Rudy Gay

Rudy Gay

Gay with the Kings in December 2013
No. 8 Sacramento Kings
Position Small forward
League NBA
Personal information
Born (1986-08-17) August 17, 1986
Brooklyn, New York, United States[1]
Nationality American
Listed height 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m)
Listed weight 230 lb (104 kg)
Career information
High school Eastern Technical
(Essex, Maryland)
Archbishop Spalding
(Severn, Maryland)
College Connecticut (2004–2006)
NBA draft 2006 / Round: 1 / Pick: 8th overall
Selected by the Houston Rockets
Playing career 2006–present
Career history
20062013 Memphis Grizzlies
2013 Toronto Raptors
2013–present Sacramento Kings
Career highlights and awards
Stats at
Stats at

Rudy Carlton Gay Jr. (born August 17, 1986) is an American professional basketball player for the Sacramento Kings of the National Basketball Association (NBA). The 6'8" small forward played college basketball for the University of Connecticut before being drafted eighth overall by the Houston Rockets in the 2006 NBA draft.

Early life and high school

Gay began playing competitive recreational basketball at the age of 12 in his hometown of Baltimore, Maryland. At the age of 14, Gay began playing for the nationally-known Cecil-Kirk AAU program under coach Anthony Lewis.[2]

Gay played his first two years of high school basketball at Baltimore County's Eastern Technical High School, a magnet school in Essex. He played varsity basketball both years. In his sophomore season at Eastern Tech, the Mavericks earned their first and only trip to College Park for the state semi-finals. Although Eastern Tech was a Blue Ribbon academic institution, Gay's parents were concerned about his college preparation. He began his junior year with Eastern Tech, but in September 2002, he transferred to Archbishop Spalding in Severn. This prompted the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association to review its transfer rules.[3] He began playing basketball for Spalding as a junior in 2002–03, earning first team All-Baltimore Catholic League honors as a junior and senior, and was also honored as the Baltimore Sun's co-player of the year as a senior.[4] He was the Washington Post All-Met Basketball Player of the Year, a McDonald's All-American, and a Parade first-team All-American in his senior year after averaging 21.2 points, 9.2 rebounds and 3.7 blocks per game.[5] Considered a five-star recruit by, Gay was listed as the No. 2 small forward and the No. 5 player in the nation in 2004.[6][7]

College recruitment

Gay's college recruitment and decision to attend the University of Connecticut over the University of Maryland were controversial.[3] Gay had expressed a desire to attend Maryland and said that he grew up rooting for the team, but he ultimately chose UConn. Because of the heavy involvement of an AAU coach and a high school coach, there was the appearance of impropriety, although no NCAA recruiting violations were discovered.[8] The NCAA adopted a new scheduling rule after UConn paid $25,000 to schedule a game against the Beltway Ballers, an ad hoc AAU team that consisted of Gay's former teammates.[9] Although it violated no standing rule at the time,[10] media observers and Connecticut staff considered it directly connected to the recruitment.[11] According to individuals close to Maryland head coach Gary Williams, the recruitment demonstrated that rule bending is often necessary to secure highly touted players, which Williams said he is unwilling to do, even at the expense of recruiting.[8]

College career

Gay with UConn coach Jim Calhoun in 2006

As a freshman at Connecticut in 2004–05, Gay was a co-winner (with Jeff Green of Georgetown) of the Big East Conference Rookie of the Year award after averaging 11.8 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.5 assists on .462 shooting in 28.8 minutes in 31 games. He was a unanimous Big East All-Rookie Team selection, was named National Freshman of the Year by The Sporting News, and earned Big East Rookie of the Week honors five times.[12]

In the summer of 2005, Gay played for United States' Men's Under-21 World Championship Team. He averaged 10.5 points and 5.5 rebounds per game over the tournament.[13]

Before his sophomore season began, Gay was nominated as Big East Preseason Player of the Year, along with Syracuse guard Gerry McNamara. After the season concluded, Gay was one of four division one college players nominated for the Naismith College Player of the Year Award (along with J. J. Redick, Adam Morrison and Allan Ray). Also, he was a unanimous selection to the First-team All-Big East. He led the Huskies in scoring (15.2 points) while averaging 6.4 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 30.8 minutes in 33 games as a sophomore. He was named first-team All-America by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) and was named to the 2006 Washington, D.C. Regional All-Tournament Team. He scored a career-high 28 points on November 21, 2005 against Arkansas. Gay led the Huskies to a 30–3 record, and finished his college career with 20 points and six rebounds in a career-high 42 minutes in an NCAA Elite Eight loss to George Mason on March 26.[12]

On April 24, 2006, Gay declared for the 2006 NBA draft.[14]

In February 2012, Gay was inducted into the "Huskies of Honor".[15]

College statistics

2004–05 Connecticut 31 26 28.8 .462 .467 .708 5.4 1.5 .8 1.9 11.8
2005–06 Connecticut 33 33 30.8 .461 .318 .732 6.4 2.1 1.8 1.6 15.2
Career 64 59 29.8 .461 .378 .721 5.9 1.8 1.3 1.7 13.6

Professional career

Memphis Grizzlies (2006–2013)

2006–07 season

Gay was selected with the eighth overall pick in the 2006 NBA draft by the Houston Rockets, who then traded him and Stromile Swift to the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for Shane Battier on July 12. Gay immediately signed his rookie scale contract with the Grizzlies upon being acquired by the team.[16] Gay averaged 10.8 points, 4.5 rebounds and 27.0 minutes in 78 games (43 starts) as a rookie. He earned NBA Rookie of the Month honors for November 2006, and went on to be selected to the 2006–07 All-Rookie First Team after placing fourth among first-year players in scoring, sixth in rebounding, fifth in steals (0.91), third in blocks (0.95), and fourth in minutes. He also finished third in the balloting for the 2006–07 Rookie of the Year Award behind winner Brandon Roy and runner-up Andrea Bargnani.[12]

2007–08 season

In 2007–08, Gay's second season, he set a Grizzlies' franchise record for points in a single season (1,632) and established a career-high for scoring average (20.1 points), becoming just the third player in franchise history to average 20 points per game (behind only Shareef Abdur-Rahim and Pau Gasol). He participated in the 2008 Rising Stars Slam Dunk Contest, and finished runner-up to Hedo Türkoğlu for the 2007–08 NBA Most Improved Player Award.[12] After his invitation to the 2008 Slam Dunk Contest, Gay and YouTube teamed up for the Rudy Gay Slam Dunk Contest promotion, in which he asked fans to upload footage of their best dunks for him to attempt during the contest. During the contest, he performed a one handed reverse clutch dunk in the first round, and during the second round, teammate Kyle Lowry alley-ooped the ball off the bar and from behind the backboard; Gay regathered and pulled off a windmill dunk. He ended with a score of 85 but did not advance to the second round.[17]

2008–09 season

In 2008–09, Gay recorded 18.9 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.24 steals and 37.3 minutes in 79 games (78 starts). He made a baseline jumper as time expired in Memphis' home opener on October 31 against the Orlando Magic, giving the organization its first home-opening win since the 2000–01 season.[12]

2009–10 season

On December 13, 2009, Gay scored a career-high 41 points against the Miami Heat, tying Mike Miller's franchise record for points in a win.[18] In 2009–10, he ranked second on the team in scoring (19.6 points) in 39.7 minutes in 80 games (all starts). He finished the season tied for 18th in the NBA in scoring, 17th in steals and third in minutes.[12]

2010–11 season

On July 8, 2010, Gay re-signed with the Memphis Grizzlies to a five-year, $82 million contract.[19][20] He emerged as one of the league's premier small forwards in 2010–11, posting career-highs in seven major statistical categories before missing the final 23 regular season games and all of the 2011 Playoffs due to a left shoulder subluxation sustained on February 15 against the Philadelphia 76ers.[21] He recorded career-highs for assists (2.8), steals (1.69), blocks (1.07), field goal percentage (.471), three-point field goal percentage (.396), free throw percentage (.805) and minutes (39.9). He also ranked second on the team in scoring (19.8 points) in 54 games (all starts).[12] Gay watched from the sidelines as the Grizzlies defeated the top-seeded San Antonio Spurs in a first round upset before falling to the Oklahoma City Thunder in seven games in the Western Conference semi-finals.

2011–12 season

Gay passed Shane Battier (523) as the Grizzlies' all-time leader in steals on February 2, 2012 against the Atlanta Hawks.[22] In 2011–12, Gay led the Grizzlies in scoring (19.0 points) and minutes (37.3), and averaged a career-high in rebounding (6.4). He posted 2.3 assists and .455 shooting in 65 games (all starts), and ranked 17th in the NBA in scoring, 16th in steals (1.46), sixth in minutes and seventh in dunks (110). He made his first postseason appearance in 2011–12, averaged a team-high 19.0 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.4 assists on .421 shooting in 39.9 minutes in seven games against the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round of the 2012 Western Conference Playoffs.[12]

Toronto Raptors (2013)

On January 30, 2013, the Grizzlies traded Gay to the Toronto Raptors in a three-team deal that also included the Detroit Pistons.[23] Gay set a franchise record by scoring 74 points in his first three games with the Raptors.[24] The Raptors finished the 2012–13 season with a 34–48 win/loss record and missed the playoffs. He became the first player to lead two teams in scoring in the same season since Stephon Marbury in 2003–04. He averaged 19.5 points, 6.4 rebounds, 1.73 steals and 34.7 minutes in 33 games (32 starts) with Toronto.[12]

Sacramento Kings (2013–present)

2013–14 season

On December 9, 2013, the Raptors traded Gay, along with Quincy Acy and Aaron Gray, to the Sacramento Kings in exchange for Greivis Vásquez, John Salmons, Chuck Hayes and Patrick Patterson.[25] On January 22, 2014, he tied his career-high of 41 points in the Kings' 114–97 win over the New Orleans Pelicans.[26][27]

2014–15 season

On June 22, 2014, Gay exercised his $19.3 million contract option with the Kings for the 2014–15 season.[28] On October 31, 2014, Gay scored 40 points in a 103–94 win over the Portland Trail Blazers. On November 19, 2014, he signed a three-year, $40 million contract extension with the Kings.[29][30] Gay appeared in just one of the Kings' final nine games of the 2014–15 season after experiencing headaches due to a concussion he received when he had a collision with his ex-teammate Marc Gasol of the Memphis Grizzlies on March 30. Gay had one of his best seasons in the NBA, averaging 21.1 points, 5.9 rebounds and 3.7 assists in 68 games.[31]

2015–16 season

On November 25, 2015, Gay scored a season-high 36 points in a 129–118 win over the Milwaukee Bucks.[32] On December 15, 2015, he recorded 17 points, 13 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 block and a career-high 6 steals in a 107–97 win over the Houston Rockets.[33]

National team career

In 2010, Gay helped the United States win its first FIBA World Championship gold medal since 1994, averaging 7.0 points, 2.9 rebounds and 1.0 steals in 13.4 minutes in nine games for the undefeated Americans. He was also a member of the national team in 2014 that collected the gold medal at the FIBA Basketball World Cup after an undefeated campaign.

NBA career statistics

  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage  3P%  3-point field goal percentage  FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high

Regular season

2006–07 Memphis 78 43 27.0 .422 .364 .727 4.5 1.3 .9 .9 10.8
2007–08 Memphis 81 81 37.0 .461 .346 .785 6.2 2.0 1.4 1.0 20.1
2008–09 Memphis 79 78 37.3 .453 .351 .767 5.5 1.7 1.2 .7 18.9
2009–10 Memphis 80 80 39.7 .466 .327 .752 5.9 1.9 1.5 .8 19.6
2010–11 Memphis 54 54 39.9 .471 .396 .805 6.2 2.8 1.7 1.1 19.8
2011–12 Memphis 65 65 37.3 .455 .312 .791 6.4 2.3 1.5 .8 19.0
2012–13 Memphis 42 42 36.7 .408 .310 .776 5.9 2.6 1.3 .7 17.2
2012–13 Toronto 33 32 34.7 .425 .336 .856 6.4 2.8 1.7 .7 19.5
2013–14 Toronto 18 18 35.5 .388 .373 .773 7.4 2.2 1.6 1.3 19.4
2013–14 Sacramento 55 55 34.4 .482 .312 .836 5.5 3.1 1.2 .6 20.1
2014–15 Sacramento 68 67 35.4 .455 .359 .858 5.9 3.7 1.0 .6 21.1
2015–16 Sacramento 70 70 34.0 .463 .344 .780 6.5 1.7 1.4 .7 17.2
Career 723 684 35.7 .452 .344 .793 5.9 2.3 1.3 .8 18.4


2012 Memphis 7 7 39.9 .421 .211 .825 6.6 1.4 1.3 .3 19.0
Career 7 7 39.9 .421 .211 .825 6.6 1.4 1.3 .3 19.0

Personal life

Gay is a Christian.[34]

In 2010, Gay was named an ambassador for the Hoops for St. Jude fundraising program for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis and donated $20,000 to the program, which allowed donors to pledge a set amount of dollars for each point scored by Gay and other participating NBA players.[35]

In April 2010, Gay was awarded the NBA Cares Community Assist Award for March in recognition of his service to the Memphis community, particularly his ongoing support of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis. As a result, a $5,000 donation was given by the NBA on behalf of Gay to support St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Gay, who wore number 22 with Memphis, personally donated $22,222.22 to the hospital.[36]


  1. Through The Wire: Rudy Gay
  2. Big East Notebook : Gay’s AAU coach didn’t notice superstar qualities right away
  3. 1 2 McMullen, Paul (December 11, 2004). "UConn's Gay shooting for stardom". Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  4. 2003-04 All-Metro boys basketball teams
  5. O'Shea, Michael (April 4, 2004). "Meet PARADE's All-America High School Boys Basketball Team". Parade. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved July 6, 2007.
  6. Rudy Gay – Yahoo! Sports
  7. "Rudy Gay '04 Helps USA beat Turkey 81-64 to win the 2010 FIBA World Championship Crown". Archbishop Spalding High School. Retrieved September 8, 2014.
  8. 1 2 Prisbell, Eric; Yanda, Steve (February 13, 2009). "It's a Whole New Ballgame, and Maryland's Williams Isn't Playing". Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  9. Hoyas rookie wins battle
  10. Barnstorming Days Are Over
  11. Exhibition ban would eliminate cheat potential, perception
  12. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 "Rudy Gay Stats, Video, Bio, Profile". Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  13. Rudy Gay's FIBA profile
  14. "Gay to leave UConn for NBA draft". ESPN. April 24, 2006. Retrieved July 6, 2007.
  15. "RUDY GAY TO HUSKIES OF HONOR". February 25, 2012. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  16. Grizzlies Trade Shane Battier to Houston in Exchange for Forward Stromile Swift and Draft Rights to Rudy Gay
  17. Rudy Gay - 2008 NBA Slam Dunk Contest
  18. "Gay helps Grizzlies maul Heat". December 14, 2009. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  19. "Grizzlies re-sign Rudy Gay to Multi-Year Contract". July 8, 2010. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  20. "2010 Free Agent Watch Archive". August 3, 2010. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  21. "Rudy Gay to undergo shoulder surgery". March 22, 2011. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  22. Hawks win streak ends with a thud at home
  23. "Grizzlies deal Gay to Raptors in three-team trade". January 30, 2013. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  24. "Rudy Gay has recorded franchise-best 74...". Twitter. February 6, 2013. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  25. "Kings Acquire Rudy Gay, Quincy Acy and Aaron Gray from Toronto". December 9, 2013. Retrieved December 9, 2013.
  26. Rudy Gay Drops Career High 41 Points on the Pelicans
  27. Rudy Gay ties career-high with 41 points as Kings pop Pelicans
  28. Sources: Rudy Gay to exercise $19.3 million contract option
  29. Kings Sign Rudy Gay to Contract Extension
  30. Rudy Gay, Kings reach extension
  31. Rudy Gay 2014-15 Game Log
  32. Gay scores 36 points, Kings beat Bucks 129-118
  33. Kings Win Third Straight
  34. "9 Questions With Rudy Gay". October 17, 2012. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
  35. Morgan, Marlon W. (February 26, 2010). "Sports business: Rudy Gay scores 'Hoops for St. Jude'". The Commercial Appeal. Retrieved March 7, 2012.
  36. "Gay receives NBA Cares Community Assist Award for March". April 13, 2010. Retrieved December 16, 2015.
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