134. John Wallace
Miami Heat Player Countdown: #134-130
Tune in today for Chapter 14 of 66 toward the top of the Miami Heat dogpile. Can you guess who's in the top 10? Not these guys - today, we check out Clinton Wheeler, Yakhouba Diawara, Gary Grant, John Wallace, and Blue Edwards.
John Wallace was a 6'8" small forward from Rochester, NY. Born on February 9th, 1974, he started for four seasons with the Orangemen of Syracuse, averaging 17 points, eight rebounds and two assists in 33 minutes per appearance. The New York Knicks selected him in the first round of the 1996 draft with the 18th overall pick. He played 68 games that season, averaging five points and two rebounds over 12 minutes per game.
Wallace played two seasons with the Toronto Raptors, leading the NBA with 82 appearances in 1997-98. He played with the Knicks again in 1999-00 (60 games), the Detroit Pistons in 2000-01 (40 games), and the Phoenix Suns in 2001-02 (46 games). He would spend 2002-03 with Panionios, a Grecian team.
Wallace made his way back to the states for the 2003-04 season, signing with Miami in August for $813,679. He would play 10 minutes per appearance over 37 games, scoring 4.3 points per game while hitting 42% of his field goal attempts. On November 3rd, he scored a season high 19 points on eight-of-13 shooting, playing 23 minutes of a 103-93 loss to the Dallas Mavericks.
All-Time HEATline: One season, 37 games, 9.9 minutes, 4.3 points, 1.6 rebounds, 0.4 assists, 0.1 steals, 0.2 blocks, 11.6 PER, 0.3 win shares.
Yakhouba Diawara is a 6'7" shooting guard and small forward from Paris, France. Born on August 29th, 1982, the import spent two seasons at the University of Pepperdine before joining Climamio Bologna in France for the 2005-06 season. The Denver Nuggets signed him as a free agent during 2006's offseason.
Diawara played two seasons in Denver, averaging four points and two rebounds in 15 minutes per game. In August 2008, the Heat inked him to a two-year/$1,820,000 contract. 2008-09 would see him shoot 35% from the field, scoring three and a half points per game in 13.5 minutes per appearance. On January 3rd, he came off the bench to play 35 minutes, shooting five-of-eight three-pointers and adding five rebounds in a 101-96 win over the New Jersey Nets. He later scored two points with five rebounds in five playoff appearances against the Atlanta Hawks (Miami lost three games to two).
Diawara's contribution in 2009-10 proved less than memorable for Miami. In six appearances, he scored five points with four rebounds and three assists, with eight personal fouls. He has played the last three seasons with various Italian clubs, and is currently signed with Reyer Venezia Mestre.
All-Time HEATline: Two seasons, 69 games, 13.0 minutes, 3.2 points, 1.2 rebounds, 0.4 assists, 0.2 steals, 0.1 blocks, 5.8 PER, 0.4 win shares.
Blue Edwards was a 6'4" small forward from Washington D.C. Born on Halloween, 1965, he averaged 27 points per game his senior year with the Eastern Carolina Pirates. The Utah Jazz picked him in the first round, 21st overall in the 1989 draft.
Edwards spent 225 games over three seasons with the Jazz. He joined the Milwaukee Bucks for two seasons starting in 1992-93. He played every game during his time in Milwaukee, averaging career highs with 16.9 points and 4.7 rebounds his first season. After splitting 1994-95 between the Boston Celtics (31 games) and the Jazz (36), he joined the Vancouver Grizzlies for three seasons.
Edwards signed with the Heat on February 14, 1999 for two-years and $1,360,000. He played in 24 games through the remainder of the 1998-99 season, playing 12 minutes and scoring three points per appearance. On February 24th, he scored 12 points on four-of-seven shooting with three rebounds and four assists, playing 31 minutes of a 91-83 win over the Charlotte Hornets. He played at least two seasons in Greece after his short stay in Miami came to an end.
All-Time HEATline: One season, 24 games, 11.8 minutes, 3.2 points, 1.4 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 0.7 steals, 0.2 blocks, 12.2 PER, 0.4 win shares.
Gary Grant, sometimes known as "The General," was a 6'3" point guard from Canton, OH. Born April 21st, 1965, the University of Michigan four year letterman averaged 22 points, four rebounds and six assists through his last two seasons on the floor. He was selected by the Seattle SuperSonics in the first round of the 1988 draft, with the 15th overall pick. Seattle traded him to the Los Angeles Clippers later that day.
Grant played 446 games (seventh in team history) over seven seasons with the Clippers, starting 228 of them. He averaged nine points and six assists during his time there, ranking amongst the NBA's leaders in assists per game in 1989-90 with 10.0 (fifth) and in 1990-91 with 8.6 (NBA eighth). Los Angeles released him in the summertime of 1995, when he was signed soon thereafter by the New York Knicks. He spent 47 games over one season with New York, averaging five points and two assists in 12 minutes per contest.
The Heat signed Grant to a contract for $500,000 for the 1996-97 campaign. He played around 13 minutes per game, shooting 35.5% from the field. On November 8th, in a 101-89 Heat win over the Milwaukee Bucks, he dished out a season high six assists to go with five points and two steals over 20 minutes. He played 24 minutes on December 4th in a 101-79 win over the Dallas Mavericks, scoring 11 with three boards, three dimes, and two steals. Miami traded him with Matt Fish and a conditional draft pick to the Sacramento Kings during the 1997 offseason for Duane Causwell. Sacramento waived him before the season started.
Grant sat out the first three-quarters of 1997-98 before the Portland Trail Blazers gave him a shot. He would spend 31 games with them over four seasons, retiring after the 2000-01 season. He later resurfaced in Greece, with club team Peristeri.
All-Time HEATline: One season, 28 games, 13.0 minutes, 3.9 points, 1.4 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 0.6 steals, 0.0 blocks, 9.1 PER, 0.4 win shares.
Clinton Wheeler, born October 27th, 1959, was a 6'1" point guard from Neptune, NJ. After two seasons of collegiate basketball with William Paterson University, a junior college, the Kansas City Kings chose him in the seventh round of the 1981 draft, with the 150th overall pick. He was later waived by the Kings, then picked up and subsequently waived several times by the New York Knicks. He wouldn't make his NBA debut until he was 28 years old, with the Indiana Pacers in 1987-88. He scored 2.5 points and 1.7 assists over 59 contests with the Pacers.
Left unprotected in the 1988 expansion draft, the New Orleans Hornets chose Wheeler. They let him go soon afterward. He later was signed and released by the Denver Nuggets. Miami got him for $100,000 on December 4th. In eight games with the Heat, he shot 57.1% from the field, draining 24-of-42 shots. In a 121-110 Heat loss to the Denver Nuggets on December 9th, he scored 13 points with four rebounds and six assists in 25 minutes of game action. Despite a promising showing, the Heat waived him two days after Christmas.
The Portland Trail Blazers picked Wheeler up soon thereafter, where he would make his last career NBA appearances (20 games). He also played in Germany, with the USBL, and with the CBA, most recently with the Rapid City Thrillers in 1994-95.
All-Time HEATline: One season, eight games, 17.9 minutes, 7.0 points, 1.5 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.0 steals, 0.0 blocks, 16.5 PER, 0.4 win shares.