By Calvin Kamrath
In Case you forgot, meet Mitch “The Rock” Richmond.
Once upon a time, Mitch was considered to be one of the top scorers in a very defensive orientated era. Mitch, a hall of famer, would go on to average 21 points while shooting 45% over his illustrious career. But we will come back to the NBA in a moment.
First, we should probably talk about Kansas State and the guidace he brought to the team. During his playing days with K State, we would see the Wildcats get to two NCAA tournaments and to one reginal final. They would lose that game, and Mitch would go to the NBA after scoring 1,327, which is the most in a two year college career in history.
Being picked with the fifth pick in the ’88 draft, Richmond would be drafted by the Golden State Warriors to be the scoring punch that the team wanted to add, and boy did he ever deliver. Starting 79 games his first year he would average 22 points and help the Warriors create one of the most popular groups, Run TMC. Alongside Tim Hardaway and Chris Mullen, Don Nelson would mold this team into the fast paced offense that many would consider to be one of the best in history. Winning rookie of the year, Richmond looked like he would set the NBA on fire with his new found teammates. For three straight seasons, Richmond would average 22 points and seemed to be a player that everyone would want to hang on to.
However, after those three amazing seasons with the Warriors, Richmond would be traded shockingly to the newly found Sacremento Kings in exchange for Billy Owens. Richmond was beloved by the Kings, as he was the first star that the team had had in it’s very young lifetime. Richmond wasn’t afriad in that spotlight either, as he would lead the team in scoring every season that he was with the team and would be apart of the All Star team all but one year of his tenure with the team. Adding an All Star MVP honor to his resume in ’95, Ritchmond would solidify himself as one of the best pure shooters in the game and a guy that you would want as a 2nd option on a title team. But Mich wouldn’t just affect the NBA, he would also help the US of A win a gold medal in what most people consider to be the (Dream Team III) in Atlanta.
The Kings would realize that Mitch was likely to leave in ’98, so they decided to trade him to the Washington Wizards (for Chris Webber, who would turn the Kings into a perinial power house). The Kings would go onto to multiple playoff apperances, while Mitch would struggle in his new role with the Wizards. He wouldn’t have the shooting touch that he displayed with Sac Town and he would fizzle out, leaving the Wizards right before Michael Jordan would give our capital a try. He would then sign on for one final season with (drum roll please)………
The Los Angeles Lakers.
In 2002, he would sign on for one year as a vet off the bench to help the second unit of the team. Averaging four ppg, Richmond would go into his deepest playoff run yet, and finally win a title with the help of the greatest duo in history (@ me). Mitch would retire and in 2014, would finally get the recognition that he deserved with his Hall of Fame induction. He wouldn’t stop there, as he is currently helping the youth of today’s world by being the assistant coach at St. John’s and is trying to help the youth of today.
In conclusion, Mitch Ritchmond is one of the best scorers in the history of our game and he was considered to be the second best scoring gaurd in the league to Michael. Mitch was a great shooter and he could probably drop 30 on your favorite player, past or present, in case you forgot….