Nabbing Tim Duncan in the 1997 NBA Draft changed the entire fortune for the San Antonio Spurs.
Fast forward seventeen years later and it’s safe to say the tanking was worth it as the San Antonio Spurs trio of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili have toppled the Showtime Lakers trio of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, and Michael Cooper for the most winningest trio in NBA playoff history
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) May 22, 2014
The Spurs are a model of consistency that each and every team in the NBA wants to replicate. Setting the foundation in 1997, they’ve shown the be, arguably, the most successful franchise of the last twenty years with only the Los Angeles Lakers as their competition. They’ve won four NBA titles, appeared in five, have fielded three of the best players at their respective players at their positions, maniacally filling in the holes with pin-point role players who excel at whatever role Popovich supplied them with, and have won 50-plus games in every season since 1999-2000.
Due to their style of play, the Spurs don’t get the same love the Kobe-Shaq Lakers, Lebron-Wade Miami Heat, or the Jordan-Pippen Chicago Bulls, but when it’s all said and done, these Spurs team will stack up right alongside them when comparing outright dominance and the accomplishments. Tim Duncan is the winner of two NBA MVP awards and three NBA Finals MVP awards. Tony Parker is the winner of the 2007 NBA MVP and has shown to be one of the best playoff point guards in history. Manu Ginobili, the most underrated out of the trio, is the winner of the 2007-08 Sixth Man of the Year and has appeared on two All-NBA teams.
Breaking the record for the most wins by a trio in the playoffs probably feels nice to the Spurs’ trio, but it’s clear this group only has one thing on their mind: winning the 2014 NBA championship.