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Tim Duncan retires with highest win percentage for any player across four major sports in last 19 years

Tim Duncan

After 19 years in the NBA, the whole basketball world solemnly says goodbye to San Antonio soon-to-be Hall of Fame power forward Tim Duncan. While many took to Twitter to express their thanks towards the big man, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insider instead posted Duncan’s win percentage over his 19 years in San Antonio. The .710 mark is not only the NBA’s best win percentage over that stretch, but also is the best in the NFL, MLB, and NHL.

Duncan’s retirement garnered a lot of media attention following his decision earlier today, earning the number one trending topic on Twitter as well as sentiments from around the league. Newly retired superstar Kobe Bryant told media that Duncan was “more cutthroat than people give him credit for” and that he “loved everything about (Duncan) on the court.”

The praise for the 5-time NBA champion extended into the suits of the association, with NBA commissioner Adam Silver releasing a statement as well on Monday morning following the decision. Silver stated, “For two decades Tim represented the Spurs, the city of San Antonio and the league with passion and class. All of us in the NBA family thank him for his profound impact on the game.”

While Duncan’s retirement was an inevitable decision, many noticed that the power forward waited to make his decision until after free agent and now-Warriors small forward Kevin Durant made his decision in free agency. The Spurs were in the running for the 2013-14 MVP, and Duncan’s commitment to his team has evidently stayed strong even through his retirement decision.

The 19-year veteran will leave the NBA with the most player-coach duo wins in NBA history under future Hall of Fame coach Gregg Popovich, who has gone through retirement rumors himself in recent years. During his final game, Popovich allowed Duncan to play all 12 minutes of the fourth quarter in a Game 6 blowout loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder. After the game, Duncan waved to a visiting crowd and pointed to the roof as he left the stadium as a player one last time.

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