Stoudemire with the New York Knicks in 2013
|No. 1 - Hapoel Jerusalem|
|Position||Power forward / Center|
Israeli Premier League|
Basketball Champions League
November 16, 1982|
Lake Wales, Florida
|Listed height||6 ft 10 in (2.08 m)|
|Listed weight||245 lb (111 kg)|
|High school||Cypress Creek (Orlando, Florida)|
|NBA draft||2002 / Round: 1 / Pick: 9th overall|
|Selected by the Phoenix Suns|
|2010-2015||New York Knicks|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
Stoudemire played high school basketball for five different schools, ultimately graduating from Cypress Creek High School in Orlando, Florida and declaring for the NBA draft as a prep-to-pro player. He won several prep honors, including being selected as Florida's Mr. Basketball. The Phoenix Suns selected him with the ninth overall pick in the 2002 NBA draft. He spent his first 12½ seasons with the Suns and the New York Knicks, before finishing his NBA career with the Dallas Mavericks and the Miami Heat.
Listed at 6 feet 10 inches (208 cm) and 245 pounds (111 kg), the highly athletic Stoudemire suffered from chronic knee problems during his career, including undergoing microfracture surgery on his knees. In spite of this, he won the NBA Rookie of the Year Award in 2003, made six appearances in the NBA All-Star Game, was a first-team All-NBA selection in 2007, and won a bronze medal with the United States national team at the 2004 Olympic Games.
His off-court ventures include a record label, a clothing line, acting and a series of children's books for Scholastic Press. In addition, Stoudemire owns a significant share of Hapoel Jerusalem, the team he won a championship with in 2017.
Stoudemire's first name had previously been listed in the Phoenix Suns media guide as Amaré or Amare, but it was changed to Amar'e in October 2008. Stoudemire told NBA.com that his name had always been spelled Amar'e, but the media had been spelling it incorrectly since he joined the NBA.
Stoudemire was born in Lake Wales, Florida, a small city within an hour's drive of Orlando, Florida. Stoudemire's parents, Hazell and Carrie (née Palmorn), divorced when he was young. Together they had two sons: Hazell Jr. and Amar'e. Stoudemire's mother did agricultural work, picking oranges in Florida and migrating north to Upstate New York to pick apples during the fall. Upon divorcing Hazell, she met Artis Wilmore, with whom she had a son, Marwan, Stoudemire's half-brother. Hazell died of a heart attack when Stoudemire was 12, and his mother was in and out of prison for crimes such as petty theft and forgery during that time. In his parents' absence, Stoudemire had other outside influences to help guide him, including a policeman, Burney Hayes, he occasionally stayed with; he also lived with his Fastbreak USA, AAU squad's coach, Travis King, as well as a minister, Rev. Bill Williams.
As a result of moving in-and-out with his mother and her problems with the law, Stoudemire transferred between five high schools in two states six different times. He first attended Lake Wales High School in Lake Wales, Florida, transferred to Mount Zion Christian Academy in Durham, North Carolina in October 1999, moved to Emanuel Christian Academy in Leland, North Carolina, returned to Lake Wales, then moved to West Orange High School in Winter Garden, Florida. His final move was to Cypress Creek High School in Orlando, Florida, where he graduated in 2002.
Due to all the transfers, he missed his entire junior year of basketball. He told Isaac Perry in an article for Dime Magazine that what kept him going during that difficult time was "God" and the words of rapper Tupac Shakur. Apart from basketball, Stoudemire excelled in football. He was coached by his father in Pop Warner football and imagined himself a star receiver for the University of Miami, Florida or Florida State. Growing up he rooted for Shaquille O'Neal, center for the hometown Orlando Magic of the NBA.
Stoudemire did not start playing organized basketball until he was 14. He only played two years of it in high school, but in both he was named the MVP of the Nike Summer League. In his senior year he averaged 29.1 points, 15 rebounds, 6.1 blocked shots, and 2.1 steals per game. Among Stoudemire's high school honors was being selected to play in the 2002 McDonald's All-American Game at Madison Square Garden in New York City, where he played with two future New York Knicks teammates, Carmelo Anthony and Raymond Felton. He was also named Florida's Mr. Basketball, the Orlando Sentinel's Florida High School Player of the Year, and to USA Today's's All-USA Basketball First Team.
With his biggest goal in high school being making it to the NBA, Stoudemire committed to the University of Memphis. However, he later de-committed and declared for the NBA draft, being taken with the ninth pick in the 2002 NBA draft by the Phoenix Suns. He was the only high school player taken that year in the first round.
In his rookie season, Stoudemire averaged 13.5 points and 8.8 rebounds per game, with a season high of 38 points against the Minnesota Timberwolves on December 30, 2002, the highest score by a prep-to-pro player until broken a year later by LeBron James. Stoudemire was selected to the Rookie squad in the Rookie Challenge. In the game, Stoudemire recorded 18 points, 7 rebounds and 4 steals. Stoudemire won the NBA's Rookie of the Year award, beating out Yao Ming and Caron Butler and becoming the first player drafted out of high school to win the award. Stoudemire also was selected to the NBA All-Rookie First Team. The Suns, led by Stoudemire, Stephon Marbury, Shawn Marion, Anfernee Hardaway and Joe Johnson, made it to the playoffs but were defeated in six games by the eventual champions, the San Antonio Spurs.
The following season, Stoudemire improved statistically, but his team stumbled to a 29-53 record, and point guard Marbury was traded to the New York Knicks. During the season Stoudemire had a 10-block game against the Utah Jazz; he recorded six blocks in the first quarter alone (both team records as of 2012). During the summer of 2004, Stoudemire was selected to play for the eventual bronze medal-winning 2004 U.S. national team in the Summer Olympics. However, head coach Larry Brown declined to give him significant playing time (6.875 MPG).
During the 2004-05 season, Stoudemire teamed up with point guard Steve Nash who the Suns signed as a free agent, to lead the Suns to a 62-20 record. Averaging 26 points per game that year and achieving a new career high of 50 points against the Portland Trail Blazers on January 2, 2005, he was selected to his first NBA All-Star Game as a reserve forward. Stoudemire and Nash ran a pick-and-roll many have compared to Hall of Famers John Stockton and Karl Malone. In the Western Conference Finals against the San Antonio Spurs, Stoudemire averaged 37 points per game, but the Suns still lost in five games.
During the 2005-06 NBA preseason, knee cartilage damage was discovered and Stoudemire underwent microfracture surgery on October 18, 2005. Initially, the Suns thought he would return by mid-February, but his rehab took longer than expected. Stoudemire, however, scored 20 points in his return against the Portland Trail Blazers, but went scoreless his third game against the New Jersey Nets on March 27, 2006. On March 28 it was announced that he would likely miss the rest of the regular season due to ongoing stiffness in both knees. His manager stated that the comeback came a little too soon, and Stoudemire needed to do more rehab. Stoudemire's rehabilitation, which was led by Suns trainer Aaron Nelson and Dr. Micheal Clark, the president and CEO of the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), went well as he stated during the rehab that he was explosive and he gradually gained his strength back.
On February 18, 2007, Stoudemire appeared in the 2007 NBA All-Star Game, his second all-star game appearance. He scored 29 points and grabbed 9 rebounds, and came in second in MVP voting to Kobe Bryant. He had previously announced that he would make the all-star game in his first season back after his knee recovered.
During the 2007 NBA Playoffs, in a series against the San Antonio Spurs, Stoudemire accused Manu Ginóbili and Bruce Bowen of being "dirty" players. Stoudemire was suspended for Game 5 for leaving the bench area after an altercation between teammate Steve Nash and Spurs forward Robert Horry. The Suns lost to the Spurs in six games despite Stoudemire averaging 25 points, 12 rebounds and two blocks throughout the series. He finished the regular season averaging 20.4 points and 9.6 rebounds. He was selected to the All-NBA First Team.
Stoudemire played in the FIBA Americas Championship 2007, but withdrew from the national team for the 2008 Olympics. Jerry Colangelo, managing director for the national team, said, "Amar'e has pulled himself out of consideration for the roster and that's predicated on, despite the fact that he's had an injury-free year coming back, he's a little hesitant on pushing the envelope too hard." Stoudemire had said in April 2008, "It's more than a year-round grind. It's last year and the year before that and the year before that. It's really been like a three-year-round basketball circuit."
Stoudemire led the Suns in scoring (25.2 ppg) and rebounds (9.1 pg) in the 2007-08 season. He made the all-star team and was named 2nd Team All-NBA. Stoudemire also adjusted well to playing with veteran center Shaquille O'Neal, who the Suns had acquired in February. The Suns however faltered in the playoffs, again losing to their rivals the San Antonio Spurs. The Suns blew a big lead in game one of the series, and seemed to never recover, losing the series 4-1 to the Spurs. Stoudemire averaged 23 points in the series. After the season, Suns head coach Mike D'Antoni left the team to coach the New York Knicks.
Under new coach Terry Porter, the Suns struggled early in 2008-09 with his system and lost five games in a row heading into the 2009 All-Star break. Stoudemire was voted a starter for the Western Conference. On February 19, in a game against the Los Angeles Clippers, Stoudemire suffered a detached retina, although he may have injured it earlier as he had been bothered by the same eye even before this game. He had injured the same eye in preseason, although this injury involved a partially torn iris, with no damage to his retina. He said then that he would have to wear protective goggles for the rest of his career, but stopped wearing them after seven games. Stoudemire underwent eye surgery to repair the retina. The recovery took eight weeks, which forced him to miss the remainder of the regular season. He announced that he would wear protective goggles when he returned to play the following season.
In the 2009-10 season, Stoudemire was once again named to the all-star team. During the season, Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic reported that the Suns and Cleveland Cavaliers discussed a trade that would have sent Stoudemire to Cleveland to pair up with LeBron James; the deal, however, never went through. Stoudemire would eventually lead the Suns to a 54-28 record, clinching the third seed in the Western Conference. Stoudemire finished the season averaging 23 points and 9 rebounds on 56% shooting. The Suns would defeat the Portland Trail Blazers 4-2 during the first round of the playoffs and beat the San Antonio Spurs 4-0 in the Conference Semifinals, to meet the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers in the Conference Finals. After dropping the first two games, Stoudemire would score 42 points in game 3 and 21 in game 4, to help the Suns tie the series 2-2. The Suns failed to win any additional games in the series, dropping it 4-2.
Stoudemire finished his tenure with the Suns fourth in franchise history in scoring average (21.4ppg), third in rebounds, free throws made and attempted, fifth in blocked shots, and single-game records of consecutive free throws in one game (20) and blocked shots (10).
On June 30, 2010, Stoudemire opted out of his contract with the Phoenix Suns, which made him an unrestricted free agent. On July 5, 2010, Stoudemire and the New York Knicks agreed in principle to a contract estimated to be worth around $99.7 million over five years. On the first day that free agents were allowed to officially sign, the Knicks formally introduced Stoudemire at Madison Square Garden. There Stoudemire proclaimed "the Knicks are back!" referring to the team's lack of success the past few years. With the Knicks, Stoudemire was reunited with head coach Mike D'Antoni, who had coached him with the Suns. On December 15, 2010, in a loss against the Boston Celtics, Stoudemire set a franchise record with his ninth straight 30-point game. On December 17, 2010, Stoudemire set a franchise record with his ninth straight game shooting 50 percent or better from the field. On January 27, 2011, Stoudemire was named a starter on the Eastern Conference All-Star Team alongside LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Derrick Rose, and Dwight Howard. He became the first Knick player to start in the game since Patrick Ewing. In the game Stoudemire scored 29 points, which tied him with LeBron James for most on the Eastern Conference team. On February 22, 2011 the Knicks made a 3-team trade with the Denver Nuggets and Minnesota Timberwolves that sent Nuggets superstar Carmelo Anthony to the Knicks along with the Nuggets' starting point guard Chauncey Billups. In 2011, the Knicks made the playoffs for the first time since 2004. Stoudemire was injured during the playoffs. In game 3, Stoudemire attempted a Willis Reed-like comeback by playing in the game despite a bad back. In the first round of the playoffs, the Knicks were swept by the Boston Celtics. Stoudemire ended up having one of the best seasons in his career, averaging 25.3 points, 9.1 rebounds, 2 blocks and a career high 2.6 assists. Stoudemire developed a mid-range game and shot a career high 43% from three point range. Stoudemire was named to the All-NBA Second Team.
During the 2011 NBA lockout, Stoudemire served as a player representative for the Knicks. Stoudemire represented the Knicks along with teammates Carmelo Anthony, Chauncey Billups, Toney Douglas, and Roger Mason, Jr., who was Vice President of the Players Union. Stoudemire considered playing overseas for Maccabi Tel Aviv B.C. due to his possible Jewish heritage, but instead opted to stay with the players union. In October 2011, Stoudemire appeared on ESPN First Take, where he promoted his new sneaker line, the Nike Air Max Sweep Thru. During the lockout, Stoudemire trained and took history seminars at Florida International University. He also dabbled in acting, appearing in the second to last episode of Entourage.
Before the 2011-12 season, the Knicks acquired Tyson Chandler, but released point guard Chauncey Billups via the amnesty clause. Early on in the season, Stoudemire struggled without a point guard to distribute the basketball. In February 2012, Stoudemire missed four games mourning the death of his older brother, Hazell, who had died in a car accident. Later that month, the Eastern Conference All-Stars were announced; Stoudemire was not voted in, nor selected by the coaches to play in the All-Star Game. It was the first year since 2006 that he was not selected to the All-Star Game. Stoudemire was struggling with efficiency and explosiveness and blamed it on the weight he gained during the NBA lockout and so engaged in a weight loss program, losing 10 pounds in 10 days with a goal to reach 245 pounds. The weight loss proved to be beneficial for Stoudemire, as he averaged 18 points per game on 56% shooting March. After a good March, however, Stoudemire suffered a bulging disk in his back. Stoudemire returned with a few games remaining in the regular season. The seventh-seeded Knicks were paired with the defending Eastern Conference champions in the Miami Heat heading into the Eastern Conference Semifinals. After a loss in Game 2, Stoudemire suffered from a self-inflicted cut to his left hand after punching a fire extinguisher box in the visitors' locker room. The wound required stitches to mend. Stoudemire returned for game four and recorded 20 points and 10 rebounds, in a Knicks victory. The victory snapped a record 13 game playoff losing streak for the Knicks. The Knicks would however not win another game as they lost the series 4-1 to the Heat. In the Heat's series clinching win in game 5, Stoudemire fouled out after the Heat's Shane Battier drew an offensive foul; this led to the Heat's PA announcer announcing Stoudemire had been extinguished, referring to Stoudemire's hand injury. The Heat later issued an apology to Stoudemire. The 2011-2012 season was a disappointment as Stoudemire's production dropped off in every statistical category from the prior year. Stoudemire averaged 17.5 points, which was down almost 8 points from the prior year, 7.8 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 1.0 blocks.
Stoudemire missed the first 30 games of the 2012-13 season with a knee injury. On December 18, 2012, he was assigned to the Erie BayHawks of the NBA D-League so that he could practice with that team as he continued his rehab. He was recalled by the Knicks on December 21. Stoudemire made his season debut on January 1, 2013 at home against Portland, playing 17 minutes off the bench, scoring six points and grabbing one rebound. After returning Stoudemire was restricted to playing a maximum of 30 minutes a game.
It was announced on March 9, 2013, that Stoudemire would have a right knee debridement. He missed the rest of the regular season because of that. For the first time in his career, he was not a starter, but a sixth man for the New York Knicks. He only played 29 games during the season, averaging 14.2 points per game and 5 rebounds per game in 23.5 minutes per game. Even without him for most of the time, the Knicks finished 54-28 (2nd best in the Eastern Conference), made the playoffs for the third time in a row, and won their first Atlantic Division title since the 1993-94 season. Stoudemire was still out when the New York Knicks defeated the Boston Celtics in six games which would be the Knicks first playoff victory since 2000. He returned to action on May 11, 2013, in Game 3 during the Knicks' Eastern Conference Semifinals series against the Indiana Pacers. The Knicks ended up losing to the Pacers in 6 games.
After injuries limited him to 47 and 29 games played in the previous two seasons, respectively, Stoudemire bounced back for the Knicks in the 2013-14 season. Not only did he manage to play in 65 games, but he grew stronger as the year progressed. He maintained his offensive efficiency as his workload increased, ultimately forcing his way into the starting five for good on March 3 in Detroit. Once there, he led New York to seven straight wins in games in which he played. In 14 games in March, he averaged 16.9 points and 6.6 rebounds per game, while averaging 28.3 minutes as he proved capable of playing power forward alongside Tyson Chandler or center in small lineups.
With the Knicks' playoff hopes hanging on by a thread with a week to go in the regular season, Stoudemire put together arguably his best performance of the season, lighting up the division-leading Toronto Raptors for 24 points on 10-of-14 shooting and 11 rebounds. However, despite Stoudemire's efforts, the Knicks failed to qualify for the 2014 playoffs, finishing just shy with a 35-47 record and a ninth-place finish in the East.
Having played predominantly in a bench role for the Knicks in 2013-14, Stoudemire's role in 2014-15 began much the same, and with it came solid production as he missed just one game over the first 28. He proved to be a solid leader off the bench for a fledgling Knicks team that had won just five games by mid-December, as he averaged 13.4 points and 7.4 rebounds per game up to and including the December 18 loss to Chicago. He went on to miss the next 12 out of 13 games with another knee injury, returning to action on January 15 in London to face Milwaukee, as he went scoreless in eight first-half minutes and didn't play after half time.
On February 16, 2015, Stoudemire was waived by the Knicks after an agreement was reached to buy out his contract.
On February 18, 2015, Stoudemire signed with the Dallas Mavericks. Four days later, he made his debut for the Mavericks against the Charlotte Hornets and recorded 14 points in just 11 minutes off the bench. Stoudemire went on to play in 23 games for the Mavericks and averaged 10.8 points and 3.7 rebounds per game.
On July 10, 2015, Stoudemire signed with the Miami Heat. He played in just one of the Heat's first 10 games of the 2015-16 season, largely due to knee soreness. He played eight minutes of first half action against the Sacramento Kings on November 19, scoring 10 points off the bench to spark the Heat early, as the team went on to win the game 116-109. On January 31, 2016, he recorded season-highs of 13 points and 12 rebounds against the Atlanta Hawks, starting in place of the injured Hassan Whiteside. Two days later, he set a new season-high with 14 points in a loss to the Houston Rockets, starting at center for the Heat in his sixth straight game.
On July 26, 2016, Stoudemire signed a contract with the New York Knicks in order to finish his career as a Knick, as he announced his retirement from the NBA later that day after 14 seasons in the league.
Though he retired from the NBA, Stoudemire did not retire from playing basketball, and on August 1, 2016, he signed a two-year deal with Hapoel Jerusalem, a team he co-owns in the Israeli Basketball Premier League. On October 1, 2016, he helped Hapoel Jerusalem win the Israeli Basketball League Cup. He went on to earn All-EuroCup Second Team honors for the 2016-17 season, as well as Israeli League All-Star honors. In June 2017, he helped Hapoel Jerusalem win the Israeli League championship.
On September 1, 2017, Stoudemire announced his official retirement from basketball.
In February 2018, Stoudemire joined BIG3 team Tri State as co-captain. Three months later, Stoudemire announced that he was contemplating a return to playing professional basketball in the NBA.
Stoudemire started the Each One, Teach One foundation in 2003. Stoudemire also funded his very own AAU team, named Team STAT. Stoudemire played Wheel of Fortune during its NBA week and donated all his winnings to the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Greater Phoenix area. In November 2008, Stoudemire received the NBA's Community Assist Award, for his work with his Each 1, Teach 1 Foundation, and its efforts to provide safe drinking water in Sierra Leone by funding the building of water wells in impoverished villages. Stoudemire visited the country in summer 2008, making visits to water well sites and meeting with President Ernest Bai Koroma and the rest of the cabinet. In 2010 Stoudemire hosted the first Amar'e Stoudemire Basketball Academy in Mali. That same year, he posed shirtless on behalf of PETA's Ink Not Mink campaign, protesting the wearing of animal fur.
Stoudemire has four children with his wife, Alexis Welch. Having dated since 2002, the two were engaged in May 2012 and later married on December 12, 2012 atop their Greenwich Village apartment rooftop.
In a 2010 interview, Stoudemire said, "I have been aware since my youth that I am a Hebrew through my mother, and that is something that has played a subtle but important role in my development." He visited Israel that year, saying he intended "to get a better understanding of [his] heritage." Traveling with Stoudemire was Idan Ravin, who works as a private coach for many NBA players who include LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Carmelo Anthony. During the trip, Ravin linked Stoudemire's language skills to his ability to decipher defensive schemes on the court. Ravin also worked with Stoudemire on a daily basis during the trip. Stoudemire was named an assistant coach of the Canadian basketball team for the 2013 Maccabiah Games, giving him an opportunity to return to Israel. In July 2013, Stoudemire met with Israeli president Shimon Peres, who urged him to join the Israel national basketball team. In a 2010 interview, Stoudemire was asked if there was a chance he was Jewish, Stoudemire said "I think through history, I think we all are". However, he was not able to confirm if he had Jewish roots. Stoudemire is associated with the Hebrew Israelite community. In April 2018, Stoudemire reportedly began the process of converting to Judaism.
In December 2014, Stoudemire purchased a 185-acre farm in historic Hyde Park, New York, which includes a 2,066 square-foot log home. Stoudemire has said that he intends to use the property as a place where his family can get together on weekends and in the off-season.
After guest appearances on Law & Order: SVU, Entourage and Sesame Street in 2011, Amar'e appeared on TV Land's The Exes opposite Kristen Johnston in a January episode. Stoudemire also appeared on Fox's comedy series, The Mindy Project, where Mindy Kaling's character went on an outing with her co-workers to a nightclub, and wound up hanging in the VIP section with the New York big man. Stoudemire's acting roles have not been limited to television. He had a role in the film MacGruber and appeared in the blockbuster romance New Year's Eve. He also appeared as himself in the comedy film Trainwreck, as one of the patients of sports surgeon Dr. Aaron Conners (played by Bill Hader).
In 2011, Stoudemire started his own clothing line which launched at Macy's in late 2011. It was designed with the help of Rachel Roy. Stoudemire described the line as "courtside apparel for the fashion-forward female". Stoudemire has his own record label named Hypocalypto and has signed rappers from Phoenix to Atlanta.
In August 2011, Stoudemire signed a deal with Scholastic Press to write a series of middle-grade chapter books called STAT: Standing Tall And Talented. The first book in the series, STAT: Home Court (ISBN 0545387590), which Stoudemire described as biographical, was published in August 2012.
In the summer of 2013, Stoudemire became a major shareholder of Hapoel Jerusalem B.C. together with sports agent Arn Tellem and Ori Allon. Later that year, he also became an assistant coach for the Canadian men's national basketball team for the 2013 Maccabiah Games.