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   Welcome to TSLMail #230 - Friday, June 9, 2006    
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   Tech Sports News

The NBA Careers of Dell Curry and Bimbo Coles
by Chris Coleman,

The most famous Virginia Tech alums that went on to play in the NBA are Bimbo Coles and Dell Curry, the top two scorers in Hokie history. They both played in the NBA for a long time, and both hold some impressive marks for their respective franchises.

Curry spent most of his career with the Charlotte Hornets. After being drafted by the Utah Jazz, and then playing in Cleveland for one season, he spent the next 10 years of his career in Charlotte. They were the best years of his career. The 1988-89 season was the first season of the new Charlotte franchise, and Curry averaged 11.9 points per game for them that season.

Curry played his final season in Charlotte in 1997-98. He was the last remaining member of the original Hornets expansion team. He moved on to Milwaukee, where he played one season, and finished out the final three years of his career in Toronto. He retired after the 2001-02 season.

Curry will go down in history as one of the top players in Hornets history, and one of the best three-point shooters in the NBA. Curry’s 9,389 points are a franchise record for the Hornets. He won the NBA Sixth Man Award in 1993-94 after averaging 16.3 points per game, despite not starting a single game during the season. He hit 40.2% of his 3-point attempts during his career, which is 17th all-time. He made 1,245 3-pointers during his career, which is 14th all-time.

Curry averaged 11.7 points per game during his career, despite starting just 99 games over the course of 16 seasons.

Bimbo Coles also enjoyed a nice career in the NBA. He played 14 seasons and was a member of six different franchises. Coles started his career with the Miami Heat in 1990, and he ended it with the Heat in 2004. Coles played in 852 career games in the NBA, starting 354 of them.

Coles averaged 7.8 points per game during his career and dished out a total of 3,313 assists. He also had 735 steals and averaged just 1.5 turnovers per game. His assist ratio (the percentage of a player’s possessions that ends in an assist) of 29.41 is 66th all-time in the NBA since 1978.

Coles ranks first in Heat history in assists with 1,946. He is also fourth in steals with 455, and fifth in points with 4,003.

Neither Curry nor Coles became stars in the NBA, but they were solid players who could make major contributions for their teams, as you can tell from the longevity of their careers. They also pocketed a nice sum of money from their careers in the NBA.

Salary Figures
Dell Curry and Bimbo Coles *
Year Dell Curry Bimbo Coles
1987 ? N/A
1988 $250,000 N/A
1989 $285,000 N/A
1990 $592,500 N/A
1991 $900,000 $290,000
1992 $1,006,000 $212,000
1993 $750,000 $650,000
1994 $1,040,000 $802,000
1995 $1,340,000 $902,000
1996 $1,570,000 $1,002,000
1997 $1,830,000 $1,400,000
1998 $3,660,000 $1,700,000
1999 $1,000,000 $2,000,000
2000 $2,100,000 $2,300,000
2001 $2,000,000 $2,250,000
2002 $2,100,000 $2,200,000
2003 N/A $1,030,000
2004 N/A $1,070,000
Total $20,423,500 $17,808,000
Average $1,361,567 $1,272,000

* Source: (click
the player's name in their column heading
for career stats and salary data)

Note that Curry’s 1987 salary was not listed, so his total income and average income are based upon the other 15 years of his career, not including 1987.

In 1998, Dell Curry was the third highest paid player on the Charlotte Hornets roster. He made over $3.6 million, and only Vlade Divac and Glen Rice made more money that season.

By 2002, Curry was in his 16th season in the NBA, and he was making $2.1 million with the Toronto Raptors, which sounds like a lot (and it is). However, only seven of the 18 players on Toronto’s roster that season made less money than Curry.

2001-02 Toronto Raptors
Player Salary Career PPG
Antonio Davis $11,000,000 10
Alvin Williams $5,350,000 9.1
Chris Childs $5,200,000 6.9
Hakeem Olajuwon $5,061,539 21.8
Jerome Williams $5,000,000 6.6
Michael Stewart $3,840,000 2.2
Tracy Murray $3,400,000 9
Vince Carter $3,073,032 23.9
Eric Montross $2,480,000 4.5
Dell Curry $2,100,000 11.7
Keon Clark $1,971,163 8.2
Michael Bradely $1,123,560 2.8
Morris Peterson $966,000 12.5
Mamadou N'diaye $793,200 3.8
Derrick Dial $540,850 3.1
Jermaine Jackson $465,850 1.9
Carlos Arroyo $332,817 6.8

Some of those salaries are just insane, especially when you consider the amount of return. Antonio Davis was a nice player who averaged nearly a double-double in 2001-2002, but he had never been an impact player up to that point in his career. And how about Michael Bradely, who scored more than 67 points in a season just once during his career, yet made $1.1 million in 2001-02?

Of course, salary caps are set by how long a player has been in the league. If a player has been in the league a certain amount of time, there is a minimum salary that he has to be paid. For example, rookies in the NBA during the 2005-06 season have to be paid a base salary of at least $398,762. Not bad, for a guy who might never see any playing time. During the 2005-06 season, players with 10 or more years of experience have to be paid at least $1,138,500.

So at the end of his career, Dell Curry was making much more than the minimum salaries for a player his age, showing that the Raptors felt he still added a lot of value to the team. However Bimbo Coles was making about what the minimum salary for veterans would have been in 2004, when he was paid $1.07 million. Coles got just 7.7 minutes per game during his final season and scored 28 points in 22 games. Pass - Your Ultimate Ticket to Hokie Sports!

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-- Will Stewart Updates From the Past Week

Recruiting Classes of the Past: 1989

June 8, 2006
The 1989 recruiting class was the last that was affected by probation that had been slapped on Virginia Tech in 1987. The Hokies signed just 16 players in 1989, two more than they signed in 1988, which was the first year of recruiting restrictions. With just 30 new players in two years, it's easy to see why Frank Beamer's early teams suffered from lack of depth and generally didn't win many games.

Thomas Staying Open
June 8, 2006
5-9, 170-pound Patrick Henry (Ashland, VA) star D.J. Thomas came close in recent weeks to making an early decision, but has decided to stick with his original plan of committing after his senior season. The standout running back/defensive back talked about his near decision as well as what his plans are for the summer.

The Road to Signing Day 2007: A Look at the Rivals Top 100
June 7, 2006 recently released their Top 100 players in the nation, and there are several Virginia Tech targets on the list, including two from the state of Virginia. The competition will be tough, as always, but the Hokies have a good chance to pull in several of the more highly-touted players in the nation.

Peter Hughes Named Tech Baseball Coach
June 7, 2006
Peter Hughes was introduced as Virginia Tech’s new baseball coach on Wednesday afternoon, finally making official what had been rumored since the beginning of the week. Hughes comes to Blacksburg from Chestnut Hill, MA, where he served as the head coach of Boston College from 1999-2006.

The Latest on Tyrod Taylor
June 7, 2006
6-1 ½, 195-pound Hampton (VA) quarterback Tyrod Taylor narrowed his list of schools to five last month. The star signal caller recruit, who had over 30 Division 1A offers to choose from, plans to take at least two unofficial visits this month and is eyeing a commitment before he heads to the Elite 11 Camp on July 23rd.

Devlin to Begin Next Round of Visits
June 6, 2006
Andrew Devlin, one of the top tight end recruits in the East, has narrowed his list to “about 10 or 12 schools.” The Mount Lebanon (Pittsburgh, PA) star hopes to make a commitment before the beginning of his senior season and plans to make a number of unofficial visits this fall – starting this weekend at the University of Virginia.

Nuss Takes Key Visit
June 6, 2006
Stone Bridge (Ashburn, VA) star Andrew Nuss did make his much anticipated unofficial visit to Notre Dame this past weekend. We caught up with Andrew to discuss the experience as well as his performance in the one day combine, which could determine whether or not the Irish extend an official scholarship offer.

Barden Excited About Decision
June 5, 2006
After receiving word from the Virginia Tech staff that he had an official scholarship offer, Brandon Barden paid a visit to Blacksburg along with his parents for a second look at the Tech campus. On Friday, June 1st, the Lincoln High School (Lincolnton, GA) standout made his verbal commitment to head coach Frank Beamer.

Hokie Hoops and the Polls
June 5, 2006
When we think about Virginia Tech football, we are used to top 10 rankings and the hype that comes with them. In fact, the football program has reached a point where any ranking out of the top 15 seems a bit low. But the Virginia Tech men's basketball team has been ranked in the AP Poll for just one season since the last time Halley's Comet was spotted from Earth, and the Hokies have rarely appeared in the AP Poll in the last six decades.

Maddox Commits to South Carolina
June 2, 2006
T.L. Hanna (Anderson, S.C.) star running back Brian Maddox announced his verbal commitment to the South Carolina Gamecocks during a 6:00 p.m. press conference at his school. The 6-2, 215-pound Maddox, who boasted over 20 Division 1A scholarship offers, narrowed his list to South Carolina, Florida, Florida State, Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia Tech earlier this week. During the press conference, Maddox indicated his final decision came down to South Carolina and Virginia Tech.
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