Thursday, January 20, 2022

Heat Fave, two-time NBA champion finds next basketball home

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Mario Chalmers’ return to the Miami Heat was undoubtedly one of the feel-good stories of the year for longtime fans of the club. After all, the 35-year-old had played a key role in helping the Heat’s Big 3 bring two titles to South Beach in the 2010s, and he also got his first taste of NBA basketball in over three years.

However, as the initial excitement about his homecoming died down, the remainder of his tenure offered little to write home about. Chalmer’s toughness stay came and went with the baller, who had never set foot on the court in a real game.

After his 10-day contract expired, fans had to wonder what would become of their old favourite. Would he attack again at the Pro Hoops in the USA or continue his playing career abroad, where he had pursued his profession for the last two years?

Heat Nation received its reply on Friday.

Chalmers have been officially acquired by the G League’s Sioux Falls Skyforce, according to an announcement by the club. The team pulled the Heat alum from the available player pool.

Chalmers is expected to be available when Skyforce announces their weekend home series against Memphis Hustle.

Of course, this isn’t the first taste of Chalmers’ first league action of the season. To fit into the 10-day/hardness mix, he joined the Grand Rapids Gold for their stint in the 2021 G League Winter Showcase.

He appeared in two games for the club, averaging 8.5 points, 3.0 assists, 2.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals.

Though Chalmers hoped to stay with the Heat through the end of the 2021-22 season, the G League could be the best place for him. Before coming to gold, he had last played for Indios de Mayaguez in Puerto Rico, where he averaged just 4.7 points per event on 21.7% shooting in three games.

With the Skyforce, he may get a real opportunity to get down on the ground and get back in shape while staying on the NBA radar.

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After his performances in Kansas, where he became a true NCAA Tournament Hero and national champion, Chalmers was selected by the Minnesota Timberwolves with the 34th pick of the 2008 draft. However, his rights were immediately traded to the Heat.

He started in all 82 games for Miami as a rookie, averaging 10.0 points, 4.9 assists, 2.8 rebounds and 2.0 steals per contest. His efforts would earn him All-Rookie Second Team honors that season.

From that point on, he continued to be a solid hand for head coach Erik Spoelstra and the Heat, mostly starting from that point and helping the franchise win its titles in 2012 and 2013. Across portions of eight seasons with the club he appeared in 525 games (including 383 starting) and recorded a line of 8.8-3.8-2.4-1.5.

As of this writing, he ranks first in franchise history in steal percentage (2.9), second in total steals (791), fourth in games played, fourth in assists (2004) and fourth place in three-point field goals (657).

CONTINUE READING:

As of this writing, he ranks first in franchise history in steal percentage (2.9), second in total steals (791), fourth in games played, fourth in assists (2004) and fourth place in three-point field goals (657).

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