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Vin Baker shoots a free throw
|Born||November 23, 1971|
Lake Wales, Florida
|Listed height||6 ft 11 in (2.11 m)|
|Listed weight||232 lb (105 kg)|
|High school||Old Saybrook|
(Old Saybrook, Connecticut)
|NBA draft||1993 / Round: 1 / Pick: 8th overall|
|Selected by the Milwaukee Bucks|
|Position||Power forward / Center|
|2004–2005||New York Knicks|
|2006||Los Angeles Clippers|
|2018–present||Milwaukee Bucks (assistant)|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NBA statistics|
|Points||11,839 (15.0 ppg)|
|Rebounds||5,867 (7.4 rpg)|
|Assists||1,509 (1.9 apg)|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
Vincent Lamont Baker (born November 23, 1971) is an American retired professional basketball player who played in the National Basketball Association (NBA). He appeared in four consecutive All-Star Games. As of 2019, Baker serves as an assistant coach for the Milwaukee Bucks.
High school and college basketball careerEdit
Baker played for Old Saybrook High School in Old Saybrook, Connecticut. He first started on Old Saybrook's varsity in his junior year. Baker was passed over by the bigger Division I schools and signed a scholarship offer from the Hartford Hawks.
During Baker's inaugural season in 1989, he averaged on 4.7 points and 2.9 rebounds per game, which earned him a place on the North Atlantic Conference All-Rookie Team. Named a starter for his sophomore season, Baker averaged 19.7 ppg and 10.4 rpg and a first team All-NAC spot. As a junior, Baker averaged 27.6 ppg (2nd in the country), 9.9 rpg, and 3.7 blocks per game (5th in the country), though the team finished with an abysmal 6-21 record. Entering his final season, Baker was called "America's Best-Kept Secret" by Sports Illustrated  and the conference's most dominant player since Reggie Lewis by Street & Smith's College/Prep Basketball Preview in 1992. Baker averaged 28.3 ppg (4th in the country) and finished with 792 points in only 28 games, a conference record that still remains in the NAC (now America East Conference). He finished with 2,238 points, a school record that still stands. However, Baker was not able to translate his immense scoring abilities into team success, as none of his teams ever made the NCAA tournament, and the best his Hartford teams ever finished in a season was .500 (14-14).
Baker's jersey (#42) hangs on the east wall of Chase Arena in the Reich Family Pavilion.
After a college career at the University of Hartford, not far from where he grew up in Old Saybrook, Baker was selected by the Milwaukee Bucks with the 8th pick of the 1993 NBA draft. He played four seasons in Milwaukee.
After four seasons with the Bucks, he was traded to the Seattle SuperSonics following the 1996–97 NBA season in a three-team deal that sent Tyrone Hill and Terrell Brandon to the Bucks, and Shawn Kemp and Sherman Douglas to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
After four years in Seattle, Baker was traded to the Boston Celtics with Shammond Williams for Kenny Anderson, Vitaly Potapenko and Joseph Forte. While his career averages include 15.1 points per game, his numbers had dropped considerably in the twenty-first century. After the 1998–99 NBA lockout season, Baker's weight ballooned to near 300 pounds and his game suffered tremendously. While Baker was able to get his weight down to around 250, Baker revealed that he was a recovering alcoholic who used to binge in hotel rooms and at home after playing poorly. In an interview in the Boston Globe, Baker said Celtics coach Jim O'Brien smelled alcohol on him in practice and confronted him about it. The team suspended him and he was eventually released.
New York KnicksEdit
Los Angeles ClippersEdit
Baker signed with the Minnesota Timberwolves on October 1, 2006, reuniting him with head coach Dwane Casey, who served as an assistant coach when Baker was in Seattle. His tenure in Minnesota would be short-lived, though. Baker was released from the Timberwolves on November 13, 2006. He never played in a regular season game after being on the inactive list for the first six games.
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|
|*||Led the league|
Baker has a non-profit foundation called the Stand Tall Foundation. The Stand Tall Foundation is an organization that helps give kids a better future by financially assisting with different charitable and volunteer organizations. The goal of the Stand Tall Foundation is to help young people with their education, personal development and general well-being.
On June 3, 2011, Baker was hired as an assistant high school boys basketball coach at St. Bernard School in Uncasville, Connecticut.
In 2014, Baker was named to a team assembled by Dennis Rodman as part of his "basketball diplomacy" effort in North Korea; the team was assembled to play an exhibition game against the North Korean Senior National Team to celebrate the birthday of Kim Jong-un.
In 2017, Baker became the head of the basketball department at Camp Greylock.
As of 2019, Baker serves as an assistant coach for the Milwaukee Bucks.
On June 21, 2008 ml-implode.com reported that Baker's 10,000 sq ft (930 m2) Durham, Connecticut home was foreclosed and put up for sale for $2.3 million. The house was purchased by U.S. Bank for $2.5 million at an auction on June 28, 2008. Baker reportedly lost over $100 million due to financial troubles.
Baker has struggled with depression and alcoholism. In 2013, the New York Daily News reported that he had stopped drinking alcohol on April 17, 2011.
- "America's Best-kept Secret". CNN. November 23, 1992.
- 1992 Street & Smith's College/Prep Basketball Preview OCLC 14589910
- "Wolves sign Vin Baker to non-guaranteed contract". ESPN.com. October 2, 2006. Retrieved April 13, 2007.
- "Vin diesels out of Minnesota as Wolves release Baker". ESPN.com. November 13, 2006. Retrieved April 13, 2007.
- "Stonington ousted in Class S softball quarterfinals". The Bulletin. Stonington, Connecticut: Gatehouse Media, Inc. June 4, 2011. Retrieved December 31, 2013.
- Reife, Stephanie (December 17, 2015). "Former NBA Player Vin Baker: From Big Bucks to Starbucks". WNPR. Retrieved January 4, 2017.
- NBA Got Game TV (October 3, 2017), The Tragic NBA Story of Vin Baker, retrieved October 12, 2017
- Harrison, Don (August 11, 1996). "Rising Star Already a Big Name at Camp". The New York Times.
- Augustine, Bernie (July 29, 2015). "Former NBA All-Star Vin Baker working as a Starbucks barista, training to become franchise manager". New York Daily News. Retrieved July 29, 2015.
- Baker stopped for driving erratically, failed field sobriety test. Posted June 19, 2007
- Vin Baker Joins List Of Athlete Home Foreclosures. CNBC.com July 1, 2008
- The Famous and Foreclosured Trutv.com, Retrieved December 22, 2008