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Similarities between Hawks and NBA’s Spurs

LAUNCESTON, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 16: Luke Hodge of the Hawks in action during the 2016 AFL Round 04 match between the Hawthorn Hawks and the St Kilda Saints at Aurora Stadium, Launceston on April 16, 2016. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media)
The Hawks' experienced players continue to deliver - week-in, week-out.

ALASTAIR Clarkson says San Antonio Spurs’ blueprint with their experienced players is an encouraging sign for the Hawks.

The Spurs have again reached the NBA playoffs, winning 67 regular season games on the back of their highly-talented veterans performing week-in, week-out. 

It’s a similar tale for the Hawks, who rely on the experience of Sam Mitchell, Luke Hodge, Josh Gibson and Shaun Burgoyne on a weekly basis.

"We would expect they (Mitchell, Gibson, Hodge, Burgoyne) would all want to play next year and we want them to play," Clarkson said on 3AW on Sunday.

"They all had terrific years last year. We look at the San Antonio Spurs and (38-year-old Manu) Ginobli, and (33-year-old Tony) Parker and (39-year-old Tim) Duncan continue to get better.

"They made sacrifices to stay together in that franchise and they are seeded two in the home-and-away season and about to start playoffs.

"We don't want to put a time frame on those players when they finish up.

"It is too easy to look at birth certificates. 

“We have to get our kids through from the lower level, but it doesn't mean the older players have to go out.

“Over the course of the last 12 months, they have proved themselves in big games and home-and-away games; they are really important contributors."

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs