Renowned for his ability to step up late in games, San Antonio Spurs legend Manu Ginobili blocked four late-game shots in his storied career.
It’s hard to rack up blocks in the NBA, even for a seven-footer. That’s why fans are so inspired when their favorite guards rise up to block a shot. Some of the most exciting moments for basketball aficionados to look back on are their favorite guards rising up to stuff a shot and San Antonio Spurs fans have been blessed with some particularly momentous blocks from future Hall of Famer Manu Ginobili.
Regarded as one of the top influential international basketball players to ever grace the sport, Manu gave his undivided attention every step of the way in his 16-year career in San Antonio. Ginobili gave his heart to the team every second that he was on the court for the silver and black, setting the tempo for his teammates while inspiring both players and supporters around the world to be the best versions of themselves.
Four specific times in his NBA career, Ginobili defied the odds by blocking a go-ahead bucket in the fourth quarter or overtime period of a game. Each of these occasions came when he was matched up against the leading scorer of the opposing team and three out of the four events resulted in a win.
It’s rare for a shooting guard to bring that level of intensity on the defensive end, but it’s a testament to Manu’s will as a player. Day-in and day-out, Ginobili put his body on the line for the Spurs and embodied the mentality that head coach and franchise leader Gregg Popovich wants for his teams. For as much weight as Manu’s voice held for this team, it was his competitive drive that forced everyone around him to be better versions of themselves.
To celebrate Ginobili’s competitive drive and steadfast will through almost two decades in the silver and black, let’s look back at these four blocks and the events surrounding them.