Derek Harper

Derek Ricardo Harper (born October 13, 1961) is an American former professional basketball player. A second-team All-American at the University of Illinois, he was the 11th overall pick of the 1983 NBA draft and spent 16 seasons as a point guard in the National Basketball Association with the Dallas Mavericks, New York Knicks, Orlando Magic and Los Angeles Lakers. Harper is widely regarded as one of the best players to never have been selected to an All-Star game.

Derek Harper
Personal information
Born (1961-10-13) October 13, 1961 (age 59)
Elberton, Georgia
NationalityAmerican
Listed height6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Listed weight185 lb (84 kg)
Career information
High schoolNorth Shore
(West Palm Beach, Florida)
CollegeIllinois (1980–1983)
NBA draft1983 / Round: 1 / Pick: 11th overall
Selected by the Dallas Mavericks
Playing career1983–1999
PositionPoint guard
Number12, 11
Career history
19831994Dallas Mavericks
19941996New York Knicks
1996–1997Dallas Mavericks
1997–1998Orlando Magic
1999Los Angeles Lakers
Career highlights and awards
Career NBA statistics
Points16,006 (13.3 ppg)
Rebounds2,884 (2.4 rpg)
Assists6,577 (5.5 apg)
Stats Edit this at Wikidata at NBA.com
Stats at Basketball-Reference.com

CollegeEdit

After graduating from Roosevelt Junior High School and then North Shore High School in West Palm Beach, Harper played three seasons for the Fighting Illini and coach Lou Henson having his best season in 1982–1983, when he led the Fighting Illini in scoring with 15.4 points per game. Harper was named First-Team All-Big Ten and Second-Team All-American in 1983, and was Honorable Mention All-Big Ten in both 1981 and 1982. Harper averaged 4.7 assists per game for his collegiate career, and led the Big Ten in assists in the 1981–1982 season. Harper was elected to the "Illini Men's Basketball All-Century Team" in 2004.

Professional careerEdit

Dallas Mavericks (1983-1993)Edit

At 6 ft 4 in, Harper was drafted by the Dallas Mavericks with the 11th overall pick of the 1983 NBA draft. He spent his first ten seasons with them, averaging 15 points and 6.1 assists. For almost the entire time in his first stint with the team, he was part of the starting backcourt tandem with All-Star shooting guard Rolando Blackman.[1] The Mavericks made the playoffs 6 out of the 10 years of Harper's tenure with the team, and they made it to the Western Conference Finals in the 1987-1988 season, but they were never able to replicate that success for any other season of Harper's time in Dallas. He had multiple seasons of averaging well over 10 PPG easily, he became well known for being a great scorer and defender. His best season came in 1990-1991 where he averaged 19.7 PPG. But he still wasn't selected to be an all star and the Mavericks finished that year with an unpleasant 28-54 record. Harper still played well for the rest of his time in Dallas, but the team was atrocious. In the 1992-1993 season especially, the Mavericks finished 11-71 which is one of the worst records of all time. Harper spent 2 more seasons with the Mavericks before leaving the team during the 1993-1994 season.

New York Knicks (1993-1996)Edit

Harper was traded to the New York Knicks (where he was reunited with Blackman) 28 games into the 1993–94 season. The Knicks were looking for a defensive point guard to replace the injured Doc Rivers, who was sidelined for the rest of the season. The shift sent him from a team that finished 13–69 to being an integral part of one that came within one game of winning the 1994 NBA Championship. His stats declined as he had to adjust to having less of an individual role, but his best season with the Knicks came in his last year with the team where he averaged 14.0 PPG. On July 14, 1996 he was released by the Knicks and became a free agent.

Return to Dallas (1996-1997)Edit

Harper returned to Dallas after signing with the Mavericks on July 26. In his return he averaged 10.0 PPG and 4.3 APG. He played well at the age of 35 but the Mavericks were still a bad team, finishing the season with only 24 wins. This would be the final season that he would play for the Mavericks.

Orlando Magic (1997-1998)Edit

Harper was traded by the Mavericks with Ed O'Bannon to the Orlando Magic for Dennis Scott and cash. He played one season for the Magic, his scoring and overall play dropped off but he was still a solid bench player. The Magic had a decent roster but the team was very old. 16 out of the 22 players on the roster were either 30 years old or older, Harper was one of those 16 players (he was 36 at the time). The team had an average record of 41-41 and missed the playoffs. Harper's contract expired in the 1998 offseason and he left the team.

Los Angeles Lakers (1999)Edit

Harper signed as a free agent with the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers were a great team and had a young Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant who lead the way. They made the playoffs and it was the first time Harper had reached the playoffs since 1996 with the Knicks. The Lakers made it to the second round but got swept by the San Antonio Spurs. This would be the final year of Harper's career.

RetirementEdit

In the 1999 offseason, the Lakers traded Harper to the Detroit Pistons, but he didn't report to the team. He retired from the NBA shortly after.

On December 18, 2017, the Mavericks announced that they were planning to retire Harper's no. 12 jersey,[2] which was eventually retired on January 7, 2018.[3]

Personal lifeEdit

Harper lives in Dallas with his family. His daughter Dana Harper was a contestant on season 11 of The Voice. He is now a game analyst for the Dallas Mavericks on their locally broadcast games. Beginning in fall 2005, he was the weekend sports anchor at KTXA serving the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex until the station ended its newscasts. The Dallas Mavericks retired Harper's #12 jersey during halftime of a game between the New York Knicks and Dallas Mavericks on Sunday, January 7, 2018.

HonorsEdit

BasketballEdit

  • 1981 - Honorable Mention All-Big Ten
  • 1982 - Honorable Mention All-Big Ten
  • 1983 - Team Captain[4]
  • 1983 - Team MVP
  • 1983 - 1st Team All-Big Ten
  • 2008 - Honored as one of the 33 honored jerseys which hang in the State Farm Center to show regard for being the most decorated basketball players in the University of Illinois' history.
  • 2018 - Dallas Mavericks #12 jersey retired

College statisticsEdit

Season Games Points PPG Field Goals Attempts Avg Free Throws Attempts Avg Rebounds Avg Assists APG
1980–81
29
241
8.3
104
252
.413
33
46
.717
75
2.6
156
5.4
1981–82
29
244
8.4
105
230
.457
34
45
.756
133
4.6
145
5.0
1982–83
32
492
15.4
198
369
.537
83
123
.675
112
3.5
118
3.7
Totals
90
977
10.9
407
851
.478
150
214
.701
320
3.6
419
4.7

[5]

NBA career statisticsEdit

Harper played in 1,199 regular season games in his career, tying him for 35th in NBA history (as of the 2013–14 NBA season).[6] He retired having the 11th-most steals and the 17th-most assists in NBA history. He is also the Mavericks' career leader in those categories.

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

Regular seasonEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
1983–84 Dallas 82 1 20.9 .443 .115 .673 2.1 2.9 1.2 .3 5.7
1984–85 Dallas 82 1 27.0 .520 .344 .721 2.4 4.4 1.8 .5 9.6
1985–86 Dallas 79 39 27.2 .534 .235 .747 2.9 5.3 1.9 .3 12.2
1986–87 Dallas 77 76 33.2 .501 .358 .684 2.6 7.9 2.2 .3 16.0
1987–88 Dallas 82 82 37.0 .459 .313 .759 3.0 7.7 2.0 .4 17.0
1988–89 Dallas 81 81 36.6 .477 .356 .806 2.8 7.0 2.1 .5 17.3
1989–90 Dallas 82 82 36.7 .488 .371 .794 3.0 7.4 2.3 .3 18.0
1990–91 Dallas 77 77 37.4 .467 .362 .731 3.0 7.1 1.9 .2 19.7
1991–92 Dallas 65 64 34.6 .443 .312 .759 2.6 5.7 1.6 .3 17.7
1992–93 Dallas 62 60 34.0 .419 .393 .756 2.0 5.4 1.3 .3 18.2
1993–94 Dallas 28 28 31.9 .380 .352 .560 2.0 3.5 1.6 .1 11.6
1993–94 New York 54 27 24.3 .430 .367 .743 1.6 4.4 1.5 .1 8.6
1994–95 New York 80 80 34.0 .446 .363 .724 2.4 5.7 1.0 .1 11.5
1995–96 New York 82 82 35.3 .464 .372 .757 2.5 4.3 1.6 .1 14.0
1996–97 Dallas 75 29 29.5 .444 .341 .742 1.8 4.3 1.2 .2 10.0
1997–98 Orlando 66 45 26.7 .417 .360 .696 1.6 3.5 1.1 .2 8.6
1998–99 L. A. Lakers 45 29 24.9 .412 .368 .813 1.5 4.2 1.0 .1 6.9
Career 1,199 883 31.5 .463 .354 .745 2.4 5.5 1.6 .3 13.3

PlayoffsEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
1984 Dallas 10 22.6 .389 .375 .714 2.0 2.8 1.1 .2 5.0
1985 Dallas 4 0 33.0 .476 .333 .714 3.0 5.0 1.5 .3 6.5
1986 Dallas 10 10 34.8 .533 .571 .750 1.9 7.6 2.3 .0 13.4
1987 Dallas 4 4 30.8 .500 .222 .800 3.0 6.8 1.8 .0 16.5
1988 Dallas 17 17 35.4 .441 .250 .729 2.5 7.1 1.9 .3 13.5
1990 Dallas 3 3 39.7 .438 .313 .688 2.7 7.7 1.3 .0 19.3
1994 New York 23 22 32.6 .429 .341 .643 2.3 4.5 1.8 .0 11.4
1995 New York 11 11 35.3 .514 .574 .750 3.5 5.6 1.0 .1 14.3
1996 New York 8 8 36.6 .354 .314 .733 2.1 4.8 1.3 .1 10.0
1999 L. A. Lakers 7 0 16.1 .419 .100 .500 1.4 2.1 .3 .0 4.3
Career 97 75 31.9 .449 .365 .712 2.4 5.3 1.5 .1 11.3

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Rolando Blackman Stats - Basketball-Reference.com". Basketball-Reference.com. Retrieved March 29, 2017.
  2. ^ Ahmadi, Arya (December 18, 2017). "Mavericks to retire Derek Harper's No. 12 jersey". NBA.com. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
  3. ^ Casas, Kevin (January 7, 2018). "Mavericks retire Derek Harper's No. 12 jersey". star-telegram. Retrieved January 8, 2018.
  4. ^ FightingIllini.com
  5. ^ Sports-Reference.com
  6. ^ "NBA & ABA Career Leaders and Records for Games - Basketball-Reference.com". Basketball-Reference.com. Retrieved March 29, 2017.

External linksEdit