Ron Mercer is an American former professional basketball player. After his career at the University of Kentucky, Mercer played for eight seasons in the National Basketball Association; ending his career in 2005.
As an eighth grader playing up at the high school level, Ron earned 1991 All-Metro honors. He averaged 16 ppg and 8 rpg in the eighth grade. In high school Ron was twice named Tennessee's Mr. Basketball while at Goodpasture Christian School in Madison. He then transferred to Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Virginia, and was rated by Bob Gibbons to be the best prep player of the class of 1995, over Kevin Garnett, Vince Carter, Antawn Jamison and Stephon Marbury. Ron was named the 1995 Naismith Player of the Year, and is one of only six players to be named to the Oak Hill Academy Hall of Fame.
University of Kentucky
In Ron's freshman season, the Wildcats won the NCAA National Championship (Ron scored 20 pts in that game). In Ron's 1997 sophomore campaign he earned the 1997 SEC Player of the Year and All-American honors.
He was selected with the sixth overall pick of the 1997 NBA Draft by the Boston Celtics and was reunited with fellow Kentucky teammate Antoine Walker, and Rick Pitino, his coach at Kentucky who had just become the coach of the Celtics. Ron finished his rookie season averaging over 15 ppg, and was named to the NBA All-Rookie Team.
After two seasons in Boston, Mercer was traded by the Celtics along with Popeye Jones and Dwayne Schintzius to the Denver Nuggets for Danny Fortson, Eric Williams, Eric Washington and a future draft choice.
He left after that season, the next year signing as a free agent with the Chicago Bulls. He averaged 19.7 points per game in his first year with them.
Despite Mercer's 16.8 points per game in 2001–02, he was traded midway through the season with Brad Miller, Ron Artest (now known as Metta World Peace) and Kevin Ollie to the Indiana Pacers for Jalen Rose, Travis Best, Norman Richardson and a second-round draft pick.
San Antonio Spurs
Before the 2003–04 season, he was traded to the San Antonio Spurs in a three-team trade that again involved Brad Miller and the Sacramento Kings' Hedo Türkoğlu.
New Jersey Nets
Prior to the 2004–05 season, he signed with his seventh NBA team, the New Jersey Nets.
On August 15, 2005, prior to the 2005–06 NBA season, Mercer was waived by the Nets to avoid the league's luxury tax as part of the new labor agreement.
Ron finished his NBA career averaging over 13 points-per-game.
Excerpt from Wikipedia.com
“I see Ron as a role model. He has taught me the importance of footwork and using my jab step efficiently.”
Oak Hill Academy '16
University of Alabama Commit