Seven Former Tigers to Open NBA Season

LSU's Shaquille O'Neal (left) joins Glen Davis in Boston
LSU's Shaquille O'Neal (left) joins Glen Davis in Boston
Kent Lowe (@LSUkent)
Kent Lowe (@LSUkent)
Communications Sr. Associate

BATON ROUGE - Seven former LSU stars will be in uniform on opening night when the National Basketball Association tips off its 2010-11 season with three games on Tuesday.

Highlighting the opening night will be Shaquille O'Neal, Glen Davis and the Boston Celtics taking on the Miami Heat in the 6:30 p.m. contest from Boston.

O'Neal enters his 19th year in the NBA and his first with the Celtics after playing last year with the Cleveland Cavaliers. The 15-time All-Star and three-time NBA Finals MVP has played in 1,170 games and has career averages of 24.1 points per game and 11.0 rebounds per game.

Davis, who won a championship in his first year with the Celtics in 2008, is expected to play his 200th NBA game Tuesday night where he has averaged 5.9 points and 3.6 rebounds in his first three years in the league.

On Wednesday night, Boston will play again at Cleveland, Anthony Randolph and his new team, the New York Knicks will be at Toronto, the New Orleans Hornets and Marcus Thornton will be at the New Orleans Arena for its opener against Milwaukee, Tyrus Thomas and the Charlotte Bobcats will travel to Dallas and Indiana will be at San Antonio where Garrett Temple will begin his second season in the league.

Randolph missed much of last season with the Golden State Warriors because of injury before moving to the Knicks but will play his 97th game entering his third season with 9.2 points per game average.

Thornton earned second-team All-Rookie team honors last season after a strong first year with the Hornets were he played in 73 games, averaging 14.5 points and 2.9 rebounds a game.

Thomas moved to the Bobcats in a mid-year trade last season and has signed a long-term deal with the team. Since leaving LSU after the 2006 NCAA Final Four season, he has played 279 games with an 8.0 average.

Temple proved to be one of LSU's best NBA stories as he went through 10-day contracts with Houston, Sacramento and San Antonio before sticking with the Spurs at the end of the season and earning the confidence of the coaching staff to easily make this season's roster. He joins his dad, Collis Temple, Jr., as members of the family making an NBA opening day roster.

The last former Tiger won't open play until Thursday when Orlando hosts Washington. The 2007 SEC Player of the Year Brandon Bass will be in his second year with the Magic. In five NBA seasons, Bass has averaged 6.7 points and 3.7 rebounds in 260 games.




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