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Swashcuff
03-31-2010, 12:10 PM
Well not according to one SI writer.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2010/writers/dan_shaughnessy/03/29/duncan.spurs/index.html


I was reading Joe Posnanski's very fine column on Tim Duncan in Sports Illustrated last month and came across a statement which jumped off the page and bit me on the nose. Concluding his homage to Duncan, Posnanski wrote, "He's one of the 10 best players in NBA history ... ''

"No bloody way," I screamed.

Since I was in my home office at the time, I went to a reliable source: Elliott Kalb's Who's Better, Who's Best in Basketball? Imagine my horror when I flipped through the book (published in 2004) and discovered that Kalb had Duncan ranked the ninth-best player in NBA history?

What am I missing here?

Off the top of my head I'd take Wilt Chamberlain (always No. 1, the guy averaged 50.4 points a game during the 1961-62 season), Bill Russell, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Shaquille O'Neal, Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Oscar Robertson, Jerry West and Bob Cousy ahead of Duncan. There's a quick 10 without as much as a three-second violation.

Nothing against Duncan, but you could also give me Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Julius Erving, Elgin Baylor, Hakeem Olajuwon, Charles Barkley, Karl Malone and Kevin McHale. Oh, and let's not forget Bob Pettit, Moses Malone, John Stockton and Isiah Thomas.

OK, I admit I'm being a little unfair to Duncan. I can find room for him somewhere in that second 12. But only a few of those 12 can make a case for cracking the top 10, and Duncan is not on my list.

Somehow, I've missed Duncan's greatness. Maybe it's because he played in San Antonio. Maybe it's the lack of flair in his game. Even his nickname is boring. Please, "The Big Fundamental?" Sounds like a guy you'd fit for a pocket protector.

Then again, learning that Duncan is only the fourth player in NBA history to scored 20,000 points with 10,000 rebounds, 2,000 blocks and 2,500 assists (alongside Kareem, Hakeem and Shaq) makes me take him much more seriously. It's like when you realize that Frank Thomas and Jim Thome are solidly ensconced in the 500 home run club.

Duncan came to Boston last night and, in the interest of research, I wandered down to the TD Garden to watch him in person. He came to town averaging 18.2 points, 10.2 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. Against the Celtics, he scored eight points to go along with nine rebounds in 26 minutes of a shockingly easy, 94-73 victory over the allegedly revived Boston Celtics.

He is certainly the slow and steady fire. Except for 2001-02 when he scored 25.5 points per game, Duncan has always averaged between 18 and 24 points per game. The Spurs have been good for 53-63 wins in each of his seasons (save for the 1998-99 season that was cut short with the lockout). He's won four championships, been named MVP of the Finals three times and earned league MVP honors twice. He's the first player in NBA history to be named All-NBA and All-Defensive teams in each of his first 12 seasons.

Bill Walton calls him the Pete Sampras of basketball. That makes him great ... and a little boring.

So who are you gonna throw out of my top 10 to make room for Duncan?

Wilt, Russell, Kareem and Shaq are non-negotiable. I'd take Hakeem over Duncan also, but let's not go there. Obviously, Magic, Michael and Larry have to be in any top 10, even if Larry's former teammate, Cedric Maxwell, thinks Dirk Nowitzki and Kevin Garnett are better than Bird. That leaves Oscar, Jerry West and Cousy -- the holy trinity of old guards. You can certainly try to argue for Duncan over one or more of those three, but I'm not buying.

I'll admit that the more I scour Duncan's numbers, the better he looks. He's a 7-footer who plays great defense, makes the perfect outlet passes and uses the glass like no one else his size. He's won his whole career, and he's done it quietly. Too quietly for his own good, maybe. Playing in a small media market has disguised some of his greatness.

Duncan continues to play at an amazing level for a guy closing in on 34.

I talked to his coach, Gregg Popovich, after Sunday night's game. I asked Pop about Duncan as a top-10 player. Of all time.

"I think he'd be flattered and embarrassed by that,'' said Popovich. "I think in some ways he suffers from the small market, with the pop culture and all that. He couldn't care less about that. It's nice that some people rank him high, but we've had a lot of great players in this league.''

Duncan was predictably humble about the whole deal.

Told that he was ranked among the top 10 players of all time he said, "It's a bit shocking. I don't know what to say about that. I know my [style of] basketball. It's nice to be thought of as one of the top players, but I can think of a lot of great players.''

We went down my list. I started rattling off names.

"You got 12 right there,'' he said.

Tim Duncan is not going to fight about this. Even he admits it is absurd. He is a great player. He's just not one of the 10 greatest of all time.

What do you guys think?

Avenged
03-31-2010, 12:17 PM
Duncan has an argument to be top 10 of all time. He's arguably the best PF of all time. Good for Duncan to be humble about it. The writer of the article acts as if he's never heard of Duncan, even ranking Lebron James above him? Not a knock to James but Duncan ranks higher than him RIGHT NOW in terms of All-Time. You can even throw Kobe in there so I won't get flamed lol :p

MagicDojo
03-31-2010, 12:19 PM
No rings in San Antonio if not for timmy thats for sure!

BoognishMN
03-31-2010, 12:34 PM
Without a doubt he's top 20 my list looks something like this, I have him as the best PF ever at 11
MJ
Wilt
Kareem
Russell
Magic
Kobe
Bird
Oscar
Shaq
Dr. J
Ducan

Chronz
03-31-2010, 12:37 PM
Easily top 10, people just dont know how to measure impact, one of the best centers of any era.

MaHaRaJaH
03-31-2010, 12:37 PM
I say he has a case for top 10 to. He's the Patrick Ewing of this decade/generation, but with championships.

jackdawson
03-31-2010, 12:47 PM
Top 10 without a doubt. He plays for Spurs and his is not a flashy player. That's why many people tend to ignore his greatness. I also believe, he deserved some DPOY award in his prime years (Ben Wallace years).

Raoul Duke
03-31-2010, 12:49 PM
Anyone that knows the game can make a great argument that he deserves to be considered top ten. And I'm so sick and tired of hearing about how badly it hurts his reputation that he plays in such a small market. If you don't know about Tim Duncan, then you're not an NBA fan.

Hawkeye15
03-31-2010, 12:58 PM
without a doubt top 20. Its not even an argument.

goldenstater
03-31-2010, 12:59 PM
No way IMO is Dr.j ahead of Duncan in any all-time list( no offense ) but come on. And thatbarticle, to say I would rather take Barkley,mchale, or Dr J us a joke. I think top ten ,I can see some arguments for maybe 11 or 12 but that's it. He has just as many rings as Kobe in this era and is actually responsible for all four.

DevonMSF
03-31-2010, 01:01 PM
Duncan can make it into Top-10 All-Time.
He's arguably the greats PF of all-time...so...
yeah, tell this SI guy to stuff it.lol

Raph12
03-31-2010, 01:13 PM
Lebron over Duncan at this point in his career :facepalm:... Well you know this guy is an idiot.

Duncan is a Top 10 player of all time IMO, I'd take him over West and Cousy in a heartbeat.

jackdawson
03-31-2010, 01:15 PM
Anyone that knows the game can make a great argument that he deserves to be considered top ten. And I'm so sick and tired of hearing about how badly it hurts his reputation that he plays in such a small market. If you don't know about Tim Duncan, then you're not an NBA fan.

Knowing a player by watching him play is one thing, and knowing a player by reading articles about him/TV media is another. A lot of young kids want to be Kobe Bryant without even watching him, and they dont even know who Tim Duncan is. How often do you see articles about Tim Duncan compared to that of superstar players from big cities?

RadiantShot
03-31-2010, 01:16 PM
I don't think Duncan is a top 10 player skill-wise. Impact wise? Yes. People seem to get that part mixed up for the most-part. A lot of people were better offensively, and had a better all-around game than Duncan, but Duncan's a franchise player, and impacted the Spurs in a huge way.

Swashcuff
03-31-2010, 01:19 PM
I don't think Duncan is a top 10 player skill-wise. Impact wise? Yes. People seem to get that part mixed up for the most-part. A lot of people were better offensively, and had a better all-around game than Duncan, but Duncan's a franchise player, and impacted the Spurs in a huge way.

well said.

Dol-Fan
03-31-2010, 01:24 PM
This guy is talking like he's never watched basketball before. He's absolutely stunned that Duncan holds company with Kareem, Wilt, and Hakeem the way that he does. It's unbelievable, for a basketball writer, you would assume that he's watched basketball enough to notice one of the most dominant teams over the last decade and a half.

He's almost putting Duncan down for being technically sound and one of the hardest workers in the game.

Hellcrooner
03-31-2010, 01:28 PM
If we make it the way it should wich is top 20 means the best 4 players at each position so you can make four rosters ( i always thought omparing pg to sf or C to sg was like comparing oranges and apples)

Undoubteldy

He is the BEST PF ever so he is top 20.

If we go regardless position i still think he makes it.

Only ones i think CLEARLy deserve a spot over him are , Magic, Oscar, Jordan,Bird, Mikan, Wilt, Russell, Kareem.

He belongs in a Bubble of players with cases to enter the top ten with the likes of Shaq, Kobe, Hakeem, Moses Malone, West, Baylor, Julius.

RadiantShot
03-31-2010, 01:29 PM
Can everyone come to an agreement that Duncan is the best PF ever? Or is everyone just going along with the flow. Let's here some different opinions if there are any.

TheKing23
03-31-2010, 01:31 PM
I have him comfortably resting in the top 10 of all-time.

TheKing23
03-31-2010, 01:34 PM
1. Jordan
2. Magic
3. Russell
4. Kareem
5. Bird
6. Shaq
7. Wilt
8. Duncan
9. Robertson
10. Hakeem

blastmasta26
03-31-2010, 01:36 PM
I think it's unanimous, Duncan is undoubtedly top 20 all time.

PJAF
03-31-2010, 01:36 PM
Maybe top 20 in power forwards but not players of all time and I wouldn't include Shaq in there either.

Raoul Duke
03-31-2010, 01:40 PM
Can everyone come to an agreement that Duncan is the best PF ever? Or is everyone just going along with the flow. Let's here some different opinions if there are any.

I would feel like a complete douche bag if I were to compare Duncan to guys I never got to watch play like Oscar Robertson and Wilt. He's one of the 10 best players that I've seen in my lifetime.

As for the "best PF of all time" thing, I thought Karl Malone was just as good despite never winning a ring.

TheKing23
03-31-2010, 01:40 PM
Maybe top 20 in power forwards but not players of all time and I wouldn't include Shaq in there either.

Wait, wait... Tim Duncan is "MAYBE top 20 in power forwards".

:facepalm:

camador22
03-31-2010, 01:40 PM
Jerry West has 1 championship, Wilt has two and the big O has 1. Duncan has 4 titles and 3 finals MVPs and the three finals MVPs were when the league had some tough teams. Duncan is no doubt the best PF of all time and in my mind a lock to be a top 10 ever. He will also rank ahead of Kobe unless Kobe wins a couple more rings.

MJ
Kareem
Bird
Magic
Shaq
Duncan
Hakeem
Russell
The Big O
Kobe

ballpd05
03-31-2010, 01:41 PM
I agree. My Ten are:

MJ
Wilt
Magic
Kareem
Shaq
Bill Russell
Oscar Robertson
Tim Duncan
Larry Bird
Dr. J

I think the small market argument is crap too. He is in the playoffs every year and has made deep runs in most of those years, so he is often on one of the last NBA teams standing when all of the games are on TV. The first round may have a couple games on NBA TV, but he is normally always out of that round.

Sure he may not get into the drama, or have a highlight because he dropped 50 on someone. Timmy's impact is unmeasurable though defense, passing, scoring, positioning, and being a decoy. Best PF of all time, with 4 title to boot.

Swashcuff
03-31-2010, 01:41 PM
Maybe top 20 in power forwards but not players of all time and I wouldn't include Shaq in there either.

:facepalm: of the day belongs to you!!! SIGH!

BOSTON617
03-31-2010, 01:45 PM
Ya definatly he is prob even further up duncan is great

BOSTON617
03-31-2010, 01:47 PM
I agree. My Ten are:

MJ
Wilt
Magic
Kareem
Shaq
Bill Russell
Oscar Robertson
Tim Duncan
Larry Bird
Dr. J

I think the small market argument is crap too. He is in the playoffs every year and has made deep runs in most of those years, so he is often on one of the last NBA teams standing when all of the games are on TV. The first round may have a couple games on NBA TV, but he is normally always out of that round.

Sure he may not get into the drama, or have a highlight because he dropped 50 on someone. Timmy's impact is unmeasurable though defense, passing, scoring, positioning, and being a decoy. Best PF of all time, with 4 title to boot.

DEF DISAGREE DR J SHOULDNT BE A TOP 10 BIRD SHOULD BE TOP 5 EASY AND DUNCAN IS 10 IF HE IS EVEN A TOP 10 PLAYER NO WAY HES BETTER THEN LARRY :facepalm:

tredigs
03-31-2010, 01:51 PM
This guy barely has Duncan as a top 25 player all time??? Behind guys like COUSY? And Wilt as the GOAT over MJ? C'mon man.

RadiantShot
03-31-2010, 01:51 PM
Honestly. I think the top 5/10/20 rankings are all overrated. Nobody's ever going to agree. Different players do different things. There's so much you can rank a player on. Impact, skill, career, championships. We should be able to voice our opinions, but nobody should degrade someone for putting Duncan in a top 20 category instead of a top 10. It's easily debatable.

tredigs
03-31-2010, 01:53 PM
I don't think Duncan is a top 10 player skill-wise. Impact wise? Yes. People seem to get that part mixed up for the most-part. A lot of people were better offensively, and had a better all-around game than Duncan, but Duncan's a franchise player, and impacted the Spurs in a huge way.

Disagree. We're talking about a guy who averages about 21 pts 12 rebs 3+ ast and 2+ blks over the entirety of his career. He's also led the league in defensive win shares in about 50% of the seasons in his career, and is just generally the most dominant defensive player of the past decade. He is the EPITOME of an all around player. You have to search pretty hard to find a hole in his game. 4x NBA champion, multiple regular season MVP and multiple finals MVP, to go along with Rookie of the Year and more 1st Team All League and 1st Team All Defensive honors he can count on one hand.

The guy is an all time great, but the fact that he's not flashy gets him overshadowed by the likes of players like Kobe (who is obviously great himself, but not as great as Duncan) during this decade, so you'll find ignorant sportswriters like this guy every so often who were completely sideswiped by the guy's impact on the league. The fact that he already has Lebron over him, to go along with players like Bob Cousy, just shows how out of touch the writer is. Poor article. It's kind of a shame Duncan rarely gets the praise he's earned. Oh well, the true NBA fans know what's up.

Raph12
03-31-2010, 02:10 PM
Disagree. We're talking about a guy who averages about 21 pts 12 rebs 3+ ast and 2+ blks over the entirety of his career. He's also led the league in defensive win shares in about 50% of the seasons in his career, and is just generally the most dominant defensive player of the past decade. He is the EPITOME of an all around player. You have to search pretty hard to find a hole in his game. 4x NBA champion, multiple regular season MVP and multiple finals MVP, to go along with Rookie of the Year and more 1st Team All League and 1st Team All Defensive honors he can count on one hand.

The guy is an all time great, but the fact that he's not flashy gets him overshadowed by the likes of players like Kobe (who is obviously great himself, but not as great as Duncan) during this decade, so you'll find ignorant sportswriters like this guy every so often who were completely sideswiped by the guy's impact on the league. The fact that he already has Lebron over him, to go along with players like Bob Cousy, just shows how out of touch the writer is. Poor article. It's kind of a shame Duncan rarely gets the praise he's earned. Oh well, the true NBA fans know what's up.

Dead-on.

THE MTL
03-31-2010, 02:17 PM
He makes a good argument, but Tim Duncan is one of the best PF of all time. I would def pick him over quite of few of the bigs he listed.

I think Duncan is at #10 or somewhere around there 9-12. However, once Kobe & Lebron get a few more years on them. Duncan def wont be Top 10.

Lakersfan2483
03-31-2010, 02:21 PM
Duncan is definitely in the top 10.

BoognishMN
03-31-2010, 02:29 PM
Maybe top 20 in power forwards but not players of all time and I wouldn't include Shaq in there either.

Wow how much glue do you have to sniff to make a comment like this.

eugene
03-31-2010, 02:30 PM
Lebron over Duncan?? C'mon... it's a joke?

BlondeBomber41
03-31-2010, 02:37 PM
I think people like this forget the true impact that Duncan had on the league for so long, and still does somewhat.

There are VERY few players I would take over Duncan all time.

Double_R
03-31-2010, 02:40 PM
best power forward ever...Mailman #2

SeoulBeatz
03-31-2010, 02:41 PM
I don't think Duncan is a top 10 player skill-wise. Impact wise? Yes. People seem to get that part mixed up for the most-part. A lot of people were better offensively, and had a better all-around game than Duncan, but Duncan's a franchise player, and impacted the Spurs in a huge way.

i honestly think you're wrong there. he has MASTERED fundamentals and he has the best post play in the NBA albeit he is one of the worst athletes. He just always knows where to be, he always gets a better angle for the rebound and putback. He's always in the right spot.

he is a master of the little things, moreso than any player ive seen before.

BOSTON617
03-31-2010, 02:45 PM
Duncan can be a top ten player just not a head of bird i think if he is a top 10 player he is number 10 .

tredigs
03-31-2010, 02:52 PM
I think people like this forget the true impact that Duncan had on the league for so long, and still does somewhat.

There are VERY few players I would take over Duncan all time.

Yeah for sure. And Duncan is STILL a lot more effective than people give him credit for. Popavich has been resting him a little more for the playoffs this year, but his per 36 minute numbers are as good as they have ever been. Some people don't like the Hollinger PER stat, but I think it's a solid objective gauge of the quality of year the players are having.

Duncan' 5th in PER this year at 24.69,

Top 10:

1. Lebron
2. Wade
3. Durant
4. Cp3
5. Duncan
6. Bosh
7. D. Howard
8. Melo
9. Dirk
10. Kobe

His career PER is 25.0 flat. The man is a g'damn ROCK.

tjlipford
03-31-2010, 02:53 PM
I believe he is top 20 all time. No rings in San Antonio without Duncan!!

bagwell368
03-31-2010, 02:54 PM
Well not according to one SI writer.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2010/writers/dan_shaughnessy/03/29/duncan.spurs/index.html



What do you guys think?

DS is an idiot, there is no way in hell Jerry West or Cousy (both short on the D) is better then Duncan. Zero. I'm not even sure Cousey is top 30. West is top 30.

I am not 100% sure he is top 10, but he is no worse then 13-14, making him easily top 20.

Maybe top 20 all time power forwards. The top guys are in no order: McHale, Malone, KG, Barkley, Buck Williams, Pettit, Cowens (yes, he was a PF playing Center).

In terms of overall career value, it's possible Malone and Barkley have him due to offense and career length, but overall balanced game, on a per game basis?

Duncan is the best - clearly. Top 20, that's funny. Oh yes he wasn't a bad back-up center, and Malone and Barkley were useless in that role.

bagwell368
03-31-2010, 02:56 PM
best power forward ever...Mailman #2

If the league policed elbows like they should have, he'd have been suspended most of his career. An artless thug - seems the type a Raiders fan would elevate to #1.

KnicksorBust
03-31-2010, 03:08 PM
Give me Duncan's career over Shaq's or Wilt's. Duncan is in my top 6.

JayW_1023
04-02-2010, 02:57 AM
I don't think Duncan is a top 10 player skill-wise. Impact wise? Yes. People seem to get that part mixed up for the most-part. A lot of people were better offensively, and had a better all-around game than Duncan, but Duncan's a franchise player, and impacted the Spurs in a huge way.

What are you talking about. He is one of the most skilled low post players ever...and one of the best students of the game.

sp1derm00
04-02-2010, 03:16 AM
I think people overrate players from the past.

I have no doubt Bill Russel and Wilt would be dominant players today, but there is no way in hell Wilt would get 50ppg or rebound over 20rpg in today's league with today's players. There is no doubt in my mind that Bill Russel wouldn't win anywhere close to 9 championships in today's league of 30 teams and the current playoff system.

Tim Duncan IS a Top 10 player, All-Time. Bottom line, he is the greatest PF to ever stop on the court and he has the rings to back it up. I am a Laker fan and I will say this: Players like Jerry West, while it's great that his legacy is remembered so fondly, the man only won one NBA championship after failing multiple times in the Finals. Tim Duncan has been a proven winner since he stepped on the court and he deserves a spot on the Top 10. And seriously? You would take BOB COUSY over Duncan?!??? BOB COUSY?!!?! The man won a lot of titles... in a league with something like 11 teams. He was probably the first good point guard in the NBA, but that's about as far as his legacy should extend. Give Tim Duncan his spot.

xBLAMEITON24x
04-02-2010, 03:34 AM
No arguement here, he is definitly in top 20

stawka
04-02-2010, 03:49 AM
Top 20 - no ****king doubt about it, top 10 - depending which way you look at things.

Anyone that says he's not in the top 15 is a hater, whether it be his style (lack thereof) or just doesn't like him for another reason. He's gotten the job done, plain and simple

ldc62
04-02-2010, 03:56 AM
Hes easily one of the best PFs of all time. So easily in top 20.

abe_froman
04-02-2010, 04:03 AM
sound like old dan is still irked on celtics losing out that draft

BlondeBomber41
04-02-2010, 12:23 PM
I think people overrate players from the past.

I have no doubt Bill Russel and Wilt would be dominant players today, but there is no way in hell Wilt would get 50ppg or rebound over 20rpg in today's league with today's players. There is no doubt in my mind that Bill Russel wouldn't win anywhere close to 9 championships in today's league of 30 teams and the current playoff system.

Tim Duncan IS a Top 10 player, All-Time. Bottom line, he is the greatest PF to ever stop on the court and he has the rings to back it up. I am a Laker fan and I will say this: Players like Jerry West, while it's great that his legacy is remembered so fondly, the man only won one NBA championship after failing multiple times in the Finals. Tim Duncan has been a proven winner since he stepped on the court and he deserves a spot on the Top 10. And seriously? You would take BOB COUSY over Duncan?!??? BOB COUSY?!!?! The man won a lot of titles... in a league with something like 11 teams. He was probably the first good point guard in the NBA, but that's about as far as his legacy should extend. Give Tim Duncan his spot.

No doubt, and thats what I have always said. People give great players from the past way too much credit alot of the time. Like they could do no wrong...

I'd bet my life, all my money, my house and my car that Tim Duncan back in those days would of ****ing dominated like no other big man.

JordansBulls
04-02-2010, 12:33 PM
Well not according to one SI writer.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2010/writers/dan_shaughnessy/03/29/duncan.spurs/index.html



What do you guys think?

I think this guy is full of ****.

Mr. Net32
04-02-2010, 12:38 PM
If Duncan played for a big market(Knicks, Bulls, Lakers, Celtics etc.) would this be an argument... If only Lebron could see this smh

JasonJohnHorn
04-02-2010, 12:47 PM
Easily top 10, people just dont know how to measure impact, one of the best centers of any era.

Whether people call him a center or a forward: this is true! His stats are meek compared to some dream fantasy players, but his impact on the court is not represented by his stats. Easily a top ten player of all time.

wolf3742
04-02-2010, 02:03 PM
I was reading this article the other day and I completely disagree but the next day a new article from one of the SI writers created a rebuttal for this explaining Duncan's place in the top 10

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2010/writers/joe_posnanski/03/30/duncan.counterpoint/index.html

RaptorizedKevin
04-02-2010, 02:40 PM
definatly top 10. timmy is one of the best/ if not the best power forward to ever play the game.

Iodine
04-02-2010, 02:42 PM
Um.............. I was under the impression that when your in the top 10 your in the top 20

Iodine
04-02-2010, 02:43 PM
I think this guy is full of ****.

JB can I sig quotee you cursing?