The artistry of Tim Duncan
Although he’s one loss from elimination, this postseason Tim Duncan has dusted off his low-post repertoire and reminded folks just how great he is. A combination of a healing foot and opportunities to operate one-on-one against the Sacramento and Dallas big men has enabled him to display his fab footwork and ambidextrous artistry. I’m not sure Popovich made the right decision in benching his bigs (I probably would have given Tim a chance to guard Dirk at least for 15-20 minutes per game so that the Spurs could, at certain times, employ a strong rebounding lineup), but that move has worked splendidly at the offensive end.
Duncan is looking better at the line, too. He didn't opt for the free-throw makeover I recommended, but he has made technical adjustments to the position of his arms and shooting hand at address, and this has made for a crisper, more confident release. He’s still prone to the way-shorts, but the ball comes out of his hand much more cleanly. The result is improved directional accuracy and a slightly less flat shot.
Time will tell if he can sustain the improvement — or if he'll even get a chance to. A determined Dallas squad is intent on ending the Spurs season Wednesday night. Should be a barnburner.