The San Antonio Spurs coaching staff for 2019 received an upgrade as “The Big Fundamental” will become one of the new assistant coaches. Former NBA All-Star and multiple-time champion Tim Duncan will now be a part of Gregg Popovich’s staff on the sidelines.
Will Hardy will also work with the Spurs coaching staff in the 2019 season.
Duncan brings elite NBA experience to coaching job
When it comes to the game of basketball, Tim Duncan was among the all-time greats in terms of big men. A future Hall of Famer, his 26,496 career points rank him as No. 14 in terms of the top scorers in NBA history.
Duncan ranks No. 6 when it comes to rebounding after grabbing 15,091 boards during his impressive career.
The Wake Forest graduate was the Spurs’ No. 1 overall pick in the 1997 NBA Draft. He’d go on to spend his entire career in San Antonio, helping them win five championships during that time.
In addition to 10 selections for the All-NBA First Team, Duncan was also a 15-time NBA All-Star and two-time NBA MVP.
He’ll now move into a new role, as he tries to help his former coach Gregg Popovich get the most of the Spurs’ roster.
According to a Spurs’ statement on the matter, Popovich joked, “It is only fitting, that after I served loyally for 19 years as Tim Duncan’s assistant, that he returns the favor.”
Will Hardy also joins Spurs’ coaching staff for 2019
Will Hardy was part of the San Antonio Spurs organization during Tim Duncan’s final six years. The Williams College graduate joined as a basketball operations intern in 2010.
A native of Richmond, Virginia, Hardy became the team’s video coordinator in 2013. Hardy also has experience coaching the Spurs Summer League team over the past three years.
Spurs announce Will Hardy and Tim Duncan as Assistant Coaches.
— San Antonio Spurs (@spurs) July 22, 2019
Popovich praised Will Hardy in the Spurs statement, saying, “Will Hardy is a talented, young basketball mind who has earned a great deal of respect from everyone in the organization thanks to his knowledge, spirit and personality.”
The news arrives the same day that the San Antonio Spurs announced their preseason schedule with ticket information. The team will play five preseason games, starting on Saturday, October 5 against the Orlando Magic at AT&T Center.
Two other home games feature the New Orleans Pelicans and Houston Rockets. They’ll play away games against Miami and Memphis.
Spurs’ 2019-20 season outlook
Even though San Antonio didn’t make any power moves during the offseason, the team is still receiving decent odds to win the NBA title in 2020.
They’re listed at Vegas Insider with 40-1 odds to win the 2019-20 Finals. That has them tied with the Brooklyn Nets and Indiana Pacers.
The Spurs still feature All-Star big man LaMarcus Aldridge and former All-Star DeMar DeRozan. According to a MySanAntonio report on Duncan’s involvement, he’s frequently worked out and practiced with players at the Spurs’ facility.
His experience should help him relate to the stars, mentor younger players, and generally, give plenty of assistance as the Spurs move forward.
In addition to Will Hardy and Tim Duncan joining as assistant coaches, it’s believed that Becky Hammons will become Popovich’s No. 1 assistant on the coaching staff. The 2019-20 NBA season officially begins this October.