Mitch Richmond

Taken with the 5th pick of the 1988 NBA Draft, by the Golden State Warriors, Mitch Richmond had an incredibly consistent NBA career. With a sensational Rookie season, Richmond averaged 23.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 4.4 assists which would earn him Rookie Of The Year honours. Most players would kill to put up those kind of numbers at least once in their career, yet alone their first season in the NBA.

His next two seasons in Golden State, Richmond continued to be a solid performer averaging over 22 points a game. Richmond was a part of the trio dubbed ‘RUN TMC’ along side Chris Mullin and Tim Hardaway who brought flat out excitement to the Bay Area over the course of their 3 years together. In somewhat of a shock move Richmond was traded to the Sacramento Kings in 1991 after just 3 seasons at the Warriors, it would be a great move for the Kings who had just landed a legitimate superstar.

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Richmond spent 7 seasons at the Kings, incredibly averaging over 20 points a game each of them. He would become a 6 x All-Star while playing in Sacramento and is arguably one of their all time greatest players. His best season scoring wise came in 1997, when he averaged 25.9 points a game. Richmond averaged over 20 points a game in his in his first 10 seasons in the NBA, a feat that not many can say they have achieved. Richmond was traded to Washington in 1998, he would spend 3 seasons there before playing his final year in the NBA for the Los Angeles Lakers. As a veteran, fittingly he would win a title there in his last season. Mitch Richmond is a true icon of the game and one of the most constant scorers you’d ever hope to see.

Fun Facts

Richmond wore the numbers #23, #22 and #9 over his NBA career.

Richmond was inducted into the Hall Of Fame in 2014.

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Baron Davis

Taken with the 3rd pick of the 1999 NBA Draft, by the Charlotte Hornets, Baron Davis’s Rookie year was a bit of a learning curve. He played all 82 games but just saw a total of 18.6 minutes a game coming off the bench. He averaged 5.9 points and 3.8 assists a game. His second season however, Davis would start all 82 games putting up numbers of 13.8 points, 7.3 assists and 5 rebounds. From that moment on Baron Davis would become an excitement machine that had the NBA a buzz with his sensational style of basketball.

In just his 3rd season, Davis would become an All-Star for the Hornets, putting up sensational numbers of 18.1 points, 8.5 assists and 4.3 rebounds. He also participated in the 2001 Slam Dunk Contest that year. As a player Davis had great ball control and a strong core that allowed him to finish strong at the rim. He had a reasonable 3-point stroke as well shooting 32% across his career.  Davis’s best scoring year for the Hornets came in 2004, where he put up 22.9 points a game, becoming an All-Star once again.

During the 2004/05 season Davis was traded to the Golden State Warriors, this move would help build the nucleus for one of the most exciting Warriors teams to watch. In particular the team dubbed ‘We Believe’ in 2007, I remember being one of the most exciting brands of basketball I’ve seen from an offensive standpoint. Davis was the general of that team which knocked off the number 1 seeded Mavericks in the Playoffs first round. Davis averaged 20.1 points and 8.1 assists that season, and threw down one of the most iconic dunks in NBA history.

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Watch Davis’s dunk on Kirilenko here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8w_1ZEk4mds

That Golden State team came and went, which saw Davis traded to the Clippers for the 2008/09 NBA season. Things in Los Angeles, just didn’t seem to click for Davis, he still put up some solid numbers and had some more flashy highlights to add to his reel, however the chemistry of the Clippers team just wasn’t there. He was then traded to Cleveland followed by New York over the course of the 2011/2012 seasons. Tragically Davis suffered a horrific knee injury whilst playing for the Knicks, which effectively ended his career at NBA level. Davis was a pleasure to watch on the basketball court and a true icon to the game.

Fun Facts

Davis led the league in steals twice in 2004 and 2007.

Davis wore the numbers #1, #5 and #85 during his career.

Manute Bol

If you can touch an NBA basketball ring without jumping, then I’d say it’s your destiny to play basketball. A man by the name Manute Bol could do just that. Drafted with the 31st pick of the 1985 NBA Draft, by the Washington Bullets, Bol stood at an incredible 7 ft 7 and weight just 90 kg, which is very light considering someone of that height. His Rookie year saw him with stats of 3.7 points, 6 rebounds and an incredible 5 blocks per game. Bol set what is still tied for an NBA record of 12 blocks in a single game during the 1985 season.

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Click on the link below to see Bol’s incredible block sequence:

Bol’s 4 blocks in a row

Bol spent 3 seasons at the Bullets, before being traded to the Golden State Warriors in 1988. He spent 2 years at the Warriors, not really setting the world on fire with his numbers, however he did begin to discover he had a 3-point shot in his arsenal ‘If you could call it that’. He took an astonishing 91, 3-pointers in during the 1989 season, making 20 of them. Bol’s next destination was the Philadelphia 76ers, where Bol would spend a further 2 and a half seasons. His numbers declined even more, which started to spell the end for the giant Manute. He did however have one of the more iconic performances a 7 ft 7 man can have, shooting an amazing 6-12 from 3-point land in a half against the Phoenix Suns.

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Click on the link to see Bol’s iconic shooting performance:

Bol’s six 3-pointers

In Bol’s last four seasons in the NBA he went to Miami, Washington, Philadelphia and back to Golden State, totalling just 19 games. The career of Manute Bol had come to an end, but he is simply one of the most iconic and unique players the NBA has ever seen.

Fun Facts:

At 7 ft 7, Bol sits equal top for the tallest ever NBA player.

Bol wore the numbers: #10, #11, #4 and #1 during his career.

Latrell Sprewell

Latrell Sprewell was drafted with the 24th pick of the 1992 NBA Draft, by the Golden State Warriors. He burst onto the scene in his Rookie season, averaging 15.4 points a game, exciting the Warriors faithful with explosive speed and power dunking. In his second season, Sprewell would play an incredible 43.1 minutes a game on average, and lifted his scoring to 21 points a game. He became an All-Star in just his second season.

Sprewell, at the Warriors was a scoring machine, with his best year coming in 1996/97 season where he averaged a career high 24.2 points per game. He would become a 3 x All-Star in his time with the Warriors, and was an extremely popular player amongst the NBA fans. Unfortunately, off the court Sprewell would have one of the most outlandish incidents between a player and coach the league has seen. In a very heated incident during in 1997, Sprewell, choked his coach P.J. Carlesimo, at a Warriors practice. Further incidents and suspensions led to the Warriors trading Sprewell, to the New York Knicks in 1998.

As it often happens with NBA players, who have trouble in their younger days, Sprewell would become a much more mature player at the Knicks. In the 1998/99 shortened season, Sprewell helped lead the Knicks to the NBA Finals, coming from the 8th seed in the East to have the Knicks fans hoping for their first Championship since 1973. Despite Sprewell’s heroics averaging 26 points a game, the Spurs would be too good for the cinderella storied Knicks. Sprewell had certainly won the hearts’ of Knicks fans after his Finals performances, and would become an All-Star the next season for the 4th time in his career, when he averaged 17.7 points per game. Sprewell had some very nice years with the Knicks, and is an iconic jersey for collectors.

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2003/04, Sprewell was traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves, where he would play his last two seasons. He still put up good numbers at the Wolves, with 16.8 points a game being his best year of the two. Teams had further interest in signing Sprewell, as his numbers suggested he was still more than valuable to have on a roster, however Sprewell, would not sign for a minimum salary so he decided to retire. Sprewell will be remembered as a competitor and perhaps a villain, but the man who rocked some of the most famous NBA cornrows, is certainly an NBA icon.

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Check out Sprewell’s Top 10 career plays below:

Sprewell Top 10 Plays

Fun Facts:

Sprewell once hit 9/9 three pointers in a game against the Clippers.

Sprewell wore two numbers in his career: #15 and #8.