Shane Battier remains hugely popular among Duke fans, where he set a standard that has been very difficult for anyone to match, much less surpass. He played with a remarkable intelligence and followed that up with phenomenal media skills. The pressers were nearly as much fun as the games.
Here’s how good he was at Duke: he said Coach K eventually just told him to “run around and make things happen.”
Can you imagine Krzyzewski telling that to any other player?
In the NBA, he was dubbed the No-Stats All-Star because of his immense influence on the game despite not scoring a lot.
This video shows 10 of his finest plays. Only two are from Duke, but they are great: the first is an incredible block he got on UNC’s Joe Forte that no one, least of all Forte, thought he could pull off, and then his remarkable block against Arizona’s Jason Gardner in the 2001 NCAA title game.
In that game, Battier played with as much desire and passion as anyone we’ve ever seen.
There was another block from that game that should have been on this list of top plays: Battier blocked a shot with his fingernails. He couldn’t reach the block in the conventional way and turned his hand around and just barely deflected it.
It was a masterful and brilliant play.
Battier remains a Duke favorite and, in many ways as fine an example of Duke Basketball as you could find.