Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Happy Trails Chris Webber
Today one of my favorite players growing up retired (finally), Chris Webber. I can't think of any pre-teen basketball fan that didn't ride for the Fab Five in the early 90's. Really, I can't think of any young, urban basketball fans period for that matter. If you didn't ride for the Fab Five, your coolness immediately went into question. In fact, I think the first ever article of clothing I actually bought with my own little money was a University of Michigan hat when I was on a field trip in D.C. I bought it during tourney time, one week before the infamous "time out" call.
Anyways, Webber got drafted with the #1 pick in the 1993 NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic, one year after they just picked Shaquille O'Neal. They wound up trading Webber to the Golden State Warriors for their #3 pick, Penny Hardaway. I mean, Shaq & Penny did their thing, but man, I dunnno shawty. I think I woulda kept C-Webb. Can you imagine that? Shaq & C-Webb on the same team?
Well, C-Webb faired pretty well out in Oakland taking home Rookie of the Year honors and teaming up with Latrell Spreewell and Billy Owens (Tim Hardaway was injured and out for the season and Chris Mullins body started breaking down) to become one of the more exciting teams in the league. They got put out in the first round of the playoffs by Charles Barkley and the Phoenix Suns, but everyone was already looking forward to seeing them next year. Unfortunately, Webber and coach Don Nelson had a falling out and he got traded to the Washington Bullets.
Once again, shit was supposed to be off the chain! The Bullets had Webber and Juwan Howard! But Webber got hurt. Then they drafted Rasheed Wallace the next year! But Webber got hurt again. The Bullets wound up making the playoffs once under Webber's watch but got put out by Jordan and them. This was also around the time Nike came out with those ridiculously priced C-Webb Air Max's. I know of at least two dudes got got robbed for theirs. I'm glad I was raised to know better than to spend $130 on some damn sneakers.
Webber started getting in a little trouble out in D.C. so he got traded to the Sacramento Kings. And from that point, he pretty much helped but that franchise on the map (and put out a rap CD). Their first squad with Jason Williams, Corliss Williamson and Vlade Divac had a good season ending with a playoff defeat at the hands of the Utah Jazz. They later switched things up trading for Mike Bibby and Doug Christie...but they couldn't get past Shaq & Kobe in the 2002 Playoffs, because they got cheated.
Webber went down with a major knee injury the next season and he'd never be the same from that point. He got traded to the 76ers, then he signed with the Pistons and got to the Eastern Conference Finals but lost to Lebron. He signed back with the Warriors this season and barely played.
I know I got kinda long winded, but I got caught up in the moment. I really liked C-Webb, I even got the chance to talk to him in the locker room once when he was in town playing the Hawks. He told me that he was starting to make beats, but wouldn't say for who. Last year a track of his surfaced with Nas rapping on it.
Anyways, I just wanted to send dude a little sendoff (I must be in a sendoff mood today).
My brother dug up a nice piece of nostalgia too...