That other guy was Robert Horry, who was a long-time Phoenix Suns opponent-even when he played for them.
It has been a bit since us good folks here at Valley of the Suns (Ok, me) shouted out the birthdays of players who have donned the colors of the Phoenix Suns. Chalk it up to an 8-0 win record for the Suns in Orlando, followed by the crushing realization that there would be no playoffs this year, followed by the draft lottery, followed by scouting reports!
As you can see, it has been a lot. But birthdays continue! And today we have two players who both played for the Phoenix Suns in the 1990s, even while one is little more than a footnote in Suns lore and the other is noted-but also deeply hated. Let’s start with the good guy first.
Tony Dumas is now 48! The swingman with the nickname of “Rocket was drafted by Dallas in 1994 and played most of his 156 career games over there before coming over to Phoenix in a trade alongside a Jason Kidd, (you may have heard of him) and Loren Meyer in exchange for Sam Cassell, Michael Finley, A.C. Green, and a future 2nd round draft pick (that ultimately became Greg Buckner).
Dumas only played six games with Phoenix, and in those averaged two points a game (and little else) on some horrific shooting numbers (we’re talking 31% from the field and 25% from three-point range bad). At the end of the day though, we don’t hate you here Tony! Happy birthday!
Tony Dumas did not play long for the Suns, but it was the guy he came to Phoenix with that would make headlines in Suns history.
Now for that other guy…
Robert Horry (who is now 50 years of age) played (horribly) for Phoenix over part of the 1996-1997 NBA season. He had been traded to Phoenix alongside Sam Cassell, (yup, that guy again!) Mark Bryant, and Chucky Brown for the legendary Charles Barkley. Horry did not want to be in Phoenix and let everyone know about it, whether it was through his play (6.9 points, 3.7 rebounds, 1.7 assists) or through his actions (generally being a malcontent, including chucking a towel at head coach Danny Ainge at one particularly ugly juncture).
It was clear that Horry was not long for the Suns, and later in the season, he was shipped to the Lakers along with big man Joe Klein for Cedric Ceballos and Rumeal Robinson. There he would magically learn to be a productive NBA player again, hit big shots, win multiple championships, and then take his act to the Spurs where he would continue feasting off of being a superstar moocher. (Too much? I don’t think so.)
Also (and I will be very brief with this) let’s not forget that Horry is the one who hip-checked Steve Nash off the court in their 2007 Western Conference Semi-Finals matchup, causing Amare Stoudamire and Boris Diaw to step off the bench and get suspended for a game, ruining the championship hopes of one of the best Suns teams that Phoenix has ever had.
Actually, you know what? Forget that guy. Happy birthday to Tony Dumas. Robert Horry, you can go kick rocks. (Preferably ones that have been sitting in this Arizona heat.)