In Keeping World at a Distance, Duncan Was One of NBA’s Most Effective Leaders

July 12th, 2016 by Kevin Ding Leave a reply »

He grew up a swimmer, so it's easy to imagine young Tim Duncan ripping off lap after lap in some sort of freestyle solitary confinement.

Disinclined to share the inner workings of his wisdom or the deeper motivations in his soul, Duncan, who announced his retirement Monday after 19 NBA seasons, leaves the public to assume he didn't want to connect with people around him.

In truth, Duncan stuck around for so long because the communication and camaraderie of being part of a team was so dear to him.

His love for the group made him beloved as a leader.

The iconic image of Duncan hugging the basketball with both arms before tip-off further suggests a personality more at ease embracing a ball than a teammate.

In hugging that inanimate object, however, Duncan showed his humanity. The reason he did it was irrational.

"It's a superstitious thing that I started, probably my first year in the league," Duncan said in a 2014 Hoop magazine interview. "For nothing else, it is just something I say before the games. Get ready to go."

More important, Duncan was never ...

Read Full Article at Bleacher Report - NBA
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