Robert Horry

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Robert Horry
Robert Horry 2012.jpg
No. 25, 5
Small forward / Power forward
Personal information
Born (1970-08-25) August 25, 1970 (age 43)
Harford County, Maryland
Nationality American
Listed height 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m)
Listed weight 240 lb (109 kg)
Career information
High school Andalusia (Andalusia, Alabama)
College Alabama (1988–1992)
NBA draft 1992 / Round: 1 / Pick: 11th overall
Selected by the Houston Rockets
Pro playing career 1992–2008
Career history
19921996 Houston Rockets
1996–1997 Phoenix Suns
19972003 Los Angeles Lakers
20032008 San Antonio Spurs
Career highlights and awards
Career statistics
Points 7,715 (7.0 ppg)
Rebounds 5,269 (4.8 rpg)
Blocks 1,035 (0.9 bpg)
Stats at Basketball-Reference.com

Robert Keith Horry Jr. (/ˈɒri/; born August 25, 1970) is a retired American basketball player and current sports commentator. He played 16 seasons in the National Basketball Association (NBA), winning seven championships, the most of any player not to have played on the 1960s Boston Celtics. He is one of only two players (the other is John Salley) to have won NBA championships with three different teams: two with the Houston Rockets, three with the Los Angeles Lakers and two with the San Antonio Spurs. He earned the nickname Big Shot Rob because of his clutch shooting in important games, and he is widely considered to be one of the greatest clutch performers and winners in the history of the NBA.[1][2][3][4][5] Horry now works as a commentator on Time Warner Cable SportsNet.

Early life, high school and college basketball[edit]

Soon after Horry was born in Harford County, Maryland, his father, Staff Sergeant Robert Horry Sr., divorced his mother, Leila, and moved to South Carolina. Horry grew up in Andalusia, Alabama. Later, when Robert Sr. was stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia, the father and son met weekly.[6][7]

As a senior at Andalusia High School, Horry won the Naismith Alabama High School Player of the Year award. He attended the University of Alabama on a basketball scholarship, where he was a teammate of fellow future NBA player Latrell Sprewell.

At Alabama, Horry started 108 of the 133 games he played in and helped the Tide win three SEC tournament titles and two berths in the NCAA's Sweet 16 round. Alabama compiled a 98-36 record during his four seasons; Horry set a school record for career blocked shots (282). He was selected to the All-Southeastern Conference, the SEC All-Defensive and the SEC All-Academic teams.

NBA career[edit]

Houston Rockets (1992-1996)[edit]

Horry was selected 11th overall in the 1992 NBA Draft by the Houston Rockets as a small forward. He spent his first four seasons with the Rockets, helping them win the NBA Championship in 1994 and 1995. While in the Finals, Horry set an individual NBA Finals record with seven steals in a game[8] and also hit five 3-pointers in a quarter. During his years with the Rockets, Horry wore number 25.[9]

In February 1994, he and Matt Bullard were traded to the Detroit Pistons for Sean Elliott, but Elliott failed a physical because of kidney problems, and the trade was rescinded. Horry said that the trade falling through probably saved his career. Horry went on to be a key member of the Rockets' title teams and began to lay the foundations for his "Big Shot Rob" reputation[4] with a game-winning jumper in the final seconds of Game 1 of the 1995 Western Conference Finals vs. the San Antonio Spurs and adding a crucial basket in a 106-103 win in Game 3 of the NBA Finals against the Orlando Magic. Following the victory at the 1995 NBA Finals, Horry and the Rockets would win their second NBA Championship. Horry said that out of his 7 championship victories, this was the one he was the most proud of because the Rockets were the 6th seed in the Western Conference.[10]

Phoenix Suns (1996-1997)[edit]

On August 19, 1996, Horry was traded to the Phoenix Suns along with Sam Cassell, Chucky Brown and Mark Bryant for former NBA Most Valuable Player Charles Barkley. Horry had been criticized in Houston for not taking enough shots and felt that was what prompted the Rockets to trade him. After joining the Suns, Horry had an on-court altercation with coach Danny Ainge, during which Horry threw a towel at Ainge.

Los Angeles Lakers (1997-2003)[edit]

The incident with Ainge led to Horry's suspension and trade to the Los Angeles Lakers on January 10, 1997, for Cedric Ceballos. Because the Lakers had retired jersey number 25 to honor Gail Goodrich, Horry wore the number 5 instead.

During the 2000 season, Horry played behind A.C. Green but frequently garnered more minutes off the bench than the starters, especially during the playoffs. In the 2000 Finals against the Indiana Pacers, the Lakers took a 2-1 lead into game 4 in Indiana. The game went into overtime, and Shaquille O'Neal fouled out, but Kobe Bryant led a run to seal the Laker victory. Horry finished with 17 points in 37 minutes, his high for the Finals, and won his third championship as the Lakers defeated the Pacers 4 games to 2. Horry averaged 7.6 points and 5.4 rebounds in 27 minutes per game throughout the 2000 playoffs.

In the 2000-2001 season, Horry played behind Horace Grant and once again played big minutes in the playoffs. He played in 16 of Lakers 2001 playoffs games, averaging 5.9 points per game. In the Finals against the Philadelphia 76ers, the Lakers dropped game 1 before winning game 2. In game 3 in Philadelphia, Horry scored 12 of his 15 points in the 4th quarter, including a critical three pointer with 47 seconds left in the fourth quarter followed by making 1 of 2 free throws with 21 seconds left to help seal the Laker victory. In game 4, Horry made 3 of the Lakers 10 total three-pointers as the Lakers rolled to a 100-86 victory. The Lakers won game 5 to clinch their second straight championship.

Horry (back row, farthest right) at a White House ceremony in January 2002 following the Lakers' 2001 NBA Finals victory.

In the 2001-2002 season, Horry was the backup power forward to Samaki Walker, although he started in 23 games. In the playoffs, Horry started 14 of the Lakers' 19 games playing an average of 37 minutes a game with averages of 9.3 points and 8.1 rebounds a game. Horry's reputation for clutch play was elevated in Game 4 of the 2002 Western Conference Finals against the Sacramento Kings. Trailing two games to one in the series and facing Game 5 in Sacramento, the Lakers were down by as many as 24 points in the first half. Eventually, the Lakers cut the lead to 99–97 with 11.8 seconds to play. On the final possession, after Kobe and Shaq missed consecutive layups, Sacramento center Vlade Divac knocked the ball away from the basket in an attempt to run out the clock. However, the ball bounced right to Horry, who hit a 3-pointer as time expired to win Game 4 100–99. A day later, Magic Johnson was quoted as calling Horry, "one of the 10 best clutch players in league history".[11] The Lakers would eventually win the series in 7 games and swept the New Jersey Nets 4–0 in the NBA Finals to complete a three peat. Horry started all four games in the Finals.

A situation similar to Game 4 happened on March 5, 2003 in a game against the Indiana Pacers when, while the game was tied at 95, Pacers center Jermaine O'Neal swatted the inside pass for Shaquille O'Neal right into the hands of a wide open Horry, who calmly hit the game-winning shot.

In the 2003 playoffs, the Lakers were attempting to win their fourth straight NBA championship. But in Game 5 in the Western Conference Semifinals against the Spurs, Horry's chance for another game-winner rattled in and out with 5 seconds left, wiping out the Lakers' rally from a 25-point deficit. Horry went 0-18 on 3-pointers in the series and the Lakers were eliminated in six games.

San Antonio Spurs (2003-2008)[edit]

Horry with the Spurs

Following the 2002–03 season, Horry became a free agent. Citing concerns over family, all of whom live in Houston, Horry signed with the San Antonio Spurs. During the 2002–2003 season, the Lakers had leaned heavily on Horry. With the Spurs, coach Gregg Popovich cut Horry's minutes significantly, resulting in renewed success.

During the 2004–05 season, the Spurs reached the playoffs and went on to win the 2005 NBA Finals. Horry played a significant part for the team's success, going 38 of 85 behind the 3-point line in the 2005 playoffs. In Game 5 of the 2005 NBA Finals against the Detroit Pistons, Horry provided more heroics in the fourth quarter to boost San Antonio to a win and 3–2 series lead over Detroit. After only scoring three points in the first three quarters, he scored 21 of the Spurs' points in the 4th quarter and overtime. The Spurs went on to win Game 5 96–95 after Horry hit a game-winning three-point shot in the final seconds. His late game heroics at age 34 were so astounding that prominent ESPN columnist Bill Simmons said of the performance, "Horry's Game 5 ranks alongside MJ's Game 6 in 1998, Worthy's Game 7 in 1988, Frazier's Game 7 in 1970 and every other clutch Finals performance over the years".[12] After winning the series in seven games, the Spurs won their third NBA Championship in seven seasons and Horry received his sixth championship ring. Horry continued to wear number 5 after joining the Spurs.

During the 2007 NBA playoffs, Horry hip-checked Phoenix Suns point guard Steve Nash which resulted in a flagrant foul on Horry. During the ensuing commotion, Raja Bell was assessed a technical foul for charging at Horry. Horry was ejected from the game and suspended for Games 5 and 6. Amar'e Stoudemire and Boris Diaw who left the vicinity of the bench, were issued a suspension for Game 5. The Spurs won the two ensuing games and subsequently moved on to the 2007 NBA Championship, where they swept the Cleveland Cavaliers winning their fourth NBA title and Horry's seventh individual ring.[13][14]

He began wearing the number 25 again after the 2006-07 season. After the 2007–08 season, Robert Horry became a free agent but went unsigned, marking his last professional season.

Records and honors[edit]

Horry collected his seventh championship as a member of the Spurs in 2007.[15] He is one of only nine players to have won seven or more championships in the NBA, and the only one who did not play on the 1960s Celtics. Robert Horry is one of only three players, along with Ron Harper and Dennis Rodman, to have won back-to-back NBA championships with two different teams.[16] In 2005, he joined John Salley as the only players to win NBA rings with three different teams. He was the all-time leader in playoff games played with 244, having surpassed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar during the 2008 playoffs.[17]

Horry holds the record for three-pointers all-time in the NBA Finals with 53, having eclipsed Michael Jordan's previous record of 42. He set the NBA Playoffs record for most three-point field goals made in a game without a miss (7) against the Utah Jazz in Game 2 of the 1997 Western Conference Semifinals. Horry has regular season career averages of 7.2 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game.

Horry and Steve Kerr, another famous reserve player and clutch shooter, alternated NBA Championships for a decade, and combined to win 12 championships over a 14-year period. Either Kerr or Horry was on the roster of an NBA Finals team from the 1993-94 season through the 2002-03 season, with every one resulting in a victory. Horry's teams were victorious in the NBA Finals in 1994, 1995, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005 and 2007, while Kerr's teams were winners in the NBA Finals in 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999 and 2003. Each won three titles playing for Phil Jackson-coached teams (Kerr with the Chicago Bulls, Horry with the Los Angeles Lakers), and two with the San Antonio Spurs.

Horry was the first player ever to accumulate 100 steals, 100 blocked shots and 100 threes in one season.[18] In 2010, he was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame.[19]

Notable playoff clutch shots[edit]

  • May 22, 1995, Western Conference Finals, Game 1, Houston Rockets at San Antonio Spurs. Horry hit a jumper with 6.5 seconds left to give Houston a 94-93 win over San Antonio at the Alamodome.[20]
  • June 11, 1995, NBA Finals, Game 3, Orlando Magic at Houston Rockets. With the Rockets up 101-100 with 20 seconds left and the shot clock winding down, Hakeem Olajuwon kicked it out to Horry, who hit a 3 over Orlando's Horace Grant to give Houston a 104-100 lead with 14.1 seconds left. It led them to a 106-103 win and a 3-0 series lead. Houston won Game 4 to complete the sweep and win back-to-back NBA titles.
  • June 10, 2001, NBA Finals, Game 3, Los Angeles Lakers at Philadelphia 76ers. With the series tied at 1, the Sixers were down 89-88 with under a minute and with Shaquille O'Neal on the bench having fouled out for the Lakers. Brian Shaw found Horry in the corner. He hit the 3 with 47.1 seconds left to give the Lakers a 4-point lead. Horry, who had been a 44% free throw shooter in the playoffs to that point, also made 4 free throws in the final minute to seal the victory. The Sixers never recovered.[21]
  • April 28, 2002, Western Conference First Round, Game 3, Los Angeles Lakers at Portland Trail Blazers. Down 91-89 with 10.2 seconds left, Kobe Bryant drove on Ruben Patterson and kicked it out to Horry, who hit the game-winning 3 with 2.1 seconds left.[21]
  • May 26, 2002, Western Conference Finals, Game 4, Sacramento Kings at Los Angeles Lakers. The Kings led 99-97 with 11.8 seconds left. After Kobe Bryant attempted a game-tying shot and missed, Shaquille O'Neal attempted a putback. When that missed, Vlade Divac knocked the ball away to try to run out the clock. However, it came right to Horry, who hit the game-winning 3 at the buzzer to give the Lakers a 100-99 victory and tie the series at 2 going back to Sacramento for Game 5. L.A. eventually beat the Kings in 7 and went on to win their 3rd straight NBA championship against the New Jersey Nets.[21]
  • June 19, 2005, NBA Finals, Game 5, San Antonio Spurs at Detroit Pistons. Horry inbounded to Manu Ginóbili, who was cornered by two Pistons defenders. Ginóbili passed it back to Horry on the left wing, who then hit a 3-pointer with 5.9 seconds left to give the Spurs a 96-95 victory and a 3-2 series lead heading into Game 6. Horry scored 21 points combined, in the fourth quarter and OT to carry the struggling Spurs.[21]

NBA career statistics[edit]

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage  3P%  3-point field goal percentage  FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high
Denotes seasons in which Horry won an NBA championship

Regular season[edit]

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
1992–93 Houston 79 79 29.5 .474 .255 .715 5.0 2.4 1.0 1.1 10.1
1993–94 Houston 81 81 29.3 .459 .324 .732 5.4 2.9 1.5 .9 9.9
1994–95 Houston 64 61 32.4 .447 .379 .761 5.1 3.4 1.5 1.2 10.2
1995–96 Houston 71 71 37.1 .410 .366 .776 5.8 4.0 1.6 1.5 12.0
1996–97 Phoenix 32 15 22.5 .421 .308 .640 3.7 1.7 .9 .8 6.9
1996–97 L.A. Lakers 22 14 30.7 .455 .329 .700 5.4 2.5 1.7 1.3 9.2
1997–98 L.A. Lakers 72 71 30.4 .476 .204 .692 7.5 2.3 1.6 1.3 7.4
1998–99 L.A. Lakers 38 5 19.6 .459 .444 .739 4.0 1.5 .9 1.0 4.9
1999–00 L.A. Lakers 76 0 22.2 .438 .309 .788 4.8 1.6 1.1 1.0 5.7
2000–01 L.A. Lakers 79 1 20.1 .387 .346 .711 3.7 1.6 .7 .7 5.2
2001–02 L.A. Lakers 81 23 26.4 .398 .374 .783 5.9 2.9 1.0 1.1 6.8
2002–03 L.A. Lakers 80 26 29.3 .387 .288 .769 6.4 2.9 1.2 .8 6.5
2003–04 San Antonio 81 1 15.9 .405 .380 .645 3.4 1.2 .6 .6 4.8
2004–05 San Antonio 75 16 18.6 .419 .370 .789 3.6 1.1 .9 .8 6.0
2005–06 San Antonio 63 3 18.8 .384 .368 .647 3.8 1.3 .7 .8 5.1
2006–07 San Antonio 68 8 16.5 .359 .336 .594 3.4 1.1 .7 .6 3.9
2007–08 San Antonio 45 5 13.0 .319 .257 .643 2.4 1.0 .5 .4 2.5
Career 1107 480 24.5 .425 .341 .726 4.8 2.1 1.0 .9 7.0

Playoffs[edit]

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
1993 Houston 12 12 31.2 .465 .300 .741 5.2 3.2 1.5 1.3 10.3
1994 Houston 23 23 33.8 .434 .382 .765 6.1 3.6 1.5 .9 11.7
1995 Houston 22 22 38.2 .445 .400 .744 7.0 3.5 1.5 1.2 13.1
1996 Houston 8 8 38.5 .407 .396 .435 7.1 3.0 2.6 1.6 13.1
1997 L.A. Lakers 9 9 31.0 .447 .429 .778 5.3 1.4 1.1 .8 6.7
1998 L.A. Lakers 13 13 32.5 .557 .353 .683 6.5 3.1 1.1 1.1 8.6
1999 L.A. Lakers 8 0 22.1 .462 .417 .786 4.5 1.4 .8 .8 5.0
2000 L.A. Lakers 23 0 26.9 .407 .288 .702 5.3 2.5 .9 .8 7.6
2001 L.A. Lakers 16 0 23.9 .368 .362 .591 5.2 1.9 1.4 1.0 5.9
2002 L.A. Lakers 19 14 37.0 .449 .387 .789 8.1 3.2 1.7 .8 9.3
2003 L.A. Lakers 12 10 31.1 .319 .053 .556 6.7 3.1 1.3 1.0 5.6
2004 San Antonio 10 0 21.1 .465 .364 .929 6.3 .9 .8 .2 6.1
2005 San Antonio 23 0 26.9 .448 .447 .732 5.4 2.0 .9 .9 9.3
2006 San Antonio 13 5 17.2 .405 .353 .731 3.7 .8 .4 .7 4.2
2007 San Antonio 18 0 20.1 .417 .351 .824 3.9 1.6 .6 1.3 4.3
2008 San Antonio 15 0 10.3 .194 .227 .667 2.1 .5 .3 .3 1.5
Career 244 116 28.0 .426 .359 .722 5.6 2.4 1.1 .9 7.9

Personal life[edit]

Horry lives with his family in Houston. His first child, and daughter, Ashlyn, was diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder called 1p36 deletion syndrome, an affliction that develops when part of the first chromosome is missing. She died on June 14, 2011, at the age of 17. He also has a son, Cameron and daughter, Jade.[22]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Horry's last-minute shot helps Spurs to 3-1 series lead". ESPN.com. April 30, 2007. Retrieved 2007-05-16. 
  2. ^ "Where Legends Are Born: Robert Horry"
  3. ^ "Best Ever? Horry Fits Role Perfectly"
  4. ^ a b "There will never be another player quite like Big Shot Rob". ESPN
  5. ^ Horry Bio (archived). roberthorry.net.
  6. ^ Bucher, Ric (June 10, 2002), "Wake-Up Call", ESPN the Magazine 15 (2) 
  7. ^ Bolton, Jonathan W. (October 7, 2010). "Robert Horry". Encyclopedia of Alabama. Retrieved June 22, 2011. 
  8. ^ Robert Horry bio, NBA.com
  9. ^ Houston Rockets uniform number history. BasketballReference.com
  10. ^ NBA Finals Package: NBA Living History
  11. ^ "A Horry-wood Ending" Tuscaloosa News, May 28, 2002.
  12. ^ "Big Shot Bob Bags another one". ESPN
  13. ^ "TNT Postgame Interview". May 14, 2007. Retrieved May 18, 2008. 
  14. ^ "Duncan, Ginobili lead Spurs past short-handed Suns". ESPN.com. May 16, 2007. Retrieved May 18, 2008. 
  15. ^ Parker, Ginobili spark Spurs to fourth NBA championship, June 14, 2007
  16. ^ "Spurs: By the Numbers". nba.com, June 6. 2007. Retrieved 19 October 2007.
  17. ^ Derek Fisher bio. basketball-reference.com
  18. ^ http://espn.go.com/magazine/vol5no12horry.html
  19. ^ http://ashof.org/index.php?src=directory&view=company&srctype=detail&refno=563&category=2010
  20. ^ DuPree, David (May 26, 2005). "Horry sparks San Antonio". USA Today. Retrieved May 22, 2010. 
  21. ^ a b c d "Where Legends Are Born: Robert Horry". NBA.com. 2005-06-20. Retrieved 2007-05-16. 
  22. ^ Turner, Broderick (June 14, 2011). "Daughter of former Laker Robert Horry dies at age 17". Los Angeles Times. 

External links[edit]