In the first of many articles to come in this exclusive series, today we look back at five Heat players you may remember (or maybe not). Meet again Earl Barron, Manute Bol, Stacey King, Ernest Brown and Robert Hite.
199 players have come and played then gone (or stayed) over the 25-year history of the Miami Heat. Today, I'll begin outlining the careers of every player to ever have suited up for the three-time World Champion Miami Heat. They are ranked by "point-shares," an advanced metric available at www.basketball-reference.com. Without further adieu, let's get this thing started!
Earl Barron is a 7' center from Clarksdale, MS. Born on August 14, 1981, the University of Memphis graduate signed his first contract with the Orlando Magic in 2004, but failed to get into a live game. He would sign a three-year, $1.8 million contract with the Heat as a free agent on October 8th, 2005.
Barron only played in eight games that season, never appearing for more than three minutes until the final two games of the season, both losses. As the Heat lost to the Atlanta Hawks, 103-100 on April 18th, Barron played 15 minutes, scoring six points with three rebounds and five personal fouls. Miami went 52-30, going on to win their first NBA title, but Barron did not play.
In 2006-07, Barron averaged two points and two rebounds in eight minutes per contest, appearing 28 times. His best effort of the season came on November 18th, when he scored 15 points on six-of-nine shooting along with six rebounds in a 106-86 loss to the San Antonio Spurs. The team won the division with a 44-38 record, but we're swept in four games by the Chicago Bulls to open the playoffs.
Barron started 15 games in 2007-08, appearing in 46 overall. He averaged seven points and four rebounds in 19 minutes per game. He would score in double figures 16 times, and broke 20 points twice. On April 11th, he threw in a career high 22 by sinking nine-of-13 from the field in a 96-91 loss to the slightly less bad Memphis Grizzlies. Miami's 15-67 record was the worst in the league.
In 2008-09, Barron was not a part of any NBA roster, appearing instead with the NBA D-League Los Angeles D-fenders. He would go on to play in limited roles with the New York Knicks (seven games, 12 PPG), the Phoenix Suns (12 games), the Milwaukee Bucks (seven games), the Portland Trail Blazers (two games), the Golden State Warriors (two games), and the Washington Wizards (11 games) before returning to the Knicks for one monster game last season (11 points, 18 rebounds in 37 minutes). He is still on the Knicks roster.
All-Time Statline: Three seasons, 82 games, 13.9 minutes, 4.9 points, 3.0 rebounds, 0.4 assists, 0.3 steals, 0.1 blocks, -0.9 win shares.
198. Manute Bol
Manute Bol was a 7'7" center from Gogrial, South Sudan. He was born on October 16th, 1962, and joined the NBA as the second round draft pick of the Washington Bullets in 1985, 31st overall.
Bol played for three seasons in our nation's capital, leading the league in blocks as a rookie with 397. He later joined the Warriors for two seasons, again leading the league in blocks in 1988-89, with 345. He also worked on his improbable long game, hitting 20-of-91 three-point attempts. He then joined the Philadelphia 76ers
for three seasons.
Just prior to the 1993-94 season, Bol signed on as a free agent with Miami for $650,000. He appeared in a total of eight games for the Heat, scoring two points on one-of-12 shooting in 61 minutes. He also blocked six shots and made 11 rebounds. Miami waived him in January. He later rejoined each of his first three teams for short stints, with the Bullets for two games, the 76ers for four, then the Warrior for five games in the 1994-95 season.
Bol followed up his basketball career as an activist and a humanitarian. He earned an official "salute" from the US Senate just days before his untimely demise, of acute kidney failure, on June 19, 2010.
All-time Statline: One season, eight games, 7.6 minutes, 0.3 points, 1.4 rebounds, 0.0 assists, 0.0 steals, 0.8 blocks, -0.3 win shares.
197. Stacey King
Stacey King was a 6'11" power forward from Lawton, OK. Born on January 29th, 1967, the big left-hander played four seasons with the Oklahoma Sooners. He was drafted by the Chicago Bulls in the first round of the 1989 draft, sixth overall.
King played for four and a half seasons in Chicago, averaging seven points and three rebounds per contest over 344 games. He was a member of three of Chicago's championship teams. In February, 1994, the Bulls sent him to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Luc Longley and a second round pick. Over parts of two seasons in the twin cities, he averaged seven points and four rebounds per game over 68 contests. The Wolves placed him on waivers after the 1994-95 season.
Prior to 1995-96, the Heat signed him as a free agent for $600,000. He appeared in 15 games for Miami, collecting more personal fouls (39) than points (38). He also grabbed 23 rebounds and collected seven steals (to 23 turnovers). On December 23rd, he put up his best numbers while a member of the Heat, scoring eight points on four-of-seven shooting with two rebounds in an 87-75 loss to the Charlotte Hornets. The Heat waived him after the season.
King split the 1996-97 season between the Boston Celtics (five games) and the Dallas Mavericks (six games). He later went into broadcasting, and is currently the Bulls lead color commentator on WGN. His popular catchphrases have allowed him to open up a popular clothing line (21King).
All-Time Statline: One season, 15 games, 10.4 minutes, 2.5 points, 1.5 rebounds, 0.1 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.1 blocks, -0.3 win shares.
196. Ernest Brown
Ernest Brown is a 7' center from Bronx, NY, and was born on May 17th, 1979. The Indian Hills Community College graduate was selected by the Heat in the second round of the 2000 draft, with the 52nd overall pick. Over the course of his first and only season as a member of the Heat (signed for $332,817), he appeared in three games, playing 21 minutes. Most of his impact came in one game, a 94-67 loss to Atlanta. He played 12 minutes, scoring three points on one-of-five shooting with four rebounds.
Brown went on to play parts of three seasons in the NBA D-League before appearing in several foreign leagues after the end of his NBA career.
All-Time Statline: One season, three games, 7.0 minutes, 1.0 points, 2.0 rebounds, 0.0 assists, 0.0 steals, 0.3 blocks, -0.2 win shares.
Robert Hite is a 6'2" shooting guard from Cincinnati, OH. Born on January 12th, 1984, the University of Miami alum signed a free agent contract with Miami prior to the 2006-07 season for $412,718.
Hite averaged four points and a rebound for Miami over his 12 career appearances. He averaged 11 minutes per appearance. He had the most impact on January 3rd, in a 110-95 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers, scoring 16 points on six-of-14 shooting with three boards and a steal for the Heat. Miami would end up waiving him on February 1st after being charged with Driving Under the Influence after a Dwyane Wade birthday party. Although the charge ultimately proved unfounded, Hite has yet to appear in an NBA game since then.
Hite later signed on with the New Jersey Nets, failing to make the roster out of training camp in 2007-08. After knocking around in European and Israeli basketball leagues for five years, he played 26 games last season with the the NBA D-League Iowa Energy Stats.
All-Time Statline: One season, 12 games, 11.3 minutes, 4.3 points, 1.3 rebounds, 0.7 assists, 0.3 steals, 0.2 blocks, -0.2 win shares.
If you like what's happening here on HHH, make sure to check back here as we track the next five, on Sunday, featuring a guy they called "Smush."