"My best pro-to-be? Michael Bibby. I love him. Man, I love that kid. I love him because he's quiet and he works hard. You never notice him until the game is over..... and then you see who the real leader is."
-- Michael Jordan
Michael Bibby was born on May 13, 1978 in Phoenix, Arizona to Virginia Bibby and former NBA player and College coach Henry Bibby. Mike, just like his dad, had a stellar career in basketball which started during his senior year at Shadow Mountain High. He was a powerful scoring machine averaging 34-points per game and led the team to the state title. His amazing performances made him the all-time Arizona high school state scoring leader with a total of 3,002 points and was eventually awarded as the Arizona High School Player Of The Year at Shadow Mountain High three-times and was also indicted as part of McDonald's High School All-American in 1996.
Off the court however, Mike is not very close to his family.... his father, Henry Bibby in particular. He doesn't answer his father's letters and even asks his roommate to screen his calls and tell his dad he doesn't live there. His father even offered him a scholarship to USC which he eventually turned down.
"You know, my mom isn't a famous person like my dad. But I wish when they say, 'Mike Bibby, son of Henry Bibby,' and all that stuff, I wish they could just say: 'Son of Virginia Bibby.' She's the reason I'm here. That's who I am."
Mike's freshman year in College, playing for the Arizona Wildcats, was even better. Mike ranked second in assists and posted mind-boggling averages of 13.5 PPG and 5.2 APG and was named PAC-10 Freshman Of The Year. He also helped the Wildcats reach the NCAA Championship for the first time. This however, pales in comparison to his sophomore year. He was named PAC-10 Player Of The Year, averaged 17.2 ppg including a career-high 26 points (made it twice), and capped it off with a career-high 13 assists with a 5.7 apg average. Also led the Wildcats and ranked second over-all in both steals and assists.
Unfortunately, Mike was having a hard time trying to support his son Michael Dane. Mike, since he was mentally and physically ready for the big league anyways, decided that it's time to move on to greener pastures -- the NBA. He left the Wildcats after his sophomore year to join the 1998 NBA Draft, and was selected in the first-round as the second overall pick by the Vancouver Grizzlies (now Memphis), amidst great anticipation that he's going to be the #1 pick which went to Michael Olowokandi of the Los Angeles Clippers.
During his rookie season, he led the lowly Grizzlies team in assists with a 6.5 average per game also ranked 13th in the NBA, and as well as steals with a 1.56 spg average. Not only that, he also led all rookies in assists, ranked 3rd in scoring (13.2 ppg), steals, and double-doubles (6), and is 10th in free-throw percentage (.751). He also participated in the AT&T Long Distance Shoot-out during the All-Star Weekend finishing in fourth place. Mike also recorded his first ever triple-double in 2000 against the Dallas Mavericks with 14 points, 11 assists, and 11 rebounds. Despite all that, the Grizzlies barely topped the standings and never even made it close to reaching the play-offs.
Then came his big break. Sacramento has been having problems with their point guard Jason Williams, a player which was instrumental in their play-off losses for the past few years usually involving his fire-at-will approach to the game. Mike Bibby along with Brent Price was traded to Sacramento in exchange for Jason Williams and Nick Anderson. Bibby was the missing piece to Sacramento's puzzle. In fact, this trade was hailed as one of the biggest trades of the season along with the Jason Kidd/Stephon Marbury deal. He averaged 13.7 ppg, played 33.2 minutes per game, and started all 80 season games. He also helped the Kings end up with a 61-21 slate and clinch their first-ever Pacific Division title. Best of all, they earned a trip once again to the play-offs with a guaranteed home court advantage.
Mike stepped up during the play-offs coming off with a total of 20.3 ppg, .424 3-point shooting percentage, and 41.3 minutes per game; aiding Sacramento in vanquishing the Utah Jazz 3-1, and the Dallas Mavericks 4-1, including a baseline shot that sealed the win in game 4. The victory booked Sacramento a ticket to the Western Conference finals against the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers for the third-straight time. The Kings lost in game 7, but not after pushing the Lakers to the limit by topping the Lakers twice in the series (2-1 and 3-2 respectively), making fans at times doubt the Lakers chances of winning.
Mike was also remembered for the game-winning shot against the Lakers in game 5: Mike inbounded to Chris Webber setting a pick and erasing Derek Fisher completely off the picture, leaving Bibby open for a 22-foot jumper which landed right on the net with 8.2 ticks left. The Arco Arena crowd went berserk, and Kobe was unable to answer back.
"This is my first year here, and I'm just happy to contribute. I think there are a lot of people on the team that can take that last shot. I just happened to hit it. My confidence level is really high right now."
Bibby recently signed a contract extension with Sacramento on August 16, and is currently on the injured list after suffering a stress fracture on his right foot during off-season practice. He's expected to play anytime soon.
- Points: 42 against Minnesota on November 22, 2000
- Offensive Rebounds: 4 (2 times)
- Defensive Rebounds: 10 against Seattle on October 31, 2000
- Total Rebounds: 11 against Dallas on April 02, 2000
- Assists: 18 (3 times)
- Steals: 7 (2 times)
- Blocks: 2 (4 times)