With all the hoopla surrounding the Rolls Royce Silver Spurs’ dismantling of King James’ Chevy Cavaliers, Ryan posted some pure comedic gold a few days ago when he found a pic of Michael Dickerson’s basketball board game.
Never mind the fact that nobody plays board games anymore, it was Michael Dickerson, on the cover of a board game, looking as if maybe he was being held at gunpoint. I knew I had to do my weekly duty on this site on none other than the star-crossed Mr. Dickerson.
Coming into the NBA from a stellar season at Zona’, Mike Dickerson had a lot going for him entering the 1998 draft. He had the body (6’5”, 190) and insane leaping ability that made him one of the bright spots for the Houston Rockets. He averaged a modest 10 points per game on a Rockets squad that was busy recovering from the Clutch City era (Barkley/Drexler/Olajuwon/Pippen). It was the next season, however, that things would change for Mike.
The 1999 NBA Draft took place, and David Stern strolled to the podium to announce the second pick, which belonged to the Vancouver (yes, there was a team up there once) Grizzlies. Former Maryland Terrapin standout Steve Francis immediately (in the worst case of sportsmanship and straight up whining) balled his face up, when he realized he’d be paid millions to play basketball professionally. Really, Francis was upset at the fact that he’d be so far away from Takoma Park, MD, so he forced the Grizz’ hand and got himself shipped to Houston for Mike D.
Francis’ career jumped off nicely, but Dickerson’s journey wasn’t bad either. In the Pacific Northwest, Dickerson teamed up with fellow Zona’ alumn Mike Bibby (when he had hair) to form one of the league’s most promising young backcourt. Mike D averaged 18ppg and shot the lights out from downtown. You’d compare him today with a Jason Richardson, a guy who has the long rangy, body, but very explosive, with a nice jumper to boot. Granted, the Grizzlies were more of a Canadian sideshow than a good team, Dickerson gave opposing defenses problems night in and night out. Mike wasn’t an all-star, but he was on his way, and he was happy with his role (as evidenced by the smile on the cover of his board game).
Well kids, we all know how these stories end, and for Dickerson it hurt really bad, literally. Mike’s groin just wouldn’t cooperate, and once that goes, the rest of the lower body usually breaks down in some way shape or form. After Mike Heisley sold the team to Graceland, Dickerson tried his best to heal up so he could join Jerry West’s newest diamond in the rough, Pau Gasol. When that experiment failed to come to fruition, it was pretty much over for Mike D, as he called it quits in 2002.
Doing some TPS reports (i.e. “Googling”) I ran into a website that claims Mike D as a founder for News For The Soul, which is a life-changing internet radio show that can…..well…..teach you how to bend spoons with your MIND! Dead serious folks check that link here (www.newsforthesoul.com/dickerson.htm) But seriously, Mike had skills on the court and it’s a shame we never got to see his full potential.