The San Antonio
Spurs have announced that they have bolstered their front line for the
remainder of the 2016-17 season with the signing veteran Joel Anthony.
With Pau Gasol expected to miss between four to six weeks with a broken
hand, having picked up the injury last month, the Spurs brought in Joel
Anthony to add vital depth to the front court.
Earlier this season, Joel Anthony was signed to two separate 10 day
contracts. The first of two contracts started on January 23rd with the
second commencing on February 2nd. Having made his debut for the Spurs
on the evening of the 23rd, the Canadian recorded four rebounds in five
minutes off the bench in a 112–86 win over the Brooklyn Nets.
Joel Anthony, who is 34, has appeared in a total of eight games this
season with the Silver and Black. He has averaged 1.5 points and 1.8
rebounds per game, whist shooting 62.5 percent from the field.
In early February, Joel Anthony secured his biggest contribution when
he logged double digit minute totals in the two games against the
Philadelphia 76ers and Denver Nuggets.
Joel Anthony was also in a training camp this season
with the San Antonio Spurs in which he took part in all six preseason
games. In this, he averaged 4.2 points and 3.3 rebounds in 13.9 minutes.
Prior to joining the Spurs in January, the veteran who has been in the
NBA for nine years most recently played with the Detroit Pistons during
the 2015-16 season. Having had an earlier spell with the Pistons in the
2014-15 season with an average of 1.8 points and 1.9 rebounds in 8.3
minutes per game he rejoined the Pistons in July 2015.
Joel Anthony has also played for the Boston Celtics in 2014 and the
Miami Heat from 2007 to 2014, where he spent his first six plus seasons
and won back-to-back NBA Championships in 2012 and 2013. The first NBA
Championship, in 2012, came against Oklahoma City Thunder whilst his
second, in June 2013 came against the San Antonio Spurs in an intense
seven game series.
In his nine NBA seasons, the UNLV product has appeared in 474 career
games, with an average of 2.2 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.10 blocks in
14.6 minutes. However, when Joel Anthony was asked if he had to prove
himself again, he said “No. It’s always been like that my whole career.
I’ve always felt like I had to prove myself. I never felt like I’ve
made it and I don’t need to do anything.”
“I’ve always felt like that. It doesn’t bother me
just because in terms of how I approach the game. That’s what I need.
If I didn’t feel like that, I wouldn’t be able to play this long. It’s
always been good for me I think.”
“To be with an organization that has this type of history and to be
among the type of players that they’ve brought in and their success as
a team, to be able to be a part of it is definitely something special.
Everyone in the league, I think, especially people who are still in the
league, appreciates this organization and how they do it. It feels good
to have an opportunity to be a part of this team.”