Rex Chapman Retires

Posted: Nov. 20, 2000

Rex Chapman is joined by his agent, David Falk (right), and Suns CEO Jerry Colangelo (center) at the press conference announcing his retirement.
(Photos by Jeramie McPeek/Suns Photos)

Phoenix Suns guard Rex Chapman today announced his retirement from the club and the game of basketball.

A 12-year NBA veteran, Chapman played the last four seasons of his career with Phoenix and led the Suns in scoring with 15.9 points in the 1997-98 season. Over his career he averaged 14.6 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.7 assists and averaged 12.4 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 224 career games with Phoenix.

Chapman ranks 28th on the all-time NBA list with 805 made three-pointers, but perhaps his most famous long-range range shot came in the 1997 playoffs in Game 4 against Seattle, when he sank a running, off-balance shot with 1.9 seconds left to send the game into overtime. He also set the NBA Playoffs record with nine three-pointers (career playoff-high 42 points) on May 1, 1997, and the mark for most three-pointers in a five-game series with 22 against Seattle that season.

In Suns history, he ranks third with 324 made three-pointers and third with 899 three-point attempts. Chapman also is in the record books as he holds a share of the club mark (along with Walter Davis) for most points in an overtime period with 12 on Feb. 13, 1999, when he outscored the Clippers by himself in the extra period.

Chapman signed with the Suns on Oct. 13, 1996, for the league minimum and proved to be one of the free agent steals of the season. Phoenix was the fourth stop in the NBA for Chapman, who also teamed with current Suns forward Tom Gugliotta and Head Coach Scott Skiles in Washington for part of the 1994-95 season.

The first-ever draft pick by the Charlotte Hornets, Chapman was the eighth overall selection in the 1988 Draft. At the time, he became the youngest player in NBA history at 20 years old, while Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was the oldest at 41.

With the Hornets he earned NBA All-Rookie Second Team honors in 1989 and was the third highest rookie scorer with 16.9 points. Chapman also finished third in the 1991 NBA Slam Dunk contest and was voted by Charlotte fans as the team's Most Valuable Player following the 1990-91 season.

From there he was traded to Washington on Feb. 19, 1992 and he played three-plus seasons for the then-Bullets. Chapman had a career-high 18.2 points in 1993-94 and also shot a personal-best .498 from the field and .388 behind the arc that season. Prior to joining the Suns he spent the 1995-96 season in Miami.

As a collegian he led Kentucky in scoring as a freshman with 16.0 points and remains today the only freshman in school history to pace the Wildcats in scoring. Chapman was named MVP of the 1988 Southeastern Conference Tournament and was a first team All-SEC pick as a sophomore.

Most recently, Chapman underwent right wrist surgery prior to the team's training camp and he is scheduled to have ankle surgery in the near future.

Chapman is a year-round resident of the Valley and along with his wife Bridget has four children: Zeke, Caley, Tatum and Tyson (born Oct. 29, 2000). His father, Wayne, is a Suns college scout and was a guard for the ABA's Kentucky Colonels, Denver Nuggets and Indiana Pacers.


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