Frank Booker

Frank Alonzo Booker (born March 22, 1964) is an American former professional basketball player.[1] He gained considerable fame in Iceland as a high scoring guard in the Úrvalsdeild karla during the early 1990s.[2]

Frank Booker
Personal information
Born (1964-03-22) March 22, 1964
Augusta, Georgia
NationalityAmerican
Listed height185 cm (6 ft 1 in)
Career information
High schoolWestside (Augusta, Georgia)
CollegeBowling Green (1983-1987)
NBA draft1987 / Round: 7 / Pick: 140th overall
Selected by the New Jersey Nets
PositionGuard
Career history
As player:
1991ÍR
1991–1994Valur
1994–1995Grindavík
As coach:
1993–1994Valur
Career highlights and awards
As player:

College

Booker played college basketball at Bowling Green State University from 1983 to 1987.[3]

Career

NBA

On June 22, 1987, Booker was selected by the New Jersey Nets with the second pick in round 7 of the 1987 NBA Draft.[4] He had short pre-season stints with the Nets, Miami Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers.

Iceland

ÍR

Booker joined ÍR in January 1991, and in his first game he set a Úrvalsdeild record when he made 15 three-point shots.[5] Two games later he tied the record when he again made 15 three-pointers, en route to 60 points, in a loss against Snæfell.[6] For the season he averaged a league leading 43.2 points while making 7.8 three-pointers per game. [7]

Valur

He joined Valur at the start of the 1991–1992 season and led them to the 1992 Úrvalsdeild finals, where the team lost to Keflavík, 2–3, after holding a 2–1 lead in the series.[8] As a member of Valur he led the league in scoring in 1992 and 1994. In 1994 he was named the All-Star game MVP.[9]

Grindavík

After three seasons with Valur, Booker joined Grindavík in 1994. For the season Booker averaged 15.5 points per game, leading the club to the second best record in the league,[10] and helping it to win the 1995 Icelandic Basketball Cup.[11]

Booker was unexpectedly let go from Grindavík after their first game in the 1995 Úrvalsdeild playoffs. The split was far from amicable. Grindavík claimed Booker had become disgruntled and disinterested after being denied by the team to participate in the All-Star game in February, do to him missing practices the same week because of a back injury. They further claimed that he had dishonored an agreement to live in an apartment the club rented for him in Grindavík, dubbed "the most expensive shoe storage this side of the Alps" by the press, and spent to much energy driving back and forth from Reykjavík where he lived with his girlfriend.[12] Booker responded that he was deeply disappointed by the dismissal and the allegations but wished the club all the best in its upcoming games.[13]

Grindavík stepped up after Booker's departure, dismantling Haukar in the next game, 88–122, and sweeping them out of the playoffs.[14]

After a big loss to Keflavík in the semi-finals, allegations rose that Booker had leaked Grindavík's playbook to Keflavík. Both Booker and Keflavík's head coach, Jón Kr. Gíslason, strongly denied the allegations, with Jón Kr. stating that he had multiple game tapes of Keflavík and did not need any help in finding their tactics.[15] To further fuel the argument between the two parties, Booker requested that the club paid him bonus for it getting to the quarter finals as was stated in his contract.[16]

Coaching career

Booker started as the head coach of Valur during the 1993–1994 season. He was replaced after a 3–10 start by Svali Björgvinsson.

Personal life

Booker's half Icelandic son, Frank Booker Jr., played for the Oklahoma Sooners in the Big 12 Conference from 2013 to 2015. He transferred from the Florida Atlantic Owls before the 2015–16 season.[17][18][19][20][21] Prior to his senior year, Booker Jr. transferred to South Carolina for the 2017–18 season.[22][23]

References

  1. Logi B. Eiðsson (5 February 1991). ""Vildi sjá heiminn"". Morgunblaðið. Retrieved 2017-07-30. (in Icelandic)
  2. Óskar Ófeigur Jónsson (21 February 2014). "Janúar 1991 – verður hann einhvern tímann toppaður?". Vísir.is. Retrieved 2017-07-30. (in Icelandic)
  3. "Frank Booker". Real GM. Retrieved 2017-07-30. (in Icelandic)
  4. "1987 NBA draft". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved 2017-07-30.
  5. ""Booker var rosaleg skytta"". Morgunblaðið. 8 December 2009. Retrieved 2017-07-30. (in Icelandic)
  6. "Booker með sextíu stig". Dagblaðið Vísir. 18 January 1991. Retrieved 2017-08-06. (in Icelandic)
  7. "Franc Booker: Ferillinn í úrvalsdeild". KKÍ.is. Retrieved 2017-08-06. (in Icelandic)
  8. Úrslitakeppni 1992
  9. Skúli Unnar Sveinsson (15 February 1994). "Þeir slakari voru betri". Morgunblaðið (in Icelandic). Retrieved 23 October 2017.
  10. "Úrvalsdeild 1994-1995". kki.is. Retrieved 2017-07-31. (in Icelandic)
  11. "Verða tveir þetta árið". Morgunblaðið. 31 January 1995. Retrieved 2017-07-31.(in Icelandic)
  12. "Franc Booker látinn fara". Morgunblaðið. 11 March 1995. Retrieved 2017-07-31. (in Icelandic)
  13. ""Ég er mjög svekktur"". Dagblaðið Vísir. 13 March 1995. Retrieved 2017-08-06. (in Icelandic)
  14. Gudmundur Hilmarsson (13 March 1995). "Frábær hittni". Dagblaðið Vísir. Retrieved 2017-08-06. (in Icelandic)
  15. Ægir Már Kárason (23 March 1995). "Sögusagnir eru um að Booker hafi kjaftað frá: "Tóm vitleysa"". Dagblaðið Vísir. Retrieved 2017-08-06. (in Icelandic)
  16. Ægir Már Kárason (4 April 1995). "Booker fer fram á bónusgreiðslur". Dagblaðið Vísir. Retrieved 2017-08-06. (in Icelandic)
  17. Tómas Þór Þórðarson (21 February 2014). "Frank Booker að spila sig inn í íslenska landsliðið?". Retrieved 2017-07-30. (in Icelandic)
  18. Óskar Ófeigur Jónsson (17 February 2015). "Frank Booker yngri vill spila með íslenska landsliðinu". Retrieved 2017-07-30. (in Icelandic)
  19. "Frank Aron Booker hugleiðir til að ná betri árangri". 27 March 2015. Retrieved 2017-07-30. (in Icelandic)
  20. Hans Belot Jr. (18 March 2017). "Men's basketball: Frank Booker's impact goes beyond the hardwood". Retrieved 2017-07-30.
  21. Óskar Ófeigur Jónsson (21 February 2014). "Frank Booker ætlar sér í NBA og ekkert minna". Retrieved 2017-07-30. (in Icelandic)
  22. Cloninger, David (12 January 2018). "Frank Booker is Gamecocks' take-charge guy on the court". The Post and Courier. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
  23. Faigle, Kevin (21 June 2017). "Frank Booker to finish collegiate career at South Carolina". WRDW-TV. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
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