Spurs Retire Tim Duncan's No. 21 Jersey

Spurs center #21 Tim Duncan shoots over Thunder Center #12 Steven Adams
Scott Ball Rivard Report Spurs center #21 Tim Duncan shoots over Thunder Center #12 Steven Adams during a playoff game in 2016
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20 December, 2016

Duncan is the eighth player in Spurs history to have his jersey number retired, joining Johnny Moore (00), Avery Johnson (6), Bruce Bowen (12), James Silas (13), Sean Elliott (32), George Gervin (44), and Robinson (50). "It doesn't even explain how much they meant to me". And he just is polite enough and mature enough to just ignore me and go back out on the court, which allowed me to coach everybody else all those years. His career, all with San Antonio, featured five championships and a 1,072-438 regular-season record. "And it's August. Lots of times, we just ended the season in June because we had a good year, and he loves the game". "I miss all of that".

There's something ironic about the San Antonio Spurs going all-out to honor Tim Duncan. When he said that Duncan was the "ultimate teammate" and that he "changed the Spurs organization into the standard of the National Basketball Association and all professional sports", Duncan looked sheepish.

The ceremony was attended by Duncan's family, former coaches, and teammates. The two were dependent on each other in many ways and the end result was something extraordinary.

"The love and support", he said, "is overwhelming".

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"It's not a show of humility in any sense or form". In case you don't know, a portion of the profits come to me, which is one of the reasons Mrs. Wilco lets me spend so much time working on PtR. That image of Duncan can sometimes feel reductive or parodic, but last night it was just nice to see it burnished by a whole a slew of anecdotes from coaches and teammates past. But he's why I'm standing. "To RC and Pop, you guys put it together and we're out here every year, winning and winning championships", Duncan said.

Tony Parker joked about his entire rookie season with Duncan that Tim never spoke to him, but complimented the power forward for all their off-the-court interactions. He's the 14th-ranked scorer in National Basketball Association history and won two regular-season MVP awards as a Spur.

It seems as though he has the title of "best Spurs player ever" locked down. "But Timmy is special, so he had to have his carrot cake".

The Spurs are paying tribute to one of the best players in franchise history Sunday night against the Pelicans, and they are doing it in style.


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