Vertical Pod with Woj: R.C. Buford

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In an emotional and nostalgic conversation, Spurs general manager R.C. Buford joins Adrian Wojnarowski to discuss the life, legacy and retirement of Tim Duncan.

In his first interview since Duncan's retirement on Monday, Buford, one of the architects of five Spurs championships, lays out in magnificent detail his emotions after the retirement of one of the NBA’s true icons. Buford describes the franchise coming to terms with his departure, how Duncan impacted daily life in San Antonio and intimate details of a partnership that dominated the league for the better part of 19 seasons.

Buford discusses how close the Spurs came to losing Duncan in free agency to Orlando in 2000, how the organization worked together with Duncan on important decisions, and how coach Gregg Popovich and Duncan managed a complicated, sometimes contentious but always loving relationship.

1:14: The team’s reaction to Duncan’s retirement.

2:48: Finding a way to thank Duncan when he doesn’t want extra attention.

4:01: Duncan’s role in creating the Spurs' culture.

5:47: How Duncan’s high expectations for himself elevated and empowered those around him.

7:35: The responsibility that Buford and the Spurs had to keep the team in contention with Duncan.

10:17: The role of Duncan and other players in helping make roster decisions.

12:38: Duncan’s work ethic and humility.

14:25: Duncan’s role in the locker room and his relationship with Popovich.

17:49: How Duncan changed the atmosphere every time he walked in the facility.

20:19: The sacrifices Duncan made for other players to take on bigger roles during his career.

22:28: Duncan’s free agency in 2000 and its impact on the franchise.

30:17: Duncan’s global impact on the Spurs and the entire game.

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