Good news for Miami Heat: Some great players were drafted 14th

Tim Hardaway was drafted 14th by the Warriors in 1989 and traded to Heat in 1996. (Harry How /Allsport)

No matter how many times you avoided walking under a ladder, picked a four leaf clover, rubbed a rabbit’s foot or just crossed your fingers it did not work.

The Miami Heat could not overcome the 98.2 percent odds in Tuesday’s Draft Lottery and will be picking 14th in the June 22 draft.

But all is not lost. Of the 63 players selected with the 14th pick in NBA draft history, one already has his spot in the Hall of Fame and one has his number hanging in the AmericanAirlines Arena rafters.

Tim Hardaway, the greatest point guard in Heat franchise history, was taken 14th overall by the Warriors in 1989. Hardaway, who played at Texas El-Paso, was traded to Miami in 1996 and along with Alonzo Mourning led the Heat to six consecutive playoff appearances. Hardaway was a five-time All-Star and six times voted to one of the top three all-league teams.

Finding another Hardaway would be huge. But finding a Hall of Famer like Clyde Drexler would be franchise altering.

Yes, Drexler is a member of the 14th-Pick Club. He was taken in 1983 by Portland. He then carved out a Hall of Fame career with the Trail Blazers and Rockets, averaging 20.4 points, 6.1 rebounds and 5.6 assists in 15 seasons, 10 of which he was an All-Star.

Drexler is the only player drafted 14th to average at least 20 points. Next in scoring is Hardaway at 17.7 per game and third is Peja Stojakovic, who averaged 17.0 points in 13 seasons, mostly with Sacramento. Stojakovic was drafted by the Kings in 1996 and was a three-time All-Star.

Hardaway is not the only prominent former Heat player to be taken 14th overall. Dan Majerle, who was drafted by the Suns in 1988 and signed with Miami in 1996, was a part of five of those Heat playoff teams as Hardaway’s teammate. Majerle was a three-time All-Star.

Which brings us to our all-time team comprised of 14th overall picks (We are going small):

PG: Tim Hardaway, 1989, Golden State.

SG: Clyde Drexler, 1983, Portland.

SF: Peja Stojakovic, 1996, Sacramento.

PF: Dan Majerle, 1988, Phoenix.

C: Maurice Lucas, 1974, Chicago.

Bench: G Luke Ridnour, 2003, Seattle; F/C Troy Murphy, 2001, Golden State; F Walter Berry, 1986, Portland; F Michael Cage, 1984, Clippers; F Herb Williams, 1981, Indiana; C Tree Rollins, 1977 Atlanta; G Dick Snyder, 1966, St. Louis.

The last five 14th overall picks:

2016: Denzel Valentine, SG, Milwaukee: Averaged 10.7 points in 57 games off bench.

2015: Cameron Payne, PG, OKC: Sent to D-League six times in two years; traded to Chicago in February.

2014: T.J. Warren, SF, Phoenix: Started 59 games this year, averaged 14.4 points.

2013: Shabazz Muhammad, SG, Utah: Traded to Minn.; numbers dropping since avg. 13.5 points second year.

2012: John Henson, PF, Milwaukee: Best year was second – 11.1 pts., 7.1 rebounds.

[2017 NBA draft lottery: Miami Heat will have 14th overall pick in June 22 draft]

[Mailbag: Could the Miami Heat trade their draft pick no matter where it falls? Tyler Johnson’s contract]

[Want more Heat news sent directly to your Facebook feed? Make sure to like our Heat Facebook page]

 

Reader Comments 0

0 comments