|No. 5 – New Orleans Pelicans|
|Born||December 9, 1989|
|Listed height||6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)|
|Listed weight||214 lb (97 kg)|
|High school||Parker (Birmingham, Alabama)|
|NBA draft||2010 / Round: 1 / Pick: 18th overall|
|Selected by the Oklahoma City Thunder|
|2010–2013||Los Angeles Clippers|
|2020–present||New Orleans Pelicans|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Stats at NBA.com|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
Eric Bledsoe (born December 9, 1989) is an American professional basketball player for the New Orleans Pelicans of the National Basketball Association (NBA). At 6 ft 1 in, he plays the point guard position. After a season with Kentucky, he was selected by the Oklahoma City Thunder with the 18th overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft and subsequently traded to the Los Angeles Clippers. Bledsoe had a four-year tenure with the Phoenix Suns between 2013 and 2017, before being traded to the Milwaukee Bucks.
High school career
Bledsoe attended Parker High School in Birmingham, Alabama. As a senior in 2008–09, he averaged 20.3 points, 9.4 rebounds and 11.5 assists per game, and helped lead Parker to a 5A state championship runner-up finish. Considered a five-star recruit by Rivals.com, Bledsoe was listed as the No. 3 point guard and the No. 23 player in the nation in 2009.
Bledsoe played one season at Kentucky in 2009–10, and averaged 11.3 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 37 games (35 starts) to help the Wildcats to a 35–3 record and Elite Eight appearance. He was named to the Sporting News SEC All-Freshman Team and was a CollegeInsider.com Freshman All-American. He scored in double digits 20 times, including four games with at least 20 points. In four NCAA tournament games, he averaged 15.3 points and set a Kentucky school record of eight made three-pointers in an NCAA tournament game against East Tennessee State in scoring a career-high 29 points (9-11 FG, 8-9 3 FG). Despite being a natural point guard, Bledsoe often filled the shooting guard role playing alongside fellow freshman John Wall.
In September 2010, it was reported that Bledsoe may have been ineligible to play his one season for Kentucky when discrepancies were found in his high school transcripts. The Alabama Public School System hired the independent law firm of White Arnold & Dowd to investigate claims that one of Bledsoe's grades was improperly changed. His algebra grade had been changed from a C to an A, thus raising his GPA high enough that he was eligible for the NCAA.
Though the investigators concluded that the instructor's reasons for changing the grade were "not credible", and that a significant number of his high school grades were written over to reflect higher grades, the school board voted to allow the grade to stand, and the NCAA declared its investigation of Bledsoe's eligibility closed the following week.
Los Angeles Clippers (2010–2013)
During pre-draft workout, Bledsoe was touted for his quickness, ball handling ability, and ability to hit the long ball. He was subsequently selected with the 18th overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft by the Oklahoma City Thunder, but was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers. In his first season, he averaged 6.7 points and 3.6 assists and started 25 games. As a result, he was named to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team. In his second season, due to the Clippers' acquisition of Chris Paul, he played only an average of 11 minutes per game, with only one start, and his stats dropped. In fact, during that season, he ended up being assigned to the Clippers' NBA Development League affiliate team, the Bakersfield Jam. However, during his third season, his statistics ended up rising in spite of still being behind Chris Paul for most of the games that he played. Bledsoe also participated in the 2013 All-Star Game's Slam Dunk Contest.
Phoenix Suns (2013–2017)
On July 10, 2013, Bledsoe was traded to the Phoenix Suns alongside teammate Caron Butler in a three-way trade with the L.A. Clippers and the Milwaukee Bucks that sent the Suns' Jared Dudley and the Bucks' J. J. Redick to the Clippers with two different second round picks going to the Bucks. On his opening night debut with the Suns, Bledsoe helped the team by getting 22 points, 6 rebounds, and 7 assists in a 104-91 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers. In his second game with the Suns, Bledsoe hit his first ever game-winning shot in an 87-84 home victory over the Utah Jazz. Before the November 19, 2013, game against the Sacramento Kings, Bledsoe's shin collided with teammate P. J. Tucker during practice. He would miss six games before returning with 17 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 steals in a 112-101 victory against the Jazz on November 29, 2013. Bledsoe scored a then-career-high 28 points in a 116-107 victory against the Sacramento Kings on December 13, 2013. Bledsoe also got his first double-double with the Suns by scoring 16 points, grabbing 11 rebounds, and putting up 7 assists in a blowout 117-90 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on December 23, 2013.
During the third quarter of the Suns' last game of 2013 against the Clippers, Bledsoe injured his left shin. What began as a shin injury eventually turned into a meniscus injury that would leave him sidelined for nearly two and a half months. His injury was a leading factor in the Suns signing former player Leandro Barbosa back onto the team for the rest of that season. Bledsoe returned to action on March 12, 2014 against the Cleveland Cavaliers. He started for the Suns again and racked up 17 points and 10 rebounds two days later in an 87-80 victory against the Boston Celtics. He continued to start for the team throughout the rest of the season. On November 14, 2019, Bledsoe scored 31 points, setting a new NBA career high, in a 124-115 victory over the Chicago Bulls.
On June 27, 2014, the Suns extended a qualifying offer to Bledsoe, thus making him a restricted free agent. After months of deliberation and rumors concerning his future, Bledsoe and the Suns reached an agreement on a new five-year, $70 million contract on September 24, 2014. In the Suns' 2014–15 season opener against the Los Angeles Lakers on October 29, 2014, Bledsoe recorded 16 points, nine assists, and six rebounds before he drew his second technical foul and was ejected with 30 seconds left in the third quarter. Despite Bledsoe's ejection, the Suns went on to win 119-99.
On December 8, 2014, Bledsoe recorded his first career triple-double with 27 points, 11 rebounds and 16 assists in the 120-121 overtime loss to his former team, the Los Angeles Clippers. On December 23, Bledsoe recorded his second career triple-double and first one without resulting in an overtime, as he recorded 16 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists in the 124-115 win over the Dallas Mavericks. On January 21, 2015, Bledsoe recorded a career-high 33 points, along with 10 rebounds and 6 assists, in a 118-113 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers. On February 26, 2015, Bledsoe recorded a near triple-double with 28 points on 11-of-16 shooting, 13 rebounds, and 9 assists, as well as 4 blocks and a steal in a 117-113 overtime win over the Oklahoma City Thunder. In doing so, he became just the ninth player in NBA history to record similar kinds of statistics during the regular season, as well as the first point guard to record 50% shooting for 28 or more points while recording 13 or more rebounds, 9 or more assists, 4 or more blocks, and at least one steal in a game. On March 21, he scored a career-high 34 points in a 117–102 win over the Houston Rockets.
On October 31, 2015, Bledsoe was only two points shy from tying his career-high in points scored, finishing with 33 points and 6 assists in a 101–90 win over the Portland Trail Blazers. On November 12, Bledsoe was one assist shy of recording a triple-double, finishing with 26 points, 10 rebounds and 9 assists in a 118–104 win over the Los Angeles Clippers. On December 13, in a win over the Minnesota Timberwolves, Bledsoe recorded 23 points with nine assists plus four steals and tied a career-high with four blocked shots. It was the NBA's first "four-by-four" (at least four rebounds, four assists, four steals and four blocks) by a guard since Dwyane Wade did it on February 28, 2009. On December 29, he underwent successful surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee and was subsequently ruled out for the remainder of the 2015–16 season. With Bledsoe out, the Suns managed just 11 more wins over the final three months of the season.
On September 15, 2016, Bledsoe was cleared for his first five-on-five scrimmage play. He made his return to the court in the Suns' season opener on October 26 against the Sacramento Kings. In his first game since injuring his knee in December 2015, Bledsoe recorded 16 points, six rebounds, five assists and one steal in a 113–94 loss. On November 2, he scored 20 points and hit the game-winning three-pointer in overtime to give the Suns their first win of the season with a 118–115 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers. On November 27, he scored a career-high 35 points in a 120–114 loss to the Denver Nuggets. On December 13, he had a 31-point game in a 113–111 overtime win over the New York Knicks. It was his third straight 30-point game, thus becoming the first Suns player with three straight since Amar'e Stoudemire in March 2010. On December 23, Bledsoe recorded 24 points and a season-high 11 assists in a 123–116 win over the Philadelphia 76ers. On January 16, 2017, Bledsoe fell just short of his third career triple-double with 31 points, nine rebounds and nine assists in a 106–101 loss to the Utah Jazz. Six days later, he recorded a career-high 40 points and a season-high 13 assists in a 115–103 win over the Toronto Raptors. He surpassed that mark on January 28 with a 41-point effort in a 123–112 loss to Denver. Two games later on February 1, Bledsoe tied his career high with another 41-point effort in a 124–114 loss to his former team, the Los Angeles Clippers. Bledsoe's three 40-points games within 11 days is the fewest days needed to post three 40-point games in Suns history—the record was previously 13, set by Charlie Scott in 1973. In the Suns' last game before the 2017 NBA All-Star Weekend, on February 15, Bledsoe recorded his third career triple-double with 25 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assists in a 137–101 win over the Los Angeles Lakers. On March 15, he was shut down for the remainder of the season after battling knee soreness.
On October 22, 2017, just three games into the season, Bledsoe tweeted out "I Dont wanna be here", which Suns general manager Ryan McDonough took as a slight against the organization and dismissed him from playing with the team. Bledsoe claimed that the tweet referred to being in a hair salon. On November 5, 2017, Bledsoe was fined $10,000 by the NBA for his tweet. That same day, it was reported that Bledsoe would return to Suns team facilities to work out with staff members.
Milwaukee Bucks (2017–2020)
On November 7, 2017, Bledsoe was traded to the Milwaukee Bucks in exchange for Greg Monroe and a protected first and second-round draft pick. He made his debut for the Bucks three days later, recording 13 points and seven assists in a 94–87 win over the San Antonio Spurs. On November 22, in his return to Phoenix, Bledsoe scored 30 points in a 113–107 overtime win over the Suns. On March 30, 2018, he scored 39 points in a 124–122 overtime win over the Los Angeles Lakers. On April 9, 2018, he had his fourth career triple-double with 20 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists in a 102–86 win over the Orlando Magic.
On January 19, 2019, Bledsoe scored 30 points in a 118–108 win over the Magic. On February 27, he recorded 26 points, 13 assists and 12 rebounds in a 141–140 overtime win over the Sacramento Kings. On March 1, he scored 31 points in a 131–120 win over the Lakers. On March 4, he signed a four-year, $70 million contract extension with the Bucks. At the season's end, he was named to the NBA All-Defensive First Team. On December 14, 2019, the Milwaukee Bucks announced that Bledsoe had suffered from a right fibula avulsion fracture during a 127–114 seasons win over the Memphis Grizzlies and was expected to be sidelined for about two weeks. Bledsoe helped the Bucks capture the best record in the league for the second consecutive season, however Milwaukee once again failed to appear in the NBA Finals, losing to the eventual Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat in five games in the Semi-Finals, with Bledsoe missing Game 1 due to a hamstring injury. Bledsoe was heavily criticized due to an underwhelming postseason performance, including an average of just 11.75 points and five assists on 33% shooting in the series against Miami.
New Orleans Pelicans (2020–present)
On November 24, 2020, Bledsoe was traded to the New Orleans Pelicans. In his debut with the Pelicans, Bledsoe recorded 18 points, two rebounds and six assists in a 113–99 win over the Toronto Raptors.
|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|
Bledsoe's mother, Maureen Reddick, worked several jobs and raised three children on her own in Birmingham, Alabama. Bledsoe has three children: sons Ethan & Emory and daughter Eriauna. On July 1, 2017, he married longtime girlfriend Morgan Poole in his hometown of Birmingham, Alabama. On July 16, 2020, he tested positive for COVID-19.
- Player Bio: Eric Bledsoe
- Eric Bledsoe – Yahoo! Sports
- "Eric Bledsoe Stats, Video, Bio, Profile". NBA.com. Archived from the original on October 1, 2015. Retrieved October 1, 2015.
- Tipton, Jerry (April 8, 2010). "Five Cats declare for NBA Draft". Kentucky.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013.
- Solomon, Jon; Leech, Marie (September 14, 2010). "Records differed on Eric Bledsoe's Birmingham prep grades". The Birmingham News. Retrieved October 2, 2010.
- Solomon, Jon (September 28, 2010). "NCAA closes book on Bledsoe case". The Birmingham News. Retrieved April 16, 2013.
- Brennan, Eamonn (September 24, 2010). "The strange ruling on Eric Bledsoe's grades". College Basketball Nation Blog. ESPN. Retrieved October 2, 2010.
- Bledsoe Grade Change Questioned but Upheld
- "Suns Complete Deal for Eric Bledsoe and Caron Butler". NBA.com. July 10, 2013. Archived from the original on October 5, 2013. Retrieved July 10, 2013.
- Notebook: Cavaliers 110, Suns 101
- "Suns Extend Qualifying Offers to Bledsoe, Tucker". NBA.com. June 27, 2014. Retrieved June 27, 2014.
- "Suns and Bledsoe Reach Multiyear Deal". NBA.com. September 24, 2014. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
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- "Suns rout Lakers 119-99 despite Kobe's 31 points". NBA.com. October 29, 2014. Archived from the original on November 12, 2014. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
- "Clippers beat Suns 121-120 in OT on Griffin's 3". NBA.com. December 8, 2014. Archived from the original on December 9, 2014. Retrieved December 9, 2014.
- "Bledsoe gets triple-double, Suns beat Mavericks 124-115". NBA.com. December 23, 2014. Archived from the original on December 25, 2014. Retrieved December 23, 2014.
- "Bledsoe scores career high 33, Suns top Blazers 118-113". NBA.com. January 21, 2015. Retrieved February 21, 2015.
- Putting Eric Bledsoe's Stat Line From Last Night in Historical Context
- "Bledsoe scores career-best 34 as Suns beat Rockets 117-102". Archived from the original on June 30, 2015. Retrieved March 22, 2015.
- "Bledsoe has 33 and Suns beat Blazers 101-90". October 31, 2015. Retrieved November 16, 2015.
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- "Knight's 25 points lead Suns over Timberwolves 108-101". Archived from the original on February 16, 2016. Retrieved December 18, 2015.
- Suns grind out victory over visiting Timberwolves
- Bledsoe Surgery Update
- Coro, Paul (September 15, 2016). "Phoenix Suns' Tucker out 6-8 weeks for back surgery". azcentral.com. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
- "Cousins, Gay lead Kings past young Suns 113-94". ESPN.com. October 26, 2016. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
- "Bledsoe's 3 sinks Blazers in OT, 118-115". ESPN.com. November 2, 2016. Retrieved November 3, 2016.
- "Suns' rally falls short, Nuggets win 120-114". ESPN.com. November 27, 2016. Retrieved November 27, 2016.
- "Bledsoe, Suns beat Knicks 113-111 in OT". ESPN.com. December 13, 2016. Retrieved December 13, 2016.
- "@EBled2 has his third straight 30-point game..." Twitter. December 13, 2016. Retrieved December 13, 2016.
- "Booker, Bledsoe lead Suns past 76ers, 123-116". ESPN.com. December 23, 2016. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
- "Johnson's big 4th quarter gives Jazz 106-101 win over Suns". ESPN.com. January 16, 2017. Retrieved January 17, 2017.
- "Bledsoe's career day leads Suns over Raptors 115-103". ESPN.com. January 22, 2017. Retrieved January 22, 2017.
- "Bledsoe scores 41 but Nuggets beat Suns again, 123-112". ESPN.com. January 28, 2017. Retrieved January 29, 2017.
- "Griffin scores 29, Clippers bounce back to beat Suns 124-114". ESPN.com. February 1, 2017. Retrieved February 2, 2017.
- Scheessele, Keith M. (February 2, 2017). "Eric Bledsoe set a Phoenix Suns record last night". brightsideofthesun.com. Retrieved February 2, 2017.
- "Bledsoe's triple-double leads Suns over Lakers, 137-101". ESPN.com. February 15, 2017. Retrieved February 15, 2017.
- Somers, Kent (March 15, 2017). "Suns shut down Eric Bledsoe ahead of loss to Kings". azcentral.com. Retrieved March 16, 2017.
- "Eric Bledsoe Tweet Was About Hair Salon". BleacherReport.com. October 23, 2017. Retrieved November 13, 2017.
- Bordow, Scott (November 5, 2017). "NBA fines Suns guard Eric Bledsoe $10K for tweet". azcentral.com. Retrieved November 5, 2017.
- "Report: Eric Bledsoe to return to Phoenix Suns team facilities". NBA.com. November 5, 2017. Retrieved November 8, 2017.
- "BUCKS ACQUIRE ERIC BLEDSOE FROM bhfbjb PHOENIX". NBA.com. November 7, 2017. Retrieved November 7, 2017.
- "Antetokounmpo leads Bucks past Spurs in Bledsoe's debut". ESPN.com. November 10, 2017. Retrieved November 10, 2017.
- "Middleton scores 40 points, Bucks beat Suns in OT". ESPN.com. November 22, 2017. Retrieved November 22, 2017.
- "Bledsoe scores 39, Bucks beat Lakers 124-122 in OT". ESPN.com. March 30, 2018. Retrieved March 30, 2018.
- "Bucks close out Bradley Center with 102-86 win over Magic". ESPN.com. April 9, 2018. Retrieved April 9, 2018.
- "Bledsoe scores 30 points, Bucks hold off Magic 118-108". ESPN.com. January 19, 2019. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
- "Bledsoe has triple-double as Bucks edge Kings 141-140 in OT". ESPN.com. February 27, 2019. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
- "Bucks outlast Lakers 131-120 for 8th straight win". ESPN.com. March 1, 2019. Retrieved March 2, 2019.
- "Bucks Sign Eric Bledsoe to Contract Extension". NBA.com. March 4, 2019. Retrieved March 4, 2019.
- Wojnarowski, Adrian (March 1, 2019). "Sources: Bucks extend Bledsoe for 4 years, $70M". ESPN.com. Retrieved March 2, 2019.
- "Gobert, George, Antetokounmpo lead 2018-19 All-Defensive First Team". NBA.com. May 22, 2019. Retrieved June 24, 2019.
- "Medical Update On Eric Bledsoe". NBA.com. December 14, 2019. Retrieved December 14, 2019.
- "Pelicans acquire Steven Adams, Eric Bledsoe in four-team trade". NBA.com. November 24, 2020. Retrieved November 24, 2020.
- "Pelicans' Eric Bledsoe: Impresses in debut". CBS Sports. December 23, 2020. Retrieved January 29, 2021.
- Boivin: Phoenix Suns' Eric Bledsoe is focused on earning respect
- Family, Flexing and a Fighter...
- Eric Bledsoe got married — and two former Kentucky Wildcats attended
- LeBron James Birmingham bound for Eric Bledsoe's wedding
- Selbe, Nick. "Bucks' Eric Bledsoe Tests Positive for COVID-19". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved July 21, 2020.
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