a legit big-man unlike today's players. He had a decent mid-range shot.
He was a member of the 1984 USA Olympic Team. He was one of 2 players acquired from the Sacramento Kings in exchange for Danny Ainge, a trade I really disliked when I was younger. While on Phoenix he was affectionately referred to by teammate Charles Barkley along with Danny Schayes as "Schleine" (a good name but not as much as I liked Carluis Scolandry, the combination of Carl Landry and Luis Scola). He actually won a championship ring with the Bulls in 1998. I'm talking about Joe Kleine.
The 7'0 Kleine was a McDonalds High School All American and began his college career at Notre Dame but would transfer to the University of Arkansas after 1 season. After winning a gold medal with the 84 Olympic Team he became the 6th pick in the 1985 draft by the Sacramento Kings, drafted ahead of Chris Mullin, Detlef Schrempf, Karl Malone and Joe Dumars. He would play 3.5 seasons for the Kings before being traded to the C's on February 23, 1989 along with Ed Pinckney for Danny Ainge and Brad Lohaus.
After the 1993 season he signed on with Phoenix where he'd team with Danny Schayes to be known as the 2-headed monster "Schleine." That was when Phoenix had a dynamite team, signing Danny Manning and Wayman Tisdale and adding them to a team that already had Barkley, KJ, and Dan Majerle. He'd play with the Suns for 3.5 years until being traded to the Flakers with Robert "Towel-Throwing" Horry for Cedric Ceballos. He'd play just 8 games for LAL before being traded again to the Nets. Somehow I don't have the animosity for him as I did for these 2 clowns.
Kleine would play 2 more seasons after that, the lockout-shortened season of 1999 with Phoenix and then the 2000 season with Portland, where he hoped to get one more chance at a title. And if not for a 4th quarter collapse of the ages against the Flakers in the Western Conference Finals (for a Portland team that was really talented) he probably would have.
|Joe Kleine: Poland Springs Spokesman|
an assistant coach at the University of Arkansas Little Rock, or the college of my most hated NBA player today. He lives in the area with his wife Dana and 4 children: they have two sons Daniel, 21 and William, 8 and two daughters Courtney, 18 and Mallory, 15. Outside of basketball Joe owns a couple of Corky’s Ribs & Barbecue, which are restaurants based out of Memphis, Tennessee.
For a list of all the "What the Hell Happened To" Series please click here. tb727 4/12/2010 10:05:00 AM Tweet