After spending a year as an assistant on the bench for the San Antonio Spurs, Tim Duncan is set to step down, as first reported by Marc Stein of the New York Times.
According to Stein, this comes as no surprise to the franchise, as it was always understood that Duncan would be with the team on a short-term stint. In fact, during this past season, Popovich mentioned numerous times how Duncan was "too smart" to take up coaching full-time and long-term.
He is expected to return to his post-retirement role, where he made numerous appearances at the team's practice facility to provide player-development assistance.
In July 2019, Duncan surprised many by joining Gregg Popovich's coaching staff as an assistant alongside Becky Hammon, Will Hardy and Chip Engelland. Aside from being an assistant, the extended 2019-20 season was eventful for Duncan, to say the least.
Although the win does officially go to Pop, Duncan did record his first win as a head coach in a game at Charlotte on Mar. 3 when the former was unavailable to coach.
Tim Duncan stepped in for Pop and got his first win as a head coach for the Spurs 🔥 pic.twitter.com/tznnVm9rsx- Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) March 4, 2020
In April, as the NBA was on hiatus to avoid the spread of the COVID-19 virus, he was officially elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Alongside Duncan, the Hall of Fame class of 2020 also includes the late Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett, Tamika Catchings, Eddie Sutton, Rudy Tomjanovich, Kim Mulkey, Barbara Stevens, and Patrick Baumann.
When the NBA resumed at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL in July, Duncan elected not to travel with the Spurs, as he remained in San Antonio to aid with the rehab of LaMarcus Aldridge, who remained in Texas as he recovered from season-ending shoulder surgery.
As a player, Duncan played a pivotal role in each of the five championships that the Spurs won during his 19 years (1997-2016). He was named to 15 All-Star teams, 15 All-NBA teams and 15 All-Defensive teams, received two league MVP awards (2002, 2003), and won three NBA Finals MVP awards (1999, 2003, 2005).
He is San Antonio's all-time leader in points (26,496), rebounds (15,091), blocked shots (3,020) and games played (1,392) and is one of only three players in NBA history to have won more than 1,000 games.
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