Sonics: Shawn Kemp “The Reign Man”
Any Seattle basketball fan will tell you that the Supersonics will one day make a triumphant return to the NBA. While we await this “inevitability,’ how can we keep the memory of the Supersonics alive? Why not track down some of the all-time greats and see what they’re up to?
Take Shawn Kemp, a.k.a. the Reign Man. He was a first-round pick in 1989 and a six-time NBA All-Star.
But where on Earth has he gone?
Kemp played his final season with the Orlando Magic in 2002-03 before making unsuccessful comeback attempts in 2005-06 and 2006-07.
He signed with an Italian team in 2008 and played three preseason games but returned to the U.S. to assess possible damage to his Houston home caused by Hurricane Ike.
In 2009, Kemp appeared on Pros vs. Joes. There’s little information on what Kemp, now 41 years old, is doing today. But he did surface to criticize Blake Griffin’s over-the-car jam in the Slam Dunk Competition last winter.
He called the dunk “weak” and said he could jump over “two Smart Cars” even at his age.
Interstingly enough, the Kemps haven’t forgotten their Seattle roots. Shawn Kemp Jr. signed with the University of Washington this past July.
Coach Lorenzo Romar said that Kemp Jr., a 6’10” forward, has good size and that “he’s a very good athlete. He can run the floor. He’s the type of player that plays above the rim.
He’s a real good defender.”
Could we have a new Reign Man on our hands in the state of Washington? Fingers crossed.