With the Finals wrapped there’s rampant speculation about retirement, from the future of the Spurs Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili to the Heat’s Ray Allen. However, it’s been certain that the 2013-14 season would be Shane Battier and last night’s Game 5 loss brought the Duke product’s career to a close. Battier, drafted sixth overall in 2001 by the Grizzlies, became one of the best individual defenders and team players of this generation; we’ll remember him for his basketball moments, sure, but also take the time to celebrate everything else, like his horrible attempts at karoake, his weirdly shaped head and complete doofiness.
His utter Dukeness
I promise, we scoured all over the place to find highlights from his time at Duke, and this is what we found. Turns out, “Shane Battier highlights package” isn’t a very popular thing. So much for appreciation for fundamentals.
At least in this video you can see the defensive presence, the three-point shooting and the explosion that a young Shane Battier had. He was one of those players who many expected to be a role player, albeit a really really good one, and he kind of met those expectations exactly.2 of 11
His individual defense against Kobe
Back when Battier was in his prime and one of the best individual defenders in the league, he was one of the few people to give Kobe problems as a one-on-one defender. Forget about all that Ruben Patterson Kobe-stopper bullshit, this was the real deal. If you watch the video above, you’ll see just how hard Battier makes Kobe work for his points.
Battier will also forever be synonymous with Michael Lewis’s profile titled “The No-Stats All-Star.” In the piece, Lewis featured Battier as a player that the “new age” NBA led by Daryl Morey rank very high on their list not for what they do to fill up the box score, but the intangibles. Battier is the ultimate intangibles dude.3 of 11
That time Amar'e left him hanging
His reputation as a pest on defense did him no favors. Case in point, in the playoffs two years ago against the Miami Heat, Amar’e Stoudemire pretended to offer Battier a hand to get up off the floor and then took it away, leaving him hanging.4 of 11
Battier was a feisty defender in his career, but like any tenacious competitor he sometimes crossed the line with his physical play. This complaint from the Pacers actually happened on the offensive end when Battier drove to the basket and hit Roy Hibbert right in the groin.
Hibbert called Battier a dirty player after the incident. David West said Battier has this funny way of moving into people’s knees. Battier did not respond to the comments. He didn’t need to, the Pacers have lost to the Heat in the playoffs for three years running.5 of 11
If you have the time, I highly recommend you read Shane Battier’s profile over at PEAK’s website. The personal section reads like the ultimate Battier paragraph:
Complete player, complete person, Shane Battier has been a lot of things in his relatively young life- scholar, athlete, All-American, leader, champion, musician, husband to high-school sweetheart Heidi, and father to Zeke and another on the way. Yet Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski best sums up the celebrated player by saying, “He personifies what you want in a basketball player. He has a positive impact on everything we do. So when you judge him by his stats, which are great, that’s not nearly the entire picture. It’s leadership, his ability to focus, his ability to get everyone to believe. There’s nobody close to him.”
You can check out his sneakers here. They’re just like Battier, not very well known, kind of bland, but probably really effective.6 of 11
Shane Battier hits seven threes in Game 7 win
Everyone remembers Ray Allen’s championship-saving three-pointer in Game 6 last year, but don’t forget Miami still needed to win a Game 7 at home to repeat as champions. On a night when Chris Bosh went scoreless and the Spurs hung tight for four quarters, the Heat needed all of Battier’s scoring to squeeze out a win.
He hit seven threes for the night and was crucial to Miami coming out as champions. It was reminiscent of Mike Miller’s game in the Finals the year before against the Oklahoma City Thunder that also clinched the title.7 of 11
That time he Celebrated the Finals at Denny’s
After winning the Finals last year, LeBron and Wade decided to hit the club scene in South Beach to celebrate with Drake and lots of other celebrities. But Battier was much more low-key. He went to Denny’s, because of course he did.8 of 11
He rejected an offer to run for senate
As we reported earlier this week, Battier will be accepting a role as a college basketball analyst for ESPN. But he was also given the opportunity for run for senate in Michigan.9 of 11
Charges, of course
Battier made getting in the way his calling card, so much so that his charitable foundation is called, you guessed it, Taking Charge. If there was a record for taking balls to the face/chest, Battier would own it outright.10 of 11
Battier organized his Heat teammates for an annual karaoke event and we found out just how awful Shane Battier can be with a mic in his hand. Watch as he does a rendition of The Love Boat theme song. Battier repeated the performance in 2014, this time, along with Greg Oden and Kim Jeong, they shared the stage to perform Backstreet Boys “I Want It That Way”.
The event raises funds for Battier’s Take Charge Foundation to help send students in South Florida to college. It also provided us with epic performances from LeBron and DWade, Mike Beasley and a Mike Miller/Birdman duet.11 of 11