He wasn't born when the late head coach of UTEP, Don Haskins, recruited a little guard out of Chicago to come to El Paso, Texas to play basketball for four years. That's how long ago Tim Hardaway played - good players stayed all four years.
Today, absolutely no one expects his son - who is a 6-foot-6 junior shooting guard at Michigan and in town to play Kansas in the Sweet 16 on Friday night - to stay in Ann Arbor for four years. He is projected as a mid first-round pick in the 2013 NBA draft, should he elect to come out.
Hardaway arrived in El Paso in 1985 and during his four-year career averaged 11.7 points, 4.5 assists and 2.1 steals per game. Despite being just 6-0, he thrived because he was built like a tank, possessed incredible ball handling skills, and could penetrate with what is forever known as "The UTEP two-step". It was maybe the most devastating cross-over dribble in NBA history.
His son is very good, but a totally different player.
Dad's advice was pretty simple - be your own guy.
"It's great just to go out there and play not only for yourself and for your family and for the last name," Hardaway Jr. said when I asked him if it's hard to live up to his famous dad. "He tells me to go out and have fun and don't worry about it; try to make a name for yourself. I'm 6-6, he was 6-foot. He's a point guard. I'm not. That's basically it, he could tell you that straight up."
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