As first reported on SpursTalk, Tim Duncan has been named an assistant coach for the San Antonio Spurs. Duncan will be an assistant for head coach Gregg Popovich, alongside Becky Hammon and Will Hardy.
This isn’t a part-time role for the future Hall of Famer. Duncan is committed to being a full-time assistant coach and is expected to have responsibilities comparable to the rest of Popovich’s coaching staff.
Duncan and Hardy were added after assistant coaches Ime Udoka and Ettore Messina left the Spurs for other coaching jobs earlier in the offseason.
What Changes With Tim Duncan As An Assistant Coach For The Spurs?
First of all, this is fantastic news for San Antonio. Duncan adds a credible, respected voice in the locker room. Regarded as one of the best teammates in NBA history and a student of the game, he has a chance to step in and be one of the most impactful assistant coaches in the league.
Secondly, the addition of Duncan may convince Popovich to stick around longer. The 70-year-old coaching legend is expected to ink a three-year deal this summer that he can opt out of at the end of either of the first two seasons. With Duncan around, the chances of Popovich sticking around for at least the next three seasons just increased considerably.
Who Will Be The Lead Assistant On The Spurs?
The Spurs haven’t announced which assistant will assume the lead spot. Hammon obviously has seniority, however it would surprise no one if Duncan is given the lead position. Even if he’s not officially given the title, all eyes will be on him during the 2019-20 season as he adjusts to life as an assistant coach in the NBA.
As for Hammon, she once again did outstanding work while coaching the Spurs summer league team in Las Vegas. While San Antonio didn’t win another summer league championship with her at the helm this year, the team responded well to her coaching and she succeeded in allowing the young players to flourish and show their full potential.
It’s now very safe to assume that Hammon will eventually be a head coach in the NBA.
So, who is Will Hardy?
Hardy has been in the Spurs organization since 2010. In 2013, he became the team’s video coordinator. Since then, he has been steadily climbing the ranks and will now have a front row seat alongside Popovich and follow assistant coaches Duncan and Hammon.