Jose Luis Villegas / Sacramento Bee Staff Photo

Kings Bobby Jackson, Peja Stojakovic, Scot Pollard, Chris Webber and Mike Bibby huddle in the fourth quarter in game five of the NBA Western Conference Finals between the Sacramento Kings and the Los Angeles Lakers at Arco Arena, Monday, May 28, 2002.

Poll

For what is Chris Webber most remembered?

Leading Off: Though not perfect, Webber was a King

Published: Friday, Apr. 12, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 1C
Last Modified: Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014 - 2:18 pm

We all remember the Fab Five – the black socks, the long shorts, the stare-downs. And the timeout.

Other early memories of Chris Webber include his Rookie of the Year season with the Warriors in 1993-94, his reluctance to join the Kings after being traded in 1998 and the spirited All-Star seasons in which he helped elevate a dormant Kings franchise and ignite Sacramento's passion for basketball.

I remember 10 years ago, when Webber sat in the visitors' dressing room before a playoff game against the Mavericks with his knees encased in ice – a scene normally played out after games. Webber frowned, tapped the ice and said, "My knees ache so bad. … I'll rest when I'm retired or dead."

About 90 minutes later, Webber was down and out, clutching a knee that would never be the same. That injury stalled the engine that helped propel the Kings to the brink of greatness.

"Webber's the best player the Sacramento Kings have ever had," team director of player personnel Jerry Reynolds said Wednesday. "When he went down, it changed us forever, too."

Webber's legacy is mixed.

Though he was a marvelously skilled big man when healthy, his reputation is stained by the player payment scandal that rocked the University of Michigan.

He could be charismatic and candid, then withdrawn and sullen.

And he had a great NBA body, but one that ultimately betrayed him.

Today's poll

For what is Chris Webber most remembered?

• The Fab Five

• The timeout

• Rookie of the Year

• Kings All-Star

• Comeback struggles

Vote above or leave your comments in the comment field; or, go to www.sacbee.com/sports

Thursday's poll results

Who is your favorite Kings coach in the Sacramento era?

• Rick Adelman: 85%

• Phil Johnson: 0%

• Jerry Reynolds: 8%

• Garry St. Jean: 3%

• Keith Smart: 2%

• Other: 2%

Total votes: 424

Follow on Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD and on podcast: ESPN1320.net

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