Miami Heat Player Countdown: #32-31

Today, we look back at small forward Caron Butler and forward Clarence Weatherspoon.

32. Caron Butler

Caron Butler is a 6'7" small forward from Racine, WI. Born on March 13th, 1980, he played high school ball at Maine Central Institute, and joined the University of Connecticut Huskies in college. He played two seasons there, averaging 18 points with 7.6 rebounds and three assists. The Heat picked him in the first round of the 2002 NBA Draft, with the 10th overall pick.

As a rookie, Butler shot 41.6% from the floor in 36.6 minutes per game. He shot 31.8% from three point range, and scored 15.4 points (team second), 5.1 rebounds (team third), 2.7 assists (team fifth), and a team leading 1.8 steals per appearance. He finished in double figures 65 times with three double doubles and helped the Heat to a 24-54 record for games in which he appeared. On January 8th, in an 86-76 loss to the Denver Nuggets, he scored 20 points with seven steals and three assists. He scored 20 points with nine rebounds and five assists in a 93-83 win against the Washington Wizards on March 2nd. In a 111-84 Heat win over the Minnesota TimberWolves on March 28th, he scored a season high 35 points on 15-of-22 shooting with seven assists, four steals, three rebounds and two blocks. Miami went 25-57 on the season, placing 13th in the Eastern Conference.

In 2003-04, Butler started 56 times out of his 68 total games played. He scored 9.2 points (team fourth) on 38% shooting with 4.8 boards (team fifth), 1.9 assists (team fourth), and 1.1 steals (team fourth) per game. His three point percentage dropped to 23.8%. He notched five double doubles, and scored 10 or more points 33 times. Miai went 39-29 in his appearances, and 42-40 overall. In a 105-96 win over the Chicago Bulls on March 29th, he scored a season high 30 points with 13 rebounds, five assists, three steals and two blocks in 40 minutes. He scored 19 points with 14 rebounds and four dimes on April 3rd, in another win over the Bulls, 97-83. Miami earned the fourth seed. After eliminating the New Orleans Hornets in seven games in the first round, they lost to the Indiana Pacers in six. Butler played in all 13 Miami contests, raising his scoring average to 12.8 with 8.5 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 1.2 steals. He scored over 20 points three times, including the Heat's 77-71 loss to the Hornets in game three on April 24th, when he scored 24 points with 15 boards.

Caron Butler Highlights (via mjfadaway23)


After the season, Butler was traded with Brian Grant, Lamar Odom, and two draft picks (Jordan Farmar and Renaldas
Seibutis) to the Los Angeles Lakers for Shaquille O'Neal. After 77 games with the Lakers in 2004-05, he joined the Washington Wizards (310 games), making two all-star games. Later on, he played with the Dallas Mavericks (58 games) and the Los Angeles Clippers (141 games). He is slated to play this season with the Phoenix Suns.

All-Time HEATline: Two seasons, 146 games, 33.5 minutes, 12.5 points, 5.0 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 1.5 steals, 0.3 blocks, 13.5 PER, 8.6 win shares.

31. Clarence Weatherspoon

Clarence Weatherspoon was a 6'6" forward from Crawford, MS. After attending Motley High in Columbus, MS, he played
collegiately with the University of Southern Mississippi for four seasons. He averaged 18.2 points with 11.3 rebounds. As a senior he brought his scoring average up to 22.3. The Philadelphia 76ers secured him in the first round of the 1992 draft with the ninth overall pick.

Weatherspoon played five and a half seasons with the 76ers (448 games). He closed out the 1997-98 season with the
Golden State Warriors (31 games). On January 24th, 1999, he signed a free agent contract to come to Miami.

In 1998-99, Weatherspoon started in three of his 49 total appearances at small forward. He scored 8.1 points on 53.4% shooting, grabbing five rebounds (team fourth) in 21.2 minutes per game. He finished in double figures 16 times on the season. On February 9th in a 108-101 loss to the Boston Celtics, he scored 13 points with 10 rebounds in 20 minutes off the bench. On March 11th, he racked up a season high 22 points on nine-of-10 shooting with five rebounds in an 83-73 win over the Toronto Raptors. The Heat picked up the top seed with a lockout-shortened 33-17 record. They were surprised by the eighth seeded New York Knicks in the first round of the postseason, losing the series three-games-to-two. Weatherspoon played 22 minutes per game, totaling 29 points and 21 rebounds.


1999-00 would see Weatherspoon appear 76 times off the bench, starting twice at power forward. He shot 51.3% overall playing 20.7 minutes per game with 7.2 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 1.2 assists. He had seven double doubles and racked up double digit points on 23 occasions. In the season opener on November 2nd, he scored 15 points with 15 rebounds and two blocks in a win over the Detroit Pistons, 128-122 in two overtimes. In an 87-82 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on February 25th, he scored 13 points with a season high 16 rebounds and two assists. The Heat posted a 52-30 record, winning the Atlantic Division and earning the second seed. After Miami swept the Pistons in three games to open the playoffs, they were knocked out in seven by the Knicks. Weatherspoon played in all 10 games, scoring a total of 64 points with 41 rebounds in 17 minutes per game.

During the 2000 offseason, the Heat traded Weatherspoon away in a three team deal that also saw Miami give up Chris Gatling and a draft pick (Brandan Haywood) and gain Brian Grant. Weatherspoon landed with the Cavs (82 games), also later playing with the Knicks (150 games) and the Houston Rockets (77 games).

All-Time HEATline:
Two seasons, 127 games, 20.9 minutes, 7.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 0.6 steals, 0.5 blocks,
16.1 PER, 9.5 win shares.

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