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The Numbers behind Tim Duncan and Dirk Nowitzki's rivalry

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Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Tonight's game, assuming Tim Duncan and Dirk Nowitzki suit up and play, will be the 90th game these two living legends have played together, which is the most among active players. So before the game, check out a few quick notes and numbers about the first 89 they've played:

  • 56 - Regular season games played between the two. Tim and the Spurs are up, 34-22.
  • 33 - Playoff games played. Tim and the Spurs have the slight edge in games, 18-15 and a 4-2 series advantage.
  • 5 - Dirk has outscored Tim by five points, 1159-1154, in their regular season meetings. I mean, it's 56 games and they're only separated by FIVE points!
  • 23 - Tim has outscored Dirk by 23 points, 795-772, the post season.
  • 17 - Dirk has played 17 more minutes, 2033-2016, in their regular season meetings.
  • 3/4/99 - Last millennium and 18 seasons ago the duo played their first game against each other. Tim led the Spurs to a 95-79 victory with 26 points and 12 rebounds while a rookie Nowitzki came off of the bench with 11 and 6. Andrew Gaze and Chris Anstey also played in the game.
  • 77 years, 4 days - combined age of two of the league's ten most-lived veterans.
  • Both players significantly raise their games when it really counts, especially their fg%, in the post-season:
Regular Season:


Post Season:

  • 1 - Teams each player played for. They've been loyal to their franchises for close to two decades, winning far more games than they've lost along the way. They represented the Western Conference in the Finals in 8 of the 17 seasons they've shared the league and netted six championships. It seems likely that the NBA will not see a rivalry this good or this prolific for a long, long time, if ever.
Enjoy them one more time in a few hours. Texas forever.