Suns History: Mario Elie, 2000-01

Hard to believe now that forward Mario Elie toiled for seven seasons in minor leagues before finding his home in the NBA. The sharpshooter who was known for breaking hearts with his ability in the clutch, Elie would finish his career with three NBA Championship rings - all captured in the Lone Star State of Texas.

Originally selected by the Milwaukee Bucks with the 160th overall pick in the 1985 NBA Draft, Elie would ultimately find his first NBA home in Golden State where he played with the Warriors throughout the 1990-91 season. Elie would then play for five different organizations before joining Phoenix for the 2000-01 season.

With the Suns, Elie enjoyed a NBA-best 7-1 start and an eventual 13th-straight playoff berth for the organization. Elie proving to be a key component for the ballclub after jumping in for the injured Anfernee Hardaway and starting 68 games. The sixth-seeded Suns who had won an impressive 51 games faced a tough matchup against the third-seeded Sacramento Kings in the opening round but refused to go out quietly. After a Game 1 upset at ARCO Arena, momentum appeared to be swinging Phoenix's way but it wasn't meant to be as they fell in the series 3-1.

Elie retired soon after, taking a job as an assistant coach with the San Antonio Spurs before moving on to the Golden State Warriors who he enjoyed two different stints with as a player.

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