Less than six years ago Rudy Gay was showcasing his considerable basketball talents in gyms across the MIAA as he led Archbishop Spalding to the 2003-2004 MIAA A Conference championship.
Today he will sign a five-year $82 million contract to stay with the Memphis Grizzlies, who acquired him in a 2006 draft day deal shortly after the Houston Rockets made Gay the eighth overall selection.
It has been a spectacular rise for a shy young boy who began his high school career at Eastern Tech High School in Baltimore County, before transferring to Spalding for three spectacular MIAA seasons. In his senior year he was named a McDonald’s All-American and became one of the most heavily recruited players in the nation. He disappointed local fans by selecting the University of Connecticut over the University of Maryland, but after just two seasons in the Big East, he entered the NBA and has steadily progressed into one of the league’s elite rising stars.
This off-season Gay was a restricted free agent after averaging 20 points and six rebounds, while leading Memphis in steals. While all of the national free agent buzz has centered around LeBron James and a handful of other elite players, several NBA teams vigorously pursued Gay’s services. In the end, however, he opted to re-sign with the Grizzlies and he will be celebrated today during a signing ceremony at Memphis’ FedEx Forum at noon.
Over his three year career, Gay has averaged 17.4 points and 5.5 rebounds in 318 games.
Gay has also been invited to tryout for the U.S. National Team by USA Basketball and will take part in the national team camp later this month in Las Vegas.
Below his a Rudy Gay career highlight film published by the Grizzlies.