Tuesday, June 07, 2005
TUSCALOOSA – The 2005 NBA Finals will feature two former University of Alabama players squaring off against one another for the world championship.
Play begins on Thursday at 8 p.m. CT when the San Antonio Spurs, featuring former Crimson Tide forward Robert Horry, host the Detroit Pistons, featuring the Crimson Tide’s Antonio McDyess.
Horry, a four-year letterman at Alabama from 1989-92, is in his second season with the Spurs. He is the only active player in the NBA to own five World Championship rings, two as a player for the Houston Rockets and three during his reign with the LA Lakers. Until he retired on October 5, 2004, only Chicago’s Scottie Pippen was playing with more rings, having won six World Championships with the Bulls.
A veteran in the playoffs on any level, Horry, a native of Andalusia, helped lead Alabama to the NCAA Sweet 16 in 1990 and 1991 was All-Southeastern Conference in 1992 and Academic All-SEC at Alabama as well. Horry and his UA teammate Latrell Sprewell, now with the Minnesota Timberwolves, was a first round pick in the 1992 NBA draft. Horry is averaging 6.0 points a game this season with the Spurs.
McDyess lettered at Alabama for two seasons in 1994 and 1995. He left Alabama after two seasons to become a first round draft pick by the LA Clippers in 1995, the same year the NBA took his teammate, Jason Caffey in the first round to Chicago. McDyess made history as the University of Alabama’s first basketball Olympian when he made the USA’s Gold Medal winning team in 2000.
McDyess, a native of Quitman, Miss., scored 10 points in Detroit’s 88-82 win against Miami in the playoffs on Monday night. He’s averaging 7.2 points for the Pistons in his first season at Detroit.
Games one and two of the NBA finals will be played Thursday and Sunday in San Antonio. The series moves to Detroit for game three on Tuesday, June 14.