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Gregg Popovich told Boban Marjanovic to ‘get your ass out of here’

The San Antonio Spurs were the first team to scout big man Boban Marjanovic, and draft him while everyone else looked the other way.

Marjanovich only averaged 5.5 points and 3.6 rebounds in 56 games. He spent time between the San Antonio Spurs and the Austin Spurs through the season. It wasn’t all in his numbers though. He became a fan favorite and was effective enough to get consistent playing time in his rookie season.

After just one year the Spurs let him go, and the Detroit Pistons quickly signed him to a $21 million contract.

There was always the possibility of losing him after the first year even though he wanted to stay, but how did it go down exactly, and why did the Spurs let him go so easily?

Coach Gregg Popovich explains the story to reporters.

He’s such a good kid, at some point I had to work to get him to understand that $21 million was different than $3 million. I said, ‘Get your ass out of here. Go. You’ve got to do it.’ But he felt bad. We knew he was gone. It happens to every team. You lose a guy because you have to pay people and you can’t pay them all.

The team let Marjanovich make the best decision for himself, not necessarily for the team.

The Spurs love him as a person and a player, and so does coach Stan Van Gundy.

Everybody who has met him has enjoyed him. What people see obviously first is the size, but he’s genuinely a nice guy.

As for Majanovic, he heeded his coach’s advice and now he’s reaping the benefits like the others who listen to Popovich.

My first wish was to stay. But this is good now. I think I made a good decision.

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