It’s Monday so I’m going to start things off with a bang to try and help you get over your Sunday Funday hangover. I present to you not only a top 10 jersey, but possibly a top 3 jersey ever. Like seeing a Yeti or Bigfoot I’ve only heard of tales of this existing but was never able to confirm it…until now. Behold a Shawn Respert Dallas Mavericks jersey!
Shawn Respert…there are few players out there that have performed so poorly in the NBA yet are thought of/remembered as highly as him. Respert was definitely one of my favorite college players ever (along with Terry Dehere) despite the fact that he played for a Michigan State team that I could relatively care less about. Respert averaged 20+ ppg each of his last three seasons at State including 24.3 and 25.6 ppg his junior and senior seasons. He was drafted 8th overall by the Portland Trailblazers and was promptly traded to the Milwaukee Bucks for “The Shaq of the MAC” Gary Trent and a first round pick (which was Paul Grant – who became a scrub). While in Milwaukee he started no games and averaged a pedestrian 4.9 ppg while shooting only 38% from the floor. A little over a year later and he continued to play poorly and was traded to Toronto Raptors for Acie Earl. His poor play continued and eventually he landed two 10 day contracts with the Dallas Mavericks. That’s what makes this jersey so damn impressive. Respert only played 10 games there, which was the shortest of any of his four stops in the NBA. He actually saw his best success with the Mavericks as he averaged a career high 21 mpg and 8.2 ppg. In case you are wondering, here’s a few of the gems that were also on that 97-98′ Mavericks team: Shawn Bradley, Khalid Reeves, Samaki Walker, and second year vet Kurt Thomas.
It wasn’t until 2005 when Respert was long gone from the NBA that he made it known that after his rookie season he was diagnosed with stomach cancer but he let very few people know (he didn’t even tell his girlfriend and family). He didn’t tell people because he “didn’t want to make an excuse, even if it was cancer”. WOW! That makes me like Respert even more. Talk about having pride in yourself and what you do. 99.99% of people would have said “I’ve got cancer, that’s why my numbers are down” but not Respert. He wanted to try and fight through it and do anything he could to try and succeed. The sports world would be better if we had 100 more Shawn Respert’s instead of a single Barry Bonds/Terrell Owens/Milton Bradley.
Shout out to my boy Marty D for yet another stellar find. See a Hoopster rocking a random jersey? Sent it to us and we’ll post it and give you a shout out!
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