Former Wake Forest standout Tim Duncan has officially been inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame, becoming the first Demon Deacon to achieve the honor. Duncan was a first ballot selection into the class of 2020, alongside the likes of Kevin Garnett and Kobe Bryant. Due to covid-19, the induction ceremony was postponed until this year.
Duncan was one of the best to ever wear the old gold and black and is likely the most recognizable Wake Forest basketball player of all time due to his dominance in the NBA. The Big Fundamental finished his 4 year college career with the Deacs averaging 16.5 points, 12.3 rebounds, 3.8 blocks, and 2.3 assists per game. He became the first player in NCAA history to reach 2,000 points, 1,500 rebounds, 400 blocks, and 200 assists in a career and is still 1 of just 12 players to finish their career with over 2,000 points and 1,500 rebounds. Duncan is easily one of the most decorated college basketball players of all time, with his list of accolades including: 1997 consensus National College Player of the Year, 2 time consensus All-American, 2 time ACC Player of the Year, 1996 ACC Tournament MVP, 3 time All ACC First Team, and ACC All-Freshman team. Duncan also led Wake Forest to back to back ACC Championships in 1995 and 1996.
Duncan went on to be the first overall pick in the 1997 NBA draft and quickly became one of the best NBA players of all time. He finished his 19 year career, all with the San Antonio Spurs, with 26,496 points, 15,091 rebounds, 4,225 assists, and 3,020 blocks. He currently ranks 15th in career points, 6th in career rebounds, and 5th in career blocks in NBA history. If you thought his list of college accolades was long, buckle up. When he retired in 2016, Duncan had an incredible list of accomplishments, including: 5 time NBA Champion, 3 time Finals MVP, 2 time NBA MVP, Rookie of the Year, 15 time NBA All-Star, 15 time All-NBA, 15 time All-Defensive Team, and even NBA Teammate of the Year. More impressively, Duncan is one of two NBA players ever to win a championship in three separate decades. He also never once missed the playoffs is his illustrious 19 year career. In 2003, Duncan put together one of the most impressive final performances of all time, averaging 24.2 points, 17.0 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 5.3 blocks per game en route to his second NBA championship. Those numbers would be absurd even today, and that was back in an era of the NBA when most teams rarely cracked 100 points. In the final game of the series, Duncan came 2 blocks shy of getting a quadruple double, finishing with 21 points, 20 rebounds, 10 assists, and 8 blocks (though many believe he was robbed of 2 blocks by the stat keeper). There is no doubt that Tim Duncan is one of the greatest players to ever play the game basketball.
Congratulations to Wake Forest LEGEND Tim Duncan on this incredible accomplishment, and—as always—GO DEACS!