Advertisement - Click to support our sponsors.

Star-Bulletin Sports

Wednesday, August 16, 2000

N B A _ I S L A N D E R S

By Ken Ige, Star-Bulletin
Miami Heat and former University of Hawaii guard Anthony
Carter entertained a group of youngsters at yesterday's
UH basketball camp.

Money can’t
change Carter

A solid NBA season with
Miami and a sizeable contract
have not gone to the head of
the former University
of Hawaii standout

By Dave Reardon

There are more than a million reasons -- $1.2 million to be exact -- for Anthony Carter to have become a vastly different person.

That's how much the former University of Hawaii basketball star will make in his second year for the Miami Heat.

NBA Heat Sure, it's not huge money by NBA standards. But many have become jerks for much less.

"You can't change, you have to remember where you came from," said Carter, who led UH to two NIT appearances, but never saw himself as too good to play pickup games with guys who couldn't make their high school teams.

He's a touch more confident after his first year of the NBA wars. But it appears Carter's added none of the excess baggage that other pros do when they start to pull in some coin.

No limo. No posse. No fancy clothes and jewelry.

Yesterday at the UH youth basketball camp, Carter looked like just another sweaty instructor in a tank top and shorts.

But he does possess an attitude.

It's pretty much the same positive yet humble persona he exuded as a star at UH from 1996 to 1998.

"He's the same guy he was back when I first met him at Saddleback (Calif.) Community College," said UH assistant Jackson Wheeler, who recruited Carter and coached him here. "It's so wonderful to see someone have success but it doesn't change him.

"We walked around and talked just like when he was in JUCO. But I guess some things never change. I bought him a chicken sandwich, and then I told him, 'Hey, you should be buying me the sandwiches now.' "

By Ken Ige, Star-Bulletin
Former UH basketball star Anthony Carter of the Miami
Heat gives shooting pointers to Gillian Wong, 11, of
Hawaii Kai at yesterday's UH youth basketball camp.

Wheeler chuckled. He realizes Carter is giving UH something much more important this week -- his time.

"Without people helping me, I would have never gotten to where I am," Carter said. "A lot of people helped me. In order to receive, you've got to give."

In addition to giving the camp a huge boost just by his presence, Carter also is making an undisclosed monetary donation to the program.

Wheeler said it's just an example of Carter's one overriding character trait.

"He's extremely loyal," Wheeler said.

"When he's comfortable with a situation he doesn't like a lot of change."

That -- and the chance to win an NBA title -- is why Carter re-signed with the Heat rather than fully explore opportunities with the Toronto Raptors and Los Angeles Clippers.

"I could've gotten four or five million, but I had a chance to stay in Miami. I like it there. People are nice, there's lots to do. It's a nice atmosphere. I want to end my career there," Carter said. "And I think we have a good chance to win."

Veteran teammates like Alonzo Mourning gained confidence in Carter as Miami's season wore on. And then there was his improbable, behind-the-basket, game-winning shot against New York in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

"I wasn't expected to do that good, but I got a chance," Carter said. "When the playoffs came, I had some experience and I was ready."

UH coach Riley Wallace has noticed a small change in Carter -- for the better.

"He's more polished and confident," Wallace said. "You'd like him to talk to every player you have."

Carter's achieved quite a bit for a high school dropout who worked his way off a nowhere-fast track.

He said he is about a year away from his degree at UH, and hopes to work on it next summer.

Carter's work ethic is legendary: He got up at 4:30 a.m. so he could work out before his 7 a.m. flight from Miami earlier this week.

As long as he stays healthy, Carter is a pretty good bet to stick in the NBA for several years. If he does -- and especially if his jump shot improves -- he'll be in line for the really big money.

For now, he's happy to have made enough to pay off his grandmother's mortgage, put some money down on a condo in Miami and help out his college team.

"It feels good to know I can go eat wherever I want instead of just McDonald's or Jack in the Box," Carter said.

Maybe he'll even buy his old coach that chicken sandwich someday.

"One thing about him, he's real good at giving back," Wheeler said. "That's why he came back here."

E-mail to Sports Editor

Text Site Directory:
[News] [Business] [Features] [Sports] [Editorial] [Do It Electric!]
[Classified Ads] [Search] [Subscribe] [Info] [Letter to Editor]

© 2000 Honolulu Star-Bulletin