After France's elimination at the Olympic quarterfinals against Spain, Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs announced his retirement from international basketball. According to the athlete, he will no longer play for his national team to focus on his career in the NBA.
France suffered a big loss against Spain on Wednesday at the 2016 Rio Olympics after the latter ended the match with a 92-67 win. The loss was very rough for Parker and his teammates especially since France just came from almost defeating Team USA last Sunday.
For Parker though, last Wednesday's game was his last with Team France.
"And I'm not gonna change my mind about that," he said according to ESPN.
I felt like Spain was the Spurs," he added. "And I was on the other side."
ESPN noted that after the match against Spain, Parker told Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich and team president R.C. Budford that he no longer has plans to continuing his career in international basketball due to its physical effects on him. Instead, he will focus his time and strength on his time with the San Antonio organization.
Parker is not the only member of the Spurs who announced his retirement from playing with his national team. Earlier this week, Manu Ginobili of Argentina also said that he is done with international basketball. The athlete made this decision after his national team's loss to Team USA.
In a post-game interview, Ginobili got a bit emotional as he looked back on his career as a member of Team Argentina, according to USA Today.
"It has been an incredible era," he said. "It is something very important in your life that is ending, and that means a lot, so you've got to think of so many things, and well. Makes me feel a little emotional."
"This is my 20th year since my first game with the national team," he added. "I'm very proud. And at the same time, I'm happy - sad and happy because having the opportunity to play this game at 39, it's not something that happens often."
Like Parker, Ginobili intends to solely focus on his career with the Spurs.