Truth be told, I’m not 100% sure what an “ode” is, but using context clues, I’m going to assume it’s a tribute.  However this whole piece is not about me and my lack of understanding of old English.  It is about quite literally the end of an era: Tim Duncan, the greatest power forward of all time, has retired.

Duncan has been around basically for my entire sports watching life.  I remember him at Wake Forest and he is the reason I am a Wake Forest fan.  I remember him in the 99 NBA Finals when he and The Admiral dominated my Knicks.  I remember him hitting three point buzzer beaters against the Grizzlies, Suns and Nuggets.  I remember him getting ejected from the bench by Joey Crawford for laughing and everyone immediately coming to his defense saying “How the hell can you eject Tim Duncan?”

In this era of premadonnas, crybaby, selfish and troubling athletes, Duncan was the black sheep.  He took less money to stay with the Spurs, showing loyalty to his roots.  He by all accounts was a great teammate and an incredible silent leader.  He never got in trouble.  He was a true role model by being who he genuinely was.

As many know, Duncan was a great swimmer in his teens, but because of a hurricane, switched his athletic focus to basketball.  He completed his four years at Wake Forest with good grades.  Basically, Duncan is just a good dude.  He did it the right way.  He handled his fame and success in stride.  I’m all for the flashy and arrogant guy – they entertain me, but growing up, I appreciated Tim Duncan and his quiet and genuine demeanor.

I’m really going to miss Tim Duncan and seeing him play.  It’s not going to be the same without him.