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George Gervin pontificates on the Spurs’ past, present, and future

A hometown hero and legend unveils the special team jersey

San Antonio Spurs v Washington Bullets Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images

For those who are new to Spurs fandom (or too young to know), George Gervin was the Spurs’ first true superstar. He finger rolled into San Antonio in 1974 as part of the Spurs ABA team and transitioned with the team into the NBA. He was the face of the franchise for a decade, and he brought excitement to the game of basketball.

For those unaware, George Gervin is the “Iceman” (no, not the Top Gun guy, this was before that). His ability to play so cool on the court earned him his nickname.

On Monday, the Spurs introduced their old school throwback jersey for the upcoming season. And who better to introduce than San Antonio Spurs legend George “Iceman” Gervin.

When he introduced the jersey at the press release he stated:

One of my favorites is coming know, the new era, this has always been my favorite...I really loved it and so proud to part of it coming back. I want to thank the Spurs for that. This is special.

When asked about his memories of the game, Ice has no hesitation:

Finger rolling. I been doing a lot of finger rolling back then...I was one of the firsts. To think, 50 years ago, and to be able to see it come back and for to be a part of it. It’s special, it’s very special to me, I’m very humbled by it.

When asked about the throwback to the 70s:

I think the guys like them, personally...I like them. It’s a part of our history. A lot of the guys that wore them...some of them are not here. I know they would get as much appreciation out of it as I do. Think about our fans. Talking about 50 years ago. There were the best then, they are the best now.

When asked about the new era of the Spurs and the young players:

I was 19 when I played...y’all know who Pop is. Pop knows talent. He has a system that has been working for years. He's got some young guys, if they come here they’ll be ready to play...I’m excited to see it.

When asked about advise he would give to the young players:

Pay attention. You’re learning form the best. For me, you’ve got the best franchise to be a part of. You see the history. I am part of the history and I’m still here. You’re in a special place. Pay attention and come ready to work, if you want to stay you’ve got to be ready to work. That’s going to be the key for a young guy.

When asked about the difference between Gervin’s game and the modern NBA:

You’re talking about ABA. That 3-point line is very valuable and we brought that in as an ABA franchise and a lot of the guys are taking advantage of it. When I was playing the game it was inside-out, and now it’s kinda played outside-in.

When asked about what he is looking for in the 50th season of the San Antonio Spurs:

I’m looking forward to us getting back into that championship form.

When asked about the city:

When I came to San Antonio it was 500,000 people. We’re the 7th largest in the country now. I say people found my paradise. This is a beautiful place to be. It’s a destination now.

Since retiring from basketball, Gervin has been a mainstay in San Antonio creating organizations for underprivileged children.

Always great to have a few minutes with a Spurs legend.

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