Former Seattle SuperSonics superstar Shawn Kemp turned 46 on this past Thanksgiving Thursday. While the rest of us were wrestling with family over white or dark turkey meat and the best of the sides, the NBA showed some love to one of the most electric power forwards ever to suit up on the pro court.
The above image was posted to the NBA's official Instagram account.
Kemp, the Elkhart, Indiana native, played 14 seasons in the National Basketball Association, eight of them with your Sonics. It's only fitting that their tribute image be keyed to his days in Seattle. Drafted by the Sonics in the first round of the 1989 NBA Draft, Kemp would be a key component in the 1995-96 team that compiled the best regular season record in the team's history. His legendary skill with dunking the ball would earn him the beloved nickname, the "Reign Man."
Kemp's extraordinary partnership with all-star point guard Gary Payton led that Western Conference championship team to take two games in the NBA Finals against the Chicago Bulls, the team with the single greatest season (72-10 reg. season; 15-3 postseason) in NBA history.
Not to be outdone by his buddy Payton, Kemp was also a six-time All-Star, and was named to the All-NBA Second Team three times during his career. Recognized as one of the best dunkers in league history, the Reign Man participated in four NBA Slam Dunk Contests yet amazingly never won.
Join us in wishing Shawn Kemp a happy 46th birthday.