It has been speculated for a while, but Tim Duncan has finally confirmed that he is retiring after 19 seasons in the NBA. Tim Duncan leaves basketball with a legacy that is hard to match. Anything and everything there is to accomplish he did it. It will look strange to see the spurs take the court without the face of the franchise leading them, but I think he made the right choice.At 40 years old he knows his best days are behind him. Retiring now allowed him to go out on his terms, instead of being forced out of the league like so many before him. Duncan is one of the few players who’s game aged gracefully. So often we see a player who dominates the league and is an all-star and then all of a sudden we’re wondering what happened to them. This is partially due to Duncan’s  Style of play. While others focused purely on athleticism and highlight Dunks, Duncan’s game was about fundamentals and playing smart basketball. Even in his later part of his career when he was the fastest or the most athletic he would still take his opponents to school by being more experienced and playing smart and better basketball. Duncan as much as anyone understood how important teamwork is in basketball. He was never there to outshine his teammates or be a star. He knew that basketball is a team game and each player had a role to play, he just happened to play his role as well as anyone in the history of the game. In addition to playing his role amazingly, he was also an outstanding leader. He led by example, and helped the whole team buy into the Gregg Popvich’s system. There is a reason why the Spurs play such great team basketball and have been consistent over the last 2 decades. Part of it’s Gregg Popovich and the other is Duncan. If The Superstar of the team does not buy in and lead by example it would’ve been very difficult for Popovich to be successful. Tim Duncan made it easy for him by being a coaches dream, he was amazingly talented, and was still coach able; this combination is difficult to find in today’s NBA.Many believe that Tim Duncan is the greatest Power Forward ever and it’s hard to argue against it. 5 Championships 3 Finals MVP and 2 league MVPs, that’s a Resume that rivals any player in history. I always hate that as soon as a player retires people ask “where do they rank all time?” because it doesn’t matter. Only Tim Duncan was Tim Duncan and only he had his career. Where he ranks is insignificant because everyone will have a different opinion. I think once you get to the level of “He one of the greatest of all time” it’s good enough. Trying to separate great players from different eras and played different positions is subjective and has no real right answer. One thing we all can agree on is that Tim Duncan is one of the Greatest to ever play the game. His legacy was cemented long ago and now we say goodbye as another all time great leaves the game.

DHJ

@doubleheaderjay