Much to the surprise of absolutely nobody on the planet or possibly in the entire galaxy, the San Antonio Spurs announced on Wednesday that they will retire Tim Duncan’s number on December 18. On that Sunday, they will welcome Anthony Davis and the struggling New Orleans Pelicans for what will probably be a big home team win (at least based on current records), but fans will get to stick around for even more excitement and electricity after the game.
Duncan’s jersey will hang in the rafters next to other Spurs greats, including George Gervin, David Robinson, James Silas, Johnny Moore, Sean Elliott, Bruce Bowen, and Avery Johnson, but his legacy will be arguably the team’s greatest. His numbers and accomplishments are just absurd:
Originally selected by the Spurs as the first overall pick in the 1997 NBA Draft, Duncan guided San Antonio to five NBA championships and posted a 1,072-438 regular-season record, giving the team a .710 winning percentage, which is the best 19-year stretch in NBA history and was the best in all of the NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB over that time. He helped the Spurs reach the playoffs in each of his 19 seasons and became the only player in league history to start and win a title in three different decades. The Silver and Black won at least 50 games in his last 17 seasons, the longest streak in league history, and posted at least a .600 winning percentage in each of Duncan’s 19 seasons, an all-time record for most consecutive seasons with a .600 win percentage in the four major U.S. sports. (Via the Spurs)
Is that good? That sounds pretty good. The NBA should harvest Duncan’s DNA and let small market teams clone him to create an army of new, really quiet superstars. Just don’t let any of the clones fall in love or they’ll all end up in San Antonio.