Tony Delk is my hero.
My Kentucky fandom was at its absolute peak during the 1996 season. I was in middle school and it seemed like everybody that I went to school with was either North Carolina or Duke fans. They loved it when Kentucky lost. However, that year, Kentucky did not lose much. Two times to be exact on their way to a National Championship. I still consider that team the greatest college basketball team of all time. Tony Delk was a big part of that team.
Delk went onto the NBA as the 16th pick in that 1996 NBA Draft that featured fellow Wildcats Antoine Walker and Walter McCarty. He was drafted three spots after Kobe Bryant. Delk had a 10 year career in the NBA and had some amazing highlights in his career including putting up 53 points in a game in the 2000-01 season against the Sacramento Kings.
Delk was playing for the Phoenix Suns and he was on fire in the game. He was 20 for 27 shooting only one three pointer, which he missed. He also added in 13 of 15 free throws. After his career finished at the end of the 2005-06 season. Since that time, Delk has played one season overseas and spent a few seasons coaching. He now runs his own basketball academy and is an analyst for the SEC Network.
Delk returned to the NBA scene this past Thursday night, where he was a guest on Kevin Garnett’s entertaining Area 21 show. The subject was guard play and he appeared alongside Kevin Garnett, Rasheed Wallace, and former Kentucky assistant Rod Strickland. The segments of the show were pretty cool and I recommend you check out both clips below.
I want someone to be as excited about the things that I have to say as Kevin Garnett is about everything. This is a fun segment because Tony Delk’s career would’ve been much different in the NBA today. Tony Delk was never a volume three point shooter, but he had seasons shooting a pretty good percentage from three. His ability to handle the ball and shoot from deep would be accentuated in today’s game.
Nevertheless, Tony Delk is one of the best players to ever play at the University of Kentucky and it was really cool to see him appear on Area 21 and get to talk about today’s players.