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David Edole

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U.S. Virgin Islands Basketball (Men)

Tim Duncans phenomenal start - Nov 12, 2012

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Tim Duncan
by Dan McCarneyin Spurs

Tim Duncan (211-F/C-76, college: Wake Forest) is playing like an MVP candidate.

For the vast majority of his career, during which he won the award twice and finished among the top five in voting seven other times, that statement would have been a given.

But coming off a campaign in which he failed to make the All-Star game for the first time since his rookie season the 1999 game was cancelled it was fair to assume that Duncans best years were behind him.

Gregg Popovich recently downplayed the notion of a Duncan resurgence, saying hes playing the same way great as he has for the past decade and a half. Theres some truth to that, especially when you consider the metronomical consistency of his per-36 minute statistics.

At the same time, its fairly clear, both from studying the stat sheet and watching him play, that the 36-year-old Duncan is playing at an unexpectedly high level in his 16th NBA season. A look at his statistics:

18.9 points per game, highest since 2008-09.

9.7 rebounds per game, highest since 2009-10.

2.4 blocks per game, highest since 2006-07.

1.4 turnovers per game, fewest of his career.

5.4 free throw attempts per game, highest since 2008-09.

53.1 field goal percentage, highest of his career.

78.9 free throw percentage, highest of his career.

Per-game stats have become passe among the NBA cognescenti, and with good reason. But Duncans superior production is also reflected in his advanced numbers. Some of the highlights (all figures taken from

28.9 player efficiency rating, best of his career.

.271 win shares per 48 minutes, highest of his career.

114 offensive rating, tying the best of his career.

91 defensive rating, best since 2003-04.

.586 true shooting percentage, highest of his career.

31.5 defensive rebound percentage, highest of his career.

6.0 block percentage, highest of his career.

8.1 turnover percentage, lowest of his career.

But wait, theres more.

While Duncan is taking more long jumper than ever (4.7 attempts between 16-23 feet, the most in seven seasons charted by hes rediscovered his aggressiveness in the paint. Not only only is he averaging 5.2 shots at the rim, the most in five seasons, hes converting at a ridiculous 80.6 percent. Thats almost 10 points better than any season in Hoops Datas database.

A couple of grains of salt.

* Sample size, sample size, sample size, sample size. (Did I mention sample size?) The Spurs have played only 8.5 percent of their 82-game schedule, meaning that a downturn is pretty much guaranteed as Duncan grinds through the marathon that is an NBA season.

* Theres also Duncans average of 30.1 minutes per game, knocking his value down just a tad from those capable of shouldering a heavier load. (LeBron James, Kevin Durant, etc.)

But when you hear people wondering if Duncan can compete for an All-Star berth, its clear we need to think about setting the bar even higher.   

Deon Edwin
Deon Edwin's 31 points make him top U.S. Virgin Islands player abroad of the week - 4 hours ago
Here is the weekly review of the top performing U.S. Virgin Islands players, who play currently abroad. John Collins (208-F-97) could not help the Atlanta Hawks (18-41) in their last game. Despite his good performance the Atlanta Hawks (18-41) lost 98-104 on the road to the Detroit Pistons.    [read more]

Second window VI. vs Canada - 4 hours ago
The Virgin Islands senior men's national team will be playing both games of the second window in the Bahamas. The team from Americas Paradise will host Canada at 5:30 pm Today and play Dominican Republic on Sunday at the same time. The Canadian team features several former NBA players in former #1 draft selection Anthony Bennett and former Miami Heat Joel Anthony. The V.I. team is 1-1 in the first window after losing a tough contest to Dominican Republic (99-89), and defeating Bahamas (93...   [read more]

Utah Jazz forward Royce O'Neale's journey to the NBA - 5 hours ago
SALT LAKE CITY - Becoming an NBA player was not an easy or typical journey for Utah Jazz small forward Royce O'Neale(198-SF-93, college: Baylor)<. O'Neale did not have the luxury of being a one-and-done lottery prospect; he was an anomaly, spending four years in college. O'Neale spent his first two seasons with the University of Denver before transferring to Baylor University. While at Baylor, O'Neale began showcasing his ability to help teams win games. 'What I loved about him is that...   [read more]

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