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Still Their Daddy!

Duke fans probably weren't at all surprised that Shane Battier was named to the NBA's All-Defensive team. But let's consider his journey for a moment: Battier was a first-round draft pick who was almost immediately derided as not being good enough for the NBA because he didn't score a lot and didn't start. Yet even at the beginning of his career, people were pointing out what an unusual guy he is. We remember Hubie Brown yelling at some fan, telling him to sit down, that Battier was someone he'd be proud to call a son.People in Memphis came to truly appreciate him before he was traded. And in Houston, he has established himself as one of the most surprising players in the NBA. Where early in his career he was torched by guys like Kobe Bryant, now he holds his own. And if you don't think his character had a lot to do with Houston's startling winning streak this season, you don't know much about him.

Battier is proof, for anyone who needs it, that character and hard work can take you an awfully long way - and you can even take your teammates along for the ride.

Update: Battier, who is rehabbing his ankle after surgery, will not be able to participate in the Olympic minicamp and thus not the Olympics. Pity.