Life lessons with Tim Duncan Tue, Jul 19, 2016
Five NBA Championships, 14th all-time in points, 6th in rebounds, 3rd in blocked shots and widely regarded as the best power forward of all time, San Antonio Spurs legend Tim Duncan retired on Monday after 19 NBA seasons. Even if you don't care about basketball, there are so many ways to appreciate Tim beyond his athletic achievements.
Kobe Bryant announced his retirement last summer to ensure he had his season-long farewell tour, turning every Lakers game into a circus of standing ovations and arena-wide video tributes. Tim Duncan retired on a Monday morning in July. No press conference, no public statement, just one tweet from the Spurs Twitter account reading: "Nineteen seasons. Five rings. One team.
No departure could be more fitting for the first ballot Hall Of Famer who only did commercials for the local grocery store chain, didn't care about "building his brand" and played for one small-market franchise for his entire career.
In today's world of celebrity stardom, Tim was an anomaly. So consistently and quietly transcendent that he was "boring". From his go-to move (a bank shot from the angle), to the no-frills dominance of the Spurs organization and his infamous "dad outfits" (baggy jeans and over-sized button ups) that remained consistent through the years of NBA fashion evolution - nothing about him was exciting because all that mattered was his quiet dedication to the game and team success.
For two decades, Tim was the foundation of the most consistent and successful franchise in pro sports. He put his head down and worked quietly and tirelessly, celebrating his teammates' achievements more than his own. Yes, it's cliche, but there's endless value in being more felt than seen, in doing things "the right way" and in a constant team-first approach. Tim embodied those qualities in every way, and will quietly bow out as one of his sport's all-time greats.
And if you don't care about any of those things, we'll always have this: