Hall of Fame forward Karl Malone spent 18 years with the Utah Jazz, but that's not where he wanted to end up on draft night in 1985.
Malone said in an interview with SI that he was sure the Dallas Mavericks would take him with the eighth selection in the draft.
“I was so sure that the Dallas Mavericks were going to draft me, because I went out there to visit them at least 10 times, enough that I moved out there and didn't want to come to New York,” Malone said. “And them I'm sitting in the green room and they don't pick me. I will admit, and I've shied away from it a little bit, I went after the Dallas Mavericks hard all the time. I was strictly there to kick their ass, because they lied to me. So every time I played the Dallas Mavericks, I looked to kick their ass over and over.”
Dallas picked Detlef Schrempf instead, who started 35 games before he was traded midway through his fourth season to the Indiana Pacers for Herb Williams.
Malone would become the NBA's second-leading all-time scorer and a 14-time All-Star. In 87 career games against the Mavs he averaged 24.6 points and 10.2 rebounds. Malone's teams went 61–36 in those games.
- Dan Gartland