That season also started a lengthy streak of futility for the Golden State Warriors in the Alamo City.
The Spurs look to extend their home win streak over the Warriors to 24 as they try for a sixth straight victory at the AT&T Center on Friday night.
San Antonio (40-26) has not lost at home to Golden State (19-48) since Feb. 14, 1997, a season in which the Spurs finished 20-62.
Duncan had 19 points and 10 rebounds in his first career home game against the Warriors on Nov. 19, 1997, and has played in 22 games during the streak. He has 17 double-doubles in that span.
Duncan, though, endured one of the worst nights of his career in a 110-84 loss at Orlando on Wednesday. He went 1 of 10 from the field for his worst-ever shooting effort, finishing with five points and six boards as the Spurs' four-game win streak was snapped.
"Just a bad night," Duncan said. "Mainly myself. It kind of starts with me."
Duncan was limited to one basket for only the third time in his career. The superstar is enduring a rough stretch, averaging 12.5 points and 40.6 percent shooting in his last eight games.
"It's hard to play with Tim having an off night," guard Manu Ginobili said. "I totally, blindly trust him. Just one of those games."
San Antonio is in seventh place in the Western Conference. This uneven season could mark the end of the Spurs' streak of 10 straight with at least 50 wins.
The Spurs have won seven in a row against the Warriors, taking both meetings this season despite Golden State's Monta Ellis averaging 38.5 points in those games.
Ellis has averaged 22.3 points in four games since missing six with a strained lower back. He scored 28 in a 131-121 win over New Orleans on Wednesday.
The story of the game, though, was the contributions of unheralded players Anthony Tolliver and Reggie Williams. Both had career highs with Tolliver scoring 30 and Williams 22.
Tolliver and Williams were called up from the NBA Development League and helped Golden State overcome a 21-point deficit.
"Just relentless," Tolliver said. "When we're down and out, it seems like sometimes we play our best basketball. Sometimes that's what it takes to wake us up."
Another former D-League player, rookie Chris Hunter, added 17 points. He scored a season-high 22 in a 124-121 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers two nights earlier.
The Warriors have lost 11 in a row on the road since a 108-101 victory at Minnesota on Jan. 6.