May 18, 2012, 6:28 PM EDT
Roy Hibbert hasn’t exactly been the Big Fundamental, but to the Heat he has been the Big Pain In The… you get the idea.
Miami can’t match Hibbert’s size inside and with each game the 7’2” center grows in confidence. Last game he put up a monster line — 19 points, 18 boards and 5 blocks.
How did he take the leap he made this year? By working out with the actual Big Fundamental last summer, he told SLAM:
“I worked out with Tim Duncan this summer,” Hibbert, who had 19 points and 18 rebounds in the contest, said. ”I model my game after him. Actually, he texts me after every game. I’m appreciative, and he’s somebody that looks out for me.”
If you’re going to find someone to pattern your game after, Duncan is about the best call there is.
And suddenly, the idea of Hibbert and Duncan facing off in the NBA finals doesn’t seem so unlikely. Of course, you know Duncan didn’t teach Hibbert all his tricks.