During the San Antonio Spurs’ dynasty days there was one team which always stood in their way — the Los Angeles Lakers. The playoff battles these two teams were instant classics and either team would eventually go on to represent the Western Conference in the NBA finals.
The Spurs would eventually go on to win three titles during the apex of their rivalry with the Lakers and at the center of these battles on the court would be Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal and Tim Duncan.
And although the Spurs would be the Lakers chief rival during the two team’s title runs, Bryant doesn’t consider Duncan a personal rival.
“He was never in my position,” Bryant said. “He was more Shaq’s rival than mine. As a team, the Spurs were always a team that we had to go through. So from that standpoint, yes, but in terms of personally, no.”
TD won four titles to Bryant’s five but Kobe is right, Shaq and Tim were more rivals.
The two dominant big men of recent years are tied with four titles a piece. TD won all four with San Antonio, while Shaq won four with three with the Lakers and one with Miami. Which begs the question – which big man won the rivalry now that Shaq is retired?
Does Duncan get the nod seeing he won all four title with one team despite never repeating as an NBA champ? Does Shaq get it because he led the Lakers to a three-peat with Los Angeles but did not get four title with the same team as TD?
What do you have to say Spurs fans?