It’s hard to believe it’s already been 18 months since San Antonio legend – and one of the greatest players in the history of the NBA – Tim Duncan announced his retirement, after 19 seasons and five championships with the Spurs.
The 1997-98 season NBA Rookie of the Year, Duncan is a two-time NBA MVP, a three-time NBA Finals MVP and a 15-time NBA All-Star, while he is the only player ever to be selected to both the All-NBA and All-Defensive Teams in every one of his first 13 seasons.
Tim Duncan is the only player in league history to start and win a title in three different decades. pic.twitter.com/pqR8u7129I
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 11, 2016
TD is 14th on the list of the NBA’s highest scorers, sixth for rebounds in NBA history and fifth for blocks, while only six players have appeared in more games than the iconic power forward/center
Born and raised in Saint Croix, a small island in the US Virgin Islands, few players have come from as unlikely backgrounds to achieve NBA superstardom. But after accepting a scholarship with Wake Forest University in 1993, North Carolina, Duncan was the first pick in the 1997 Draft.
In just his second season, Duncan had a championship ring and a Finals MVP award to his name.
Duncan’s renowned consistency and composure have been arguably his greatest assets, while his ability to be among the NBA’s elite at both ends of his career – debuting at 21 and playing his last game aged 40 – is virtually without peer.
Far from the most charismatic or extroverted superstar in the league, Duncan’s decision to announce his retirement well after the NBA season hype had died down was typical of the man.
While Kobe Bryant embarked on a seemingly never-ending farewell tour this year, TD preferred to go out with minimal fanfare – an incredibly humble path for a player ESPN rated as the greatest power forward of all time earlier this year, ahead of Karl Malone, Dirk Nowitzki, Charles Barkley and Kevin Garnett.
— NBA Memes (@NBAMemes) July 11, 2016
TIM DUNCAN – CAREER STATISTICS
San Antonio Spurs (1997-2016): 1,392 games; 26,496 points; 15,091 rebounds; 3,020 blocks; 4,225 assists.
FG%: .506; 3P%: .179; FT%: .696; RPG: 10.8; APG: 3.0; BPG: 2.2; PPG: 19.0.