CHARLOTTE (Ambush Sports) — A legendary player for the San Antonio Spurs was given a temporary nod to coach the team during Tuesday night’s road game against the Charlotte Hornets.
Tim Duncan, who played his entire 19-year career with the Spurs, replaced head coach Gregg Popovich, who was unable to make it to Charlotte because of personal business, according to the team on Twitter prior to tipoff.
Duncan served as acting head coach previously on November 16, when Popovich was ejected during a game against the Portland Trail Blazers, which the Spurs would later lose. The former NBA All-Star has been an assistant coach on Popovich’s staff since last July.
Duncan collaborated with assistants Will Hardy and Becky Hammon to secure a 104-103 comeback victory for the Spurs (26-34) over the Hornets (21-40).
Popovich is expected to return for the next game against the Brooklyn Nets Friday night.
The 43-year-old Duncan won five championships with San Antonio and will be inducted in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame later this year.
The Spurs are four games behind the Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth seed in the Western Conference.