The name Tim Duncan is synonymous with the San Antonio Spurs. In almost two decades in the league, the talented forward/center made his name as one of the NBA’s top scorers, rebounders, and defenders among big men, and while many had seen this day coming, the man himself has just made it official, announcing his retirement after 19 years with the Spurs.

Duncan gave Spurs the best 19-year stretch in major American sports history

According to the Spurs’ official press release, Duncan’s 19-year stretch with the team gave them a 1,072-438 win-loss record in the regular season, good for a winning percentage of .710. This wasn’t just the best 19-year stretch in NBA history, but also the best in major American sports, also including the NFL, MLB, and NHL.

A Hall of Fame-worthy career

As the first-overall pick in the 1997 NBA draft out of Wake Forest, Duncan immediately stepped in as a force to be reckoned with, taking a team that went 20-62 the year prior to a 56-26 record. He won Rookie of the Year honors that 1997-98 season, averaging 21.1 points, 11.9 rebounds, 2.7 assists, and 2.5 blocked shots, and taking the Spurs to the Western Conference semifinals, where they lost to the Karl Malone and John Stockton-led Utah Jazz.

But the Spurs were not to be denied in the season that followed, as they beat the Knicks in the 1999 NBA Finals, winning the first of Duncan’s five NBA championships with the team.

As an individual player, Duncan also won two MVP awards in the regular season (2002 and 2003), and three NBA Finals MVP awards (1999, 2003, and 2005). He made the All-Star Game, and any one of the three All-NBA Teams and two All-Defensive Teams 15 times each in his career, with the latter marking a league record.

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Additionally, he is only the third player in NBA history to win 1,000 games with the teams he has played for, and the only one to accumulate those wins with just one team.

All in all, Duncan totaled 26,496 points, 15,091 rebounds, and 3,020 blocked shots in his career, good for averages of 19.0 ppg, 10.8 rpg, and 2.2 bpg. In terms of shooting, he shot a very commendable 50.6 percent from the field in his 19-year NBA run, and while free throw shooting has often been pointed out as the weakest area in his game, he still shot a decent 69.6 percent over his career.

What's next for the Spurs after Duncan?

With the addition of Pau Gasol through free agency and LaMarcus Aldridge having been with the team since the 2014-15 season, the San Antonio Spurs will remain strong in the post even after Duncan's retirement. The Spurs should also remain the perennial postseason contenders they've been since Duncan's rookie year in 1997-98, with Gasol and Aldridge teaming up with the backcourt duo of Kawhi Leonard and Tony Parker, and Danny Green providing threes and defense from the small forward spot.

Whileit's going to be hard to imagine a San Antonio Spurs without Tim Duncan, experts such as Golden State Warriors coach and former Duncan teammate Steve Kerr do indeed believe the Spurs will keep contending even without old #21 manning the post.

"When you think of a Spurs game, you think of the opening tip and Timmy cradling the ball and looking down at Pop (Spurs coach Gregg Popovich) and Manu (Ginobili) and Tony," Kerr said.

"The four of them really kind of define who they are. But Tim is the main guy obviously...They'll still be the Spurs based on what they've built. And maybe that's Timmy's lasting legacy. He helped build something so strong that's still going after he leaves."

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