Unlike Kobe, Tim Duncan Retires Quietly
No Farewell Tour For This Superstar
July 14, 2016
Kobe Bryant and Tim Duncan are future NBA Hall Of Fame players. Both have retired and both are properly being lauded for their accomplishments.
But they are different kinds of people.
Bryant embraced his last of 20 Laker seasons by agreeing to an elaborate tour where he willingly met with the media in his final game in every city.
Duncan retired Monday after 19 seasons with the San Antonio Spurs. He treated his final season like the other 18. He played unselfishly, said goodbye and didn’t even appear at a next day press conference.
They are different guys but both were good enough to lead their teams to five championships.
‘Everyone has their way,” said Spurs coach Greg Papovich.
We heard a lot of praise for Bryant throughout his final season. Now we’re hearing a lot of praise for Duncan as fans, media, teammates and opposing players realize he won’t be playing any more.
“I loved everything he did on the court,’ said Bryant.
‘The greatest power forward ever,’ said Clippers star Blake Griffin. “It was an honor playing against him.”
“The Spurs will always be Timmy’s team,” said Spurs’ veteran guard Manu Ginobli.
“Tim was the ultimate teammate,” said NBA commissioner Adam Silver.
Several time Duncan accepted a lower salary by millions than he could have had so the Spurs would have additional money within the salary cap to sign other players.
That decision contributed to the Spurs’ ability to win at least 50 games in every season.
Duncan’s last game was the Spurs’ losing effort in this season’s playoffs against the Oklahoma City Thunder
Duncan was named the NBA’s MVP twice. He played in 15 all-star games.
The Spurs recently signed free agent center Pau Gasol to protect themselves in case Duncan did retire.
Lamarcus Aldridge, who joined the Spurs last season. will remain a key big man and former Playoff Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard rounds out the Spurs’ frontline.
In order to free up money to sign Gasol the Spurs sent reserve forward Boris Diaw to Utah.