There are players who get under the skin, that you admire beyond everything, that you live with a particular transport and without them you feel worst your experience as a spectator.
When I think of football, I remember Roberto Baggio and Francesco Totti.
What could ever be football without their marvelous play?
Here with their withdrawals something inside us fans came to fail, to break.
When I think of swimming, I am obviously reminded of Michael Phelps and Ian Thorpe or our Massimiliano Rosolino.
So used to hunting the umpteenth record of the first 2 and the tenacity of the "cagnaccio" Neapolitan to be unable to mean swimming in the pool without their strokes.
100 meters of elegance and eternity.
How many times has Usain Bolt inspired these feelings in less than 10 seconds? Athletics without him is no longer the same.
Kobe Bryant says goodbye with 60 points and we ask to ourselves what will happen to the NBA without the Black Mamba?
Yeah, the NBA with its thousand stories and its thousand faces, protagonists who seem to come out of a training novel like Tim Duncan or Ray Allen ready to break every night but who have not managed to curb the progress of the years and to at one point they had to pull the oars in the boat.
Since last week the National Basketball Association greets another of his favorite children. One of those you do not expect to see in the Hall of Fame but that will soon be building its foundations in that house.
Emanuel David Ginobili Maccari, for everyone Manu Ginobili said STOP.
After 23 years of career at very high levels, he hung his shoes on the nail.
The San Antonio Spurs who amazed the world lose the last component of the historic triad Parker - Ginobili - Duncan that under the guidance of coach Greg Popovich had conquered the Playoffs uninterruptedly for 16 years during that they win 4 NBA titles.
Ginobili despite the 41 years (yes, you got it right 41 !!!) was the last to surrender to the last Playoff, when against the champions of Golden State had played the office in a desperate attempt to keep his match.
It was not enough to save San Antonio, however, without his star Leonard (by the way he left too in the summer) but it was served to all to write another page of ink in the superb career of the sixth most famous man in America.
And to say that at the dawn of his story nobody would have bet on him. History that obviously started in Argentina but that saw its actual opening page in Italy, to be exact in Reggio Calabria.
With Viola Reggio Calabria conquered, as well as a place of honor in the hearts of Italian fans, a transfer to the most prestigious Virtus Bologna where he won everything, glowing in an impressive manner. Thanks to those performances, he secured a place at the NBA Draft of the Year of Grace 2002.
Manu had been selected 3 years earlier by those foxes of Buford and Popovich in the 1999 draft with the choice number 57. Incredible today to think that for 56 times they were called different names from that of Ginobili before "Pop" took him home.
It was certainly the "Steal of the Draft" of the century.
Manu Ginobili arrives in the Spurs system, meets Duncan, Parker and Popovich.
Everything else is history.
Covering his personal recognition, he makes you smile and angry at how little credit he has been given at the level of prizes.
Only an All Star Game, only once the sixth best man of the year for one who, in one of the strongest teams in history, often had the ball in hand in the decisive seconds, in the hottest moments of the action.
If Parker was there to accelerate and give the team time, Duncan was a kind of talented coach on the field that on the 2 sides of the parquet dominated, Manu has always been the decisive man, the player to whom to entrust the ball when he was stung at a point or when the situation was desperate. If you wanted to "kill" the game you had to deliver the ball in his polite hands. He would have thought of it.
He knows something about Argentina that under his leadership in the field even won a historic Olympics in 2004 in Athens.
From Argentinian people Manu had inherited and exported the famous "Garra" the one that distinguished him from the others, the one that allowed him to keep the lucidity even with 2 men on, the one that allowed him to score from 20 meters on the siren with the tranquility of who was reading the newspaper on the beach, the one that allowed him to be one of the best defenders in the world against anyone.
A little more than a month after the start of the NBA 2018/2019 season all NBA fans feel more alone, awakened by a news that everyone knew would have to arrive sooner or later but that nobody was ready to hear.
Only the legends manage to transmit this.
Manu Ginobili was a legend in the field, now his myth is ready to become eternal and grow more and more, like his talent, like his "Garra".