March 5, 1977 |
|Listed height||6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)|
|Listed weight||244 lb (111 kg)|
|High school||Cold Spring Harbor
(Cold Spring Harbor, New York)
|College||Miami (Ohio) (1995–1999)|
|NBA draft||1999 / Round: 1 / Pick: 6th overall|
|Selected by the Minnesota Timberwolves|
|Position||Shooting guard / Small forward|
|Number||10, 55, 3|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NBA statistics|
|Points||9,195 (14.1 ppg)|
|Rebounds||2,602 (4.0 rpg)|
|Assists||1,532 (2.4 apg)|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
- 1 Early life
- 2 College career
- 3 NBA career
- 4 Sports broadcasting
- 5 Personal life
- 6 NBA career statistics
- 7 References
- 8 External links
Szczerbiak was born in Madrid, Spain, to Marilyn and Walt Szczerbiak, a former ABA player who was helping lead Real Madrid to three European League championships. While there he set a Spanish League single-game scoring record with 65 points. Wally spent much of his childhood in Europe during his father's playing career.
When Walt retired, he moved his family back to his native Long Island, New York. Wally played basketball at Cold Spring Harbor High School in Cold Spring Harbor, New York. As a senior in the 1994-95 season he averaged 36.6 points per game and 15.9 rebounds. He was named the winner of the Richard Sangler Award as Nassau County's outstanding boys' basketball player. Szczerbiak competed for the Long Island team in the 1994 Empire State Games. Despite Szczerbiak's outstanding high school statistics, his small school background failed to impress East Coast college coaches and he went unrecruited.
During the fall of his high school senior year, Szczerbiak and his parents visited the Miami University campus. The following Monday, despite Walt's wishes for Wally to wait on making a decision, Szczerbiak called coach Herb Sendek and committed to play for the Redhawks.
In his first two seasons there he averaged 8.0 and 12.8 points. As a junior in 1997-98 he burst onto the scene as one of college basketball's leading scorers, averaging 24.4 points per game and earning first-team All-MAC honors despite missing several games with a broken right wrist.
In his senior season he averaged 24.2 points per game and led the Redhawks to the Sweet 16 in the 1999 NCAA Tournament as a #10 seed. Szczerbiak scored a career-high 43 points in a first-round win over #7 seed Washington. He followed that with 24 points in a second round toppling of #2 seed Utah, leading the Redhawks to the Sweet 16. Despite Szczerbiak's 23-point performance they would eventually lose to Kentucky 58-43. Miami finished the season 24-8.
In 2001, Szczerbiak became the fifth Miami player to have his jersey retired (#32). In 2009, he was inducted into the Miami University Athletic Hall of Fame.
Minnesota Timberwolves (1999–2006)
The Minnesota Timberwolves selected Szczerbiak 6th overall in the 1999 NBA Draft. His best year as a pro was in 2002 when he was a coaches' selection to the Western Conference All-Star team. Later he tied a Timberwolves franchise record of 44 points on April 13, 2003, since broken by Kevin Love, Corey Brewer and Mo Williams. Szczerbiak was coming off the bench for the 2004-05 NBA season. He was uncomfortable with the role and wanted to be a starter. In the 2005-06 season, the former All–Star returned to the starting role.
Boston Celtics (2006–07)
On January 26, 2006, Szczerbiak, along with Michael Olowokandi, Dwayne Jones and a conditional first–round draft pick, was traded to the Boston Celtics for Ricky Davis, Mark Blount, Marcus Banks, Justin Reed, and two second-round draft picks.
Szczerbiak underwent knee surgery in the 2006 offseason to fix a knee which had been injured for several months.
In the 2006-07 season, Szczerbiak played well early on, including a 35-point performance against the Charlotte Bobcats early in the season. However, he was soon plagued by several injuries to both ankles, which greatly affected his shooting and jumping ability. Szczerbiak decided to have season-ending surgery on his ankles.
Seattle SuperSonics (2007–08)
On June 28 (the night of the 2007 NBA Draft), the Celtics traded Szczerbiak to the Seattle SuperSonics along with Delonte West and Jeff Green (the 5th overall pick) for Ray Allen and Glen Davis (35th overall).
Cleveland Cavaliers (2008–09)
On February 21, 2008, Szczerbiak and teammate Delonte West were traded by the SuperSonics to the Cleveland Cavaliers in a 3-way deal involving the Chicago Bulls, who also sent Ben Wallace and Joe Smith to Cleveland.
Szczerbiak played in 25 regular season games (one start) with the Cavaliers averaging 8.2 points and 3.2 rebounds. He scored 18 points against Detroit on April 16, 2008. Between the SuperSonics and the Cavaliers, Szczerbiak played in 75 games (two starts) and averaged 11.5 points and 2.9 rebounds.
During the 2008 NBA Playoffs Szczerbiak started at shooting guard for the Cavaliers, helping the Cavs defeat the Washington Wizards in the first–round by putting up 26 points and shooting 6–13 from the 3 point line in game six against. For the playoffs, Szczerbiak averaged 10.8 points per game.
During the 2008–2009 NBA season, Szczerbiak played in 74 games, starting in 5 of them. Given 20 minutes a game, Szczerbiak averaged 7 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 1.1 assists while shooting .450% from the field and .411% from the 3-point line.
On November 5, 2009, Szczerbiak revealed he'd had a career-ending third surgery performed on his left knee three weeks earlier.
A week later he reportedly rejected a league veteran's minimum contract offer from the Denver Nuggets, opting instead to continue to rehabilitate his knee and possibly test the free agent market later. Another contemporary report had him mulling a broadcasting career after a tryout with the New York Knicks reportedly fell through.
Szczerbiak succeeded in making the transition to sports broadcasting, becoming a basketball analyst for CBS College Sports.
Szczerbiak met his wife, Shannon (Ward), when they were both in the same freshman orientation group at Miami University and were married July 1, 2000. They have four children.
In 2013, Szczerbiak was inducted into the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame.
NBA career statistics
|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|
- NBA.com, Wally Szczerbiak, College Career
- Szczerbiak, Davis change teams in seven-player trade
- Sonics' Allen traded to Celtics for Wally, West & Green, June 29, 2007
- Cavs get Wallace from Bulls, Szczerbiak from Sonics, February 21, 2008
- http://www.rotoworld.com/content/playerpages/player_main.aspx?id=610&sport=Wally Szczerbiak news and career stats at Rotoworld.com
- "Bird Set to go at end of season" article, written By Peter Vescey, 18 October 2009.
- Wally's NY Knick Dream is over; Szczerbiak mulling retirement, NY Post, article 11 November 2009.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Wally Szczerbiak.|
- Career statistics and player information from Basketball-Reference.com
- NBA profile (archived from 2008)
- ESPN 1999 draft profile