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Patrick Ewing
Charlotte Hornets
Position Associate head coach
Personal information
Born August 5, 1962 (1962-08-05) (age 54)
Kingston, Jamaica
Nationality American
Physical stats
Listed height 7 ft 0 in (2.03 m)
Listed weight 240 lbs (109 kg)
Career information
High school Cambridge Ridge
(Cambridge, Massachusetts)
College Georgetown (1981-1985)
NBA Draft 1985 / Round: 1 / Pick: 1
Selected by the New York Knicks
Playing career 1985-2002 (17 years)
Position Center
Jersey no. 33, 6
Career history
As player
1985-2000 New York Knicks
2000-2001 Seattle SuperSonics
2001-2002 Orlando Magic
As coach
2002–2003 Washington Wizards (assistant)
2003–2006 Houston Rockets (assistant)
2007–2012 Orlando Magic (assistant)
2013–present Charlotte Bobcats / Hornets
(associate Head coach)
Career highlights and awards
    • 11× NBA All-Star (1986, 1988–1997)
  • All-NBA First Team (1990)
  • 6× All-NBA Second Team (1988–1989, 1991–1993, 1997)
  • 3× NBA All-Defensive Second Team (1988–1989, 1992)
  • NBA Rookie of the Year (1986)
  • NBA All-Rookie First Team (1986)
  • NBA's 50th Anniversary All-Time Team
  • No. 33 retired by the New York Knicks
  • New York Knicks all-time leading scorer
  • NCAA champion (1984)
  • NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player (1984)
  • College national player of the year (1985)
  • 3× Consensus first team All-American (1983–1985)
  • 2× Big East Conference Player of the Year (1984–1985)
Career NBA statistics
Points 24,815 (21.0 ppg)
Rebounds 11,617 (9.8 rpg)
Blocks 2,894 (2.4 bpg)

Patrick Aloysius Ewing, Sr. is a Jamaican-American retired professional basketball player and current associate coach for the Charlotte Hornets of the NBA. He played most of his career with the NBA's New York Knicks as their starting center and played briefly with the Seattle SuperSonics and Orlando Magic. Ewing was named as the 16th greatest college player of all time by ESPN.[1] He won Olympic Gold Medals as a member of the 1984 and 1992 US Men's National Basketball teams. In a 1996 poll celebrating the 50th anniversary of the NBA, Ewing was selected as one of the 50 Greatest Basketball Players of All Time. On April 7, 2008 he was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame on September 5, 2008 along with former NBA coach Pat Riley and former Houston Rockets center, Hakeem Olajuwon. His number 33 was retired by the Knicks in 2003.

Contents

Biography

Early life

Born in Kingston, Jamaica, Ewing excelled at cricket and soccer. He was 11 years old when he arrived in the United States with his family, settling in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He learned to play basketball at Cambridge Rindge and Latin. In order to prepare for college, Ewing joined the MIT-Wellesley Upward Bound Program. Upward Bound is a federally-funded TRIO college-prep program for disadvantaged high school students. He went to Georgetown University in Washington, D.C..

College career

Ewing, one of the most highly recruited freshmen ever, signed a letter of intent to accept to play for Coach John Thompson at Georgetown University. As a freshman during the 1981–1982 season, Ewing became one of the first college players to start and star on the varsity team as a freshman. While at Georgetown, he developed a habit of wearing a short sleeved t-shirt underneath his sleeveless jersey. This started a fashion trend among young athletes that lasts to this day. In the 1982 NCAA final against the University of North Carolina, Ewing was called for goaltending on the first five possessions of the first half, setting the tone for the Hoyas and making his presence felt.

The Hoyas had a shot at winning the game until Fred Brown threw an infamous bad pass to James Worthy at the tail end of the game. In the 1983–84 season, Ewing and Georgetown took the NCAA title with an 84–75 win over the University of Houston. In Ewing's senior year of 1985, Georgetown was ranked number one in the nation and was heavily favored to beat unranked Villanova in the title game, but the Wildcats shot a record 78.6 percent from the floor (22 for 28) to upset the Hoyas 66–64. Ewing was one of the best college basketball players of his era, as Georgetown reached the championship game of the NCAA tournament three out of four years. He was a first-team All-American.

NBA career

New York Knicks

We've had the Mikan era, the Russell era, the Kareem era … now we'll have the Ewing era.

Pat O'Brien, quoting an unnamed NBA scouting director just before the 1985 NBA Draft lottery.[2] In 1985, the NBA instituted the first ever Draft Lottery to prevent teams from deliberately losing games to secure a better chance of obtaining the ultimate prize, Patrick Ewing. The New York Knicks won the Draft Lottery of 1985, and selected Ewing first overall.

Although injuries marred his first year in the league, he was named NBA Rookie of the Year, averaging 20 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 blocks per game. Soon after he was considered one of the premier centers in the league. Ewing enjoyed a successful career; eleven times named an NBA All-Star, once named to the All-NBA First Team, six times a member of the All-NBA Second Team, and named to the NBA All-Defensive Second Team three times. He was a member of the original Dream Team at the 1992 Olympic Games. He was also given the honor of being named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History.

The Knicks played the defending NBA Champion Chicago Bulls and Michael Jordan in the 1992 Eastern Conference Semifinals. Ewing was unstoppable in Game 1, finishing with 34 points, 16 rebounds, and 6 blocks, and the Knicks beat Chicago 94–89. With the Knicks facing elimination, Game 6 is regarded as one of the greatest of Ewing's career. The Knicks trailed 3–2 in the series and Ewing was limited physically by a bad ankle sprain,[3] but he helped the Knicks beat the Bulls 100–86 by scoring 27 points. NBC announcer Marv Albert called it a "Willis Reed-type performance", but the Knicks were ultimately eliminated in Game 7 in a blowout, 110–81.

In a 1993 game[4] between the Knicks and the Charlotte Hornets, the 7'0" (2.14 m) Ewing suffered a moment of embarrassment when guard Tyrone "Muggsy" Bogues, who stands a mere 5'3" (1.60 m), managed to block his shot.[5] The team looked like it was going to advance to the NBA Finals when they took a 2–0 lead over Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls. Both teams battled well, each winning on its home court in the first 4 games. However, the Bulls stunned the Ewing-led Knicks, winning Game 5 in New York 97–94 after Ewing's teammate, Charles Smith, was repeatedly blocked down low by Bulls defenders on the game's final possession. The Bulls would go on to win Game 6 96–88 and then claim their third straight NBA title. This would be one more season in which Ewing had to deal with no championships, despite the fact that the Knicks had the best regular season record in the Eastern Conference at 60–22 and had the second best record in the NBA, behind the Phoenix Suns, who were 62–20.

With Jordan out of the league, 1993–94 was considered a wide open year in the NBA, and Ewing had declared that 1994 would be the Knicks' year. He was a key contributor to the Knicks' run to the 1994 NBA Finals, in which the Knicks – in the finals for the first time since 1973 – lost in the final seconds of Games 6 and 7 to Hakeem Olajuwon's Houston Rockets. The Knicks, with Ewing leading them, had to survive a grueling trek through the playoffs simply to reach the Finals. They defeated Scottie Pippen's Bulls in seven games in the 1994 Eastern Conference Semifinals (all seven games were won by the home team), and defeated Reggie Miller's Indiana Pacers in the Conference Finals, which also took seven games to decide. In the Finals, the Knicks stole Game 2 in Houston, but couldn't hold court at home, dropping Game 3 at the Garden. The Knicks then won the next two games to return to Houston ahead 3–2. However, the Rockets won the next two games. Ewing made the most of his playoff run by setting a record for most blocked shots in a Finals series (only later to be broken by Tim Duncan). He also set an NBA Finals record for most blocked shots in a single game, with 8 (later surpassed by Dwight Howard).

The following year, a potential game-tying finger roll by Ewing rimmed out in the dwindling seconds of Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals, resulting in a loss to the Indiana Pacers. In the 1995–96 season, Ewing and the Knicks were eliminated in the Eastern Conference Semifinals in 5 games by the record-setting Bulls, who won 72 games that year en route to their fourth championship.

In the 1997 playoffs, the Knicks faced the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Ewing was involved in a Game 5 brawl where both team's benches got involved. Ewing was suspended for Game 6 and claimed he got a "raw deal", despite NBA rules stating that a player is automatically suspended one game for leaving the bench during a fight.[6] The Knicks, who were up 3–1 in the series going into Game 5, lost the next three games and were eliminated.

In the next season, Ewing's career almost came to an end due to an injury. On January 12, 1998, in a game against the Milwaukee Bucks at the Bradley Center, Ewing was fouled by Andrew Lang while attempting a dunk. He then fell to the court hard and landed on his wrist, breaking it, dislocating the bone, and tearing ligaments. The injury was so severe that it required immediate surgery to prevent nerve damage. Ewing, who had only missed 20 games in the previous ten seasons, missed the remaining 56 games of the season.[7] However, he was able to rehabilitate the injury faster than expected and as the playoffs began, Ewing was talking about returning. The Heat and Knicks met up in the playoffs for the second straight year. This time, the 2 teams met up in the First Round of the playoffs. The series went to a decisive 5th game, but the Knicks avenged their loss to Miami the year before by beating the Heat in Miami 98–81. Ewing returned for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Indiana Pacers. His presence wasn't enough however, as the Knicks fell to the Pacers in 5 games.

The following season, Ewing and the Knicks qualified as the East's #8 seed in a lockout-shortened campaign. Although battling an Achilles tendon injury, Ewing led the Knicks to another victory over the Heat in the First Round, 3–2. They followed that up by sweeping Atlanta, and defeated the Pacers in the Conference Finals in 6 games, despite Ewing's injury finally forcing him out of action. However, the Knicks couldn't complete their Cinderella run, as they lost in the Finals to the Spurs 4–1.

In Ewing's final season as a Knick (1999-00), the team finished as the #3 seed in the East behind the Pacers and Heat. The team advanced to the Conference Finals again, sweeping the Raptors and beating the Heat for the third straight year in 7 games, but could not defeat the Pacers and fell in 6 games. During his final season as a Knick, Ewing played in his 1,000th NBA game, finishing his Knick career with a franchise-record 1,039 games played in a Knick uniform (He is the only player to play 1,000 games with the Knicks).

After the Knicks

In 2000, he left the Knicks as part of a trade to the Seattle SuperSonics. In the trade, the Knicks sent Ewing to Seattle and Chris Dudley to Phoenix, and received Glen Rice, Luc Longley, Travis Knight, Vladimir Stepania, Lazaro Borrell, Vernon Maxwell, two first-round draft picks (from the Los Angeles Lakers and Seattle) and two second-round draft picks from Seattle. After a year with the Sonics and another with the Orlando Magic, he announced his retirement on September 18, 2002. That season, he took a job as an assistant coach with the Washington Wizards.

In 1,183 games over 16 seasons, Ewing averaged 21.0 points, 9.8 rebounds, and 2.4 blocks per game, and averaged better than a 50 percent shooting percentage.

In 2001, Ewing testified in part of the Atlanta's Gold Club prostitution and fraud federal trial. The owner Thomas Sicignano, testified that he arranged for dancers to have sex with professional athletes. Ewing admitted he went to the club and received oral sex twice in the club. Ewing was never charged with any criminal wrongdoing.[8]

On February 28, 2003, Ewing's jersey number 33 was retired by the Knicks, for whom he played 1039 games, in a large ceremony at Madison Square Garden. He continues to be considered one of the greatest players in the Knicks' storied history, as well as one of the greatest in NBA history. In his last year with the Knicks, Ewing had a game-winning slam dunk over Alonzo Mourning in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals to lead the Knicks to the Eastern Conference Finals.

Coaching career

[1][2]Ewing played his final season (2001–02) with the Orlando Magic and became an assistant coach for the team in 2007.On July 3, 2007, Ewing was one of four assistants hired to serve under first-year Orlando Magic head coach Stan Van Gundy[9] for the 2007–08 season.

Ewing was enshrined into the Basketball Hall of Fame as part of the class of 2008.[10]

Ewing was a key factor in the Magic's run to the 2009 NBA Finals, where they lost to the Los Angeles Lakers. He guaranteed a win in Game 7 of the second round against the defending champion Boston Celtics.[11] The Magic beat the Celtics 101 to 82 to win the series 4 games to 3. As a result, Ewing saw Magic captain Dwight Howard set a new NBA Finals record, for most blocked shots in a single finals game, with 9 in Game 4 of the finals, surpassing the previous record of 8, which Ewing himself set in Game 5 of the 1994 Finals.

In 2010, Ewing finally got the opportunity to coach his son Patrick Ewing Jr. in the 2010 summer league. Ewing Jr. played for the Magic.[12]

NBA statistics

In 1999, Ewing became the 10th player in NBA history to record 22,000 points and 10,000 rebounds.

In 1993 he led the NBA with 789 defensive rebounds. He was top ten in field goal percentage 8 times, top ten in rebounds per game as well as total rebounds 8 times, top ten in points, as well as points per game 8 times, and top ten in blocks per game for 13 years.[13]

Other work

Ewing was in the 1996 movie Space Jam as himself, one of five NBA players whose talent was stolen (along with Charles Barkley, Shawn Bradley, Larry Johnson, and Muggsy Bogues). Ewing had a brief appearance, again as himself, in the movie Senseless starring Marlon Wayans.

Ewing made cameos as himself in the sitcoms Spin City, Herman's Head, Mad About You, and Webster.[14] Most recently, he appeared in a 2009 ad for Snickers, suggesting that those who eat the candy bar might "get dunked on by Patrick Chewing".

He co-wrote In the Paint, a painting how-to book for children.[15]

Personal life

After friend and rival NBA center Alonzo Mourning was diagnosed with a kidney ailment in 2000, Ewing promised that he would donate one of his kidneys to Mourning if he ever needed one.[16] In 2003, Ewing was tested for kidney compatibility with Mourning, but Mourning's cousin was found to be the best match.[17] Ewing's son, Patrick Ewing, Jr., attended his father's alma mater, Georgetown University after two years at Indiana University. Ewing, Jr. wore the same jersey number that his father wore, #33. He was drafted by the Sacramento Kings in the second round with the 43rd pick of the 2008 NBA Draft, but was then traded to the New York Knicks, his father's old team.

He has been a resident of Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey.[18]

Ewing, in addition to his son, also has two daughters named Corey and Randi.

Endorsements

Ewing's first sneaker endorsement was with Adidas in 1986.[19] In 1991, Next Sports signed a licensing deal to release footwear under Ewing's name in the United States.[20] In 2007, the brand was purchased by United Front with the intentions of a retro or re-issue of Ewing's signature line of sneakers.[21]
Patrick Ewing Knicks Tribute09:46

Patrick Ewing Knicks Tribute

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