We are continuing our series of looking at the five Spurs championship squads and what those players are up to now. We already looked at the 1999 and 2003 squads (so if you missed them, be sure to check them out), and today we are moving on with the 2004-05 team, which officially established the Big Three as a force to be reconned with, and whispers of the Tim Duncan-led Spurs being a dynasty-in-the-making began circulating.
As a reminder, players who appeared on more than one championship team will only be listed in their first appearance to avoid repetition, so for Tim Duncan, refer back to 1999, and for Bruce Bowen, Manu Ginobili, and Tony Parker, refer back to 2003. Also, I couldn’t find an official team photo for this group that wasn’t so blurry it would be an insult to viewers’ eyes, so instead here is one from the stage following the championship. Without further ado, here are the 2004-05 Spurs!
Brent Barry (#17) — After leaving the Spurs in the summer of 2008, Barry played one season with the Houston Rockets, becoming the third Barry to play for the club along with his father Rick and brother Jon, before retiring after being cut during 2009 training camp. After a career in media that included stints on TNT and NBA TV, he joined the Spurs’ front office in 2018 as vice president of basketball operations, where he remains to this day.
Devin Brown (#23) — San Antonio’s own out of South San Antonio West High School and UTSA, Brown finally got to play for the team he grew up idolizing for two seasons, including the 2005 championship. Today, he leads a Nike Pro Skills organization in San Antonio, which as 20+ teams for underprivileged children to help them realize their dreams of playing basketball at higher levels, such as college or the pros. Earlier this year, Brown was named to the San Antonio Sports Hall of Fame.
Robert Horry (#5) — And here is the vice president of the Bitter Former Spurs club, alongside president Stephen Jackson. After retiring in 2008, he coached his AAU Big Shot basketball team in Los Angeles. He has also made many media appearances over the years, and that’s where his odd attitude towards the Spurs comes in, saying stuff like Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili cost the Spurs championships and Hakeem Olajuwon is “20 times better” than Tim Duncan. (It’s fine if he thinks The Dream is better, but such extreme hyperbole makes it hard to take him seriously.) Today, Horry is a Lakers commentator on Spectrum Sports Net.
Linton Johnson (#43) — We have arrived at the first person in this series who is still an active basketball player today. Johnson’s NBA career lasted until 2009, with 2006-07 being the only season he played regular minutes (for New Orleans/OKC), and he has since been bouncing around overseas. He currently plays for Step Back Caiazzo, which to my best understanding is a Series C club in Caiazzo, Italy.
Sean Marks (#4) — The first New Zealand-born player in the NBA, Marks retired from playing in 2011 and immediately began his coaching/front office career with the Spurs, first as basketball operations assistant for the Spurs and general manager for the Austin Torros. He then became an assistant coach in 2013, winning another championship with the Spurs in 2014 before returning to the front office as assistant general manager in 2015. Finally, he was hired as the Brooklyn Nets’ general manager in 2016, where he remains today. Marks was also inducted into the Basketball New Zealand Hall of Fame in 2017.
Tony Massenburg (#24) — Originally drafted by the Spurs in the second round of of the 1990 NBA Draft, Massenburg played 35 games for the Spurs that season before jumping around the NBA and overseas (holding the NBA record of having played for 12 NBA teams before it was broken by Ish Smith last season) before fittingly returning to the Spurs for what would turn out to be his final NBA season to win a ring. Unfortunately, six weeks later, he was in a car accident, suffered a severe ankle injury, and after two seasons off to recover, he was unable to make another NBA roster. Since then, he opened a sports bar in Maryland in 2010 and today contributes to CSN Mid-Atlantic’s Washington Wizards coverage.
Nazr Mohammed (#2) — Acquired for Malik Rose to help shore up the center position next to Tim Duncan (one of the more heartbreaking trades for Spurs fans, right up there with George Hill and Derrick White), Mohammed spent one more season with the Spurs before going on to have a solid NBA career with Detroit, Charlotte, Oklahoma City and Chicago. He retired in 2016 and is currently a pro scout for the Thunder and general manager of their G League affiliate, the Oklahoma City Blue.
Rasho Nesterovic (#8) — The first of many centers who attempted to fill the David Robinson-sized hole next to Duncan, Nesterovic was solid for the Spurs in 2004 but held back by an ankle injury in 2005. His NBA career ended with the Raptors in 2010 before he played one season with Olympiacos in Greece. In 2014, he was named as Secretary General of the Basketball Federation of Slovenia, and in 2015 he was elected as a member of the FIBA commission of players. Bonus fun fact! He is also Luka Doncic’s godfather.
Glen Robinson (#3) — 2005’s version of Kevin Willis, “Big Dog” Robinson capped off his lucrative NBA career winning a ring with the Spurs. There really isn’t much out there about his post-playing career, other than he was inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame in 2017. His son, Glen III, played in the NBA from 2014-2021 and won the NBA Dunk Contest in 2017.
Beno Udrih (#14) — After winning two NBA championships with the Spurs as Tony Parker’s backup, Udrih had a long playing career, traveling around the NBA until 2017 before signing with Lithuanian club Zalgiris Kaunas for the 2018 season. He was announced as an assistant coach for the Westchester Knicks in January 2020, and 11 months later he was hired as a player development coach for the New Orleans Pelicans.
Mike Wilks (#11) — At just 5’10”, Wilks was an NBA journeyman from 2002-2009. After a failed attempt at joining the Polish league, he became a scout for the Thunder in 2012 and later an assistant coach. He has even made a little history there, becoming the first former Thunder player to coach a game in the 2021-22 season after Mark Daigneault entered health and safety protocols.
It turns out there was a lot more turnover between 2003 and 2005 than I remember, but then again that shouldn’t be too surprising considering how many veterans were on that team outside the main core. Remember to go check out 1999 and 2003 if you missed them, and stay tuned for 2007 and 2014!