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Tim Duncan has been Roy Hibbert’s mentor

May 18, 2012, 6:28 PM EDT

Roy Hibbert, Tim Duncan Getty Images

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.

  1. illegalblues - May 18, 2012 at 6:36 PM

    i am shocked, absolutely shocked, that tim duncan texts

  2. Justin - May 18, 2012 at 6:40 PM

    Dude is going to get a big contract as a restricted free agent. Pacers will probably match it.

  3. charlutes - May 18, 2012 at 6:44 PM

    Roy Hibbert instantly becomes one of my top 10 favorite NBA players after reading this. I would looooooove love love an Indiana San Antonio finals. That would be amazing basketball although the Pacers would get owned.

  4. cosanostra71 - May 18, 2012 at 6:45 PM

    I like Hibbert and I like the Pacers. Hadn’t seen a whole lot of him until the playoffs, and he looks like the player he was in college. Comes in, puts in hard work, solid fundamentals. He may not be a “superstar” but he does win games with his play and that’s really all that matters.

  5. acdc363 - May 18, 2012 at 7:36 PM

    That’s cool. I like both of them more now. I can understand Tim (or anyone for that matter) saying he hates KG (i’m a Celtics fan) but I just like reading stuff like this. I like seeing guys high five after games and help each other up. Don’t get me wrong I love seeing rivalries and guys battling under the rim but it’s always nice to get reminded that these guys can be human like us.

  6. dgbk - May 18, 2012 at 8:06 PM

    makes a lot of sense. and make me respect both players more…its good to see duncan passing the torch in a way… unlike shaq who hit every younger center with it while yelling he’s king on his way out

  7. geraldthecat - May 18, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    It never gets said ” Duncan is one of the best of all time”. He is top ten.

  8. diamondmo33 - May 19, 2012 at 1:55 AM

    Pacers won’t get past Miami.

  9. pxeeks - May 19, 2012 at 2:43 AM

    Great story.. Duncan is a top 50 all timer. He didn’t have to reach out to Hibbert yet he did. Classy dude.

  10. labratre - May 19, 2012 at 5:05 AM

    Pacers fans, do you honestly think that the Heat will keep shooting as bad as they have. Do u honestly think D Wade will play this bad again. The answer is $$$$ NO! So, with that said, enjoy now, cause they got their 2 games and 5 seconds of fame. It’s going to be over! Now if they can keep that team together, they are going to be one of the most exciting teams in the league. I like them, just not their time yet. They’ll be one of the top teams in the league in years to come, u can bank that!

  11. kavika6 - May 19, 2012 at 5:57 AM

    That would be a great Finals. I hope the Pacers can get there. I know the Spurs will be ready.

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