The One With an Ode to ‘The Big Fundamental’

Fun Fact of the Day: After drafting Tim Duncan, the San Antonio Spurs posted a 1,072-438 regular season record or a .710 winning percentage, which is the best 19-year stretch for any team in NBA history and any team in the NFL, NHL and MLB over the last 19 years.


Today's Rundown

MLB 

Slugfest.  Miami Marlins Giancarlo Stanton won last night’s Home Run Derby, blasting a total of 61 homers in 3 rounds of the contest!  In the final round, he defeated defending champion White Sox’s Todd Frazier 20-13.  He was the favorite to win because he’s known for his super deep homers (he hit 18 of the 19 longest last night), and this year’s format gave bonus time for distance. It was ‘Mission Accomplished’ for Stanton, who isn’t playing in tonight’s All Star game, but flew all the way out to San Diego just to bash some balls.


Spotlight on Tim Duncan

Yesterday, Tim Duncan, the greatest power forward of all time, announced his retirement in classic Timmy fashion, through a San Antonio Spurs team press release with no fan fare. After 19 tremendous seasons with the Spurs, here are some fun facts about the legendary 40-year-old b-baller.

Tim swims.  Timmy grew up in St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands. He originally wanted to be a swimmer like both of his older sisters (one of whom competed for the U.S. in the 1988 Olympics). But when a hurricane destroyed the only Olympic-sized pool in St. Croix, Timmy gave up on swimming and his brother-in-law encouraged him to pick up basketball. He was a freshman in high school when he started playing.

The college years.  Timmy is one of the few NBA superstars that completed college. As a top prospect, he could have left school early for the NBA draft, but he promised his mom that he would complete college before she passed away from breast cancer when he was 14. After Timmy graduated with a major in Psychology from Wake Forest, he was drafted #1 by the Spurs. 

The greatest of all time.  Timmy was known as “The Big Fundamental” because he played simple and consistent ball, including a killer bank shot and stellar defense. He was a consummate professional and team player. He helped lead the NBA’s 4th smallest market team to 5 NBA titles, winning 2 NBA MVP awards and playing in 15 All-Star games on the way. Together with teammates Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker, they won the highest percentage of games for any trio in NBA history. Throughout his career, he was coached by basketball genius and legendary curmudgeon Gregg Popovich. The duo won 1,001 games—the most of any player-coach pair.

The enigma. Off the court, Timmy avoided the limelight, so he didn’t get many advertising contracts (except for these fantastic local grocery spots). He was a big nerd, loving Dungeons & Dragons and Renaissance fairs. The Onion frequently roasted his stoic demeanor with articles like: “Tim Duncan Reports 5th Straight Successful New Year’s Resolution” and “Tim Duncan Hams It Up For Crowd By Arching Left Eyebrow Slightly.

One thing’s for sure, Spurs fans will miss him very much. #ThankYouTim


Seen and Heard

NBA 

He can dish it out, but can’t take it. Golden State Warriors power forward Draymond Green was arrested this weekend in East Lansing, Michigan for getting into a fight at a restaurant. According to sources, Green slapped a fan for talking smack—not a good look for the biggest trash talker in the NBA. Green could face up to 93 days in jail and a $500 fine. It’s not great timing for possible jail time (but when is it?), since Green’s supposed to be playing on Team U.S.A. at the Rio Olympics next month. 

 

OLYMPICS 

Calling all golfers!  Yesterday, Jordan Spieth pulled out of the Rio Olympics citing Zika and safety concerns.  He’s the 18th golfer to take a hard pass on the Olympics, including the rest of the top 4 players in the world: Jason Day, Dustin Johnson, and Rory McIlroy. This was supposed to be golf’s triumphant return to the Olympics after a 112-year absence, but now… not so much.


Hot Read

MLB

All-Star Game.  Watch your favorite stars duke it out for league home team advantage during the World Series in tonight’s Midsummer Classic. 7:30pm ET on FOX