Photo via Instagram / _tonyparker09
He was married to Eva Longoria.
Lots of folks began to love Tony even more after he married Corpus Christi native Eva Longoria. Although he eventually did her dirty by cheating on her, you have to admit that he had great taste initially.
Photo via Facebook / Tony Parker
When the Spurs won the championship in 2003, he became one of the youngest players to have a title.
Not too long after joining the Spurs, Tony won his first championship with the team at just 21 years old. At the time, he was one of the youngest players in NBA to earn the distinction. Since then, other young players have gone on to achieve this, but TP was one of the earliest.
Photo via Instagram / 210_spursnation
He retired when he was good and ready.
Although it meant he left the Spurs, Tony was traded to the Charlotte Hornets in 2018 because he wanted to have a relevant place on the team, and the Spurs just weren’t doing that anymore. Lots of basketball heads can respect that. But just a year later, his heart wasn’t in it anymore. After his retirement announcement, Parker said he could physically play another two seasons, but just didn’t feel like it. That takes a lot of guts to admit.
Photo via Instagram / _tonyparker09
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He said playing basketball isn’t the same without Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili.
When asked if his choice to retire was based on Timmy and Manu already being out of the game, Tony had this to say: “I thought I was going to play my 20 seasons with the Spurs. But talking with Timmy and talking with Manu, that helped a little bit, like, ‘OK, I’m ready for this. Timmy and Manu are not playing, it’s not the same.’”
Photo via Facebook / Tony Parker