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Uniquely desultory
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Discussion Starter #1
His retirement sort of the anti-Kobe:

Tim Duncan retired Monday morning, and his retirement announcement was so appropriately Tim Duncan-like it almost made one misty: not a ceremony, or a television interview, or a gooey letter in Derek Jeter's star-cozy Players Tribune, but a 538-word press release, from the only NBA team he ever played for, the San Antonio Spurs. A press release! It was so modest and charmingly retro it may as well have arrived by fax, or better yet, snail mail.

Would anyone have wanted it any other way? Duncan's exit was always going to happen like this. No one who loved Duncan ever thought he'd engineer a final-season vanity lap through the league, standing through awkward midcourt celebrations among opponents bearing unwanted gifts. No way. I believe Duncan would have rather spent a season curled in the baggage hold of the team bus than collecting personalized rocking chairs and electric guitars from teams he tried to bury.
http://www.wsj.com/articles/tim-dun...vSource=cx_picks&cx_tag=poptarget&cx_artPos=2
 

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There is no spoon
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It seems like just yesterday he was at WFU, such a classy guy. The world would be a calmer place if more people followed his role.
 

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Top notch player, 5-time NBA champion spanning an impressive 15 +-year run.

I'm really sad to see him go.

Reminds me of a guy who comes to work every day, gives 100% effort, and never complains.

Never recall his ever being arrested either.

Used to love watching him loathe talking to reporters.

I'd take him over Kobe Bryant any day. Duncan is a TRUE champion in my opinion.
 

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Uniquely desultory
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Discussion Starter #6
Tim is a classy guy and a winner.:thumbup:

Too bad he couldn't go out as well as the greatest athlete in sports history did:

By winning the NBA championship as player/head coach of a championship team in his last game.:)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGcgnRkPhoY
Russell was clearly a great player. He was a big hero of mine. I've come to have mixed feelings about him however. I first saw him play in Seattle in about 1969. I was hoping I'd get a good look at him and as we were waiting for things to get going, I looked to my left and there he was walking past me in the little aisle/chute leading from the locker rooms to the court.

I probably saw 6 or 7 games while he was the Seattle coach. In one game I managed to sneak down to vacant season ticket seats in about the 4th row behind the bench. Would happen often - a block of 4 seats or so vacant the entire game in the prime zone. We had just sat down and I was looking at Russell, smiling, and he looked around and made eye contact and gave me a look of utter contempt. I read that he did that often with fans. Oh well.

Add to that his lousy coaching in Seattle. When he was player/coach he had the advantage of having Bill Russell as his starting center. That and a crew he was very familiar with. At Seattle Russel kept journey Zaid Abdul Aziz (formerly Don Smith) on the bench for long periods while playing the hapless 7'2" great white hope Tom Burleson. Might have been owner's instructions, who knows.

His poor cousin, Bob Hopkins, took over for him during off season in '77 and started the season at something like 5 and 17 whereupon he was replaced by director of personnel Lenny Wilkens who took an entirely different starting 5 from the bench. They won 11 of the first 12 games, went to the finals, and won the title the next year.

I saw a video about Wilt and they showed footage of him being a surprise guest at an award ceremony for Russell in Boston. A number or city luminaries were reportedly trying to make up for the less than stellar treatment Russell received in Boston over the years. Seeing the two of them sitting together on stage, taking in the accolades was moving.

I don't want to dump on Russell bigtime, I did admire much about him. I swear my dad softened his racism (he grew up in hardass ******* zones in AZ) from watching Russell as NBA play by play TV guy around 1970. But I think Duncan very much on a par with him in terms of clutch play and character.
 
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