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Five Stars: 1994-95 Miami Heat NBA season

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1994-95 would prove to be a transitional season for the seventh year franchise.

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

1994-95 would be an example of one step forward and two steps back for the Heat, who in their seventh season went 32-50. It would be the first season the Heat would play without first ever draft pick Rony Seikaly. Power forward Grant Long was the last of the original members of the franchise, and he was traded after just two games to the Atlanta Hawks. This left the longest tenured player on the team as Glen Rice, who for the fourth consecutive season came in as Miami's

First Star

41 Glen Rice 1269.5

In 1994-95, Rice appeared for the sixth consecutive season in the Five Stars. He was the only Heat player to appear in all 82 games for Miami, starting every night at small forward. He led the club with 3,014 minutes in total, sinking 667-of-1403 shots from the field (.475) and 185-of-451 shots from outside (.410). He also drained 85.5% of his free throws (312-of-365). He scored an NBA eighth-best 1,831 points and was fourth on the team with 378 rebounds and 192 assists, leading the club with 112 steals. He was sixth in the NBA in three pointers made and attempted, and ninth in the league in overall field goals, made and attempted.

Rice averaged a team-high 36.8 minutes per game, clocking in at a team-high and NBA ninth-best 22.3 points, a team second 1.4 steals, and a team fifth 4.6 rebounds and 2.3 helpers. Advanced statistics also had him pegged as the team leader, with a 19.7 PER. 10.0 Win Shares, and a .159 WS/48. He scored 30 or more points on 18 occasions, but somehow did not register a single double-double.

On December 23rd, Rice scored 37 points on 14-of-24 shooting in 35 minutes, making five assists and grabbing three rebounds in a 116-93 victory against the Charlotte Hornets. March 17th would see the Heat defeat the Los Angeles Clippers by a 120-98 final count behind 45 points by Rice. He shot 17-of-26 from the field in 42 minutes, adding seven assists, four rebounds and two steals. In Rice's best scoring game of the season, he racked up a then-record 56 points on 20-of-27 shooting, including an incredible seven-for-eight from outside in 45 minutes of a 123-117 win against the 55-22 Orlando Magic on April 15th.

Just prior to the 1995-96 season, the Heat traded Rice with Matt Geiger, Khalid Reeves, and a first round pick (Tony Delk) to the Hornets for LeRon Ellis, Alonzo Mourning, and Pete Myers. Rice played three all-star seasons with the Hornets, played two seasons for the Los Angeles Lakers (winning the NBA Championship in 2000), one season for the New York Knicks, two seasons with the Houston Rockets, then closed it out with 18 games for the Clippers in 2003-04.

Second Star

42 Kevin Willis 803.7

Willis, a 7', 220 lb. power forward out of Michigan State University, was initially selected in the first round of the 1984 NBA Draft by the Atlanta Hawks. The Los Angeles, California native was born on September 6th, 1962, and played nine full seasons for the Hawks before joining the Heat at age 32.

Willis played his way to the Second Star despite ranking eighth on the club with 65 appearances, starting 61 times at power forward. He totaled a team-second 1,112 points and a team-best 696 rebounds. He also pitched in with 83 assists, 59 steals, and 33 blocks. Willis made 46.9% of his field goals (457-of-974) and 69.1% of his free throws (195-of-282).

Willis averaged 17.1 points per contest in 35.4 minutes, leading the team with 10.7 rebounds. He had 38 double-doubles, scoring over 30 points three times and 15 or more rebounds 16 times.

Willis' best performances of the season seemed to be concentrated in the month of December. On the second day of the month, he scored 31 points on 14-of-23 shooting with 17 rebounds, two blocks and two assists as the Heat defeated the New Jersey Nets, 115-97. On December 12th, he scored 28 points with 17 rebounds and four steals in a 122-111 win against the New York Knicks. In a December 21st 122-112 two-overtime victory against the Milwaukee Bucks, Willis put up 29 points and a season high 24 rebounds in 50 minutes.

Willis would play 47 games with the Heat in 1995-96, scoring 10.2 points with 8.9 rebounds per game. Miami traded him with Bimbo Coles to the Golden State Warriors for Chris Gatling and Tim Hardaway. After completing the season with the Warriors, he played two seasons with the Houston Rockets, two and a half seasons with the Toronto Raptors, a half season with the Denver Nuggets, another season with the Rockets, two seasons with the San Antonio Spurs, another season with the Hawks, and five games with the Dallas Mavericks in 2006-07, at the age of 44.

Third Star

32 Billy Owens 760.6

Owens, born on May 1st, 1969, was a 6'8", 220 lb. shooting guard from Carlisle, Pennsylvania. Born on May 1st, 1969, he stayed in Carlisle through his formative years, also attending Carlisle High. After three seasons of college ball at Syracuse University, the Sacramento Kings selected him in the first round of the 1991 NBA Draft, with the third overall selection. The Kings traded him just before the 1991-92 season to the Golden State Warriors for Les Jepsen, Mitch Richmond, and a draft pick who later became Tyus Edney.

In three seasons with the Warriors, Owens played 196 games between both forward positions and shooting guard, averaging 15.0 points on 51.3% shooting, along with 7.9 rebounds, 3.4 assists, and just over a steal per game. Just prior to the 1994-95 campaign, Golden State sent him with Sasha Danilovic to the Heat for Rony Seikaly.

Owens averaged 14.3 points with 7.2 rebounds, 3.5 helpers, and 1.1 steals per game in his first season in Miami, draining 403-of-820 shots for a .491 shooting success rate. He also made 194-of-313 from the foul stripe for a 62.0% shooting rate, which was easily the worst on the club. He was not a three-point shooting threat while with Miami, making just two-of-22 shots from outside.

Owens started 60 of his 70 appearances through the season with Miami at shooting guard, ranking third on the club with 1,002 points, second with 502 rebounds, third with 246 assists, and third with 80 steals. His 30 blocked shots placed him fourth on the team.

Owens totaled 19 double-doubles of the season, and scored 20 or more points 13 times. On January 5th, he scored 19 points with 10 rebounds and 10 assists for his only triple-double of the season as the Heat defeated the Minnesota Timberwolves, 114-91. His best game of the season came on Valentine's Day, when he racked up 20 points with nine boards, five steals and five assists in a 112-99 Heat win against the Milwaukee Bucks. On March 17th, he shot 13-of-18 from the field for 29 points and seven assists, again grabbing 10 boards as Miami continued to own the Los Angeles Clippers, 120-98.

Owens played 40 games for Miami in 1995-96, scoring 13 points with 6.6 rebounds and 3.3 assists before a mid-season trade sent him along with Kevin Gamble back to the Kings for Tyrone Corbin and Walt Williams. Owens would go on to play with the Kings for two and a half seasons, later playing a season with the Seattle Supersonics, splitting the 1999-00 season between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Warriors. He closed out his career after 45 games with the Detroit Pistons in 2000-01.

Fourth Star

12 Bimbo Coles 590.3

Coles would total 679 points for the Heat over 68 games in 1994-95, which was the fourth highest total on the team. He led the team with 416 assists, rank second with 99 steals, and pitch in with 191 rebounds and 13 blocked shots.

Coles averaged 32.5 minutes per game, starting in 65 games for the Heat at point guard. He scored 10.0 points with 6.1 assists, 2.8 rebounds, and 1.5 steals. He made 261-of-607 shots from the field for a 43.0% shooting rate, his lowest since his 1990-91 rookie season. He also made 141-of-174 foul shots to clock in at .810, second only to Glen Rice's .855 mark on the team. He totaled seven double-doubles for the season.

On December 12th, Coles dished out a season best 15 assists, scoring 21 points with five rebounds as the Heat defeated the New York Knicks, 122-111. Six days later, he scored 20 points with 12 assists in a 103-102 loss to the New Jersey Nets. In Coles' best game of the season, a 111-107 win over the Washington Bullets on February 8th, he made nine-of-12 shots from the field as well as all six of his foul attempts for 25 points to go along with seven assists, six rebounds, and three steals.

Fifth Star

3 Khalid Reeves 528.1

Reeves, a 6'3", 199 lb. point guard out of the University of Arizona, was born in Queens, New York on July 15th, 1972. After attending high school at Christ the King in Middle Village, NY and four seasons of collegiate ball, the Heat made him their first round selection in the 1994 NBA Draft, with the 12th overall choice.

Reeves averaged 21.8 minutes per game as a rookie, starting in 17 of his 67 overall appearances at point guard. He made 44.3% of his shots from the field (206-of-465) and 140-of-196 foul shots (.714). He also gave Miami a legitimate long-distance threat off the bench, converting 67-of-171 shots from beyond the arc for a .392 success rate. He averaged 9.2 points, 4.3 assists, 2.8 rebounds, and 1.1 steals per game.

Reeves totaled 619 points for the Heat, with 288 helpers, 186 rebounds, 77 steals and 10 blocked shots. He totaled three double-doubles for the season.

Reeves showcased his talents much more ably in the last quarter of the season, starting in the final 16 games. On March 28th, he scored 24 points with 10 assists and five rebounds in a loss to the Boston Celtics, 126-115. On April 11th, he totaled 24 points with nine assists and three rebounds in a 112-99 setback to the New York Knicks. Just four days later, he scored 20 points with 14 assists and three boards in a win against the Orlando Magic, 123-117.

Reeves didn't play another game for the Heat after that season. Miami traded him with Matt Geiger, Glen Rice and a draft pick (Tony Delk) to the Charlotte Hornets for LeRon Ellis, Pete Myers, and future franchise cornerstone Alonzo Mourning just before the 1995-96 season got underway. Reeves played five more NBA seasons between the Hornets (20 games), the Nets (81 games), the Dallas Mavericks (95 games), the Detroit Pistons (11 games) and the Chicago Bulls (three games). After seven seasons of professional ball between Greece, France, Lebanon, and Venezuala, as well as hitches in the CBA, the ABA, and the USBL, he hung up his high-tops in 2005. He currently serves as an assistant coach back at Christ the King.

The Rest

22 John Salley 456.5

52 Matt Geiger 448.0

35 Kevin Gamble 418.9

21 Ledell Eackles 234.3

2 Keith Askins 211.5

54 Brad Lohaus 190.7

32 Harold Miner 161.1

14 Kevin Pritchard 34.6

3 Steve Smith 26.5

43 Grant Long 8.1