SAN ANTONIO RENEWS CONTRACT WITH VETERAN TIM DUNCAN
Mon, 16 Jul 2012 11:40 AM EDT
The Spurs reported they had re-signed Duncan, bringing back the 36-year-old forward for a minimum of a 16th season. Terms were not divulged; nameless sources related it’s a 3-year, $36 million deal.
The 1st overall pick in the 1997 draft, Duncan in 15 seasons has led the Spurs to 9 division titles and the playoffs every year, including four NBA championships. The San Antonio Spurs are 830-352 in the regular season during his tenure, the highest winning percentage over any 15-year span in NBA history, and Duncan has two league MVP awards to go with 3 NBA Finals MVP honors.
“Tim Duncan has built a reputation for himself as one of the greatest players in NBA history,” Coach Gregg Popovich expounded. “He is a free handed mega star who likes to compete and has only 1 goal when he steps on the court – to do whatever is required to help his team win. We are all thrilled that he’ll spend his complete career as a Spur.”
Duncan, a 13-time All-Star, has averaged 20.3 points, 11.3 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 2.22 blocks per game over his career.
He experienced a little bit of a renaissance this season after injuries and age led some observers to speculate his career was nearing an end. Duncan averaged 15.4 points and 9.0 rebounds in leading the Spurs to the Southwest Division title and a league best 50-16 record.
“I believe (his health) potentially had as much to do with solidifying in his mind how long he wanted to go into the future,” GM R.C. Buford related. “He played well all though this entire season and he even felt better than he ever had. I think in his mind, that was what was crucial. We’re going to play him as long as he says he can play and then likely one or two days longer. We’re hoping he is going to extend us.”
The signing was expected, especially after Duncan asserted, “I’m here and I’m a Spur for life,” during their Western Conference playoff series against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
“You’re never confident that’s going to happen till it’s done,” Buford declared, “but he made it obvious he would have liked to be here. We laid out what our facts were and here is how we thought we could do the most impressive team we may put around him and he claimed, ‘I wish to be a part of it.”
To that end, the Spurs also announced constrained free-agent Danny Green had re-signed with the team.
“I was going to announce that we traded for Steve Nash, but the Lakers beat us to it,” Buford recounted. “I think that we won’t go into the season with the very same team as we had a year ago. (But) we think there is a lot of chance for internal growth, particularly this summer when we have our gym and our players and the chance to get our coaches with them.” NFL spreads
But the Spurs have other questions headed into the offseason. The Spurs lost in the playoffs to Oklahoma City, blowing a 2-0 lead. They don’t have many glaring wishes with the bulk of the roster on track to come back.
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