Raja Bell (born September 19, 1976) is an American retired professional basketball player who played in the National Basketball Association (NBA) for the Philadelphia 76ers, Dallas Mavericks, Utah Jazz, Phoenix Suns, Charlotte Bobcats, and Golden State Warriors. He is the Director of Player Administration for the Cleveland Cavaliers. He was twice named to the NBA All-Defensive Team in his career.
Bell with the Suns
|Position||Director of Player Administration|
|Born||September 19, 1976|
Saint Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands
|Listed height||6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)|
|Listed weight||210 lb (95 kg)|
|High school||Miami Killian (Miami, Florida)|
|NBA draft||1999 / Undrafted|
|Number||19, 11, 18|
|1999–2000||Yakima Sun Kings|
|2009–2010||Golden State Warriors|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NBA statistics|
|Points||6,998 (9.9 ppg)|
|Rebounds||1,968 (2.8 rpg)|
|Assists||1,208 (1.7 apg)|
Bell was born on Saint Croix, in the U.S. Virgin Islands and grew up in the greater Miami, Florida area, attending Ponce de Leon Junior High School, Gulliver Academy and Miami Killian Senior High School. He began his college career at Boston University, where he was America East Conference (then called North Atlantic Conference) Freshman of the Year. But after a sophomore year slump and difficulties with head coach Dennis Wolff, he transferred to Florida International University (FIU) in Miami. As a Senior, he led the FIU Golden Panthers to a Sun Belt Conference tournament title, and a bid in the NCAA tournament. Bell went undrafted out of college in the 1999 NBA draft.
Philadelphia 76ers (2001–2002)Edit
He signed as a free agent with the San Antonio Spurs on August 2, 2000, but never played a game for them. He was eventually released, and signed with the Philadelphia 76ers on April 16, 2001. He played limited minutes in the final five of the Sixers' games in the 2000–01 regular season, but saw action in 15 of the team's 23 playoff games. The little-used Bell starred in Game 7 of the 2001 Eastern Conference Finals, scoring 10 points (all in the 2nd quarter) and rallying the Sixers from an early deficit against the Bucks as the 76ers won easily. He played in all five games for the 76ers in the 2001 NBA Finals.
Bell played in 74 games with the Sixers in the 2001–02 NBA season, averaging 3.4 points per game, and played in three of the team's five playoff games as the Sixers suffered a five-game playoff series loss to the Boston Celtics.
Dallas Mavericks (2002–2003)Edit
On October 1, 2002, Bell signed as a free agent with the Dallas Mavericks, and he averaged 3.1 points in 15.6 minutes per game. For the first time in his NBA career, he gained extensive starting experience, starting in 32 of the 75 games he played.
Bell averaged 5.7 points and 3.0 rebounds per game in 17 post-season games with the 2003 Mavericks as the team advanced to the Western Conference Finals.
Utah Jazz (2003–2005)Edit
On September 26, 2003, Bell signed with the Utah Jazz, and enjoyed what had been his most successful season since entering the NBA. Bell played in all 82 of the Jazz's games, and despite starting in only four of them, he posted career highs with 11.2 points, 2.9 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 24.6 minutes per game. In the 2004–05 season he slightly improved upon these stats with 12.3 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 1.4 assists per game, despite playing in only 63 games.
Phoenix Suns (2005–2008)Edit
On August 3, 2005, Bell signed with the Phoenix Suns. Bell responded to the presence of Steve Nash and became an extremely solid contributor. He started in all 79 games he played in, and finished the 2005–06 season averaging 14.7 points per game in 37.5 minutes per game.
Bell also hit a career high 44.2% of his 3-point field goal attempts during the 2005–06 season. He was chosen to participate in the 2006 NBA Footlocker Three-Point Shootout, but did not participate due to a family illness and was replaced by Gilbert Arenas.
One of the most notable incidents of Bell's career occurred in the 2006 NBA Playoffs on May 2, 2006, in Game 5 of a first round series against the Los Angeles Lakers. Bell clotheslined Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant on a hard foul, resulting in an ejection (with 7:33 left to play in the game). In the postgame press conference, Bell explained that he was retaliating to an elbow to the jaw from Bryant. "It's a personal thing when someone continually hits you in the face. That's the only way I can put it. I've been playing as hard as I can play. I've been trying to do a good job, I've been trying to be what my team needs me to be, and I continually get hit in my face. There doesn't seem to be any boundaries or limitations for what he's allowed to do to me, and at that point, I kind of lost my cool and I took it into my own hands." Bell was suspended for one game after his clothesline. The Suns eventually won the series in 7 games.
During the next round of the 2006 NBA Playoffs, Bell demonstrated his clutch abilities in Game 5 with a last second three-pointer in overtime against the Los Angeles Clippers to tie the game and send it into double-overtime, where the Suns eventually pulled away to win and go up 3 to 2 in the series. In Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals against the Dallas Mavericks, midway through the fourth quarter, Bell sustained a calf injury which forced him to miss the rest of the game, as well as the next two games of the series. Bell returned in Game 4 to help the Suns tie the series at two games apiece, though they eventually fell to the Mavericks.
Charlotte Bobcats (2008–2009)Edit
On December 10, 2008, Bell was traded to the Charlotte Bobcats along with Boris Diaw and Sean Singletary in exchange for Jason Richardson, Jared Dudley and a 2010 second-round draft pick in a move by the Suns to retool their roster. This came after a disappointing start to the season for Bell during which he posted just 9.6 points per game and saw a diminished role under new coach Terry Porter.
Golden State Warriors (2009–2010)Edit
On November 16, 2009, Bell was traded to the Golden State Warriors along with Vladimir Radmanović in exchange for Stephen Jackson and Acie Law. He played just one game for the Warriors; in his lone performance scoring 11 points while hitting all three of his three-point attempts. He was released from the team on March 22, 2010.
Return to Utah (2010–2013)Edit
On July 14, 2010, Bell signed a three-year, $10 million contract to return to the Utah Jazz. However, his relationship with the team soured after two seasons. In a mutual agreement, he spent much of the 2012–13 season away from the team while still under contract. On March 10, 2013, Bell was waived by the Jazz.
On February 13, 2014, Bell announced his retirement from basketball.
On October 1, 2014, the Cleveland Cavaliers announced the hiring of Bell as the team's Director of Player Administration. He won an NBA Championship with the Cavs in 2016 in this role. In early 2016, Bell was named a finalist for the Kenny Whetham Memorial Trophy for his off-court efforts in the community. His prominent charge for the hardware was put to a stop when Magglio Ordonez was announced as the champion due to his charitable actions after the severe earthquake that rocked Guatemala in November of 2015.
Personal life and familyEdit
In July 2004, Bell married his girlfriend, Cindy Greenman. On May 2, 2007, Cindy gave birth to their first child, Dia, by c-section six hours before tip-off of Game 5 against the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1st round of the 2007 NBA Playoffs. The Suns won that game 119–110, closing the series at 4–1. His wife gave birth to another child, Tai Brooklyn, on November 8, 2008. He weighed 6 lbs, 8 oz and was 18 inches long. Bell has siblings named Brooklyn, Tyler, Destiny, Jack, and Tombi Bell. Tombi is a former WNBA basketball player out of the University of Florida and former coach of the Miami Hurricanes women's basketball team.
NBA career statisticsEdit
|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|
- "Jazz Agree to terms with Bell". NBA.com. 2003-09-26. Retrieved 2009-01-19.
- "Suns Sign Guard Raja Bell". NBA.com. 2005-08-03. Retrieved 2009-01-19.
- Haller, Doug (May 3, 2006). "Bell's foul is cause for great concern". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved 2007-04-29.
- Coro, Paul (May 4, 2006). "Bell ringers: Raja blasts Kobe". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved 2007-04-29.
- "NBA suspends Bell for kicking Bargnani". Associated Press. January 5, 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-31.
- "2006–07 NBA Expanded Standings and Leaders". Basketball-Reference.com. Archived from the original on 2007-07-02. Retrieved 2007-08-04.
- NBA Player 3-Point Shooting Statistics - 2006-07 (sorted by Three-point Field Goals Made)
- "Bobcats Acquire Boris Diaw, Raja Bell and Sean Singletary from Phoenix". NBA.com. 2008-12-10. Archived from the original on 2008-12-13. Retrieved 2008-12-11. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "Warriors Acquire Bell & Radmanovic From Charlotte". NBA.com. 2009-11-16. Retrieved 2009-11-16.
- Raja Bell Game Log - Utah Jazz - ESPN (2009-10)
- "Warriors Sign Reggie Williams For Remainder of Season". NBA.com. 2010-03-22. Retrieved 2010-03-23.
- Bresnahan, Mike (2010-07-15). "Raja Bell to Utah, not LA". NBA.com. Retrieved 2010-07-15.
- Pincus, Eric (February 26, 2013). "Utah Jazz executive talks Raja Bell and the Lakers". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on February 27, 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "Jazz Waives Guard Raja Bell". NBA.com. 2013-03-10. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
- Raja Bell Retires From NBA
- Jerry Zgoda [@JerryZgoda] (31 January 2015). "Kevin Love in the house" (Tweet) – via Twitter. /photo/1
- Raja Bell welcomes his champion son : Celebrity Baby Blog