4 Haziran 2008

Alonzo Mourning wants to keep playing for Heat

Miami Heat reserve centre Alonzo Mourning — once the property of the Toronto Raptors — isn't ready to call it a career after all.

Mourning, who retired Jan. 14, admitted Monday that he wants to play one more season.

"I want to come back and play another year," Mourning said. "I just want to get my body right to do it."

Mourning, 38, has not played since tearing his right quadriceps and a patella tendon in his right knee trying to block a shot during the first quarter of the Heat's protested 117-111 overtime loss to the Atlanta Hawks last Dec. 19.

Prior to being hurt, he averaged 5.9 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.8 blocked shots and 16.0 minutes in 24 games.

Mourning is the franchise leader in games played (568), points (9,310), rebounds (4,714), blocked shots (1,583) and minutes played (17,311).

But his contract with Miami expires June 30.

"I need to get my body where my mind is," Mourning said. "I still, in my mind, feel I can contribute."

Had a kidney transplant

Mourning made headlines at the start of the 2000-01 NBA season when he was diagnosed with focal glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) — a degenerative kidney ailment.

He had a kidney transplant on Dec. 19, 2003, receiving a kidney from his cousin, Jason Cooper, and later returned to the NBA.

The seven-time all-star has averaged 17.1 points, 8.5 rebounds, 2.8 blocked shots, 1.1 assists and 31.0 minutes in 837 games (686 starts) over 15 NBA seasons with the Charlotte Hornets, New Jersey Nets and Heat.

Mourning was acquired by Toronto from New Jersey along with Eric Williams, Aaron Williams and two first-round draft picks for Vince Carter on Dec. 17, 2004.

But he refused to report to the Raptors, and later negotiated a buyout on the more than $17 million US he was owned on a four-year, $22.6-million US contract he signed with the Nets on July 16, 2003.

Mourning was drafted second overall out of Georgetown by the Hornets in 1992, and was chosen NBA defensive player of the year in 1999 and 2000.

kaynak : NBA