HEAT Sign Alonzo Mourning
MIAMI, March 1 The Miami HEAT announced today that they have signed free agent center Alonzo Mourning and requested waivers on guard/forward Wesley Person. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Mourning, a 610, 261-pound center, returns to Miami after playing two seasons for the New Jersey Nets. Prior to that, he spent eight seasons with the HEAT, guiding the club to six playoff appearances including a run to the Eastern Conference Finals in 1997. Mourning was drafted by the Charlotte Hornets with the second pick in the 1992 NBA Draft, and was obtained by the HEAT in a trade on November 3, 1995. He signed with the Nets as a free agent on July 16, 2003 and was traded to the Toronto Raptors on December 17, 2004. He was then waived by the club on February 11, 2005 without playing a game. In his 13 NBA seasons, he has averaged 19.8 points, 9.6 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 2.96 blocks in 34.5 minutes per game. He ranks sixth in NBA history in blocks per game, 14th in total blocks (1,930) and 29th in field goal percentage (52.3%).
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In the 2000-01 season, Mourning was diagnosed with focal glomerulosclerosis, a kidney disorder, which caused him to miss the first 69 games of the season. He was able to play the remaining 13 games of the season, and 75 games (74 starts) the following year. In 2002-03, he spent the entire season on the injured list for the HEAT with the kidney disorder. He played 12 games for the Nets in 2003-04, but was placed on the injured list on November 25 after being forced to stop playing basketball due to his kidney ailment. On December 19, 2003, he underwent a successful kidney transplant and was released from the hospital four days later.
The seven-time All-Star ranks in the top 10 in virtually all statistical categories in HEAT history, including second in total points scored (8,045). He ranks first in field goal percentage (53.2%), free throws made (2,164) and attempted (3,233), blocks (1,199) and in double-figure scoring efforts in a single season (77), which he accomplished in the 1999-00 season. He places second in field goals made (2,935) and attempted (5,518), defensive rebounds (2,736) and total rebounds (3,934), double-doubles (193) and in double-figure scoring efforts (382). He ranks third in HEAT history in games started (392), offensive rebounds (1,198) and for points in a single season (1,718), accomplished in 1999-00. His 14,192 minutes in a HEAT uniform ranks fourth and his 407 games played ranks sixth. He also ranks tenth in HEAT history for steals (271).
Mourning was named NBA Defensive Player of the Year in both 1999 and 2000 and was a member of the NBA All-Defensive first team those same years. He was also an All-NBA first team selection in 1999 and an All-NBA second team selection in 2000. Additionally, he won a gold medal as a member of the U.S. Olympic team in 2000 and was awarded the J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship Award by the NBA in 2002.
Person signed with the HEAT as a free agent on August 11, 2004. He averaged 3.9 points, 1.4 rebounds and 12.9 minutes per game in 16 games (three starts) with Miami.