Tristan Thompson was 6 when Tim Duncan made his NBA debut with the San Antonio Spurs.

To generations of kids weaned on ESPN, Duncan must seem like a player who wandered into their highlights from another era, his black-and-white Spurs uniform only lending to the perception. Duncan relies on fundamentals. He takes as much satisfaction in a 10-foot bank shot as a thunderous dunk.

"When I was younger, he was not always on the SportsCenter Top 10 plays, but he got it done in the box score," Thompson said of the four-time NBA champion and two-time league MVP. "Learning from a guy like that is priceless."