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Eric Montross Bio

Famous in college basketball, his NBA career would be productive but he was never a big star.

He could have been a famous trivia question if the lottery results were different because when he would be traded during his NBA career he was nearly traded for the draft pick that would become Tim Duncan.

Montross was a monster in the paint for UNC, and was a key part of their NCAA title win in 1993. In four years with the University of North Carolina, Montross shot 58.5% from the field for 11.7 points per game.

His rebounding average went up every year he played in college, going from 4.2 to 7.0 to 7.6 and then 8.1 rebounds as a senior. At 7-0 and 270 pounds he was someone that NBA teams thought could fill up the paint.

The Celtics needed size, they had Dino Radja, who could play some center but was more of a power forward, as well as Pervis Ellison and Acie Earl.

Montross was a very good addition to the Celtics, although it is strange to look back at his career as his rookie year was his best NBA season. A reason for this was that Montross got minutes and later in his career he would be on teams where other players took most of the shots.

For his rookie season Montross played 29.7 minutes a game, he played in 78 games and started 75 of them.

Montross scored 10 points a game in his rookie season. He had effective post moves and could score with his right or left hand close to the basket.

His field goal percentage was 53.4% and he made the NBA All-Rookie second team. His second, and final season in Boston was less productive.

Dallas was looking for a center and decided it was worth moving down a few spots in the 1996 draft and also giving away a 1997 first round pick to get one. Dallas ended up with Montross and Samaki Walker.

The Celtics were able to draft forward Antoine Walker and also ended up with another lottery pick, from Dallas for the next year, in the Tim Duncan draft. The Celtics watched as the lottery handed Duncan to the Spurs. Boston used the Dallas pick to draft shooting guard Ron Mercer.

Montross would be out of Dallas after a few games when he and half the team were sent to New Jersey. It was a trade package, and not a starting unit, when center Montross, power forward Chris Gatling, small forward George McCloud, shooting guard Jim Jackson and point guard Sam Cassell were sent to the Nets for Shawn Bradley, Ed O’Bannon, Robert Pack and Khalid Reeves.

Another short stay and another blockbuster trade for Montross. The Nets sent him and Jim Jackson, Anthony Parker and Tim Thomas to the Philadelphia 76ers for Keith Van Horn, Michael Cage, Lucious Harris and Don MacLean.

If Montross was expecting to stay a long time he was mistaken, he was traded by Philadelphia with Jerry Stackhouse and a 2005 second round draft pick to Detroit for Aaron McKie, Theo Ratliff and a 2003 first round draft pick. With Detroit, Montross could settle in and play.

His role was a bench player who would give them some size when needed, and a few rebounds and fouls. His first two seasons were better than his last season and a half with Detroit. After the trade to Detroit, Montross scored 7.2 points a game with Detroit. The next year he shot 52.5% for 5.9 points per game.

There was one more move for Montross as he and JYD Jerome Williams went to the Toronto Raptors for Big Nasty Corliss Williamson, Tyrone Corbin, Kornel David and a 2005 first round draft pick. He started some games for the Raptors and was a good rebounder but injury ended his career.


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