Commentary

Best single-game performances: 6

Updated: June 15, 2012, 12:25 PM ET
By John Hollinger | ESPN.com

Tim DuncanNathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty ImagesTim Duncan dominated the paint in the 2003 Finals which was no small feat against the Nets' defense.

6. Tim Duncan, Spurs: 2003 Finals, Game 1

This is perfect: The top-rated Duncan game is one that absolutely nobody remembers. However, Duncan's Game 1 annihilation of the Nets was not only his personal-best Finals performance, but the ridiculous 43.3 is the top Game Score for any Finals game of the post-merger era -- and he did it against an elite defensive team.

It would be hard to find a game that greater exemplifies Duncan's understated excellence. The 2003 Finals were low on sex appeal because San Antonio and New Jersey both were small-market teams, but it was a gritty series that required Duncan's best.

In the opener, he more than delivered.

Going up against two of the better defensive centers of the decade in Jason Collins and Dikembe Mutombo, Duncan ripped off 32 points, 20 rebounds, seven blocks, six assists and three steals. He even shot 10-for-14 from the free throw line and he had only one turnover.

Duncan broke open a tie game at the half by scoring 24 of his 32 points after the break, and was only two steals away from the only "five-by-five" in Finals history.

Intro | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20 Insider | 21-30 Insider | 31-40 Insider | 41-50 Insider