Honoring Tim Duncan: 21 Facts You Should Know

In the last 12 months we’ve see some great athletes hang up their cleats or shoes for the final time: Charles Woodson, Peyton Manning and Kobe Bryant. We now get to add the Big Fundamental, Tim Duncan, to that list.

I penned some of the Black Mamba’s highlights over his career back in March as well as April, but was hoping to get to see the great Tim Duncan play for one last season.

Not surprisingly, he went out without a lot of fanfare – but he will be remembered forever. And, by now, even the most casual fans probably know the story of Tim Duncan and the Spurs.

They never missed the playoffs in his 19 seasons. They reached the Western Conference Finals nine different times, going on to appear in the Finals six times and winning five of them. Five. Not many players can claim five championship rings. But below are some other stats you may not know about Tim Duncan.

1. 65 players in NBA history have played 1,100 games or more in their career and only 35 players have eclipsed 1,200 games in their career. Tim Duncan amassed 1,392 games in his career, the 7th most by any player in history.

2. For the 1,392 games that Duncan played in for the regular season, he started all but three of them.

3. We know about 19 trips to the playoffs for Tim Duncan. That has amounted to 251 games – or over 3 seasons worth of games added to Duncan’s career. This mark stands as the second highest total for any player. He started every playoff game he was in.

4. For players that have amassed at least 500 games in their career, Duncan will go down with the fifth-best total in Win Shares (a cumulative measurement of a player’s contributions to their team) at 206.4. He was just 1.3 WS shy of John Stockton. Rival Dirk Nowitzki could pass Duncan this next season – he’s just 7.6 WS behind Duncan’s mark.

5. Duncan led the Spurs in WS for the regular season from 1998-99 to 2006-07. He did it three more times in 2008-09, 2009-10 and 2014-15.

6. Tim led the league in WS twice: 2001-02 (17.8) and 2002-03 (16.5).

7. Tim Duncan also has 12 seasons of a 10.0 or greater WS. Only 4 other players have more and LeBron James and Dirk Nowitzki also have 12 seasons of 10.0 or more WS in a season.

8. Tim Duncan’s WS total for the playoffs is 37.8, good for third on the list behind LeBron James and Michael Jordan and just ahead of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

9. Tim Duncan also holds the top single-season WS mark in the playoffs at 5.9. It came in the 2002-03 championship run. LeBron James came close with a 5.8 mark in 2010-11.

10. In the same vein of Win Shares, we can measure WS per 48. Duncan’s mark is .209 ws/48 for his career – one of just 20 players with a .200 or better mark (minimum 500 games played). Duncan’s mark is a tie for 13th best with John Stockton and Shaquille O’Neal.

11. Duncan’s playoff WS/48 is just slightly behind his regular season mark at .194. For players with at least 100 playoff games in their career, Duncan’s mark is the 7th best all-time.

12. Duncan put up a career average of 19 points, 10.8 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game. Only 13 other players have done that in their career.

13. If we add his 3.0 assists per game over his career, that list of 13 players dwindles down to 7.

14. Duncan will retire with the sixth most rebounds in NBA history (15,091).

15. Duncan’s rebounding percentage (18.4) is the seventh best mark in NBA history.

16. Duncan will retire with 26,496 points, the 14th most all-time.

17. Amazingly enough though, Duncan only had one game with 50 or more points; he had just 4 of 40 or more points as well.

18. Duncan finishes 4th all-time in the NBA for number of blocks (3,020).

19. Duncan was also 10th in assists by a forward (4,225).

20. He also holds the 5th spot in double-doubles of at least 20 points and 10 rebounds in a game (498).

21. Duncan’s total rebounds in the playoffs (2,859) is currently the third best mark in history and his blocks (568) are the top mark in the playoffs – even ahead of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Hakeem Oljuawon.

Thanks for all the memories Tim!


(all statistics courtesy of Basketball-Reference)