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George Karl: I'm hearing 'whispers' this might be Tim Duncan's last season

Tim Duncan has a player option for $10 million next season. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images) Tim Duncan has a player option for $10 million next season. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Veteran coach George Karl, who led the Denver Nuggets from 2005 to 2013, said this week that he's hearing "whispers" that this is Tim Duncan's last season in the NBA.

Karl, now an NBA analyst for ESPN, said that he received a number of phone calls recently -- including one from San Antonio -- that said the 37-year-old four-time MVP is thinking about hanging it up after the current season.

Karl's comments, as transcribed by Paul Garcia of Project Spurs:

"You know, over the weekend, that was the whispers that I got. I got a couple of phone calls, one from San Antonio, that said that Tim Duncan’s thinking this is going to be his last year. The best, most fundamental big guy ever to play in the NBA, and [him] leaving would make me very very sad. The San Antonio Spurs without Tim Duncan would be very difficult for me to watch.”

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Duncan, a two-time regular season MVP and three-time Finals MVP, signed a three year, $30 million extension with the Spurs in 2012. (He has a player option for next season.) Guards Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker are also under contract with the Spurs for this season and next.

Selected first overall by the Spurs in the 1997 draft, Duncan has career averages of 20 points, 11.2 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 2.2 blocks per game. San Antonio is currently the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference with a 38-15 record heading into the second half of the season.

Footage with Karl's comments:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PHc8UlW1f4

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