Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Donyell Marshall is Homeward Bound

While basketball, specifically the "professional" variety, gets very little attention on this blog I wanted take some space to talk about Donyell Marshall's homecoming of sorts. Marshall, a Reading High School graduate, is set to sign a 1-year deal worth $1.26 million (10-year veteran's minimum) with the Philadelphia 76ers. After graduating from Reading High, he attended the University of Connecticut and was named the unanimous Big East Player of the Year following the 1993-1994 season. He left college early and entered the 1994 NBA Draft and was selected 4th overall by the Minnesota Timberwolves. However 40 games into his rookie seasons the Timberwolves shipped him off to the Golden State Warriors, where he would play for 5.5 seasons. He played 2 seasons with the Utah Jazz, and 1.5 with both the Chicago Bulls and Toronto Raptors. He started the 2007-2008 season in Cleveland, where he signed prior to the 2005-2006 season, but was eventually traded to the now defunct Seattle SuperSonics. Marshall was released by the displaced SuperSonics franchise, now located in Oklahoma City, this summer.

For his career, Marshall has played in 932 games with 422 starts averaging 26.7 minutes/game along with 11.4 points/game, 1.4 assists/game, and 6.8 rebounds/game. Marshall never developed into the player scouts thought he would be but he can provide some push from the bench. This could be Marshall's last year in the NBA and it is fitting taht he got to end it for the team closest to his home town. Good luck in Philly, Donyell.

I got to meet Donyell Marshall in the summer of 1994, a few weeks prior to the NBA Draft. The local newspapers and broadcasts were hyping him for a while and my father and I happened to run into him at Red Caboose Park in West Lawn, PA while attending some summer outdoor basketball league games. Being only 9 at the time I was a bit scared to ask for his autograph but I finally did and have the mint, signe basketball at home to this day.

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