Skip to main content

Tim Duncan told Pop Spurs would never win with Tony Parker

Tim-Duncan-Tony-Parker

His entire first year with the Spurs, Tim Duncan didn't say a word to Tony Parker. Duncan won an NBA title his second year in the NBA ('98/'99) and returned to each season expecting to be in the Finals. He just didn't understand Pop's passion for drafting completely unknown international players. 

It turned out Pop was right and that Ginobili kid was quite good at basketball. If you look at one of the greatest basketball teams ever to play, the '13/'14 San Antonio Spurs, you had players from Australia, Italy, France, Canada, Brazil, Argentina, and the U.S. Virgin Island playing the beautiful game. The guy from the U.S. Virgin Islands never saw it coming. He actually told Pop the french guy would never be a good player. 

“But why are we drafting a European point guard? We’ll never win a title with a European point guard.”

Tim Duncan, “Tony Parker: Beyond All My Dreams”

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

Now we know why Duncan didn't speak to Parker for his first year there. He was convinced Parker would burn out and go back home, so why bother. We all praise the Spurs for beating everyone to the punch for recognizing the talent outside of the US. It's taken for granted the Spurs were the United Nations of the NBA. 

After the Spurs dominated the Heat in '13/'14, Miami traded for Shabazz Napier on draft night because LeBron tweeted about him. A single tweet was all it took. The Spurs had their franchise guy and NBA champion frustrated after they drafted a European point guard to the point he didn't speak to the mean for an entire year. How did the Spurs respond? They drafted Louis Scola and Leandro Barbossa in the next two drafts ('02 and '03.) 

A Croatian shooting guard in the 90s broke the ceiling and the stereotypes. A shooting guard from Argentina and a point guard from France won it all several times. And in 2020, the reigning two-time MVP is Greek, and a Slovenian kid is no.1 on the "Who'd you build a franchise around?” list. 

What's next? Google Basketball Africa League

Milwaukee Bucks forward Khris Middleton, guard Jrue Holiday, and forward Giannis Antetokounmpo

The Milwaukee Bucks to host youth programs as part of the NBA Abu Dhabi Games

Milwaukee Bucks and Atlanta Hawks will be the first NBA teams to play in Abu Dhabi

Phoenix Suns' forward Jae Crowder defending Chicago Bulls' star DeMar DeRozan

Can the Chicago Bulls make a trade for disgruntled Phoenix Suns forward Jae Crowder?

Find out if the Chicago Bulls can acquire disgruntled Phoenix Suns small forward, Jae Crowder.

Chicago Bulls head coach Billy Donovan with Lonzo Ball

Chicago Bulls head coach Billy Donovan bracing for the entire season without Lonzo Ball

The Bulls are preparing themselves to be competitive while they wait on the health of starting guard Lonzo Ball. Here's what their head coach had to say about the matter.

Dallas Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd

"You can't say, 'This is the way I would do it'" — Jason Kidd explains why he never forced his players to emulate his playing style

Kidd's experience on the Lakers coaching staff has proven to be extrememly valuable in his evolution as a coach.

Houston Rockets center Hakeem Olajuwon

Greg Anthony singles out the most underrated part of Hakeem Olajuwon's on-court skillset

Everyone praises Hakeem's footwork. Greg Anthony praised his God-given instincts for the game.

Los Angeles Lakers head coach Darvin Ham and general manager Rob Pelinka

How the Los Angeles Lakers could take advantage of the NBA's new rule

The new NBA rule could benefit the Lakers if they implement a run-and-gun system.

North Carolina Tar Heels guard Michael Jordan

“No one knew me until then” — Michael Jordan revealed the most satisfying time of his basketball career

Michael Jordan will never forget his time in North Carolina because of the pressure he had to conquer to make a name for himself.