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Former Sonic Brent Barry to Start for Spurs

If asked to describe the situation in Seattle last season Brent Barry may have chosen to echo the sentiments he made when traded to the Sonics for Hersey Hawkins.

“You can’t make chicken soup out of chicken (BLEEP).” He stated in a deadpan voice when asked about the situation he’d departed in Chicago.

Barry has moved onto better things with the San Antonio Spurs and his insertion into the starting lineup tonight provides some room for Sonics fans both to reminisce about one of their most entertaining former team members and to wonder about the decision made to let him go 2 years ago.

According to published reports the decision not to re-sign Barry stemmed from a desire not to sign him to the 4 year contract offered by the Spurs. The Sonics reportedly sought a 3 year contract and would not budge when asked to add an extra year for an aging guard. In addition to the extra year there was some speculation that the team was saving salary cap space for a run at the 2005 free agent class.

In his first season with the Spurs Barry seemed like something of a bust. His contributions to the Spurs were insignificant compared to his standout role with Seattle and rookie Beno Udrith seemed to steal both his minutes and his scoring ability. Meanwhile in Seattle veteran Antonio Daniels, at a fraction of the price, more than made up for the loss of Barry in the Sonics rotation.

This season, after the departure of Daniels via free agency it is questionable whether the Sonics made the wrong decision in letting Barry go. Despite unimpressive regular season numbers he started 8 games in last year’s championship run for the Spurs and has now been asked to step in and start for a struggling Manu Ginobilli. The Sonics meanwhile were left with no options at the guard position this season when Flip Murray failed miserably to establish himself at the PG Position.

The bottom line is this: Veteran players such as Barry are one of the main differences between bottom feeders like the Sonics and contenders like the Spurs. While having Tim Duncan is nice the Spurs would not be the team they are without solid veterans such as Brent Barry stepping off the bench and filling roles when needed. I expect Barry to produce results in the Spurs remaining games.

Is Barry a bust signing for the Spurs? Was 4 years too much to offer a fan favorite like Bones? What was your favorite Brent Barry quote? Talk about it here: