Posted on: August 19, 2012 4:58 pm
Chris Webber announced his retirement from the NBA, today. I would just like to say "thank you" for the amazing plays I was fortunate enough to watch during your respective college and NBA careers.
As a Freshman at Michigan, Webber and his Fab Five teammates did the impossible; reaching the NCAA Championship game with an improbable run in the Tournament. Back then, Webber, Jalen Rose, Juwon Howard, Ray Jackson, and Jimmy King (the Freshman along with Chris) basically had equal billing as far as their contribution to this remarkable team. The next year, Chris took the reigns as the bonafide leader, leading the team to a #1 seed in the Tournament in sparking a comeback against UCLA in the round of 16. Thanks to his overall efforts, the Wolverines once again made it to the Championship game.
Along the way, the Fab Five and their teammates were revolutionizing the "fashion" of the game, introducing the baggy shorts look which is still common, today. Back then, traditionalists scoffed at their appearance and overall swagger. Bill Walton, former college great, was among the most vocal, creating a rallying cry to denounce the Fab Five and their style of basketball.
Webber and his teammates didn't win either Championship, comely very close to a title in their 2nd attempt against North Carolina in which is unfortunately remembered by Chris signaling for an ill-fated time out late in the game (a timeout the team didn't have and allowed the Tar Heels to shoot a couple technical foul shots to ice the game). To use proper hindsight, though, without Webber and his efforts in that game Michigan would not have even had a chance to win in those last fateful minutes.
The Orlando Magic drafted Webber as the 1st pick in the draft the next year and he was eventually traded to the Golden State Warriors that same draft night. His NBA career included playoff runs with the Warriors, Washington Bullets (now the Wizards), Philadelphia 76'ers and the Detroit Pistons. His most notable chance for an NBA championship occured with the Sacremento Kings, making it to the 7th game of the Western Conference Finals before bowing out to the Los Angeles Lakers. The next year after that titlerun,Webber suffered a severe injury to his leg, needing micro-fracture surgery to repair it and was never the same player.
Chris Webber is widely considered one of the best passing big men to ever play the game, Personally, I will miss watching is basketball flair on the court. Luckily, I have some tapes of his days with the Fab Five to remind me of how great he was.
Once again, thank you Chris and good luck in your future endeavors.
Posted on: March 25, 2008 10:48 pm
Chris Webber announced he was retiring from the NBA, today. I would just like to say "thank you" for the amazing plays I was fortunate to watch during your NBA and college careers.
As a Freshman at Michigan, Webber and his Fab Five teammates did the impossible, reaching the NCAA Championship game with an improbable run in the Tournament. Back then, Webber, Rose, Howard, Ray Jackson, and Jimmy King (all Freshman at the time) basically had equal billing as far as their contribution to this remarkable team. The next year, Chris took the reigns as the leader, leading them to an amazing comeback against UCLA in the Tournament, and once again, reaching the final game.
Not only were they doing the unthinkable with their basketball skills, Webber and his teammates at Michigan revolutionized the "fashion" of the game, creating a fad of wearing long, baggy shorts, which is still used by NCAA and NBA players, today. Traditionalists may scoff at this, but this group of players really changed the way the game of basketball is played. This had to be a good thing if it riled up a guy like Bill Walton, who railed against the Fab Five during their run. Yeah, I know there are no records of this team ever playing in the NCAA's do to rules violations, but we all remember.
Webber's NBA career included playoff runs with the Warriors, Bullets (Wizards), 76ers, and Pistons. But his best chance at an NBA title was with the Kings, making it to the 7th game of the Western Conference Finals. The next year,
Webber's NBA career was derailed by leg micro fracture surgery, an injury which shortened the careers of Jamal Mashburn, Allan Houston, Penny Hardaway, and others. Chris was injured during Kings run through the playoffs against the Mavericks, and neither he or Sacramento were ever the same. He was one of the best passing big men in NBA history, and I will missing watching him on the court. Luckily, I have some tapes of his days with the Fab Five to remind me of how great he was.
Thank you, Chris, and good luck in your future endeavors... :)