Originally posted on Project Spurs  |  Last updated 3/18/13
There's not a lot of comparisons to San Antonio Spurs' Tim Duncan in this modern era.   With Duncan defying the aging process and playing at a level we haven't seen in 10 years, you'd probably have to go a few years back to find a comparison for Duncan. In fact, you'd probably have to go close to 30 years to find someone who was in Duncan's situation.   Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Byron Scott finds the comparison with former teammate and Hall of Famer, Kareem Abdul Jabbar. When asked about the similarities between the two, Scott wasn't shy with how similar Duncan is right now to when Jabbar was at the same stage of his career.   "First of all, he's kept himself in pretty good shape. The same thing with Kareem at 37-years old, he was still in fantastic shape. I don't know if there are a whole lot of parallels between the two," said Scott after Cleveland played San Antonio.  "They play a little bit different but Tim is still one of those guys you have to deal with even at his age. He can still get it done in the post, he can still pop out and make shots. He's making free throws now."   At 36-years old, Duncan is averaging 17.1ppg and 9.8rpg while Jabbar averaged an impressive 21ppg and 7.3rpg.   Jabbar's scoring is more impressive at this point of his career, but we also have to factor in that Duncan is playing in a different era of NBA basketball. Unlike the big men in Jabbar's days, the big men are bigger, stronger, and more athletic along with more athletic power forwards sliding into the center position.    We can't know how Kareem would do in this day and age in basketball, but the way Duncan is playing this season can't be denied with this current mission he's on to capture his fifth NBA championship. Duncan isn't leading his team like Jabbar did during the 1983-1984 season, but he is helping lead the Spurs in an impressive category.   The San Antonio Spurs are currently rated 3rd out of 30 (101.2) in defensive rating while the Lakers were 9th out of 23 (107.3). This is obvious with Duncan focusing more on the defensive end of the ball while Jabbar was more of an offensive player at this point of his career.   Nonetheless, both men showed no signs of slowing down at this point of their respective careers.   Jabbar played until he was 41 years old while it's heavily thought that Duncan will be on the court until he finds a championship during his possible final contract with the Spurs.   Duncan is still showing his worth by carrying the team with Tony Parker being injured and notching up three 30-point games this season, something we haven't seen out of him for 3 years or so. The Lakers and Jabbar found their way to three more championships after 36 years old age and Duncan is looking for similar luck on his end to a Hall of Fame career.   One thing for sure is that Duncan will be looking to have some Jabbar-like performances where he defies aging in the playoffs and carries the team in whatever capacity they need him to.
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