Elton Brand

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Posted by sonny 03/18/2009 @ 00:07

Tags : elton brand, basketball players, basketball, sports

News headlines
Forward awaits a Brand new season - phillyBurbs.com
PHILADELPHIA — Elton Brand can't wait. After a frustrating first season with the Sixers in which a torn labrum and ensuing shoulder surgery limited him to 29 games, Brand said his rehab is progressing and he plans on showing the Philadelphia fans much...
Offseason decisions critical for Stefanski - Cherry Hill Courier Post
Both he and former coach Tony DiLeo last week mentioned the nucleus of Andre Iguodala, Thaddeus Young and Elton Brand, and the promise of young players such as Lou Williams and Marreese Speights. Of course, prospective coaches, especially those...
Philadelphia 76ers: 2009 NBA Draft - CollegeHoopsnet.com
Philadelphia began the season hoping to pose a serious threat to Boston in the Atlantic Division, thanks to their signing of Elton Brand in the summer. But the Sixers were unable to make waves in the early going, losing Brand for the season due to...
Houston Rockets' Finish Hurts So Good - Bleacher Report
Did you think Elton Brand would be wearing a Sixers uniform this year? I agree that injuries plague all teams, but I don't know if they've plagued any the way they've plagued yours. I don't have the exact numbers, but between Yao and McGrady,...
Brand on schedule with rehab - phillyBurbs.com
Elton Brand is progressing with the rehabiliation of his surgically repaired right shoulder and is on schedule, according to the doctor who performed the operation. The Sixers issued a release Thursday saying that Dr. Craig Morgan of Wilmington made...
Rich Hofmann: Personnel issues should be Sixers' No. 1 priority - Philadelphia Inquirer
That is the Elton Brand saga. "We have good players that people will like to coach,'' said Ed Stefanski, the Sixers' president and general manager. Stefanski said that prospective coaches will be "lining up" to get what he considers to be a good job...
TBJ Ep. 435: 'Hard-hitting' Cavs-Hawks analysis, Brand and more - Yahoo! Sports
We briefly touch on the Cavs-Hawks "contest," Elton Brand's(notes) return, McLovin' (again), and alternatives to basketball in the offseason. We also hand out our Wanker Of The Week and kick it old school with some "NHL '94" talk. Darren Puppa!...
76ers miss Brand - at least a healthy one - Philadelphia Inquirer
By Bob Ford When fans wonder why 76ers general manager Ed Stefanski took last year's pricey plunge on free-agent power forward Elton Brand - whose contribution to the team this season was both brief and uninspiring - Stefanski can direct them to film...
Five Questions the Sixers Need Answered This Off-Season - Bleacher Report
A season that began with high hopes due to the acquisition of Elton Brand. The Sixers were considered a team on the rise following the 2007-08 season which saw them finish the season a game under .500 and put a scare into the Detroit Pistons in the...
Something to Prove in 2009-10 - FanHouse
--Elton Brand, Philadelphia. For most of his career, Brand has been praised for being a double-double guy and one of the most effective low-post players in the NBA. But he's now been injured in back-to-back seasons, and there are questions about...

Elton Brand

Duke University basketball fans cheer on Elton Brand during a 1999 game against the University of Maryland.

Elton Tyron Brand (born March 11, 1979 in Cortland, New York) is an American All-Star professional basketball player and film producer who currently plays for the Philadelphia 76ers of the NBA. Brand is one of four active players to have career averages of at least 20 points and 10 rebounds per game; the other three are Tim Duncan, Shaquille O'Neal and Kevin Garnett.

At the age of thirteen, Brand enrolled in Peekskill High School, where he was immediately added to the varsity basketball roster. He averaged 41 points and 20 rebounds per game, played AAU basketball with future NBA player Ron Artest, and by his senior year he was consistently ranked among the top high school basketball players in the country. At the same time, he became something of a cult hero in Peekskill, helping his team win two state championships while demonstrating a humble calm and an articulate intelligence. The former Governor of New York, fellow Peekskill native George Pataki, was once asked about being the town's favorite son, and he answered that Peekskill's favorite son was not the Governor but Elton Brand. Recruited heavily after his successful high school career, Brand decided to enroll at Duke University alongside a cluster of other high school stars, including Shane Battier.

As a sophomore, Brand was the dominant inside presence for a Duke team that is widely regarded as one of the most talented teams in recent NCAA history. After leading the Blue Devils to the championship game of the Final Four—where they were upset by the University of Connecticut—Brand was named the consensus National Player of the Year. He subsequently decided to leave Duke after his sophomore season and apply for the NBA draft, where he was selected by the Chicago Bulls with the first pick. Brand, along with William Avery, Trajan Langdon and future teammate Corey Maggette, was one of the first players in Duke basketball history to leave school early for the NBA Draft. All three entered the 1999 NBA Draft instead of returning to Duke.

Brand was the number one pick in the NBA draft of June 1999. He was selected by the Chicago Bulls, a team that had struggled since the retirement of superstar Michael Jordan and other key players in the 1990s. Brand quickly adapted to the challenges he faced and emerged as a calming and unifying influence on the fresh group of Bulls players. He seemed unfazed by the big players he faced, barely breaking stride from his Duke totals as he averaged 20.1 points and 10 rebounds per game in his first year. His only frustrations came as a result of the Bulls' losing record--he had come out on the losing end of very few basketball games before coming to Chicago. In May 2000, Brand shared NBA Rookie of the Year honors with Houston Rockets guard Steve Francis.

Through much of the 2000-2001 season Brand was hailed as the linchpin of a possible new Chicago dynasty, as a potential successor to Michael Jordan himself. Brand duplicated his 1999-2000 points-per-game total of 20.1 and, showing equal consistency, improved his rebounds per game from 10.0 to 10.1; his 3.9 offensive rebounds per game were the second best in the NBA.

After two successful seasons with the Bulls, Brand was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers in 2001 for Brian Skinner and the draft rights to Tyson Chandler. In Los Angeles, Brand became the first Clipper since Danny Manning (in 1994) to be selected to the All-Star team in 2002.

When Brand became a restricted free agent in 2003, the Miami Heat dangled an offer worth $82 million over six years. In what was an unprecedented move by team owner Donald Sterling, the Clippers matched Miami's offer and managed to keep Brand a Clipper. Prior to this, the biggest contract Sterling had approved to that point was a five-year, $15 million deal for Eric Piatkowski in 1998.

In the 2006 NBA season, Brand experienced a personal renaissance. He posted career-highs in points per game (24.7) and field-goal percentage (52.7), while leading the Clippers to a 47-35 record, good enough for the sixth seed in the Western Conference. In February 2006, Brand was selected to the 2006 NBA All-Star Game as a reserve forward for the West. As a result of his individual prowess and the Clippers' recent success, many analysts believed that he was a strong candidate for Most Valuable Player for the 2006 season. Steve Nash went on to win the award. On April 22, 2006, Brand made his playoff debut scoring 21 points against the Denver Nuggets. On May 1, Brand helped lead the team to its first playoff series win since 1976, when the team was known as the Buffalo Braves. Although the Clippers eventually lost in game 7 of the second round (Western Conference Semifinals) against the Phoenix Suns, the Clippers had the best season that their franchise had ever seen. Brand received the Joe Dumars Trophy after being named the 2005-06 NBA Sportsmanship Award winner.

Following his stellar 05-06 season, Brand regressed a bit in the following season. His point average in 2006-07 dropped and the Clippers missed the playoffs.

He missed most of the 2007-08 NBA season due to a ruptured left Achilles' tendon. However, Brand made his return to the Clippers' lineup April 2, 2008 after being out since the end of the previous season. He contributed 19 points in his return. He only played in 8 games that season.

Brand opted out of the final year of his contract and became a free agent. However, he said that he hoped to resign with the Clippers. He gave up the $16.4 million on the last year of his contract with the Clippers to test the free agent waters. According to ESPN, sources have reported that Brand chose to opt out from his contract in order to provide Clippers with more payroll flexibility in hopes of strengthening their roster. This came to fruition when Clippers landed Golden State Warriors star Baron Davis. Briefly, this gave Clippers' management and the media the reassurance that Brand would indeed resign with the team.

On July 9, 2008, Brand signed a five-year deal with the Philadelphia 76ers, a team in which Brand had previously stated to have an interest.

It was announced on February 5, 2009 that Brand would have season ending shoulder surgery for the injury he sustained on December 17, 2008. During the game that night against the Milwaukee Bucks, Brand dislocated his shoulder when he was knocked to the floor while going for a rebound. Brand had been coming off of the bench so that he could be slowly worked back into the lineup, but after over a month on the bench and only six games back during which his production was severely limited, the decision was made to go forward with the surgery. The procedure was successfully performed Monday, February 9.

The two-time All-Star Brand plays the power forward position, despite being only 6 ft 8 in tall and thus usually giving up two inches or more to his direct opponent. However, Brand has established himself as one of the top big power forwards of the NBA, averaging 20.3 points, 10.4 rebounds (4.0 being offensive rebounds) and 2.00 blocks in his career.

Brand makes up for his lack of size like another undersized power forward, Charles Barkley, using his wide and thick body and surprising athleticism for a man his weight in order to out-muscle his opponents. His large wingspan also allows Brand to be a proficient shot blocker.

In his first years in the league, he had a few, but effective and powerful moves underneath the basket which already made him an effective post player. It was not until the beginning of the 2005-06 season when Brand became one of the best power forwards of the NBA. During the off-season prior to the 2005-06 season, he trimmed his weight from 265 lb. down to 254 lb. in order to increase his quickness. He also worked on adding more finesse moves underneath the basket so that he could score without having to utilize power all the time. But most importantly, he worked on his shooting range and developed a dependable 18 ft. jumper. As a result, he raised his scoring by 4.7 points in that season.

Philadelphia 76ers forward Elton Brand will be sidelined for a month because of a dislocated shoulder.Team officials say the Sixers' leading scorer has a fracture and tear in his right shoulder but will not need surgery. Brand was hurt Wednesday night in a 93-88 win over Milwaukee. Brand is averaging 15.9 points and 9.8 rebounds per game this season. He signed a five-year, $80 million free agent contract with the 76ers in July.A playoff team last season, the 76ers struggled to a 9-14 start before firing coach Maurice Cheeks last week. They are 16-10 under interim coach Tony DiLeo. DiLeo and the Sixers coaching staff have opted to bring Brand back from injury off the bench, a method frequently adopted to aid players returning from injury to re-acclimatize to the NBA.

Elton started the Elton Brand Foundation in the spring of 2000. His foundation is an organization that provides support to worthy causes in Chicago; Peekskill; and Durham, North Carolina.

In the summer of 2006, Elton married his longtime girlfriend (and fellow Duke student) Shahara Simmons in North Carolina. Brand also played for Team USA in the 2006 FIBA World Basketball Championships, averaging 8.9 points and 3.3 rebounds per game.

Brand, alongside his partner Steve Marlton, is founding member and president of Gibraltar Films, a company engaged in film investment, acquisition, production, and distribution of motion pictures. The first project of Gibraltar Films was the production of a Vietnam-era prisoner-of-war film Rescue Dawn. Brand attended the film's premiere at the Toronto Film Festival.

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Philadelphia 76ers

Philadelphia 76ers logo

The Philadelphia 76ers (also known as the Sixers for short) are a professional basketball team based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They play in the National Basketball Association (NBA).

The 76ers are the NBA's oldest franchise. In 1946, Danny Biasone sent a $5,000 check to the National Basketball League offices in Chicago, and the Syracuse Nationals became the largely Midwest-based league's easternmost team. In 1949, the Nationals were one of seven NBL teams that merged with the Basketball Association of America to form the NBA. In 1955, the Nationals (led by forward Dolph Schayes) won the NBA championship.

By the early 1960s, the NBA's Nationals were struggling. Syracuse was the last of the medium-sized cities, but it was too small for a professional team to be profitable. Paper magnate Irv Kosloff bought the Nationals from Danny Biasone and moved them to Philadelphia in 1963. The NBA thus returned to Philadelphia one year after the Warriors had left for San Francisco. A contest was held to decide on their new name and the winner was the late Walt Stahlberg. Their name was changed to the "76ers," after 1776, the year the Declaration of Independence was signed in Philadelphia. The nickname was quickly shortened to "Sixers" by headline writers, and the two names soon became interchangeable for marketing purposes.

For their first four years in Philadelphia, the Sixers played mostly at the Philadelphia Arena and Civic Center-Convention Hall, with an occasional game at The Palestra at the University of Pennsylvania.

In the 1964-65 season, the 76ers acquired the legendary Wilt Chamberlain from the Warriors; Chamberlain had been a high school legend in Philadelphia and began his career with the Warriors while they still played in Philadelphia. In Chamberlain's first full year back in Philadelphia, the Sixers ended the Boston Celtics' eight-year reign as Eastern Division regular-season champions. The 76ers would push the Celtics to seven games in the Eastern Conference Finals, with the 76ers trailing 110–108 in Game 7. After Hal Greer's pass was stolen by John Havlicek — an infamous blow to 76ers fans, rubbed in by fabled Celtics announcer Johnny Most when he yelled into the microphone "Havlicek stole the ball!" — the Celtics went on to beat the 76ers and win another NBA Championship.

Led by head coach Alex Hannum, the 76ers had a dream season as they started 46–4, en route to a record of 68–13, the best record in league history at the time. Chamberlain, Billy Cunningham, and Hal Greer, along with all-stars Chet Walker, Lucious Jackson and Wali Jones led the team to the Eastern Conference finals. This time, with the Celtics aging and hurt, the 76ers beat the Celtics in five games. In Game Five of that series, as the 76ers went to victory and the NBA Finals, rabid Philadelphia fans chanted "Boston is dead!"—a symbol that the Celts' eight-year reign as NBA champion had ended. The Finals were almost anticlimatic, with the Sixers ousting the Warriors in six games to give them their first NBA Championship. The 1966-67 Sixers were voted the best team in league history during the NBA's 35th anniversary celebration.

In the 1967-68 season, with a new home court in the form of the The Spectrum to defend their championship, once again the 76ers made it back to the NBA Playoffs and in the rematch of last year's Eastern Conference Finals, the 76ers held a 3–1 series lead over the Celtics, before selfish play and ego cost them big, as the Celtics came back to beat the 76ers in seven games. At the end of the season, the 76ers inexplicably traded Hall of Famer Chamberlain to the Los Angeles Lakers for one arguable player, Archie Clark, and two mediocre role players, Darrell Imhoff and Jerry Chambers. The trade was one of the most mentally deficient in NBA history, and sent the Sixers into a freefall, which GM Jack Ramsay accelerated by subsequent divestiture of All Star forward Chet Walker for a series of grossly inadequate replacements.

While the rapidly declining Sixers continued to contend for the next three seasons, they never got past the second round. In 1971-72 – only five years after winning the title – the Sixers finished 30–52 and missed postseason play for the first time in franchise history.

The bottom fell out in the 1972-73 season. The 76ers lost their first 15 games of the season, and a few months later set a then-record 20 game losing streak in a single season. Their record following the 20 game losing streak was 4–58, and the team at that point had just lost 34 of 35 games. The 76ers finished the season with a 9-73 record, earning the nickname from the skeptical Philadelphia media of the "Nine and 73-ers". Under Coach Roy Rubin the Sixers won 4, and lost 47. He was succeeded by player-coach Kevin Loughery, the team won 5, lost 26. This was Roy Rubin's first and last job coaching in the NBA. The 76ers finished an NBA-record 59 games behind the Atlantic Division champion Boston Celtics. The nine wins by the 1972-73 squad is the second fewest in NBA history — to the six games won by the Providence Steamrollers in the 48 game 1947-48 season. The 73 losses, although threatened several times, remains the all-time low-water mark for any NBA franchise. The Sixers' .110 winning percentage is also the lowest in NBA history. Only six seasons earlier, the 76ers had set the NBA record for most wins in a season.

The next year, the 76ers would hire Gene Shue as their head coach and they slowly came back. In the 1975-76 season, the 76ers got George McGinnis from the Indiana Pacers of the ABA (after the Knicks tried to sign him, not knowing that the Sixers owned his rights), and with him, the 76ers were back in the playoffs after a five-year absence, and even though they lost to the Buffalo Braves in three games, a "Doctor" would come along and get the team healthy enough to stay in perennial contention. During this period, however, one last personnel misjudgment had effects when the team used the fifth pick overall in the 1975 draft to select Darrell Dawkins directly from high school. The immensely talented and physically imposing Dawkins seldom, if ever, lived up to his great potential in part because of a perpetual adolescence. In fact, his lack of development and some lingering back injuries limited his NBA career to 9 years, the last several of which were as a mere footnote player. In retrospect, Dawkins is probably the best example of the value of at least a few years of NCAA play before turning pro and the 76ers fans would concede that his drafting turned out to be in noone's best interest except perhaps that of his agent.

The 1976-77 season would be memorable for the 76ers; as a result of the terms of the ABA-NBA merger they acquired Julius Erving from the New York Nets, soon after the team was purchased by local philanthropist Fitz Eugene Dixon, Jr., grandson of George Dunton Widener and heir to the Widener fortune. With them, the 76ers began an exciting ride for the fans of Philadelphia, beating their long-time rival from Boston in a seven-game playoff to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals. There, they defeated the Houston Rockets, led by future Sixer Moses Malone, in six games to advance to the NBA Finals. There they would lose to former coach Jack Ramsay and the Bill Walton-led Portland Trail Blazers in six games, after building a commanding 2–0 series lead.

That led to the 1977-78 motto of "We owe you one," which would ultimately backfire when they lost in the playoffs that season to the Washington Bullets, who went on to win the NBA championship. In the next four seasons, the Sixers would fall short of the NBA Championship, even after changing coaches to former Sixers great Billy Cunningham. In the 1980 NBA Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers, they lost, four games to two. In Game Six, rookie Magic Johnson played center for the Lakers in place of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (who was out because of a sprained ankle sustained in Game Five) and scored 42 points. In the 1981 Eastern Conference Finals, the 76ers opened a 3–1 series lead over the Celtics only to see Boston come back and win the series in seven games. The following season, the 76ers again faced the Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals, and again jumped to a 3–1 series lead only to see Boston forge a 3–3 series tie. The 76ers were given little chance of winning as they faced the Celtics in Game Seven at Boston Garden. This time, they played angry but inspired basketball, pulling away to a 120–106 victory. In the game's closing moments, the Boston Garden fans began chanting "Beat L.A., Beat L.A.", an incredible moment in basketball history, and although they lost in the NBA Finals, the 76ers began the 1982-83 season with great momentum. All they needed now was Moses to lead them to the promised land of the NBA championship.

However, the Sixers backed up Malone's boast. They made a mockery of the Eastern Conference playoffs, first sweeping the New York Knicks and then beating the Milwaukee Bucks in five games. The Sixers went on to win their third NBA championship (and second in Philadelphia) with a four-game sweep of the Los Angeles Lakers, who had defeated them the season before. Malone was named the playoffs' MVP. The Sixers didn't quite fulfill Malone's prediction, as their run was actually "fo', fi', fo" ("four, five, four")--a loss to the Bucks in game four of the Eastern finals being the only blemish on their playoff run. Nonetheless, their 12–1 playoff record is the second-best in league history after the 2000-2001 Lakers, who went 15–1 en route to the NBA Title coincidentally beating the 76ers in the finals. The Philadelphia-based group Pieces Of A Dream had a minor hit in 1983 with the R&B song "Fo-Fi-Fo", which title was prompted by Malone's quip.

After a disappointing 1983-84 season, which ended with a five-game loss to the upstart New Jersey Nets in the first round of the playoffs, Charles Barkley arrived in Philadelphia for the 1984-85 season. For the next eight seasons, Barkley brought delight to the Philadelphia fans thanks to his humorous and sometimes controversial ways. The 76ers returned to the Eastern Conference Finals, but lost to the Boston Celtics in five games. Following the season, Matt Guokas replaced Billy Cunningham as head coach, leading the Sixers to the second round of the playoffs in 1985-86, where they were defeated by the Milwaukee Bucks in seven games.

On June 16, 1986, Katz made two of the most controversial and highly criticized personnel moves in franchise history (no mean feat in light of the Chamberlain and Shawn Bradley disasters), trading Moses Malone to Washington and the first overall pick in the 1986 NBA Draft (which had been obtained from the San Diego Clippers in a 1979 trade for Joe Bryant) to the Cleveland Cavaliers. In return, the Sixers received Roy Hinson, Jeff Ruland, and Cliff Robinson, none of whom played more than three seasons with the team. Cleveland, meanwhile, turned their acquired pick into future All-Star Brad Daugherty. The 76ers returned to the playoffs in 1986-87, but were defeated in the first round by Milwaukee, three games to two. In 1987-88, with the team's record at 20–23, Guokas was fired and replaced by assistant Jim Lynam. Lynam finished the season 16-23, and overall Philadelphia finished 36-46, failing to reach the postseason for the first time since 1974-75. Philadelphia selected Charles Smith with its first pick in the 1988 NBA Draft, then traded his rights to the Los Angeles Clippers for their first pick, Hersey Hawkins. In five seasons with the Sixers, Hawkins would average 19 points per game, and left the team as its all-time leader in three-point field goals attempted and made.

In 1988-89, Philadelphia returned to the playoffs after a one-year absence, but were swept in the first round by the New York Knicks. In 1989-90, Barkley finished second in the league's MVP voting, as the 76ers won the Atlantic Division title. After defeating Cleveland in the first round of the playoffs, Philadelphia faced Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls in the second round. The 76ers fell to the Bulls in five games, and would do the same in 1991 after sweeping the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round. Some people feel the two postseason losses to Chicago were the beginning of the end of Barkley's stay in Philadelphia. In 1991-92, the 76ers missed the playoffs for the just the second time during Barkley's eight seasons in Philadelphia. On June 17, 1992, Barkley was traded to the Phoenix Suns for Jeff Hornacek, Tim Perry, and Andrew Lang, a deal that was met with harsh criticism.

Lynam relinquished his head coaching position to become general manager following the 1991-92 season, and hired Doug Moe to fill the vacancy. Moe's tenure lasted just 56 games, with the Sixers posting a 19–37 record. Popular former player and longtime assistant coach Fred Carter succeeded Moe as head coach in March 1993, but could only manage a 32–76 record at the helm. Following the 1993-94 season, the 76ers hired John Lucas in the dual role of head coach and general manager. The enthusiastic Lucas had been successful as a head coach for the San Antonio Spurs, and Philadelphia hoped he could breathe new life into the 76ers. It proved disastrous, as the team went 42–122 in its two seasons under Lucas. The acquisition of unproductive free agents such as Scott Williams and Charles Shackleford, players at the end of their careers such as LaSalle Thompson, Orlando Woolridge, and Scott Skiles along with stunningly unwise high draft picks such as Shawn Bradley and Sharone Wright were also factors in the team's decline. In fact, Wright played in only 4 NBA seasons while Temple product Eddie Jones — drafted 4 slots below Wright in 1994 by the L.A. Lakers — is in his 14th year as a productive NBA player.

Starting with the 1990-91 season, and ending with the 1995-96 season, the 76ers had the dubious distinction of seeing their win total decrease each year. The nadir was the 1995-96 season, when they finished with an 18–64 record, the second-worst in franchise history. It was also the second-worst record in the league that year, ahead of only the expansion Vancouver Grizzlies but behind the Toronto Raptors, who were also in their inaugural season. That season would turn out to be their last in the The Spectrum. Katz, unpopular among fans since the 1986 trades, sold the team to Comcast-Spectacor, a consortium of Philadelphia Flyers owner Ed Snider and Comcast Corporation, at the end of the 1995-96 season. Snider had been the Sixers' landlord since gaining control of the Spectrum in 1971. Pat Croce, a former trainer for the Flyers and Sixers, took over as president.

Many 76ers fans call these years "The Dark Ages." However, after many years of misfortune, there was a bright spot. The team won the lottery for the top pick in the 1996 NBA Draft. Questions remained, but with the first pick, the Sixers found their "Answer": Allen Iverson.

With new ownership and Iverson in place, and the 76ers moving into the CoreStates Center, things seemed to finally be heading in a positive direction. Croce fired Lucas as both coach and general manager. Johnny Davis was named head coach, while Brad Greenberg took over as general manager. Iverson was named Rookie of the Year, but Philadelphia's overall improvement was minimal, as they finished with a 22–60 record. 76ers top brass felt changes had to be made after the 1996-97 season. Changes came in the form of the firings of Davis and Greenberg and the unveiling of a new 76ers team logo and jerseys. To replace Davis, Larry Brown was hired as head coach. Known for a defense-first approach and transforming unsuccessful teams into winners by "playing the right way", Brown faced perhaps his toughest coaching challenge. He often clashed with Iverson, but the 76ers improved to 31 wins in 1997-98. In the early 1997-98 season, the Sixers traded Jerry Stackhouse, who had been the third overall pick in the 1995 NBA Draft, to the Detroit Pistons. In exchange, Philadelphia received Aaron McKie and Theo Ratliff, defensive standouts who would have an impact in the team's resurgence. The 76ers also acquired Eric Snow from the Seattle SuperSonics in January 1998.

Prior to the 1998-99 season, the 76ers signed George Lynch and Matt Geiger, but a lengthy lockout delayed the start of the season, which was shortened to 50 games. During the season, Philadelphia acquired Tyrone Hill in a trade with Milwaukee. The team began its resurgence during this strike-shortened season, finishing with a 28–22 record and the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs, marking the first time since 1991 the team reached the postseason. In the first round, Philadelphia upset the Orlando Magic, three games to one, before being swept by the Indiana Pacers. The following season, the Sixers improved to 49–33, fifth in the East. Again, the Sixers won their first round series in four games, this time defeating the Charlotte Hornets. For the second straight year, they were defeated by Indiana in the second round, this time in six games. Iverson and Brown continued to clash, and their relationship deteriorated to the point where it seemed certain Iverson would be traded. A rumored trade to the Los Angeles Clippers fell through, but a complicated four-team deal that would've seen Iverson sent to Detroit was agreed upon, only to see it dissolve due to salary cap problems. When it became clear Iverson was staying in Philadelphia, he and Brown worked to patch things up, and the team would reap the benefits in 2000-01.

During that season, the 76ers got off to a hot start by winning their first ten games, and their record would eventually swell to 41–14. Larry Brown coached the Eastern Conference All-Stars, and Allen Iverson was named MVP of the All-Star Game. Shortly before the All-Star break, Theo Ratliff was lost for the season with a wrist injury, one that would later prove to be devastating to his future career. Feeling the team needed an established center to advance deep into the playoffs, Philadelphia acquired Dikembe Mutombo from the Atlanta Hawks in a deal that sent Ratliff, Nazr Mohammed, Toni Kukoč, and Pepe Sanchez to Atlanta (Sanchez was reacquired later in the season after the Hawks waived him) In total, the team went 56–26 en route to becoming the top seed in the Eastern Conference Playoffs. The 56 wins were tied for the second-most in the league behind San Antonio's 58. The Los Angeles Lakers also won 56, but gained a higher overall seed than the Sixers based on tiebreakers.

In the first round of the playoffs, Philadelphia faced Indiana yet again. In Game One, the 76ers wasted an 18-point lead and lost, 79–78, when Reggie Miller hit a three-pointer in the closing seconds. Philadelphia fought back, however, and took the next three games to win the series. In the Eastern Conference Semifinals, the Sixers squared off against the Toronto Raptors and their superstar, Vince Carter. The teams alternated wins in the first four games, with Iverson scoring 54 points in Philadelphia's Game Two victory. In Game Five, the 76ers jumped out to a 33–12 lead after the first quarter and routed the Raptors, 121–88, with Iverson contributing 52 points. Toronto won Game Six, setting the stage for Game Seven at the First Union Center. With the Sixers ahead, 88–87, Carter missed a jump shot at the buzzer to send Philadelphia into the Eastern Conference Finals against the Milwaukee Bucks. After the teams split the first two games of the series, it was learned Iverson would miss Game Three due to various injuries that had plagued him late in the season. Though many people felt Milwaukee would win easily, the 76ers kept the game close before falling, 80–74. The Sixers would win Games Four and Five before dropping Game Six. In Game Seven, the Bucks jumped out to a 34–25 second quarter lead before seldom-used reserve Raja Bell scored 10 points to spark a 23–4 run that gave Philadelphia the lead for good. Iverson scored 44 points, and the 76ers pulled away in the second half, winning by a 108–91 score, putting them in the NBA Finals for the first time since 1983. Their opponent would be the Los Angeles Lakers, who had run up an 11–0 record in the first three rounds of the playoffs, and were expected by many to make quick work of the Sixers. Because of a seemingly meaningless loss to the Chicago Bulls in the regular season finale (both the Sixers and the Lakers finished with identical 56–26 records), the 76ers had to open a series on the road for the first time in the 2001 playoffs.

In Game One, the Lakers jumped out to an 18–5 lead, but the Sixers stormed back to take a 15-point lead in the second half. Los Angeles fought back to force a 94–94 tie at the end of regulation. The Lakers scored the first five points of the overtime period, but the 76ers went on a 13–2 run to end the game, winning by a 107–101 score. Iverson hit a go-ahead three-pointer in the extra period, and followed that with a jump shot after which he famously stepped over Tyronn Lue after making the basket. Eric Snow hit a running jump shot in the waning seconds with the shot clock expiring to clinch the stunning victory. Los Angeles would win Game Two, 98–89. In Game Three, Shaquille O'Neal fouled out late in the fourth quarter, and the 76ers pulled to within a point with less than a minute to play. Robert Horry, however, hit a three-pointer in that final minute, and the Sixers would lose, 91–86. The Lakers wrapped up the NBA title with a 100-86 win in Game Four and a 108–96 win in Game Five. The 2000-01 Sixers featured the NBA's MVP (Iverson), the NBA's coach of the year (Brown), the Defensive Player of the Year (Mutombo), and the Sixth Man of the Year (Aaron McKie).

The 76ers went into the 2001-02 season with high expectations, but were able to produce only a 43–39 record, sixth in the Eastern Conference. In the first round of the playoffs, Philadelphia was defeated by the Boston Celtics, three games to two. In 2002-03, the Sixers sprinted to a 15–4 start, but a 10–20 swoon left them 25–24 at the All-Star break. After the break, the 76ers caught fire, winning nine in a row at one point, and 23 of their last 33 to finish at 48–34, earning the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs. Iverson scored 55 points in the playoff opener against the New Orleans Hornets, and the Sixers went on to win the series in six games. In the second round, the Detroit Pistons ended Philadelphia's playoff run in six games.

On Memorial Day, 2003, Brown abruptly resigned as head coach, taking over the reins in Detroit a few days later. After being turned down by Jeff Van Gundy and Eddie Jordan, the 76ers hired Randy Ayers, an assistant under Brown, as their new head coach. Ayers lasted only 52 games and was fired with the team's record at 21–31. Chris Ford took over, but the Sixers finished the season at 33–49, missing the playoffs for the first time in six years. Iverson, who clashed with Ford throughout the second half of the season, played only 48 games in a stormy, injury-plagued season. Following the season, Philadelphia native Jim O'Brien was named head coach. Iverson was moved back to point guard and flourished, having arguably his finest season. He also impressed many with his willingness to get other players involved in the offense. During the 2004-05 season, Philadelphia acquired Chris Webber in a trade with the Sacramento Kings, with the hopes that the team had at long last found a consistent second scoring option to compliment Iverson. Andre Iguodala, Philadelphia's first-round pick in the 2004 NBA Draft, was named to the All-Rookie First Team, and the Sixers returned to the postseason with a 43–39 record. In the first round, they were defeated in five games by the eventual Eastern Conference Champion Pistons, coached by Larry Brown. Following the season, O'Brien was fired and replaced by the popular Maurice Cheeks, who played for the team from 1978-89, and was the starting point guard for the 1983 NBA Champions. However, the coaching change did not turn around the team's fortunes. A 2–10 stretch in March doomed them to missing the playoffs for the second time in three years with a 38–44 record.

With the opening of the 2006-07 season, the Sixers started out hot, going 3–0 for the first time since making it to the Finals five years previously. However, they stumbled through the first half of the season and couldn't quite recover, finishing 35-47, good for 3rd in the Atlantic Division, and 9th in the Eastern Conference (tied with Indiana).

On Tuesday, December 5, 2006, disappointed with the direction the team was headed, Allen Iverson gave the 76ers management an ultimatum: find players who will help support me or trade me. This was confirmed via an in-game interview with team owner, Ed Snider.

On December 19, 2006, Allen Iverson, along with Ivan McFarlin, was sent to the Denver Nuggets in exchange for guard Andre Miller, forward Joe Smith, and two first-round draft picks.

On January 11, Sixers GM Billy King announced that the Sixers and aging forward Chris Webber had agreed to a buyout of the remainder of his contract. The Sixers would pay Webber $36 million over the next 1½ seasons, which is $7 million less than he would have been paid to play. After the buyout, the Sixers waived Webber, making him a free agent. Webber signed with the Detroit Pistons shortly thereafter.

The Sixers drafted Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets SF Thaddeus Young with the 12th pick, traded with the Miami Heat for 21st pick Colorado State PF Jason Smith, traded with the Portland Trail Blazers for 42nd pick Vanderbilt SG/SF Derrick Byars, and then finally traded with the Utah Jazz for Providence PF Herbert Hill.

On December 4, 2007, the Sixers fired Billy King and replaced him with Nets GM, Ed Stefanski.

This season, the Sixers revamped their homecourt design. The logo based on their home uniforms is placed on center court, while the primary logo is placed on the right side of the baseline. The streaking ball on the left side of the court is eliminated, and the team website is placed on the sideline.

The Sixers clinched a playoff berth with a win over the Atlanta Hawks on April 4, 2008. It was their first postseason appearance since 2005, as well as the first in the post-Iverson era. However, they were eliminated by the Pistons in six games, with Detroit winning the series 4-2. Even with this elimination, many folks considered this to be a successful season, considering that the Sixers were 12 games under .500 in early February and went on to have a run that led them to the playoffs and a 41-41 record.

On July 9, 2008, the 76ers signed power forward Elton Brand to a 5 year, $79.795 million-dollar contract. They were able to sign him after trading Rodney Carney, and renouncing their rights to all their unrestricted free agents. Brand had originally opted out of his contract with the Los Angeles Clippers, looking to re-sign with them. But Elton saw that the 76ers offered him more money (he regarded their offer as the "Philly-Max"), and a better chance at winning an NBA Championship playing in the Eastern Conference. This move has been the subject of controversy since there were rumors that he and Baron Davis had made a friendly agreement to play together for the Clippers. Later on the team signed free agent point guard Royal Ivey of the Milwaukee Bucks, Kareem Rush from the Indiana Pacers, and then signed former Sixer Theo Ratliff after Jason Smith's injury. Donyell Marshall was signed on September 2, 2008 after he stated that he wanted to go back home to his agent and end his career in the city of brotherly love. Rush, Ivey, Ratliff & Marshall were all payed the veteran's minimum wage because of their one dimensional play, but they will be contributors to a team on the rise. During the offseason they also resigned valuable restricted free agents Louis Williams for 5yr/$25 million and Andre Iguodala for 6yr/$80 million.

However the Sixers couldn't find the form that pushed them to the playoffs last year. The Sixers started the year with an uninspiring 9-14 record before firing head coach Maurice Cheeks on December 13. Assistant GM Tony DiLeo took over and the Sixers gradually improved. They currently post a 29-30 record, with an 20-16 record under DiLeo. Unfortunately, Brand's first season with the Sixers ended early with a right shoulder injury that required surgery. Despite the loss of Brand, the Sixers are currently in playoff contention.

As part of the Sixers' 60th anniversary season, the team website uses the old Sixers logo used from 1977-97. The team will switch back to that pair permanently starting in the 2009-10 season.

Erving, Chamberlain, Cunningham, Barkley and Sonny Hill (team executive and director of youth basketball programs in the city) have also been inducted into the Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame.

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Golden State Warriors

Golden State Warriors logo

The Golden State Warriors are an American professional basketball team based in Oakland, California, representing the San Francisco Bay Area. The team is part of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference of the National Basketball Association (NBA). They play their home games at Oracle Arena in Oakland.

The Warriors were founded in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1946 as the Philadelphia Warriors, a charter member of the Basketball Association of America. They were owned by Peter Tyrrell, who also owned the Philadelphia Rockets of the American Hockey League. Tyrell hired Eddie Gottlieb, a longtime basketball promoter in the Philadelphia area, as coach and general manager. He named the team after an early professional team in the city.

Led by early scoring sensation Joe Fulks, they won the championship in the league's inaugural 1946–47 season by defeating the Chicago Stags, four games to one. (The BAA became the National Basketball Association in 1949.) Gottlieb bought the team in 1951.

The Warriors won their only other championship as a Philadelphia team in the 1955–56 season, defeating the Fort Wayne Pistons four games to one. The stars of this era in the team's history were Paul Arizin and Neil Johnston. In 1959, the team signed draft pick Wilt Chamberlain. Known as "Wilt the Stilt," Chamberlain quickly began shattering NBA scoring records and changed the style of play forever. On March 2, 1962, in a Warrior "home" game played on a neutral court in Hershey, Pennsylvania, Chamberlain scored 100 points against the New York Knicks, a single-game record that the NBA ranks among its finest moments.

In 1962, Franklin Mieuli purchased the majority shares of the team and relocated the franchise to the San Francisco Bay Area, renaming them the San Francisco Warriors, playing most of their home games at the Cow Palace (located on the border between San Francisco and Daly City), though occasionally playing home games in nearby cities such as Oakland and San Jose. The Warriors won the 1963-64 Western Division crown, losing the NBA championship series to the Boston Celtics, four games to one.

In the 1964–65 season, the Warriors traded Wilt Chamberlain to the Philadelphia 76ers, as they only won 17 games that season. In 1965, the Warriors drafted Rick Barry in the first round. Barry was named NBA Rookie of the Year in his first season, then led the Warriors to the NBA finals in the 1966–67 season, where the team lost (four games to two) to the team that replaced the Warriors in Philadelphia, the 76ers. Angered by management's failure to pay him certain incentive awards he felt he was due, Barry sat out the 1967–68 season, joining the Oakland Oaks of the rival American Basketball Association the following year. After four seasons in the ABA, Barry rejoined the Warriors in 1972.

With the opening of the Oakland Coliseum Arena in 1966, the Warriors began scheduling increasing numbers of home games at that venue. The 1970–71 season would be the team's last as the San Francisco Warriors. They changed their name to the Golden State Warriors for the 1971–72 season, playing almost all home games in Oakland. Six "home" games were played in San Diego during that season but more significantly, none were played in San Francisco or Daly City.

The Warriors won their only championship on the West Coast in 1974–75. In what many consider the biggest upset in the history of the NBA, the Warriors defeated the heavily favored Washington Bullets in a four-game sweep. That team was coached by former Warrior Al Attles, and led on the court by Rick Barry, Jamaal Wilkes and Phil Smith. So little was felt of the team's chances in the playoffs, even by their home fans, that the Coliseum Arena scheduled other events during the dates of the NBA playoffs. As a result, the Warriors did not play their championship series playoff games in Oakland; rather, they played at the Cow Palace in Daly City.

After changing their name from the San Francisco Warriors, the Warriors became (and remain) the only NBA team that does not include the name of their state or their city in their name (although "Golden State" is a well-known California nickname).

After a subpar stretch in the late 1970s and early 1980s, the team had a brief resurgence with coach George Karl, culminating in a famous 1987 Western Conference Semifinal match against Magic Johnson's Lakers, which is still shown on TV in the NBA's Greatest Games series.

In the game, the Warrior's NBA All-Star point guard Sleepy Floyd had an amazing performance in the second half, which is still the NBA playoff record for points scored in a quarter (29) and in a half (39). Floyd scored 12 consecutive field goals in the fourth quarter, finishing the game with 51 points, and leading the Warriors to victory. The "Sleepy Floyd Game" was a catalyst for increased interest in the NBA in the Bay Area, which was furthered by new coach Don Nelson who engineered another successful string of wins in the late 1980s to early 1990s with the high scoring trio of point guard Tim Hardaway, guard Mitch Richmond, and forward Chris Mullin (collectively known as "Run-T.M.C." after the rap group Run-D.M.C.). However, coach Don Nelson wishing to get frontcourt players to complement his run-and-gun system, made a trade that broke up the Run-T.M.C. core by sending Richmond to the Sacramento Kings for Billy Owens while bypassing Dikembe Mutombo, who was selected next by the Denver Nuggets. Nelson was brought to the team by Jim Fitzgerald, who owned the team between 1986 and 1995. The following year, 1993-94, with first-round draft pick and Rookie of the Year Chris Webber playing alongside Latrell Sprewell, the Warriors made the playoffs.

The season after that, however, saw a rift form between Webber, Sprewell and Nelson. All three soon left the team, and the organization went into a tailspin. 1994-95 was the first season under current team owner Chris Cohan. While the Oakland Coliseum underwent a complete renovation, the 1996-97 Golden State Warriors played their home games in the San Jose Arena in San Jose, California, struggling to a 30–52 finish. Sprewell was suspended for the remainder of the 1997–98 season for choking head coach P. J. Carlesimo during a team practice in December 1997. He would not play until he was dealt in January 1999 to the New York Knicks for John Starks, Chris Mills and Terry Cummings. Former GM Garry St. Jean and Dave Twardzik received much of the blame for the Warriors' struggles following the start of Chris Cohan's tenure, including Cohan himself. St. Jean brought in several players, such as Terry Cummings, John Starks, and Mookie Blaylock, who were well past their primes. Twardzik drafted several flops, such as Todd Fuller (while Kobe Bryant was still available) and Steve Logan (who never played an NBA game). In the following draft, the team selected Adonal Foyle while Tracy McGrady was still available. St. Jean did, however, draft the future 2-time NBA slam dunk champion Jason Richardson (from Michigan State), who would become a key player on the team until the end of the 2006–07 season.

For a few years, with rising stars Jason Richardson, Antawn Jamison and guard Gilbert Arenas leading the team, the Warriors seemed like a team on the rise. In the end the young Warriors just did not have enough in the ultra-competitive Western Conference. After the 2002–03 season, Garry St. Jean's earlier mistakes of committing money to players like Danny Fortson, Adonal Foyle and Erick Dampier were painfully felt by Warriors fans when the team was unable to re-sign up-and-coming star Gilbert Arenas, despite Arenas's desire to stay in the Bay Area.

After spending two years in the Warriors front office as a special assistant, Chris Mullin succeeded Garry St. Jean and assumed the title of Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations. Among his first moves were the hiring of three former teammates to help run the organization: Mitch Richmond (special assistant), Mario Elie (assistant coach) and Rod Higgins (General Manager). Mullin hoped to build the team around Jason Richardson, Mike Dunleavy, Jr., and Troy Murphy—complementing them with experience in Derek Fisher, a free agent signed by Golden State after playing a key role on three championship Lakers squads, Calbert Cheaney, a playoff-tested sharpshooter and Adonal Foyle, an excellent shot-blocker who is perhaps better known for his off-court work as founder of the campaign finance reform organization, Democracy Matters. The team also drafted 7-foot center Andris Biedriņš from Latvia (11th overall). At the 2005 trading deadline, Mullin further added to the team by acquiring guard Baron Davis, bringing the team its first "superstar" since Mullin himself.

Warriors fans hoped that 2005-06 would finally be the season that the team ended their playoff drought. Despite the poor play of newly re-signed Mike Dunleavy, Jr. and the broken hand of first round draft pick Ike Diogu, the Warriors enjoyed a great start to the 2005–06 season. They entered the new year with a winning percentage over .500 for the first time since 1994, but lost their first five games of 2006 and managed to win only 13 more games through the end of March. Star Baron Davis often found himself at odds with coach Mike Montgomery. Furthermore, Davis failed to remain healthy and played in just 54 games. He suffered a sprained right ankle in mid-February and did not return for long before being listed as an inactive player the remainder of the season. The injury-prone Davis had not played a full season since the 2001–02 campaign until the 07–08 season in which he played all 82 games averaging 21.8 points a game (incidentally a contract year). On April 5, 2006, the Warriors were officially eliminated from playoff contention with a 114–109 overtime loss to the Hornets, extending their playoff drought to 12 seasons.

During the offseason, the Warriors rebuilt themselves. First in the 2006 NBA Draft, the Warriors selected center Patrick O'Bryant with the 9th overall selection. They also traded Derek Fisher to the Utah Jazz for guards Devin Brown, Andre Owens and Keith McLeod, and signed training-camp invitees Matt Barnes, Anthony Roberson and Dajuan Wagner. Brown, Owens, Wagner, Roberson, Chris Taft and Will Bynum were all waived while Barnes established himself in the rotation. Golden State also announced that it had bought out the remaining two years of head coach Mike Montgomery's contract and hired previous Golden State and former Dallas Mavericks coach Don Nelson to take over in his place.

Entering the 2006–07 season, the Warriors held the active record (12) for the most consecutive seasons without a playoff appearance (see Active NBA non-playoff appearance streaks). The 2006–07 season brought new hope to the Warriors and the Warriors faithful. Fans hoped that the Warriors will eventually find themselves among the NBA's elite with Don Nelson leading a healthy Baron Davis, an ever-improving Jason Richardson, and future stars Monta Ellis and Andris Biedriņš.

On January 17, 2007, Golden State traded Troy Murphy, Mike Dunleavy, Jr., Ike Diogu, and Keith McLeod to the Indiana Pacers for forward Al Harrington, forward/guard Stephen Jackson, guard Šarūnas Jasikevičius, and forward Josh Powell. Many Warriors fans praised GM Chris Mullin for the trade for getting rid of considerable financial burdens in Dunleavy and Murphy. The Warriors now sought to "run and gun" their way to the playoffs with a more athletic and talented team. On January 24, the Warriors won their first game with their revamped roster, with encouraging play from Monta Ellis, Al Harrington, and Baron Davis against the New Jersey Nets, ending dramatically on a buzzer beater from Ellis.

March 4, 2007 marked the turning point in the Warriors season. They suffered a 107–106 loss in Washington handing them their 6th straight loss when Gilbert Arenas hit a technical free throw with less than one second remaining. The loss dropped them to 26–35, a hole inspiring the squad to a point of total determination. On April 18, 2007, the Warriors clinched their first playoff bid since 1994 with a resounding 120–98 victory in their season finale at Portland. The Warriors closed out the regular season (42–40) with a 16–5 ending run. During the run, they beat Eastern top seed Detroit Pistons 111–93, snapping their 6-game losing streak and notching their first win on the tail end of a back-to-back. The Warriors also ended the Dallas Mavericks' 17-game win streak with five players recording double digits. "We Believe" became the Warriors' slogan for the last couple months of the season and the playoffs.

On April 22, 2007, the Warriors played their first playoff game in 13 years, and beat the Dallas Mavericks 97–85, holding MVP Dirk Nowitzki to just 4-of-16 shooting, making it 6 straight against the NBA-best, 67 game winners. But the Warriors were crushed by the Mavericks in Game 2 when both Baron Davis, sometimes referred to as "Boom Dizzle" by fans, and Stephen Jackson, also known as Captain Jack, were ejected from the game. Then the Warriors bounced back by winning both Games 3 and 4 at home, putting Dallas on the brink of elimination. A close Game 5 saw the Mavericks eke out a 118–112 victory to send the 3–2 series back to California. The Warriors led by 9 with 2:41 left in the game, but Dallas scored 15 straight points. On May 3, 2007, the Warriors, with the help of their explosive third quarter, eliminated the Mavericks and became the first #8 seed to beat a #1 seed in a seven-game series. This was the Warriors' first playoff series win in 16 years. The Warriors went on to play the Utah Jazz in the second round of the 2006–07 playoffs.

Facing the Utah Jazz in the Conference Semifinals, The Warriors dropped two close games at EnergySolutions Arena to open the series. The Warriors had the chance to win both games late. In Game 1, Stephen Jackson missed a wide open 3 pointer that would have put the Warriors ahead with 6 seconds left. In Game 2, the Warriors led by 3 with 15 seconds left, but missed free throws allowed the Jazz to tie the game and eventually win in overtime. The series then shifted to the Oracle Arena, where the Warriors won Game 3 in a convincing blowout. Baron Davis scored 32 points and electrified the crowd with a monster dunk on Jazz forward Andrei Kirilenko late in the fourth quarter, the Warriors won the game 125-105 to avoid going 0-3 in the series. The Warriors went on to lose Game 4 at home, in what was their first loss in Oakland in well over a month. The Jazz closed out the Warriors in Game 5 in Salt Lake City. In the end, the physical play of the Jazz simply wore down the smaller Warriors.

After reestablishing itself as a playoff contender in the past season, the team set high expectations for itself. A much challenging year was foreseeable because the "We Believe" generation of Warriors had already gotten attention of the whole league. Shooting guard Jason Richardson was also traded to the Charlotte Bobcats for rookie Brandan Wright. To make things harder, Stephen Jackson received a 7-game suspension for his firearm incident. The absence of Jackson hurt the Warriors, as the team opened the season with six straight losses. Things immediately turned around with Jackson's return. The Warriors quickly fought back into playoff position. Monta Ellis' rise, Baron Davis' solid injury-free season (21.6 points, 8 assists, 4.6 rebounds per game), and an overall improvement in chemistry, led to the good play of the team after the Jackson's return. It was the first time the Warriors had three players average 20 points per game since the T-M-C era (Davis at 21.7, Ellis at 20.7, Jackson at 20.1).

On January 29, 2008, the Warriors signed Chris Webber for the rest of the season. But the Warriors offense was too fast for Webber and he ended up playing only nine games, averaging 3.9 points and 3.6 rebounds in 14 minutes per game before been waived on March 25, 2008. Webber announced that he is officially retired from basketball due to persistent problems with his surgically repaired knee. On April 14, 2008, the Warriors were officially eliminated from the 2008 Western Conference Playoffs, after losing to the Phoenix Suns 122–116 in Phoenix, despite having 48-34 season. The Warriors sold out nearly every home game during the season averaging 19,631 per game, the highest in team history.

On June 30, 2008, Baron Davis opted out of the last year of his contract with Golden State. Days before July 9, when teams were officially allowed to sign free agents, he had verbally agreed to a five year, $65 million deal with the Los Angeles Clippers.

To replace Davis, Golden State offered Gilbert Arenas and Elton Brand lucrative contracts, but Arenas re-signed with the Washington Wizards and Elton Brand signed with the Philadelphia 76ers. With the 14th pick of the 2008 NBA draft, the Warriors selected and signed Anthony Randolph out of LSU. On July 10, Golden State inked Clipper free agent Corey Maggette to a five year, $50 million deal.

On July 19, 2008, the Warriors signed Ronny Turiaf from the Los Angeles Lakers. Also, on July 22, 2008, the Warriors acquired Marcus Williams from the New Jersey Nets for a future first-round draft pick. On July 24, 2008, the Warriors resigned Monta Ellis to a new 6-year contract worth $66 million, matched the Clippers' July 17, three year, $9 million offer for Kelenna Azubuike, and signed second round draft pick Richard Hendrix. On July 26, 2008, the Warriors also resigned Andris Biedrins with a six-year contract worth nearly $63 million (including bonuses).

On November 21, 2008, the Warriors traded forward Al Harrington to the New York Knicks for guard Jamal Crawford.

On January 23, 2009, after missing 43 games due to injury and suspension, Monta Ellis returned in a loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers. He recorded 20 points, three rebounds, three assists, one steal and one block.

Bob Fitzgerald does play-by-play and Jim Barnett does color commentary on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area. Together, they do over 70 Warriors games a year on CSN. They also host "Roundtable Live", a half-hour pre-game show leading up to the broadcast of select Warriors home games. Bob is in his 11th season broadcasting Warriors games while Jim is in his 23rd season. Matt Steinmetz and Scott Reese are the 3rd and 4th members of the broadcast team and do halftime and post-game analysis, while Jaymee Sire acts as the Warriors insider and sideline reporter.

Tim Roye, who is in his 13th season doing Warrior games, does the play-by-play by himself without a color commentator. Exceptions are when the game is on national television, in which case, Jim Barnett (not doing TV) does color commentary. The games are broadcasted on KNBR-AM. Games at night, 7:30 Pacific Time, are broadcast on 680, while early starts on the East Coast are broadcast on 1050 to avoid interrupting The Razor and Mr. T. After each game, Tim Roye, Bob Fitzgerald, and Jim Barnett discuss the just-finished game and then they preview the upcoming games. Damon Bruce does the pre-game and post-game shows live from Oracle Arena. Major sponsors of the Warriors radio broadcast are Bud Light, Lucky's, and Corona Light.

The team currently trains at Oakland Convention Center, Oakland, CA.

Meschery, Attles, Barry and Thurmond are also members of the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame.

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Los Angeles Clippers

Los Angeles Clippers logo

The Los Angeles Clippers are a professional basketball team based in Los Angeles, California. They play in the National Basketball Association (NBA) and are members of the NBA Western Conference's Pacific Division. The club's home games are played at the Staples Center, which they share with the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Sparks.

The Clippers began in 1970 as the Buffalo Braves. They were one of three franchises that joined the NBA in the 1970–71 season; the others were the Portland Trail Blazers and Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Braves, in their eight seasons in Buffalo, played their home games at the Buffalo Memorial Auditorium, sharing the arena with another new franchise, the Buffalo Sabres of the National Hockey League, who also debuted in 1970. The team's first head coach was Hall of Famer Dolph Schayes, the franchise's first star players were Bob Kauffman and Don May, who were acquired in the 1970 NBA Expansion Draft. However,in the NBA Draft of 1970, Buffalo passed on hometown hero Calvin Murphy,a 5 foot 9 point guard from Niagara University. Murphy would eventually be inducted into the Hall Of Fame. As typical of first-year expansion teams, the Braves finished with a dismal record, going 22-60, seven games ahead of expansion-mate Cleveland, which finished its season at 15-67. Kauffman, who averaged 4.3 points per game the previous year with the Chicago Bulls, led Buffalo in scoring with 20.4 points per game and earned a spot on the 1971 NBA Eastern Conference All-Star team.

The Braves repeated their 22-60 record in the following 1971-72 season, but did make good acquisitions that would make the club better. Buffalo drafted center Elmore Smith from Kentucky State University, and local favorite Randy Smith, from Buffalo State College. Schayes was replaced one game into the season with John McCarthy as the team's head coach. The team did not do much better in the 1972-73 season, as they went 21-61 under new head coach, Dr. Jack Ramsay. The Braves' big move that season was drafting forward/center Bob McAdoo, from North Carolina. The team finally made its first playoff appearance in 1973-74, where they faced the Boston Celtics in the first round and lost in six games.

In 1974-75, Bob McAdoo was awarded the NBA Most Valuable Player Award, averaging 34.5 points, 14.1 rebounds and 2.12 blocks per game, while shooting 51.2 percent from the field and 80.5 percent from the free-throw line. The Braves made a trip to the playoffs in the 1974–75 season and again during the 1975-76 season, which would be one of their last in Buffalo.

During the last four seasons, the Braves played a total of 16 games in Toronto, Ontario at Maple Leaf Gardens in the hopes of expanding their fan base from Western New York to also include the Greater Toronto Area.

By the summer of 1976, the team's founding owner Paul Snyder was doing all he could to sell the team. The June 15, 1976 issue of Buffalo's Courier-Express blasted the headline "Braves Go to Florida, Leaving 'Hockey Town'." Snyder had a handshake deal to sell the team to Mr. and Mrs. Irving Cowan, who would move the Braves to Hollywood, Florida, yet the City of Buffalo filed a $10 million damage suit to block the move. The sale eventually fell through and the Braves and the city signed a new 15 year Memorial Auditorium lease in July with a provision that the lease could be voided if the team did not sell 5,000 season tickets in any season. Later that summer Snyder finally sold 50 percent of the franchise to businessman John Y. Brown, Jr., who had previously owned the Kentucky Colonels of the American Basketball Association. Brown later acquired the remaining half from Snyder sometime in the 1976-77 season. Brown, in turn, sold a percentage of the team to another businessman, Harry T. Mangurian, Jr. who later went on to own a portion of the Boston Celtics in the 1980s. However, a provision in the transaction stipulated that if Brown sold the contract of any Braves player, then the money would go to Snyder and the purchase price would be reduced. This subsequently occurred when the Braves sent McAdoo to the New York Knicks for players and cash midway through the 1976–77 season.

Because of the team's poor play in its final two years (30–52 in 1976–77 and 27–55 in 1977-78), along with rumors of the franchise relocating because of low season ticket sales, John Y. Brown met with the then-owner of the Celtics, Irv Levin and negotiated a deal in which the owners would swap franchises, in which Brown would take control of the Celtics and Levin would get the Braves. Levin was a California businessman, and wanted to own an NBA team in his native state. The deal was brokered by David Stern, the general counsel for the NBA who later became the league's commissioner in 1984. Following what would be the final season in western New York, the NBA owners voted 21-1 to let the Braves relocate. They moved to San Diego, California after the 1977-78 season, and became the San Diego Clippers.

In the team's first season in San Diego, the Clippers posted a winning record, going 43-39, under new head coach Gene Shue. However, that record was not good enough to advance them to the post-season, finishing two games out of the final playoff spot. As it turned out, it would be the Clippers' last winning season for 13 years. It was also in that first season in Southern California that long-time announcer Ralph Lawler began his association with the club. Randy Smith had another solid season, averaging 20.5 points per game, finishing second behind World B. Free, who was acquired in the offseason from the Philadelphia 76ers. Free finished second overall in NBA scoring average, with 28.8 per game, while George Gervin of the San Antonio Spurs had a 29.6 average.

The 1979-80 season was not much better, as the Clippers began to struggle, but not before they brought in San Diego native, center Bill Walton, who was two years removed from an NBA championship with the Trail Blazers. Walton was not much of an impact unfortunately, due to missing 68 games because of foot injuries, which he also suffered in his final years in Portland. San Diego managed to finish with a record of 37-45, despite the fact that many of their key players missed games due to injuries. Free continued his great scoring, again finishing second in league scoring, with 30.2 PPG. Paul Silas replaced Shue the following season, and the Clippers finished with a 36-46 record, once again missing the postseason. Walton missed the entire season once again due to chronic foot injuries. Free was traded to the Golden State Warriors in exchange for guard Phil Smith.

The 1981-82 season brought more changes to the Clipper franchise as Irv Levin sold the team to Los Angeles-area real estate developer and attorney Donald Sterling for $20 million. The Clippers' poor play in their final years in San Diego resulted in poor attendance with the team averaging only 4,500 fans per game. Sterling subsequently lobbied the NBA to relocate the team to his native Los Angeles.

In 1984, the Clippers moved to Los Angeles, California, playing at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena. The Clippers, under head coach Jim Lynam finished with a disappointing 31-51 record.

The Clippers were mired for the next seven seasons, including a 12-70 record in the 1986-87 season, at the time the second-worst single-season record in NBA history. Marques Johnson and guard Norm Nixon were both injured. That season also brought in Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor as the team's vice president and general manager of basketball operations. In the 1989-90 season, Baylor made a trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers that brought Ron Harper in exchange for forward Danny Ferry and swingman Reggie Williams. That move, along with the 1987 NBA Draft of Ken Norman from the University of Illinois, the 1988 draftings of University of Kansas forward Danny Manning and Charles Smith from the University of Pittsburgh (Smith was acquired from Philadelphia in exchange for the draft rights of guard Hersey Hawkins), and the 1990 NBA Draft of Loy Vaught from the University of Michigan, formed a nucleus that made the franchise a playoff contender.

Midway through the 1991-92 season, the Clippers made yet another coaching change. Larry Brown, who was fired by the Spurs weeks before, was hired as the team's head coach in late January 1992. He replaced Mike Schuler, who had led the team to a 22-25 record before his firing. Brown finished the season with a 23-12 mark, for an overall record of 45-37. It was the franchise's first winning season in 13 years. The team also achieved a first that season, for the first time since moving to Los Angeles, the Clippers finished with a better record than the Los Angeles Lakers. The Clippers advanced to the playoffs for the first time in 16 years (since they were Buffalo), but were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by the Utah Jazz, 3–2. Due to the late April 1992 Los Angeles riots, Game 4 of the series was moved to the Anaheim Convention Center, and the Clippers won that game. The Clippers returned to the playoffs again in the 1992-93 season with a 41–41 regular season record, but lost again in five games in the first round, this time to the Houston Rockets.

Brown left the Clippers to join the Indiana Pacers as their head coach, and Bob Weiss was brought in to replace him. That 1993-94 season proved to be one of the worst seasons in Los Angeles NBA history, with both the Clippers and Lakers going a combined 60-104 in the regular season. After one year on the job, Weiss was fired, and veteran head coach Bill Fitch was brought in to guide a roster of young and inexperienced players. The Clippers continued to make frequent roster and coaching changes throughout the next several years and made a playoff appearance in 1997, under Fitch. That team made the playoffs with a losing record (36–46) and were swept in the first round by the eventual Western Conference Champion Utah Jazz, 3 games to none.

From 1994 to 1999, the Clippers played selected home games in the Honda Center (known at the time as the Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim), sharing the venue with the Anaheim Ducks (then the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim) (hockey) and the Splash (soccer). It was speculated that the Clippers might move to play in Anaheim full time.

However, in 1999, the Clippers and Lakers both started to play in the Staples Center. It was in that first season at Staples Center that the Clippers drafted highly-touted, but oft-troubled, star forward Lamar Odom from the University of Rhode Island. The Clippers finished with a dismal 15–67 record. The team hired former All-Star (and Los Angeles native) Dennis Johnson, as an assistant coach. The team also hired Hall of Famer and former Laker great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as an assistant coach, to help tutor second-year center Michael Olowokandi. Johnson remained an assistant coach until the middle of the 2002-03 season, when he took over as head coach. Abdul-Jabbar lasted only one season on the job.

The 2000-01 season brought more changes. Reserve forward Derek Strong was sent to the Orlando Magic in exchange for second-year forward Corey Maggette and the draft rights to guard Keyon Dooling from the University of Missouri. The Clippers' two draft picks that year were childhood friends from Illinois: high schooler Darius Miles from East St. Louis (3rd overall pick) and Quentin Richardson, a guard/forward from DePaul University (18th overall pick). The team became popular among fans with their high-flying style of basketball and the Clippers did improve a bit with a 31-51 record, leading the NBA in bench-scoring with 37 points per game.

To improve upon the previous season, the Clippers acquired high-scoring and rebounding power forward Elton Brand from the Chicago Bulls in exchange for the draft rights to Los Angeles-area native and high schooler Tyson Chandler. At this point of his career, Brand had career averages of 20 points and 10 rebounds per game in just two seasons. Brand's hard work and accomplishments earned him a spot on the 2002 NBA Western Conference All-Star team as an injury replacement for center Shaquille O'Neal of the Lakers. The Clippers contended for most of the season, but won only 3 out of their last 13 games and finished 39-43, 5 games out of the final playoff position.

The 2002 offseason brought more changes, as Miles was traded to the Cavaliers in exchange for point guard Andre Miller, who led the NBA in assists in 2001-02 with 11 per game. Suddenly, with a good point guard in Miller, the playmaker Lamar Odom at small forward, one of the league's best power forwards, Elton Brand, the emerging center Michael Olowokandi, and a very good supporting cast off the bench, the Clippers could actually make a serious run for the playoffs. However, with poor team chemistry and injuries (the Clippers lost 293 man-games to injury), the Clippers finished with a very disappointing 27-55 record. Head coach Alvin Gentry was replaced by Dennis Johnson midway through the 2002-03 season.

In the 2003-04 season, the Clippers lost many of their core players to free agency (Miller, Odom, Olowokandi, and forward Eric Piatkowski--one of the longest-tenured players in Clippers history, while opting to retain Brand and Maggette with long-term contracts. They, along with Richardson, made up one of the NBA best high-scoring trios, with a combined 58 points per game. With new head coach Mike Dunleavy, Sr., the Clippers finished at 28-54, a lot due to inexperience and injuries.

The 2004-05 season saw the Clippers, although also missing the playoffs, finish with a better record than the Lakers for the first time since 1993 and have great hope for the future, with young rising stars such as Brand, Corey Maggette and Shaun Livingston. Bobby Simmons won the 2004-05 NBA Most Improved Player award after averaging 16 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 assists per game. As a result of that, Simmons cashed in on his newfound fame, and signed a 5-year, $47 million deal with the Milwaukee Bucks in July 2005, playing closer to his hometown of Chicago.

To counter Simmons' defection to Milwaukee, the Clippers announced days later that they would sign guard Cuttino Mobley to a contract similar in years (5) but less in money ($42 million) to what Simmons received from the Bucks. Mobley was the first significant free agent signing from outside the organization since Bill Walton in late 1970s. Mobley officially signed his contract on August 3, 2005.

More deals were made, most notably on August 12, 2005, where the Clippers traded guards Marko Jaric (in a sign and trade transaction) and Lionel Chalmers to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for guard Sam Cassell and a lottery-protected 1st round pick in the 2006 NBA Draft. In relation to the lottery-protected pick, in order for the Clippers to acquire the pick, the Timberwolves would have to make the playoffs, or else Minnesota retains its draft pick.

During the summer of 2005, the Clippers announced that they would build a state-of-the-art practice facility (the first NBA practice facility within the four corners of the City of Los Angeles) in the Playa Vista development. Several current players on the Clippers' lineup live in the planned community. According to the Clippers' website, the new facility will open its doors for community programs in the off-season and will be surrounded by other community parks and recreation.

The 2005-06 season was a turning point for the team's overall image; a hot start marked by several wins over top teams caught the attention of many fans. Before the 2005-06 season, the Clippers drafted young Yaroslav Korolev. Elton Brand was chosen as a reserve power forward for the All-Star Game and articles have been run in many sports magazines giving recognition to the much improved team. Just before the NBA trading deadline, the Clippers traded power forward Chris Wilcox to the Seattle SuperSonics for forward Vladimir Radmanović. The Clippers had been lacking consistent outside shooting which is what they were looking for in the trade.

While the Clippers had a few stretches of poor play this season, resulting in some frustrating losses, they nonetheless were able to maintain a solid record, including posting several winning streaks. The Clippers achieved their first winning record in 14 seasons and clinched their first playoff spot since 1997.

By finishing sixth in the Western Conference, with a record of 47-35 (their best finish since the team left Buffalo), the Clippers benefitted from the current NBA playoff format of regular season records taking precedence over winning the division, and secured home court advantage over the Denver Nuggets instead of travelling to Denver for four games as a #6 seed would usually be expected to do. On April 12, 2006 the Clippers were #5 seed and would have played against the Dallas Mavericks in the playoffs, but the Clippers lost 5 of their next 7 games and the Memphis Grizzlies clinched the #5 position instead.

On April 22, 2006, the Clippers won their first NBA playoff game in 13 years. Two days later, they won their second playoff game, going 2-0 against an opponent for the first time in franchise history. Although they won the first 2 games, they lost Game 3, but they won Game 4. On Monday, May 1, 2006 they won Game 5 in Los Angeles and their first playoff series since they moved from Buffalo.

The team faced the Phoenix Suns in the Western Conference semi-finals. After losing in game one (130-123 in Phoenix), the Clippers beat the Suns in an impressive 122–97 victory in Game 2. The series shifted to Staples Center for game 3, and the Suns beat the Clippers, 94–91, as Suns forward Shawn Marion scored 32 points and grabbed a game-high 19 rebounds. In game four, Elton Brand posted 30 points, nine rebounds, and eight assists as the Clippers evened the series on May 14, 2006 with a 114–107 victory over the Suns. In game five, Suns guard/forward Raja Bell made a key 3-pointer with 1.1 seconds left in the first overtime to send the game into a second overtime. Phoenix beat Los Angeles in this double-overtime "thriller" game, 125–118.

The double-overtime loss for the Clippers, to say the least, was devastating, but they bounced back with a convincing, series-saving 118-106 Game 6 win over the Suns. Second-year defensive specialist Quinton Ross had a timely offensive game, scoring a then career-high 18 points. Elton Brand had another excellent contribution, with 30 points (his scoring average in this particular series), 12 rebounds, three assists, and five blocks. Corey Maggette came off the bench to score 25 points, with 7–8 shooting from the field, and 9–9 from the free throw line. Chris Kaman and Sam Cassell each scored 15 points apiece. Marion once again led Phoenix in scoring, with 34 points, with reserve guard Leandro Barbosa scoring 25 points off the bench for the Suns. The Clippers lost the seventh game to Phoenix 127–107.

General Manager (and Basketball Hall of Fame member) Elgin Baylor won the NBA Executive of the Year award for his leading the Clippers to the playoffs.

The 2006 off-season started as the team drafted center Paul Davis from Michigan State University in the second round of the 2006 NBA Draft, as the 34th overall pick. The pick was acquired by the Clippers by way of a 2004 trade with the Charlotte Bobcats for center/forward Melvin Ely. The team also drafted guard Guillermo Diaz from the University of Miami as the 52nd overall pick. While Davis signed with the team in July, Diaz was not signed, and decided to play overseas. However, the team still holds his draft rights. The Clippers did not have a pick in the 2006 draft's first round.

Meanwhile in free agency, on July 13, 2006, the Clippers scored a major coup, by signing forward Tim Thomas away from divisional rival Phoenix, in a four-year, $24 million deal. That was to counter the defection of forward Vladimir Radmanović to the crosshall Lakers in a somewhat similar deal to what Thomas got from the Clippers, except Radmanovic signed for an extra year, but both players would make the same amount of money annually, which would be $6 million.

Also on July 13, guard Sam Cassell (widely credited as the biggest reason for the Clippers' recent success) signed a two-year, $13 million deal. Cassell stated in interviews that once he retires, which would be likely after this contract runs out, he would like to join the Clippers' coaching staff under Mike Dunleavy, Sr. Also, on August 1, the team signed veteran forward/center Aaron Williams (previously with the then-New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets) to an undisclosed deal. Williams played for Dunleavy with the Milwaukee Bucks in the 1994-95 season.

To further their television commitment to their local fans, on August 11, the Clippers and KTLA-TV announced a three-year contract extension, which would increase KTLA's annual 25-game commitment to 30 games a year, plus selected playoff games not airing exclusively on ABC or TNT. Just like during the last two seasons, KTLA will air all of its Staples Center-based Clippers telecasts in high definition. Until recently, they were the only local team to currently air its over-the-air broadcasts in HDTV; KCAL-TV aired its first HDTV Lakers broadcast on February 2, 2007, versus the Indiana Pacers at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Fifteen of the 30 annual KTLA telecasts air on KSWB-TV in San Diego, KTLA's sister station; although KTLA is already available on cable in the San Diego market.

The increased demand for Clippers games has also led to the scheduling of twelve true nationally-televised Clippers games on TNT and ESPN. The team will also have eight additional games on NBA TV; NBA TV normally uses the home team telecast's video feed and announcers, while using its own on-screen score and graphics, therefore, their presentations are not considered true, self-produced national broadcasts, such as the case with ESPN, TNT, and ABC. This brings the total of nationally-televised games to 20, the most ever in franchise history.

On September 7, the Clippers announced a radio broadcast deal with KSPN-AM, the local ESPN Radio-operated outlet.

The team, though, did not fully perform to expectations, in comparison to the previous season. A lot of this has been attributed to lack of a team chemistry and injuries to several key players, including Cassell, Thomas, Livingston, and Kaman. Players such as Luke Jackson, Alvin Williams, and Doug Christie were signed to 10-day contracts to help solidify the team's bench. Jackson and Alvin Williams only lasted through portions of the January schedule and each had limited playing time, while Christie signed with the team on January 31. Christie was not retained, and was suspended on the final day of his second 10-day contract with the team, due to Christie's desire to not return to the team, because of the team's lack of on-court direction. Christie was released from the team on February 21.

In one of most of the devastating injuries this season, guard Shaun Livingston severely dislocated his left knee in which he tore every ligament in his knee. This occurred with 8:10 left in the first quarter of a home game versus the Charlotte Bobcats on February 26, 2007 at Staples Center, as Livingston was driving to the basket, where he missed the lay-up, and came down awkwardly on his left knee. The extent of the injury was so severe, local news outlets such as KCBS-TV/KCAL-TV and KNBC-TV elected not to air the clip of Livingston's injury on their sports reports. According to the team's lead physican, Dr. Tony Daly, Livingston's prognosis for him to return to basketball activity from the point in time of his injury is eight months (which would put it at around the first week of the upcoming season) to a full calendar year. The Clippers, which were expected by many to make the playoffs again after their surprise appearance the season before, finished the season 40–42, 2 games behind the 8th-seeded Warriors. On May 22, the Clippers received the fourteenth draft pick from the NBA lottery. The draft was on June 28 in New York. The Clippers selected Al Thornton a combo forward from Florida State University. The Clippers used their second-round pick to draft a point guard Jared Jordan with their 45th pick.

The 2007-08 season started off on a negative note, with Elton Brand on the disabled list because of a ruptured left Achilles tendon, and Shaun Livingston still out with the injury he sustained from the previous year. Brand missed most of the 2007-08 year, and the Clippers struggled to stay competitive in the Western Conference. Chris Kaman was one of the lone bright spots for the Clippers, and took advantage of a depleted roster by averaging 15.7 points and 12.7 rebounds per game throughout the season, but was limited to playing 56 games due to various injuries. The Clippers ended the season with a record of 23–59, 12th in the Western Conference and last in the Pacific Division.

The Clippers saw the departure of several players, including Elton Brand and Corey Maggette, and acquisitions of ten players either by draft, free agency or trades.

On July 1, 2008, Baron Davis, a Los Angeles native and formerly of the Golden State Warriors, verbally agreed to and signed (on July 10) a five-year contract with the Clippers, worth an estimated $65 million.

After a disappointing 2007–08 season, the Clippers obtained the 7th pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, and selected Eric Gordon out of Indiana University. The team also selected DeAndre Jordan from Texas A&M University in the second round (35th overall pick). Another second-round pick, Mike Taylor from the NBA D-League's Idaho Stampede and Iowa State University (55th overall pick), was acquired from the Portland Trail Blazers in exchange for a future second-round pick. Gordon officially signed with the team on July 7, while Jordan and Taylor both signed on July 15.

Also on July 15, the Clippers acquired forward–center Marcus Camby from the Denver Nuggets in return for a $10 million trade exception and the choice to exchange second round picks with the Clippers in 2010. On July 23, the Clippers also acquired guard Jason Hart from the Utah Jazz in exchange for guard Brevin Knight. On July 28, the Clippers signed guard Ricky Davis to a one-year deal, with a player option for a second year . The Clippers continued their active offseason with signing reserve forward–center (and one-time Clipper) Brian Skinner on July 31, and traded for reserve forward Steve Novak on August 6 for future second-round pick considerations, in a deal similar to the Camby trade.

On August 7, the team signed guard Jason Williams from the Miami Heat to a one-year deal.

Recently, the Los Angeles Clippers re-signed forward Paul Davis. The Clippers signed three Davis' (Baron, Ricky, and Paul) in their "rebuilding offseason" in which they obtained key players such as Baron Davis, Marcus Camby, Ricky Davis, and Jason Williams. However, just prior to the start of training camp, Williams announced his retirement on September 26.

On October 7, according to reports from various sources including the Los Angeles Times, Orange County Register, and the team's own web site (Clippers.com), Elgin Baylor ended his 22-year reign as vice president and general manager of basketball operations. It was one of the longest such tenures in professional sports history. The Clippers have indicated that Baylor had retired from his post, and as a result, head coach Mike Dunleavy, Sr. will also assume the role as general manager, while director of player personnel Neil Oshley is promoted to assistant general manager.

In many of those same reports, including a related article in the October 8 edition of the Times, it was also indicated that Baylor had either been fired, resigned, or retired, depending on the source. According to similar reports, Baylor had been offered a different position in the organization, with the same salary, but with little to none decision-making power; Baylor refused. In fact, when pressed about his stauts with the franchise, Baylor had been advised by his attorneys not to say anything, indicating that the team and Baylor are in negotiations to work out a settlement agreement based on his departure. According to the above-mentioned article, Baylor had been working without a formal contract since the early 1990s.

On November 21, the Clippers and New York Knicks made a trade, in which Los Angeles sends forward Tim Thomas and guard Cuttino Mobley to New York, in exchange for forward Zach Randolph and reserve guard Mardy Collins. With the trade of Mobley, only one member of their 2005-06 playoff team remains on the roster--starting center Chris Kaman. On December 11, Mobley announced his retirement due to the heart condition known as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Mobley has yet to play a game for the New York Knicks after the trade.

McAdoo and Randy Smith (G, 1972-79, 1983-84) are also members of the Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame. Walton, a native of the San Diego area, is also a member of the San Diego Hall of Champions.

On March 1, 2006 the Clippers held the New Orleans Hornets to an NBA record low 16 points in the second half of play. Since the introduction of the shot clock, no point total for a half had been lower than 19. Coincidentally, one of three teams to have such a low point total in a half was the Clippers.

On March 23, 2007 the Utah Jazz (44-23 at the time) lost to the Clippers (32-36 coming into the match) 104-72 in Los Angeles. That was the largest margin of defeat by an NBA team at least 20 games over .500 to a team under .500 since the Houston Rockets lost in Orlando Magic 114-82 on March 30, 1991.

The Clippers are currently the oldest NBA team to never appear in the NBA Finals.

The Clippers are one of three teams (along with the Memphis Grizzlies and the Charlotte Bobcats) to have never won an NBA Championship, Conference Championship, or a Division Championship in their franchise's history.

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Baron Davis

Baron watch.jpg

Baron Walter Louis Davis (born April 13, 1979) is an American professional basketball player who currently plays for the Los Angeles Clippers of the NBA. Davis became a star at Crossroads School and UCLA. Davis was drafted by the Charlotte Hornets as the third pick in the 1999 NBA Draft.

Davis was born in Los Angeles, California. His grandmother and guardian, Lela Nicholson, was instrumental in pushing him to play basketball. With her encouragement, he eventually earned a basketball scholarship to play at Crossroads School, a prestigious private school in Santa Monica, California.

As a senior at Crossroads, Davis led his team to the Championship of The Beach Ball Classic tournament in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina over perennial prep powerhouse Christ The King Regional High School (Queens, New York), while earning MVP honors and a spot on the All-Tournament team along with future St. John's standout Erick Barkley at that prestigious event. That year, Davis was also named Gatorade National Player of the Year and a Parade All-American. He was also selected to play in the prestigious McDonald's All-American High School Basketball Game in Colorado Springs, Colorado in 1997, playing with future NBA players Elton Brand, Shane Battier, Larry Hughes and Ron Artest, and winning the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest despite being the smallest man in the competition at 6'2".

After a highly contested recruiting battle that saw Kansas, Georgia Tech, Duke, and UCLA in hot pursuit for his services, Davis selected UCLA as his school of choice, so that he could play in front of his family and friends. During this time, Davis was involved in a minor scandal pertaining to his driving a 1991 Chevy Blazer that was a gift from his sister, then a UCLA employee. The car was sold to her by a member of Jim Harrick's family. At the time, Harrick was the UCLA men's basketball coach, presenting both a conflict of interest and a potential recruiting violation, since rumor had it that the car was purchased below market value. The incident was cleared up when it was discovered that Davis' sister had, in fact, bought the car at the listed blue-book price. Davis then enrolled at UCLA in 1997 without problem. In 1998, Davis was named the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year and made the All-American Third Team by his sophomore year in 1999.

In Davis' two years at UCLA, he averaged 13.6 points and 5.1 assists for the Bruins. While coming down from a dunk during an NCAA Tournament game his freshman year, he injured his knee and tore his Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). Surprisingly, though, he made a full recovery the next season and seemed to have regained nearly all of the speed, quickness, and explosiveness he had before the injury while doing enough on the basketball court to warrant his declaring for the 1999 NBA Draft after his sophomore campaign.

Davis was the third pick in the 1999 NBA Draft by the Charlotte Hornets. In his NBA debut, a 100-86 win over the Orlando Magic, Davis scored nine points, and added five rebounds, two assists and two steals. In Davis' first year, he backed up Eddie Jones and David Wesley, but by Davis' second year he started all 82 games for the Hornets. Davis would lead Charlotte to the second round of the playoffs in back-to-back years, the first being a sweep of the Miami Heat in the 2001 NBA Playoffs. The next season, Davis started all 82 games again while averaging 18 points a game and 8.5 assists per game. He was also selected as a injury replacement for Vince Carter in the 2002 NBA All-Star Game. In the summer of 2002 the Charlotte Hornets moved from Charlotte, North Carolina to New Orleans, Louisiana. Davis would lead the Hornets back to the playoffs, but the next two years were first round exits. Injuries would plague Davis for much of his tenure in New Orleans.

He played for the US national team in the 2002 FIBA World Championship.

On February 24, 2005, Davis was traded from the Hornets to the Golden State Warriors for guard Speedy Claxton and veteran forward Dale Davis after tension with the Hornets coaching staff and several nagging injuries. The move created one of the more potent backcourts in the NBA with Davis and star guard Jason Richardson. It also saw Davis' return to California where he craved to return to since his college days in UCLA.

After two seasons in which the Warriors underachieved under coach Mike Montgomery, the Warriors hired former coach Don Nelson for the 2006-2007 season. His high scoring offensive system was designed to fit Davis's uptempo style. Although Davis suffered through knee soreness and underwent surgery during the season, he still led the Warriors to their first playoffs since 1994. The Warriors swept the regular season series against the Mavericks 3-0 giving them an advantage and won the series against the top seeded Dallas Mavericks 4-2, making them the 1st No. 8 seed to beat a No.1 seed since the NBA changed the 1st round from a 5-game series to a 7-game series. It was numerically the largest upset in the history of the NBA playoffs, with the 67-15 Mavericks having a record of 25 games better than the 42-40 Warriors. Davis averaged 25 points in the series. In the following series, against the Utah Jazz, the Warriors' run ended in 5 games.

Davis's performance in the 2007 NBA Playoffs drew praise from basketball analysts and fans alike, with a few claiming Davis to be the best player in the post-season. Davis' playoff highlights included numerous acrobatic layups, a half-court three-pointer at the buzzer, and a memorable dunk over Andrei Kirilenko. The Jazz eliminated the undersized Warriors 4 games to 1. Davis averaged 25.3 points, 6.5 assists, 2.9 steals, and 4.5 rebounds per game in the 2007 Playoffs.

After the 2007-08 season, in which Davis failed to guide the Warriors to the playoffs, Davis's agent Todd Ramasar claimed that Davis might opt out of his contract with the Warriors, which would have paid him $17.8 million, to pursue other options. This was seen as evidence of a rift between Davis and coach Don Nelson growing after Nelson pulled Davis from a playoff elimination game against the Phoenix Suns due to Davis's poor playing and shooting (2-13 in 17 minutes; the Warriors were down 14 points when Davis left the game, losing by 6). On June 30, 2008, Davis opted out of his contract with the Golden State Warriors.

On July 1, 2008 Davis verbally agreed to a 5-year, $65 million dollar deal to play for the Los Angeles Clippers, and officially signed with the Clippers on July 10, 2008. Although Davis committed to joining the Clippers with the intention of playing with Elton Brand (who had opted out of his contract but was expected to re-sign with the Clippers but later signed with the Philadelphia 76ers) Davis still signed and said that Brand's departure had no impact on his decision to come to Los Angeles.

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Source : Wikipedia