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Shawn Marion Retires

As he announced earlier in the year, Shawn Marion followed through on his retirement plans following the Cleveland Cavaliers loss in the NBA Finals to the Golden State Warriors.  Marion, who is 37, is coming off career lows in the NBA, but did have a productive sixteen year career in the Association. 

Marion was drafted ninth overall by the Phoenix Suns in 1999 out of UNLV and was instantly dubbed the “Matrix”.  The versatile forward would have his best seasons with Phoenix, going to four All Star Games and being named to the All NBA Third Team twice.  Following a very productive nine year run with the Suns, he would be traded to the Miami Heat, and later go the Raptors, but his crowning accomplishment would come with his fourth team, the Dallas Mavericks.

While Marion was in Dallas, he was a member of the surprising championship team of 2011 that defeated the first attempt of Miami’s “Big Three” of LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh.  Marion was no longer an All Star, but still a productive member of the team and he joined Cleveland last season with the hope of chasing another.

Marion is an interesting candidate for the Basketball Hall of Fame as is one of the few players who has 17,000 career Points, 10,000 career Rebounds, 1,500 Steals and 1,000 career Blocks.  He retires with a PER of 18.8 and 15.2 Points per Game, very good numbers, but this is a player that was never considered the best at his position or even on his own team. 

Saying all of that, we here at will slot Marion at a high number once he is on the list in five years.

7. Mark Aguirre

Mark Aguirre was a star at the University of DePaul where he led the Demons to a final four and was a 2 time All-American.  Drafted number one overall by the Dallas Mavericks, Aguirre quickly became the face of the Mavs.  Aguirre proved to be a great scorer and the Mavericks became title contenders throughout the next several years though they could not get past the mighty Lakers. Traded midway through the 88-89 season to the Pistons for Adrian Dantley, Aguirre was reunited with childhood friend Isaiah Thomas and together they led the Pistons to two titles.  Aguirre averaged exactly 20 points a game over his 14 year career and will be remembered for his great ability to post up and score from the small forward position.

29. Rolando Blackman

Rolando Blackman is one of the great outside shooters in the history of the league.  A great career at Kansas State led to him being taken 9th overall by the Mavericks in 1981 and his 17,000 career points and an 18 point per game average showed that same ability in the pro ranks.  What is lost is how much of a great team player Rolando was.  He teamed with Mark Aguirre and Derek Harper to turn Dallas into a basketball contender in the 80s.  His two free throws after the buzzer in the 1986 All-Star game while all of the players from both teams watched and laughed was a signature moment for one of the most underrated players of the 80s. 

62. Michael Finley

A very solid player throughout his career, Michael Finley was capable of brilliant flashes of offense in the open court, and a stronger commitment to defense in his later campaigns. In his prime, Finley was a two time All Star and an electric player to watch. He was a workhorse on good Dallas Maverick teams (three times he led the NBA in minutes played) and was part of the ‘Run and Gun’ that they executed so well. Like so many of these players though, he found his championship ring in a supporting role where he won with San Antonio in 2007 coming off the bench.

84. Dale Ellis

Dale Ellis was a great shooter, although we don’t think the Basketball Hall of Fame likes shooters.  His 19,000 career points and sixth position all time in three pointers easily gets him on this list.  Quite simply, he was a great shooter at Tennessee, he was a great shooter in Milwaukee and he was a great shooter in Seattle.  Oh and did we mention that he played forever?

97. Derek Harper

Derek Harper was the partner in crime and backcourt mate of Rolando Blackman for almost a decade in Dallas.  Ironically the closest they ever came to a title is when they were both traded to the Knicks and they came within one game of winning the championship in 1994.  Harper was one of the best all around point guards of his era as he was a great defender who had size and quickness and could both score and distribute.  Harper is widely regarded as one of the best players to never make an All-Star game and when he retired he was 11th in steals and 17th in assists in NBA history.  1,200 regular season games and over 16,000 points don’t hurt his argument either.  Is a solid and consistent career with good overall stats enough to get him in?
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