T-Mac Provided Sizzle, Little Substance

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HANG TIME, Texas —
When word spread that Tracy McGrady had announced his retirement, how many folks went straight to YouTube?

There were those 13 sizzling points in 35 sensational seconds that defined a career. Memorable and yet fleeting.

For 16 tantalizing NBA seasons, he was never the main event in the center ring under the big top when championships were to be decided, but always in a booth just outside on the carny midway — T-Mac next to the bearded lady.

Oh, there was never any doubting his ability to put the ball into the basket from any angle and from anyplace on the court. He was a deft and willing passer, could be a strong rebounder for a guard and could get after it defensively out on the wings.

Yet after all those years we’re left with a legacy that is lighter than cotton candy and with just as much substance.

While making the announcement on ESPN and looking back on his career, McGrady made the Hall of Fame case for himself that at one point in their careers there was debate about whether he or Kobe Bryant was the better player. And that is exactly the point, there came a fork in the road and their resumes went in distinctly different directions.

The price of admission to the Hall of Fame should not merely be the gaudy jewelry of a championship ring. But it should matter that a perennial All-Star performer, a franchise’s foundational player lifts his team up in the playoffs and, despite a scoring average that often increased in the playoffs, McGrady could not do that. Not in Orlando, not in Houston, where he had his chances.

Until he was a decorative ribbon on the Spurs’ machine as they marched to The Finals last spring, McGrady was the only NBA scoring champion (two times) to never advance past the first round of the playoffs.

For all of the improbable 3-point shots he made, high-rising slam dunks he threw down, thread-the-needle passes that he delivered right on the money, what McGrady could never do was close the deal. He was the front man of teams that blew 3-1 leads in Orlando and Houston and another pair of 2-0 leads with the Rockets.

“It’s all on me,” McGrady said prior to the 2007 series against the Jazz.

“It was never on me,” he said when the Rockets lost.

McGrady never understood how or what it meant to lead, even though he pretended to embrace the role.

It is not enough to say that, because another prolific scorer from another era — Walt Bellamy – was eventually voted into the Hall of Fame, McGrady should be, too. It would be wiser to see Bellamy’s inclusion as a mistake and move on.

Indeed, there were injuries to his back and knees. But there was an ugly end to McGrady’s tenure in Orlando when he sat out the end of a 21-61 season and the microfracture surgery that signaled the end of his relevance as a star or even as a starter in Houston came again with much recrimination and little remorse.

How very fitting then, for comparison’s sake, that McGrady’s retirement comes within days of Allen Iverson calling an end to his career. They entered the NBA a year apart and for nearly a decade they were the yin and the yang of the league for nearly a decade. Passion and passivity. Fire and ice.

Iverson was the rail-thin waif that seemed to be held together by pipe cleaners who threw himself into every game he ever played and constantly went crashing to the floor like grandma’s finest china, only to always pick up the pieces and come back even stronger. Iverson was voted MVP of the league in 2001 when he carried the Sixers to The Finals with an indomitable will. McGrady was cooler than an ice cube, but just as prone to melt.

The Hall of Fame should be a place for enduring greatness, a career masterpiece like the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

We looked up at T-Mac like fireworks on the Fourth of July. Oooh, isn’t that pretty?

Good thing we’ll have those 13 points in 35 seconds on YouTube to remember him.

164 Comments

  1. Vince says:

    The comments posted were a better read than the article itself.

  2. Bojeezy says:

    I have seen some dumb blogs on NBA.com. As Stephen A. Smith would say this has to be the most ridiculous thing I have heard. I bet Fran wrote this just so he can rile ppl up and get more traffic. Of course he never lead his teams past the first round but he did his best to try to help his team win. With his size and ability he could of done more amazing things because of his potential. If he had another Allstar on his team like Shaq or Duncan. He for sure have some rings. This is just life and he got the injury bug like so many other NBA players.

    Give the man his credit he deserves because who are we to downplay what he has accomplished because I do t see anyone else getting scoring titles. Thank you T-Mac for the memories. It is players like you that make us watch and love this game.

  3. Jimbo says:

    Fran Blinebury, why don’t you say what you really think !! Man, I have never read such a complete crucifixion of a professional athlete. Let me see, T-Mac was involved in a steroid scandal ? No never heard anything about that. I know, he had a substance abuse problem ? No, nothing there either. Oh, he beat up his girlfriend, or was that his wife ? No, try again. I got it, he gambled heavily on the dogs, maybe had his own fighting dog-ring. And when the dogs got too torn up to fight, he hung them by their necks and shot them ? Oh, must be thinking of a different sports star. This has got to be it, he wrapped his Mercedes SUV around a tree after a grizzly bar fight of which two other guys went to the hospital ? Well darn, missed on all accounts. Seems as if T-Mac was just a tremendously gifted superstar pro-basketball player destined to not win and NBA title… like Karl Malone, Gary Payton, almost like Vince Carter, Mike Miller, Elgin Baylor, Wilt Chamberlain, Jerry West, Jason Kidd, etc (note, I say almost because these guys all won one title in the twilight of their careers as pieces of a championship team). Fran, could it be that you just don’t care for T-Mac’s style ? Hey, that’s OK, we all have our opinions… and this article is definitely just that… one man’s opinion.

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  5. Don't give a fuk says:

    it would be as big of a shame as the zimmerman case!

  6. Nice post and Your blog is very informative…

  7. Kobe fan says:

    Excellent article bro! Finally! An article that is concise and goes against the popular sentiment.

    TMac didn’t care enough to stay with Vince-his best shot at winning, period.

    Never had the cajones to make it on the big stage. Keep the Hall of Fame full of ELITE talent. Case closed.

  8. mezstah says:

    T-mac was a freak of nature. The most gifted player ever. Not the best but a player together with Allen Iverson, Kobe Bryant, Garnet, Duncan Carter who shaped an entire decade with basketballmemories. He was a joy to watch period. People don’t go to a basketballgame for players like Al Horford they are going to see Tmac like highlights. And in a HOF where pistol pete maravich has his place, then T-mac belongs there also. Both scorers with less teamsucces.But entertaining as hell

  9. zgillet says:

    A world where Robert Horry makes it to the HOF and Tmac doesn’t is a world I don’t want to live in.

  10. 007 says:

    Players want to be superstar for the money but don’t realize how hard winning a championship is. Never grasping the fact you need help no matter how much your ego tells you that you don’t.

    Two superstar cousins had the chance to take the Raports to only God knows where with that dynamic duo. Instead Tracy McGrady left Vince Carter and the rest is non playoff success history.

    All the time he got booted out of the first round is proof of him needing another superstar/ quality peice.

  11. Dean says:

    Let’s leave that decision for those who actually know what they are talking about. How is a potential HoF player not a player of substance? He lead 3 teams in his time, I don’t care what anyone says, those days in Orlando were good times for the NBA as a whole. Teams had only one or two stars and he was Orlando’s. His career averages, and scoring title speak for themselves.

  12. RookieoftheYear says:

    This article is epic Fail. This is what happens when bias gets into a so-called journalist. What a joke. Has this guy ever played a sport in his life? Does he have any practical background on the sport. From what perspective is he writing this junk. Complete disrespect and obvious bias.

  13. VC says:

    @KobeFan Of course T-Mac’s career did not pan out like Kobe’s. Kobe firstly had the opportunity to play under a bigger spotlight in Los Angeles a team with a history of winning championships. How else did they get Shaquille O’neal? Kobe always had better care from the LA front office, T-Mac did not and it was injuries that destroyed his chances of ever panning out consistently. The only comparison we’re trying to make with the T-Mac vs. Kobe was that they have faced off during each one of their primes, and during THAT time, arguments could be made about both players as to who was the best in the NBA. It’s a relevant argument because both have admitted guarding each other have been the most difficult in their careers. Why I’m even bringing up this comparison is because I feel like the blogger dismissed the greatness T-Mac had once achieved and it was at one point at the same level as Kobe Bryant.

  14. KOFI says:

    Fran shut the hell up Kobe fan shut the hell up! T-mac haters world wide sut the hell up…. Injuries killed the guy…Simple… When he was right at the highest height of his playing days he took a dump on ppl for jokes… and thats carrying Hill, Goodden, miller, juwan howard, armstrong and kemp to name a few… KOBE HAD A HUGE SUPPORTING CAST>>>>LEBRON HAS A HUGE SUPPORTING CAST>>>>JORDAN HAD A HUGE SUPPORTING CAST!! WHY CAN ALL YOU STUPID HATERS NOT SEE THE CLEAN TRUTH BEHIND HIS STRUGLES… FRAN IF YOU READ THIS AND ARE THINKING SOMETHING…..SHUT THE HELL UP STOP THINKING COZ YOU CLEARLY AINT THINK WHEN YOU WROTE THIS DOO DOO STAIN PIECE OF NONSENSE YOU WANNA CALL AN ARTICLE…. INFACT SAME GOES FOR ALL YOU IVERSON HATERS…HE CAME OUT AND PLAYED BALL HARD EVERY NIGHT!!! SHUT THE HELL UP…22 GAME WIN STREAK? 13 IN 30? DUNKIN ON BRADLEYS FAMILY? YOU MUST BE CRAZY TO SAY HE AINT ONE OF THE BEST TO HAVE EVER GRACED A BASKETBALL COURT AND YOUR DAM TELEVISION… STUPID DONKEY FRAN!!! WHY WOULD YOU GUYS @NBA EVEN ALLOW THIS TO BE POSTED…UNLESS YOU GUYS THINK HE IS AN IDIOT TOO SO PUT HIM OUT HERE FOR SLAUGHTER…IF SO HI5 TO NBA…IF NOT SHUT THE HELL UP!!!!

    • Kobe fan says:

      FEEL THE CAPS LOCK RAGE!!!

      If Kobe wasn’t a flat out atomic dog like Jordan, maybe I’d be on TMac’s sack like you cartoon watching, fun loving, happy to please people out there. But I’m into demanding excellence myself, so maybe that’s my issue with all these fun loving, line-towing, crowd pleasing players.

      Jordan Kobe=True Alpha Wolves
      Everybody else=not so much

  15. Zan Buchan says:

    i feel like mcgrady didnt sign your jersey or something

  16. darko says:

    T-Mac was forced to be the primary ballhandler a lot, and he wasn’t the greatest decision maker, being somewhat over deliberate.An offense built around him as swingman and point forward with a true point guard and good bigs would have been a winner. It never happened, but remember the cast of characters in THE 22 GAME WIN STREAK.

    The Hall of Fame should be about fame; a guy like McGrady was a hero to a lot of kids, who should be able to find him in the Hall when they take their grandchildren. I’m right, aren’t I? Marquis Haynes is in there, isn’t he?

  17. Fefe (Nets) says:

    In My opinion: A.I., T-Mac & Yao should be in the Hall of Fame (for different reasons but also due to the fact that they were at one time the best or top2/3 at their positions for many years).
    I will see a lot of hate but it’s objective.

  18. SixerFanEU says:

    And another thing-I just saw T-Mac’s career highs: 62 points, (vs. WAS, 2001), 17 rebounds (vs. SAS, 2002), 7 blocks (vs. HOU, 2000), 55 minutes played (vs. NYK, 2003). Between 2001 and 2007, his LOWEST scoring average is 24,4 PPG. If he does not eventually enter HOF, it will be, along with Bernard King, the worst snub ever.

  19. SixerFanEU says:

    Between 2001 and 2004 probably the best or second best SG in the league (beside Kobe, AI was a combo guard). He could score at will and made his teams better, no matter what anyone says. And another thing-that 35-second bonanza happened against the SAN ANTONIO SPURS-the dude destroyed the greatest NBA franchise of the 21st century in 35 seconds!!! The look on Pop’s face was priceless ;)

    Bye, T-Mac, and good riddance. You’ll be missed.

  20. TheDon says:

    This is the most rude and disrespectful article i have ever read on NBA.com. This article is pitiful and I may never visit this website again. How dare you disrespect T-Mac like that. This man is one of the greatest to ever lace up a pair of sneakers and he’s definitely deserving of a spot in the HOF. The real fans of the NBA know what the deal is so to the guy that wrote this article I wanna send a big YUCK FU right in your direction.

  21. Kobe fan says:

    Too bad TMac…….everybody said you were better than Kobe.
    You used to ooh & ahh the crowd with off-the-backboard dunks….in the AllStar game.
    But you’ve never been an MVP at anytime. You’ve never hoisted anything-maybe an all-star game MVP, I’m not sure. Whoops, you never did that either.
    Dude, you were a scorer, with some Harlem Globetrotting from time to time.

    Now to ALL you youngins who saw TMac as a child or preteen, sorry you didn’t hitch your wagon to a real winner.

    TMac, look how the Mamba JUST did a Jimmy Kimmel exclusive, JUST did China TOUR! Can you say ‘glo-bal i-con’?
    17 years…….Kobe.

    • HEATFANSINCEWADE says:

      Get off Kobe’s Jock! Its Kobe’s turn in a year or two to be discussing his retirement so chill Kobe Stan. Kobe will tell you that Tracy was a great player not shut up and stop disrespecting a Future Hall Of Famer cause he will be one even if you or Fran don’t want him there. P.S.. Vince and Iverson will be Hall of Famers too you can bet on that! These guys along with Kobe, Wade, James helped keep the NBA exciting after Jordan left.

  22. Kobe fan says:

    Far be it from me to see the logic as in why TMac deserves a HOF induction. Never made it out of the first round playoffs as leader, was never really the man in the Eastern Conference over Vince & AI, and I STILL think it was dumb of him to leave the Raptors, Vince’s team or not.

    After a myriad of other unfortunate events, it is stands to reason that TMac was just a very good show…….look at his lack of true longevity & the total productivity-as the author of this article illustrates.

    With a lack of true productivity, leadership, & commitment, health, I ask that all you ‘calling for the author’s head’ reevaluate TMac’s resume.

    • The Beard says:

      The only reason you are hating on T-Mac so much is because he really was better than Kobe, if he wasn’t you wouldn’t be trying this hard to convince us all he wasn’t hahahahahahah

  23. NiklemaN says:

    Mr. Blinebury, really? I mean, are you serious?
    7 time NBA All-Star(6 time starter), 7 time All-NBA selection, 2 time NBA scoring Champ, 2001 Most Improved player, career high of 62 points, probably had the best performance in the history of the game in those 13 points in 35 sec. should’ve win that 2006 All-Star MVP, ranked 75th Best player in the world – is not worth for the Hall of Fame?? Really?
    Also, T-Mac had style, estetics, was being compared to Kobe Bryant, and actually in those two scoring-champ years I think he WAS the better player…
    So much to talk about this guy…
    He ranks in my 20 all time NBA players…
    He’ll enter the Hall of Fame I think…
    He deserves it! Long Live T-Mac, Respect Man!

  24. TOte says:

    if Alex English, Gus Johnson, and Chris Mullin made the HOF, T-mac should make it too.

    McGrady
    7× NBA All-Star (2001–2007)
    NBA Most Improved Player (2001)
    2× NBA scoring champion (2003–2004)
    2× All-NBA First Team (2002–2003)
    3× All-NBA Second Team (2001, 2004, 2007)
    2× All-NBA Third Team (2005, 2008)

    English
    8× NBA All-Star (1982–1989)
    NBA scoring champion (1983)
    3× All-NBA Second Team (1982–1983, 1986)
    J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship Award (1988)
    #2 Retired by the Denver Nuggets

    You want facts Frannie? there you go…

  25. Topshelf says:

    Dude your acting like T-Mac killed your momma. Cool out!

  26. From an says:

    Longtime Piston fan. When they beat T-Mac’s Orlando squad after being down three one underlines McGrady’s ineptitude. After taking the 3-1 lead, he kept going on about “finally making the second round. It feels good. I can’t wait. I am so excited.” Notice the I’s, not the we’s. Then when Detroit wins the series, he deflects everything to his teammates. Then it’s we. And that sums him up. He enjoyed the spotlight, until it got to bright, then he ran and hid. Great talent, but he’s not the type that would run through a brick wall to win like most hall of famers. What would he have said if San Antonio won this year? Would he have taken the credit of being a champ without having an impact?

  27. vern says:

    I remember when he was in Toronto with vince carter. He was a real surprise and started taking the highlight camera from Vince to him.

  28. Kobe fan says:

    LMAO! I remember all the “TMac is better than Kobe” quotes. And Iverson was better than Kobe, and Vince was better, etc……..

    People know better. They knew better back then. People didn’t/don’t like Kobe. It’s all based off emotion.

    But with today’s NBA, I’d take a prime TMac over Wade or Melo, quite honestly. TMac was just like Vince Carter: fun to watch, but never leaders.

    Remember TMac shoes? Every iteration of those TMacs was ugly. Adidas……..even Kobe saw the truth-get with Nike.

    And yeah Kobe did have Shaq & Pau & Bynum(Bynum maybe not so much), yet none of those guys were there when Kobe took Toronto to dinner with 81pts.

    Then again, we are talking about the highest paid player in the league.

    • The Beard says:

      WHO CARES, this is about T-MAC. In his prime it was a debate if Kobe was as good as T-Mac, not who was better!!

  29. RJCN says:

    Mr. Fran Blanwhatever.

    You obviously has never played in the NBA as the rest of us. So don’t pretend to be smart about players when you dont. This article is distastefull towards a player who helped define a generation.

  30. RJCN says:

    Mr. Fran Blanwhatever.

    You obviously has never played in the NBA as the rest of us. So don’t pretend to be smart about players when you dont. This article is distastefull towards a player who

  31. Alex says:

    He won’t be a first ballot HoFer. He will get in eventually though. I see him in the same light as Vince Carter, great talent, wonderful to watch, can dominate games almost at will, just never really got it done in the playoffs where it mattered. It’s hard to enter the HoF without a strong playoff resume but fortunately for them, they have a very strong regular season resume that will push them in eventually.

  32. defdun says:

    I am so disgusted by Fran Blindbury’s rant on Tracy McGrady! He wasn’t only a flashy scorer, he also led the league in PER with 30.27 in 02-03. Player Efficieny Rating is known to be one of the most objective stats – and funny enough all past NBA leaders have become hall of famers.

    As mentioned by others above he was unlucky that during his prime key players in his team were injured. Just imagine his 28ppg/7rpg/5apg average over the 4 Orlando seasons together with Grant Hill’s 26/5/7 he put up in DET before joining TMac in ORL in 00/01…that would have been the closest thing to MJ & Scottie in the new century. However Grant Hill only suited up for 47 games (!) over the 4 years they “played” together for Orlando. Then in HOU the it was Yao who was often injured – or McGrady himself.

    Whatever, some people including myself (and probably T-Mac and Walt Bellamy too) feel that an apology is due for such a disrespectful way to treat NBA legends and to “celebrate” the retirement of a 7x NBA All-Star.

  33. Elon says:

    You speak about TMAC. As if he was some subpar player. He was a great player. You must not play a lick of basketball. If you do you need to turn in your shoes and jersey. TMAC is a HOF PLAYER WITH NO HELP.

  34. David Victor says:

    Frank Blinebury you’re a fat loser….. (And this is coming from one) why are you trying to taint Tmacs retirement by saying ignorant things. Are you trying to get attention with controversy? You figure say some rude stuff so your article gets people talking about you? The HOF ballots for Tmac are 5 years away…. It is difficult to get into the HOF as a player ( pretty easy for irrelevant coaches and other people no one cares about). No one needs you on a soap box trying to lead a campaign to stop his induction that’s not going to happen. How about just letting people celebrate his career? Every player other than the super elite…. Wishes they could have had a great career like Tmac why would you focus on him not reaching a potential that was set because of the great things we saw he could do? Lets celebrate the great things he did….. The comparison to Kobe was valid and it stopped where it should have. Just like Kobe’s comparisons to Mike stop where they should. Seems a little racist in the article as well. Maybe it’s something personal with Tmac but even if it is your article should be objective not some personal crusade to stain his moment.

  35. Mike says:

    Wow, this article is a joke. An entire piece dedicated to how much you dislike a retiring player? Last article I ever read from Fran Blinebury.

    I never like T-Mac, but reading this piece just p***ed me off. I guess there are actually no approval systems on NBA.com…

  36. MM16 says:

    Back to back 30+ points of four years in the playoffs. And he shouln’t be a Hall of Famer, are you kidding me.
    Just look at the videos. That guy was simply a killer on the court.

  37. Chakotay says:

    AI all the way! The Hall of Fame should be exclusive not inclusive!

  38. mc bOoM says:

    INJURIES. THAT’S THE PROBLEM.

  39. Pedro says:

    This is a pure and blatant rant, nothing more. The only point I agree is that T-Mac should not be a HOF. The guy was incredible, he and Iverson were my favorite players back then along with Kobe. The guy was a beast, way better than Vince Carter!

  40. Strop right there says:

    Blinebury you can quit your job old fellow.
    Stop disrespecting T-Mac, you are not qualified to do so.

  41. everlastpl says:

    Im a little bit confused… how come Grant Hill will be in the HOF but there is a problem with McGrady?
    Grant Hill could never take over a game like TMAC, and was a star of a team for what? 4 years only?

  42. Rocket33 says:

    Wow! Fran really touched a nerve with this piece. And the people aren’t wrong. McGrady was a joy to watch and he provided a hell of a lot more than 35 seconds of highlights. Players like him and Allen Iverson made the NBA fun to watch in the post-MJ pre-LeBron era. Yeah Shaq and Kobe won all those championships but I wasn’t tuning in to watch them with the same enthusiasm.

    I think Fran’s piece has some valid points. McGrady is a huge “what if” kind of player. So much talent, the game seemed effortless to him. I’d have loved to have seen a couple more years of him and Vince together to see if they could have turned Toronto into a contender. But money and Florida got him out of Canada. But then how good could he and Grant Hill have been in Orlando without injuries? Again, so many what ifs.

    It’s a shame McGrady and Iverson aren’t getting the respect they deserve. Too much focus on the negative parts of their games. We’ll just have to place them in “Team Can’t Get No Love” with Marbury and Stevie Franchise. Head out to China I hear it’s nice.

  43. lol says:

    Mcgrady ruined his career when he left Toronto and V.Carter…they could have build a contender team together but….and then came the injuries, McGrady should have retire years ago, he was a great scorer in his prime but i dont think hes HOF worthy..well maybe in his prime he was HOF material but looking at his career from start to finish it was basically a failure, more like Iverson another huge failure who achieved nothing basically.

  44. Mario says:

    Dear fran ,

    so please tell me why chris mullin made the hall of fame?????

  45. Julius says:

    Sad to read an article like this on nba.com, t-mac was a spectacular player and a world-wide superstar and was an icon fof the league before the explosion of Lebron James. He had very few chances to compete for a championship, a couple of years during his days in Houston, with Yao, Battier and Mutombo, and a cpuple of years later with Artest and some other good players, but to be onest we shoud remember that the wastern conferece was so competitive that his team were far from being one of the best, just remember the lakers, the spurs and the mavericks in that period. In Toronto, well we know everybody wants out of there, and in Orlando? With Grant Hill’s at 10% or Partick Ewing in his 40′s? Or with Doleac in the middle? Every team with a chiampionship trophy was built to be a winner, and T-mac never had the chance to play for one of those, except for last season, when he was a 36 old years old player: Good Luck with your new life T-Mac!

  46. Symm says:

    Survey says that the overwhelming majority of people don’t agree with Fran.

    Survey also seems to say that they don’t think Fran is a very good writer.

    Perhaps Fran will consider a retraction as well as an apology?

  47. jb says:

    Not sure if Fran wrote this just to be provocative, but regardless, its pretty low. It’s one thing to argue that TMac isn’t qualified for the HOF, it’s another to present his allstar career as one of the most prolific scorers of his generation as essentially meaningless and not worth remembering.

    If even Kobe can show some love (remember the comment a couple weeks back about TMac being the toughest he ever had to guard?), why is it below Fran to acknowledge the man for the talent and excitement he brought to the league?

    Despite the misgivings, flaws and the “what ifs”, the man deserves respect. And none was given here.

  48. Garry Foulkes says:

    I don’t think he should be in the H.O.F. OK so he had some great seasons and became a player everyone would have wanted. That didn’t stretch long enough in my eyes to warrant being in the H.O.F. I know injuries etc. But still… If he was able to play at that level for longer and get deeper into the playoffs then yes!

  49. Baller says:

    Wow,

    Now I lost any respect for you Fran
    I would at least try to understand such disrespectful posting if
    if the guy was playing right now

    To this to a guy that’s just retired?
    What kind of a-hole are you?

  50. rkr2k says:

    I’m very sad to hear T-Mac retires. He’s like Jordan, Magic and Lebron combined. All the best T-Mac! For me you’re still the greatest NBA player. And oh, they forgot to mention that you’ve at least won a Western Conference Finals before retiring.

  51. defdun says:

    FRAN! I’m shocked! Completely disrespectful for someone of the caliber of T-MAC just after announcing his retirement.
    T-MAC was a legitimate superstar in his heyday and rightfully there was a discussion if he or Kobe was the better player. They were the only two guys posting ~30ppg, ~6rpg and ~6apg. If Kobe was the MJ of the 2000s (he’s not!) then T-Mac was the Clyde Drexler of that time. Flashy and smooth, enthusiastic yet low key.

    Tracy McGrady inspired a whole generation of fans and players with his outstanding skill set and should be remembered for just that.

    PS. Thanks to BigMatta23 for clarifying on Fran’s misconception of Walt Bellamy’s career achievement

  52. Chad says:

    T-mac was more talented than Kobe. In his prime his moves was smooth as.

    In terms of fire Kobe had the drive, fire and killer instinct.

    Though I don’t necessary believe that was all the reason to the rings.

    The players Kobe had and the injuries t-mac had were more the reason.

    In summary, if kobe and t-mac were swapped around in their respective teams and t-mac didn’t have the injuries he had, their resume may not be that far different.

    Agree not fair to disprect the man, saying he ‘pretended’ to lead. I mean, he tried.

  53. J says:

    harsh fran

    HOF HOF HOF HOF HOF

  54. Kamote says:

    Wow, Fran, this is what a trash article looks like.

    You are right… TMac was never the leader most people would want him to be (as if Kobe is). Though he has the skills and once was one of the top athletes, but he would never be a candidate for HOF (truth). Much like Kemp, Richmond, Mourning, Iverson, Houston, Hardaway, G. Hill (though his injuries are the main culprit)… they were THAT good, but would never be in the same conversation with MJ, Bird, Magic, Duncan, Russel, KG, etc.

    However, I don’t really see the point in bashing over his career. He has been both entertaining and competitive during his time… has given us more reasons to cheer than just the 13 pts in 35 secs fame… has inspired children during his time to pick up a basketball and do his moves… and he was one of the reasons why the NBA was still being watched after the MJ era.

    This article is trash and just shows soooo much disrespect, just low even for NBA writers like you. And from the looks of your pic, TMac can kick your @$$ in the court even if he has his hands and legs tied. Give the guy the respect that is due to him.

  55. Marios says:

    I understand that T-Mac was not decorated with rings, but the way he dominated the game , he deserves to be Hall of famer. For years the league was talking about him (as well as Kobe , Vince and Iverson). I find this article quite disturbing and disrespectful towards T-Mac and the kind of player he was…He was unstoppable, he could fill the stadiums and to be honest, after T-Mac’s injuries all star games are never the same. It means nothing that he got no rings, besides that is a product of team effort. Well-earned T-Mac, Well earned!

  56. Flo says:

    This is so disrespectful for T Mac and everything he brings to the game..

    The guys is a 2 times scoring leader, one of the flashiest player at his prime, and everyone was talking about him maybe being the best player at that same time!
    I remember being a kid and wanting those T Mac shoes just because that was him or Kobe. So yeah he never won, but is that a reason to even consider writing such a disrespectful article about him? I don’t think so.

    And to me, he fully deserves a spot on the HOF

    I’m just shocked to see that on NBA.com

  57. JSM01 says:

    To all the haters:
    02-03 ORL 75 74 39.4 0.457 0.386 0.793 6.5 5.5 1.6 0.8 2.60 2.08 32.1

  58. Jaamnoo says:

    good thing we have those 1 points in 35 seconds…?
    Sad post.

    Frannie, stop writing…even better, stop thinking about players who were great and inspired alot of young men to play basketball, AND didnt won enough rings so that you have enough material to write about.

    T-mac, too bad you have to retire and good luck.

  59. Bronson says:

    T-MAC to the Hall of Fame. Hands Down, no questions asked. He proved to provide a element to the game that no one else had before. Whether his personal achievements were met.. Debatable. But as far as basketball, he is part of the history that needs to be remembered thru hall of fame recognition.

  60. VC says:

    I need to post in my honest opinion here to defend T-Mac and I hope Mr. Blinebury reads this. Tracy McGrady from 2000-2005 started on average 74.4 games a season, during this time he had established himself as a two time NBA scoring champion. He averaged at least 25.6ppg, 6rpg, 4.5ap, 1.4stl, elite statistical figures in the same company as NBA legends. In each of his first three years on the Magic, the team was knocked out of the first round of the playoffs, and to no one’s surprise, there was barely any offensive support on the team. The only reliable scoring options other than T-Mac was Mike Miller and Darrell Armstrong and Grant Hill – who started only 4 games the first season, 14 in the second and 29 in the third. In the third year of 2003, only TWO players other than T-Mac started in over 50 games on that roster! In the fourth year in Orlando, they tanked the team and began to rebuild with players such as Juwan Howard, Keith Bogans and Drew Gooden, in the end the team went 21-61. Tracy enjoyed superstardom in his tenure at Orlando, but realized winning was much more important. In no way possible could you argue that T-Mac in his prime physical abilities wearing a Magic jersey was put in a position to win by the Orlando front office. During that time, he could truly say: “It was never on me.” Jordan, Bird, Kobe, Magic, none of them could have made it through the first round of the playoffs in that roster. T-Mac then moved onto the Houston Rockets where he teamed up with Yao Ming and no other notable players. They lost to a 58-24 regular season Mavs in the first round. And, there is exactly where I would locate as the end of Tracy McGrady’s healthy prime. From then on we saw a star completely burnt out by injuries, and even when we saw him return in 06 and 07, he played 36mpg, a career low since Toronto days. His chances of winning was completely stumped by the fall of Yao Ming, playing 48 games in 06 and 55 games in 07. T-Mac had the sizzle and he had ALL of the substance. He just didn’t have the health, nor did he have the opportunity to win while he was healthy. He truly isn’t a player you can just write off as just another prolific scorer, or scoring champion that is a borderline Hall of Famer. In the generation of the 90s-00′s generation of basketball, he was one of the Kings of the Court and this we must appreciate. What he did for basketball, for cities, adidas, kids growing up like me is forever an imprint and inspiration. Finally, you can’t blame his career for the lack of substance, he just never had break. I hope you can only understand. – Vince (a T-Mac fan)

  61. Joshzilla says:

    So Fran, how would you feel about Grant Hill being inducted? Very similar situations for Grant and Tracy, injuries hampered their careers and neither has achieved a high level of team success.

    Does this take away from their individual careers? No!

    Might get on YouTube now and watch the Admirals quadruple double.

  62. Linda says:

    Will anyone who has ever played a game for the Raptors be inducted into the hall of fame?

  63. lukebahr says:

    Will anyone who has ever played a game for the Raptors be inducted into the hall of fame?

  64. E-SY says:

    “The Hall of Fame should be a place for enduring greatness, a career masterpiece like the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.”

    It’s nothing close to that at all. There are too many mediocre players in the “hall of fame” to even suggest it has any relevance anymore. Insert T-Mac… it doesn’t matter anyway. Give the guy some credit if it’s only because he is far better than the worst player in there. (Not close to the superstars in the league though.)

    True greatness has nothing to do with the hall of fame. That was wasted a long time ago…

  65. Andrew Fallman says:

    Wow. Just when I thought the creative journalistic stylings of the expert (EX NBA) player/ coach/ what exactly? couldn’t be any more biased/ opinionated- this piece of work gets published on NBA.COM. Thank you Mr. Blinebury for your opinion about Tracy McGrady and his career, can you please get fired and let a better journalist take your place? I’d love to read some less bullshrimps and hear about the actual NBA beyond what drunk college students articulately blab to their friends at the bar to show off their arrogant and shallow perspective of the NBA and its particular stand-out players. If T-mac was so insignificant then why did fran even write this well articulated article?

  66. Jvs says:

    Wow what a hatefull and disrespectfully article. Complete nonsense, tmac in his prime was a joy to watch, as a magic fan I enjoyed watching him put on so many great proformances. He was one of the players that took over games and every time he shot the ball you knew it was going in, just an awesome player all around, wish him the best. As far as Fran goes well see how many articles of his accomplishments are written when he retires, sad,sad little man, can’t even believe they would let such a sorry article like this be posted.

  67. Uhm says:

    Why all this hate? Why all this disrespect? Jeez, at least wait for the corpse to be cold, before you start talking bad about the dead.

  68. T-Mac Fan says:

    T-Mac… Unlucky… I would put it down like that. He left Toronto to get more playing time since he was playing behind Vince Carter at the time and they were playing the same position and had similar games. The duo wouldn’t have had enough basketballs to please everyone… I’m not saying that they were selfish players, I’m just saying you can have only so many “alpha dogs” in a team. Just see how well that Dwight thing worked with Kobe… Kobe wants the ball at all times and Dwight would have liked to have plays go through him…

    But I digress, I am a Tracy MacGrady fan. He was an absolute blast, but was unlucky. He had that lanky frame that couldn’t stay right during his career. But that really isn’t the unlucky bit at all… The fact is that in Orlando, the incredible Grant Hill was brought in to be his Pippen (or Jordan) and raise the Orlando team to the championship contention level. Which it did on paper, but Hill was positively never healthy during his Orlando days and this dynamic duo never really materialized. I would have wanted to see that duo go to work fully healthy. That would have been fun to see…

    Then in Houston, T-Mac was supposed to form a Kobe-Shaq combination with Yao Ming, but again when T-Mac wasn’t hurt Yao was… This is too well documented in the annals of NBA that it really doesn’t need further explanation. We did see some glimpses of this combination in action, but after the gruelling 82 game season one or the other was always hurt bad…

    The problem with the salary structure of the NBA is that if you have multiple top tier players the rest of the team is usually not that good. Even the Lakers besides Shaq and Kobe were nothing to celebrate. Their other players weren’t anything to write home about. If Shaq or Kobe had been hurt in the early 2000′s they wouldn’t have those banners up there either. It is extremely important to have those star players, but it is almost more important to have them healthy when the games start to count in the play-offs… And this is where T-Mac was unlucky. He or his side kick was always hurt in the play-offs and role players really couldn’t rise to the occation to cover up for a missing 20+ ppg etc.

    You want more proof of this, just see how well Kevin Durant did in the play-offs last spring after losing Russell from his side and they even had Kevin Martin (a bonafied scorer who could fill it up) and they still crashed and burned bad.

    In any case… T-Mac was a great player. One of the best to play the game. At least on the offensive end of the floor. He was a true artist. His 13 points in 35 seconds was an incredible performance! What made this so special was that the Spurs did everything right in the final minute and they still lost their 12 point lead in a minute. They hit all their free throws and there was nothing downright dirty done by the Rockets players (that was not called by the refs) that would have felt like cheating in that run… Spurs even did a good job defending the shots T-Mac did take. But even after Spurs did everything right, Houston won… Because T-Mac made those shots… That was just an incredible performance… Spurs even had all their starters in the game too.

    T-Mac was a legend… Should be headed into the hall-of-fame for sure. This 13 points in 35 seconds should be played at his post 24/7. That was a glimpse of the incredible things T-Mac was and is. He was an unlucky superstar in the NBA. And his Luck shouldn’t keep him out of the HOF…

    T-Mac, you will be remembered… Now go watch the 13 points clip from YouTube and be amazed!

  69. russellmenez says:

    this is by far the worst nba article i have ever read. t-mac deserves recognition after a retirement, not some stupid
    “oh he’s not worthy to be in the hall of fame” bull-ish…………

  70. COOLFUJ says:

    Right now we don’t see ppl idolizing Penny Hardway or Shaq even Jordan, but these NBA Super Stars are whom T-MAC grow up admiring. After watching all the great time clips of his you can see a lot of Penny touch or shadows, because everyone back in the 90s are trying to dunk over as many ppl especially tall Big players as possible, we don’t see those anymore even Iverson’s flash or Karl Malone and Stockton’s perfect team works are gone. Everyone is afraid to get injured that is not entertaining. I want see more ppl duplicate the dunks and the old time sakes………..

  71. moe says:

    your a joke fran, tmac was a superstar.

  72. Parkah Louis says:

    Happy retirement, TMac. Contrary to popular belief, you contributed a lot to this game. Of course they’re are a lot of opinionated people; some are armchair coaches & some write blogs, but the cold hard facts are that injuries are a part of the game. These injuries have now placed your legacy on the imaginary island of “what if”, but I personally believe that had you been on the Lakers team that had the first three-peat instead of Kobe, they could’ve actuall challenged for two more consecutive titles. Your defense was a lot better than Kobe’s when healthy, but a lot of that will be overlooked because of lack of hardware. Either way, I hope that you enjoy your next stage of life. You’re an outstanding individual that stayed out of the press for any wrong reason; I think that contributes to why people overemphasized what your game “lacked” (and I use that term loosely).

  73. arvin says:

    I love to see more T-mac old games than Lebron because hes more fun to watch. hes like the rocky balboa of basketball he never give up he love the game so much thats why he inspired more people. as a basketball fan hes on my top 5 favorite players: JORDAN,KOBE,T-MAC,MALONE,BARKLEY..

  74. ryelpango says:

    Wow! I forgot how good TMac was until I watched his highlights.
    Pretty funny how Fran is getting smashed!

  75. Markus71 says:

    I can’t believe how harshly U judge His Legacy!
    When people look at the best SGs of all-time…. He is Top5! In front of Clyde, AI, Gervin, Maravich, Ray Allen…
    Behind only MJ, Kobe, the Logo, DWade!

  76. tom says:

    Should be a Hall of Famer….simply the Best…simply Amazing….NBA where T-mac happens

  77. All Hangtime Blog posts written by this Fran guy will not even be read past the headline by me. What a disrespectful piece of garbage. Disgracing a man’s heart, hard work, and talent/ability right after his retirement. I guess this guy didn’t watch T-Mac play enough to fully respect T-Mac’s game and accomplishments despite his injuries and lack of decent supporting casts throughout his career. Keep listening to the water cooler conversations, Fran. That’s where you seem to get all of your “insight” as a blogger. You idiot.

    If you’re reading this T-Mac, you were my favourite player growing up and I hope you enjoy continued prosperity even after retirement

    • HeatfansinceWade says:

      Its a Shame Fran had to go at T-Mac like this. Fran, you got caught up in the (If I dont get a championship I’m no good) judgement of players. How can anyone blame Lebron for leaving Cleveland with writers like Fran waiting to call your career a bust if you dont win a championship. T-Mac’s legacy cant be Sh**ted on because of the lack of Rings, It has to be praised for the awesome amazing player that he was. Ps. If he had stayed with Vince that would have been an amaizing duo.

    • waltwilliams55 says:

      Totally agree, I cannot believe the disrespect this article shows. T Mac had more talent and time into his game than most the people who come in the door and leave again. How about Fran go watch the clip where Kobe gives respect to Tmac in his twilight. Game recognize game and he had it.

    • Scott says:

      I 100% agree!!!

      How the heck did this hateful empty article get on NBA.com?????

      Who is to blame for this

      I too loved your game T-mac and you were the man!!!!

      it was an honor watching you play and i’ll be telling your stories to my kids one day!!!

      -Scott

    • Lebronwadebosh says:

      agreed fran is a joke. fire the fooler get someone that understands basketball writing.

    • #1KobeH8R says:

      Gotta have rings… Defense wins champions (ask Olajuwon, Robinson, Shaq, KG, Duncan, and LeBron)

  78. elite says:

    tmac might not have lived up to be the GOAT but his highlights are the GOAT :D

  79. jarvis says:

    Yeah. Hey y’all, don’t read Fran when vince carter retires! you’ll here the same garbage.

  80. QI313 says:

    I think the combo of him and Vince could have been somewhat comparable to Jordan and Pippen

  81. QI313 says:

    My only knock on McGrady is that he should have never left Toronto. Yea he was supremely talented, but could not lead a team. Just imagined if him and Vince had more time together. Championship maybe?

  82. TMAC FAN says:

    Fran Blinebury, do your research before you blast a 7 x NBA All-Star and a 2 x NBA Scoring Champion. You mention the playoff losses from TMAC’s career but you failed to look deeper into those losses. The 2003 playoff series loss against the Detroit Pistons (Billups, Hamilton, Prince, Wallace) shouldn’t be considered a failure because TMAC single handedly made a series between the #1 seed and #8 seed (his Orlando Magic) a competitive series. He also had to face an extremely talented, well coached Jerry Sloan team in the Utah Jazz (DWill, Booz, Millsap, Korver, Kirilenko, Okur) during a lot of playoff battles while he had an injured Yao Ming most of the time and a supporting cast of mediocre players in Alston, Battier, Hayes, Landry, Mutombo (in his late 30s, early 40s). His Houston Rockets had a 22 game winning streak, one of the longest winning streaks of all time and they won more than half of those games without Yao in uniform too. During his Orlando Magic playoff games, he averaged about 32 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 5.5 apg, 1.5 spg, 1.5bpg. During his Rockets playoff games, he averaged about 27 ppg, 7 rpg, 7 apg. He gave his blood, sweat, and tears in those playoff battles and if you forgot what kind of player he was, you need to watch his post game press conference after the devastating Utah series loss. He played with heart and he brought an excitement to the game just like Iverson and Kobe did. The fact that he has no championship ring should not be the defining factor of his career.

    • Steven says:

      Don’t forget he had his All star running mate in Orlando, Grant Hill pocketing MAX money to watch the game from the bench. They never even got to play together. And then in Houston the same thing happened with Yao . Its sad that someone who is SUPPOSED to be an expert on NBA seems to only write about things out of context. I watched T-Macs career as it happened and this is not an accurate representation of how good a career T-Mac had. He could torch ANYBODY in the league , and he was as cold as ice Fran is right about that, but he didn’t melt like it, he just came up short. As did C-Webb, Chuck, Stockton/Malone, Ewing, AI , Pistol Pete, Steve Nash, Nique, Gervin, Reggie Miller. Did they all melt like ice too?

    • Scott says:

      WORD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      I wont read anymore articles by “fran” because of this, i didnt know such an ignorant man could be in such a position. your a disgrace fran

    • Lebronwadebosh says:

      fran is ridiculous this guy should not have a job. period. this is the worst article ive seen since reading about how d rose wouldn’t amount to anything.

      • The Beard says:

        For real, and it’s not like he just rolled over and died. All those series went to at least six games. Not one sweep.

  83. Cesar says:

    What a disrespectul article! T-Mac during his prime was a game changer, not perfect, but gave fans a “show” – he may not be better than MJ, Lebron, KB – so what? he performed to his best ability and made this fan appreciate the game much more. Yes he couldnt lead the team to the finals and win a championship, how many other greats have faltered – Fran, over the top – unneccessary article, we should be celebrating what T-Mac did for the game – not putting the man down!

  84. fanofthegame says:

    a two time scoring champ, who upped his scoring average during the playoffs every single time he played them.. deserves a lot more respect that what is mentioned in this article. fran probably doesnt like tmac. but that is ok… i never did like kobe… but i respect him for the player he is… and his legacy. he would never have won any of his championships if shaq or pau wasnt by his side. lebron would never have won his 2 without wade, bosh, mike miller, shane battier.. chris anderson… td wouldnt have won 3 without parker and ginobili… MJ wouldnt have won without pippen, rodman, horace grant… and you are ditching mcgrady because he couldnt carry a team past the first round.. who was there to help him??? are you going to ditch stockton and malone because they didnt win a championship? Mcgrady deserves every bit of respect for who he is as a basketball player.. man he helped atlanta a lot last year playing significant minutes.. injuries got to him… nothing more… fran should retract this article or apologize to the basketball world…

    • allen iverson says:

      absolutely right!
      and just to add . they respected and praised grant hill’s career even though he was plagued by injuries
      why not respect t-mac’s

    • Scott says:

      AGREED!!!

      completely disgraceful article

      T-Mac was amazing, injuries killed him

  85. Saad says:

    Mr Blinebury, you only showed how sad and mean you are. You and me included will never be able to do the tiniest spark of the transient “fireworks” that McGrady did. If ever, we will remember McGrady the fireworks, not cynical onlookers. I am grateful to McGrady for the shivers and joy he gave me, and sad that my favorite Hang Time blog published such a hate. Long live, T-Mac. I will go and watch those 33 seconds again.

  86. ball is life says:

    i kinda find this post disrespectful and rude.

  87. Roman says:

    oki so Rodman yes and T-Mac no are u kidding me?

    • maki says:

      In contribution to basketball? Of course Rodman has way more better records than T-Mac! Get your facts straight! Rodman has dominated the rebounding world Seven times even with his height and even with the likes of Ewing, Barkley etc.. in his time! If you want to be in the HOF…break records, make legacy, etc…I have more great memories of Rodman compared to T-MAC …dude was a great scorer..That’s it! He didn’t make a serious impact…when he was the scoring champion..his team wan under achieving.. If its Rodman and T-Mac whom I have to choose? I’ll go with Rodman without thinking twice! Know basketball dude.

      • The Beard says:

        T-Mac was also a great rebounder, not as good as Pippen, but what people don’t realize is he would go head to head with the best of them.

  88. Lakers-Warriors-Suns says:

    He needed more help….

  89. LB James says:

    Thanks Fran – I appreciate how you give me fellatio (and me only), along with the other writers here. T-Mac got nothing on me.

  90. Bob M says:

    No way!! T-Mac was an amazing player. His ability carried those bad teams that he was on. I thought T Mac was better than KB24 in his prime. You may choose a YouTube video to remember him by, but there is no way you limit his great career to one event. But, I doubt if you will any player that thinks T Mac wasn’t a superstar. No way, find someone else to hate on.
    PS: Here is a YouTube link that has his top plays and great comments about his play (including Paul George) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NollBuDyU6Q

    • QI313 says:

      No way was TMAC better than KOBE. Kobe has always been the best 2 guard since Jordan. And still is. Kobe’s intangibles were WAY more solid than TMAC. Kobe also won scoring titles. But scoring was only APART of Kobe’s game. Whereas TMAC, scoring was pretty much his ONLY game. He lacked on the defensive end and he didn’t do enough conditioning to keep himself from sustaining such career threatening injuries. That’s just the facts bro,

      • Lebronwadebosh says:

        are ypi sire caz wade teamed up with LeBron and that helps rating?!!?!?!? t mac didn’t do that// how foolish. only a youtube sensation not a well known aspired player by many.who actually picked up the ball. I agree kobe is better in his ways, footwork, great, but like t mac kobe has done some things, t mac did others, t max had a short career doesn’t make him not worth giving props to. are you better than t mac? you and fran together?

      • The Beard says:

        I think Kobe’s “intangibles” included Shaq. T-Mac didn’t have that kind of “intangible”

  91. Bill says:

    Harsh article Fran.. it’s true T-Mac didn´t do well on the offseason and may not be worthy of hall of fame consideration. Nevertheless, he was definitely a great player and his career could have been brighter without injuries. If he is retiring we should give him due respect and not just underline 35 seconds of one game. If he had “little substance” then I guess your standard to consider a player as significant puts the Hall of Fame as a mandatory minimum.

    • Lebronwadebosh says:

      this writer fran should be fired,. you ever picked up a ball fran? ever made 12 pts in a minute un guarded? lol I mean come on what qualifies greatness to you other than drinking lebrons sweat and hoping you grow…

  92. david says:

    What the hell? Get that piece of garbage article out of here…Every player who scored more than 18k/5k/4k made the hof I don’t see why mcgrady shouldn’t. At his prime he was a top 3 player in the nba just stop it.

  93. priadr says:

    Ouch. Let the man have one more moment of glory, to enjoy the celebration of his career and retirement, before you shoot it down as not being worthy of anything more than 35 seconds.

    • Lebronwadebosh says:

      agreed this whole article getting approved is more ridiculous than anything ive seen. kg made it out of the first round one time before boston…. grow up only one team can win out of 30. this is ridiculous. lets hate on dr j and penny hardaway next,. forget the talent this is about pointing out things that didn’t go their way.

  94. m.w.a. bulls 1 says:

    He was only a scorer. Not really worth an article. Good riddance Mcgrady.

    • Lebronwadebosh says:

      He’s worth a ton of articles fool. what is Iverson just a scorer when he took defensive player of the year at Georgetown?! crai more root for your big three, one of which who has aged rapidly, one of which who doesn’t score in finals games. whatever. learn history, modern atleast, then try to pick up the past. you are pathetic in every way and clearly have never played a real game beyond whatever gym you pay to play in.

  95. Bigmatta23 says:

    Fran Fran Fran…I am shocked and dismayed with your reference to Bellamy. To say “It would be wiser to see Bellamy’s inclusion as a mistake and move on.” is outrageous and absolutely incorrect. Bellamy was a sure fire Hall Of Famer and is most deserving of that accolade. It is not the NBA hall of fame Fran, it is the BASKETBALL Hall of Fame. Bellamy still holds Indiana University records for rebounding (season and career) over 50 years later!!! Was starting centre on the gold medal winning 1960 Olympic team. First pick in Draft, Rookie of the year, 2nd highest rookie scoring average ever – 31.6 (still) along with over 19 rebounds per game. As a rookie!! Bellamy ended his NBA career with 20,941 points and 14,241 rebounds. How can you possibly dismiss that contribution with such nonsense. You should retract that comment or hand in your media credentials.

  96. Oakley34BLAM says:

    I remember watching the 13pts in 35 minutes game at a bar with the sound off. I was vainly pleading for those around me to direct their eyes to the unbelievable performance unfolding so quickly on the screen above. Absolute insanity. Back then NBA on TNT games were often incredible, and that was perhaps the most. Say what you want about the man’s legacy…those 35 seconds seal the truth.

    • Lebronwadebosh says:

      little substance from the guy that inspired derrick rose, league youngest mvp.. hmm I don’t see why this is written so negatively here. INJURIES HAPPEN. ARE WE DISSING BILL WALTON NOW TOO?

  97. Syd says:

    You make it sound like having videos up on youtube is a bad thing. At the end of the day, when its all said and done, we all have to revert to youtube. Remind me to look for you on there as well. This guy goes down with the last of a dying breed of legends, insert mamba and the answer. You should be thankful that you even get a chance to speak of his name. Objective writing ? Typical ! Fran dbl chin …insert your last name, barring his injuries, and some god awful lineups, you’d be writing a different story. Think I’m making it up, look at LBJ first 9 yrs in Cleveland. Thats all you so called writers are good for now, negativity. Celebrate a man who pushed the limit to higher heights in a post Jordan era, where we all wondered, where the league would be. That is all …..for now

  98. Gere says:

    Is this a joke? T-Mac was a superstar. He was for some time better than Kobe. Sure he sometimes has problem in playoffs but you cant blame just him for those first round loses saying he should be a leader. Thats bunch of ….. Kobe never was much of a leader himself. Legacy isnt defined by rings. Rings are often just work of chance otherwise greats like Barkley, Ewing, Malone would have some. Hes just unlucky to join that company of greats without rings. Mr, Blinebury should seriously think twice before writing anything.

    • Lebronwadebosh says:

      I still got my t macs and get love for wearing them on any court, younger and older generations, this article is full of hate. he should of joined with 3 or 4 former team usa team mates to make it interesting???

  99. Big AI says:

    Blinebury, this is kind of disrespectful to T-Mac, considering he just retired. Could you maybe talk more about the game changing player he was and not single him out for not being able to carry teams deep in the playoffs by himself (not counting his healthy Rockets days).

    • Lebronwadebosh says:

      no according to this guy he shoulda joined with ai and mutumbo and kidd like smart kool guys like LeBron! long live Miami!!!! oh ya throw reggie in for the 3 point king of the day. writers- learn how to write with respect. these guys tore the floor up and all you can do is say kobe and shaq- two top 6 all time scorers beat them with some very cluch players on board. \come on…

  100. JR says:

    Damn, hate on Fran.

  101. Alocs says:

    Kidd, Hill, Iverson, and now McGrady. The 2018 Hall of Fame will be no surprise. Can we just induct them now?

  102. Tom Pittman says:

    I usually love hang time blogs, but not this time.

    Really? A fully researched blog blasting a retiring player? Really?!

    McGrady is a sad tale, yes, and probably a cautionary tale at that, but this article was beneath — well beneath — what I thought this site was about.

    Speaking of legacies, what will people be writing about you when your career is done, especially if you are this easily inclined to take the hatchet out on someone else?

  103. KoolESP says:

    Even though there are real points made in this eulogy, it is far too mean for my liking. Everyone deserves a pat on the back and a gold watch after retirement, T-Mac included. Ok, so maybe he’s not hall of fame-worthy, but he did bring a lot to the game of basketball by way of flare and esthetics.

    Live long and prosper, T-Mac.

  104. I know Trace McGrady never won a damn thing in the NBA. I also know he was never able to lead his teams far into the playoffs. And yes, I know T-Mac was more about flash than anything else.

    But can this man get at least a little respect? McGrady was an utter joy to watch on a basketball court. He dominated games like it was his second nature. His offensive explodes are up there with the best in NBA history. This was a natural born player.

    Sure, Kobe won more. But Kobe also played with Shaquille O’Neal and the crops of Pau Gasol, a healthy Andrew Bynum and a motivated Lamar Odom. When Kobe was all by himself, LAL was nowhere near a top team and they blew a 3-1 lead in the playoffs. Yep, Kobe failed to lead his team when he had to do it by himself.

    Tracy McGrady wasn’t a perfect player nor should he be a definite lock for the Hall of Fame. But this man dominated the NBA with his amazing talent and skills. Too bad his knees and back gave out on him way too soon. But hey, that’s basketball life. T-Mac, you rocked the place, be proud of it.

    • Bystander says:

      Great point. Many forget that stretch in Kobe’s career. He also almost had a rocky departure from LA, or at least he demanded one temporarily.

      • josef says:

        another hater.. its even a miracle that they were in the playoffs with their starting 5 of..
        PG – Smush Parker
        SG – Kobe Bryant
        SF – Luke Walton
        PF – Lamar Odom
        C – Chris Mihm

        A starting 5 with smush, walton and mihm shouldnt really win 10 games but kobe carried them to the playoffs. stop hating

      • artifex says:

        He’s not saying that Kobe wasn’t good. But said that as example to show that TMac was pretty good too. He definitvely was a great scorer. In the question of team success he falls on exact the middle line. I am a strong voter that a team is composed of 5/12 players. And, today maybe more than in the past. it takes more than one to win. But there are several examples of players who were the lone stars and the contribtion from no.2-12 can be much discussed.
        If I compare e.g. the 2002-03 teams of Orlando (TMac) and Philly (AI), both stars didn’t have much help. It’s definitively not the defining season for AI but they were just 6 wins ahead and lost to the same Pistons (4-2) vs. DET-ORL (4-3). Though AI had 9.2 WinShares (Snow, VanHorn and McKie had 8, 6 and 5). TMac in Orlando had 16.1 with Armstrong and Garrity coming up next with <5… he was LONE
        If you hold injury against (He didn't contribute) of towards him (It wasn't his fault his numbers sled) is probably something people won't agree on…

        On his upside I'd put: He was a fan favorite. People (outside the usual fan base) loved watching because he was playing. And that speaks for his game…

    • Jaamnoo says:

      True
      Agree

  105. DHegs says:

    Cue MJ/LeBron/Kobe debate :( smh

    • Another Heat Fan says:

      People have to recognize, that the true debate was never Lebron vs. Kobe.
      I mean aside from the fact that the two play different positions and different styles, Kobe and Lebron are from different generations. When Kobe was in his prime, Lebron must have been 15 or so.

      The true debate back in the day used to be Kobe vs. Tmac. Perhaps out of all the Kobe debates that were made, it was the only one that made sense because we were comparing two young guards who actually went at it in their prime, instead of trying to compare players across generations. This was a real time battle.

    • Another Heat Fan says:

      Just watch, and decide for yourself if he deserves a HoF spot.

      • DJ says:

        T-Mac was (before injuries) an incredible athlete, he had that huge wingspan, and was just a perfect build for the game. He could play with anybody at any level. What seems to be called flash in this article is to me a great player finding a way to make plays when things are neither easy or presented directly to him, he see’s the game differently, that’s what great players do, they find a way to make plays. Seems that the real debate to me is how people judge a HoF candidate. Does a player need to be a great leader? To take their team to another level and make everyone around them a better player? The answer for guaranteed HoF status is yes, but, on the other hand can a HoF also just be a great individual competitor? If that’s true (which I think it is) then T-Mac is a yes, at least for the first half of his career. He played against the best and could not only go toe-to-toe but also win those exchanges. Just cause T-Mac wasn’t a GREAT LEADER doesn’t mean he wasn’t a GREAT PLAYER. I think on a level of individual excellence pre-injury T-Mac is right there with many other Hall of Famers.

  106. Jon says:

    I remember that series against the Jazz! As a Jazz fan I was very pleased with his pitiful performances! He was overhyped. He was a decent player, but not a superstar.

    • Chris says:

      Sorry to hear that you are a Jazz fan, you should be an expert on teams pitiful performances now.

    • TMacforlife! says:

      Not a superstar.. That’s why your a jazz fan. The first place loser.

      • I Know everything about Hoops says:

        Pitiful perfomances he was the best player on the court both teams knew it the Jazz players were praising him

    • Another Heat Fan says:

      This article does not acknowledge that T-mac’s team was in the 8th seed when really he willed his team into a 3-1 lead against the number 1 seed pistons.

      Doesn’t mention either that he went 2-0 with the 5th seeded rockets against the 4th seeded mavs.

      My point is, unlike Kobe who had Shaq in his “truly prime” years, Mcgrady did not have enough on his team to even have home court advantage in the first round. And yet he always came close to advancing past the first round despite being the lower seed.

      • Van says:

        Nicely said. The only thing that t-Mac did wrong in his career is that he never tried up get better. He was was always so much better than everyone else that he didn’t try to improve anything that he needed to improve. That happens to a lot of people. Just look at Beasly; he hasnt improved since he came out of college. Some players just get comfortable cause they made it. T-Mac got comfortable with his skills and it’s why he couldn’t play anymore in the nba when he lost most of his athletic ability. If he had learned more; he could have still helped a lot of teams out there. This is why Bird was a genius; he didn’t need athletic ability to be a great player. I’m sure that deep down inside T-Mac will regret not trying to be the best player he could have been; but by that time it won’t really matter.

      • The Beard says:

        I agree Van, I can only imagine how good he would’ve been if he did try to get better.

    • Another Heat Fan says:

      Nowadays you guys fault so many superstars for taking the “easy way out” and joining strong franchises with other superstars to make superteams that win championships. But you guys don’t take into account the window of opportunity some of these superstars have. Not everyone can be like Kobe, staying in his prime past his prime.
      Some people only have a couple of years. Which is why it’s important that you stack the deck. You’re not supposed to “wait”. If you are a player with the ability to carry the right team to a championship, you’ve got to join the right team NOW.

      Kobe, who had lets say 12 “prime” years, was in a position to compete for a championship in 10 out of those 12.
      That one year the lakers missed the playoffs, Kobe was making demands to get traded, which really forced the organization to act faster and get him Pau and Ron Artest.

      T-mac, who had lets say 5 “prime” years, was never in a team that could compete for a championship. When he finally got with Yao Ming and had a team that could compete it was already too late due to injuries to him and Yao.

      Imagine how different history could have been, if Kobe was with the Magic and T-mac was in LA with Shaq during 2000, 2001, 2002? T-mac wouldnt have 5 rings like Kobe has now, but he would have ATLEAST two. And this article would have been much different.

      I think T-mac should be inducted to the hall of fame, BECAUSE OF KOBE. Because for those of you who think that Kobe Bryant was one of the top 5 players to ever play the game, then the memory of T-mac being right up there with Kobe even if it was only for 2 or 3 years should be enough to get him inducted to the hall of fame.

      • marty says:

        Excellent point!! Its about situations this is a team sport.The guys writing these blogs have selective amnesia call it like it is!!!

    • Scott says:

      One of the rudest and most ignorant articles i have ever read on NBA.com…….
      so your saying Malone, stockton, Barkley, webber etc etc were all losers who couldnt lead eh?

      That they too lacked substance?

      You clearly hold a deep seeded hatred for T-Mac
      Maybe if he had ANY help in orlando, or if Yoa ming could have been healthy for half a season he would have done better.
      This article is an insult to basketball fans everywhere and i hope its taken down.

      Your pathetic!!!!!

      • 31for3 says:

        Dude, calm down. That’s not what he’s saying at all. Malone, Stockton, Webber, Barkley ALL led their teams thru the playoffs with each of them reaching the conference finals, and Malone, Stockton and Barkley reaching it more than once and also reaching the finals. He’s saying that T-Mac’s teams blew series leads and he was NEVER able to lead a team past the first round of the playoffs. Read the entire article before you get so worked up.

      • Gman says:

        so are your reading skills.

      • Jorge says:

        Well said!!! As a loyal Rockets fan, this is disgusting and just blocks all of the sunlight T-Mac brought on teams that needed help!!!

    • The Beard says:

      I don’t see how averaging 28 ppg in that series is a pitiful performance… and I’m a jazz fan