Ratliff, Theo
Background
2002-03: Hawks fans finally got the opportunity last year to view a healthy and dominant Ratliff patrolling the paint, the 6-10 center bounced back from his injury-plagued season the year before to finish ninth in balloting for the NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year award • Reminding many of the shot-blocking abilities of former Atlanta post players Tree Rollins and Dikembe Mutombo, he turned away a career-best 262 blocks and took home his second league shot blocking title in the last three years • Speaking of Rollins and Mutombo, Ratliff’s season total was the sixth-highest in team history, trailing those two guys • In addition to forcing players to think twice before coming down the lane, his overall production improved tremendously over the last three months of the year • From February 1 to the season’s end, he totaled 9.8 points and 8.0 rebounds and rejected a staggering 4.2 shots in 33 minutes • On the season, Ratliff averaged 8.7 ppg, 7.5 rpg and 3.2 bpg (.464 FG%, .720 FT%) • He had nine double-doubles and 16 double-digit rebounding games • In an early-season game against the Hornets (11/16), Ratliff pulled down 17 boards - tying his career best, and he missed out on a triple-double on two occasions (9 pts/9 rebs/9 blks v/Orl (2/2), and 16 pts/14 rebs/9 blk @Ind (2/14)) • He also set or tied single game career highs in assists, steals and blocks • Saw action in 81 of the 82 regular season games, missing the only one because of illness (flu) • He has missed 108 games since joining the Hawks • SEASON HIGHS: 20 pts v/Tor (3/8), 17 rebs v/NO (11/16), 5 assts v/Milw (12/5), 4 stls (2x), 9 blks (3x), 48 mins @Bost (11/22), 9 FGM v/Tor (3/8), 7 FTM (2x).

2001-02: If there's any player hopeful of an injury-free, 82-game campaign, it is Ratliff, whose brief career in the Hawks' red-and-white has only consisted of three games...Completely recovered from the wrist injury that ended his season the year before, the 6-10 center suffered another setback when doctors found a small cartilage tear in his right hip...After seeing action in the first two games, Ratliff required surgery to repair the damage and he was placed on the injured list on November 5...Following weeks of rehabilitation and believing that his problems were behind him, he played 15 minutes at Toronto (January 11), but the pain continued to bother him and forced him to the sidelines yet again...The Hawks' trainers, medical staff and Ratliff turned to the Alex McKechnie Physiotherapy Clinic for assistance, and McKechnie - who has worked with the Vancouver Canucks and the Los Angeles Kings - spent the rest of the season getting Ratliff ready for the upcoming season...His drills created constant resistance against the limbs to correct the body's alignment and with repeated emphasis, Ratliff was forced to use positioning to strengthen his movements and ease the pain in the affected area...In order to test his recovery process, Ratliff played in two of Atlanta's summer league games and declared himself ready to re-establish his dominance on the court...If healthy, his presence will certainly improve the Hawks' defensive capabilities...In his brief appearances last season, Ratliff averaged 8.7 ppg, 5.3 rpg and 2.7 bpg (.500 FG%, .545 FT%)...Reached a personal milestone in his final game when he blocked the 1000th shot of his career against the Raptors...He has missed 107 games since joining the Hawks...SEASON HIGHS: 12 pts (2x), 8 rebs @Hou (10/30), 6 blks @Hou (10/30), 1 asst v/Wash (11/1), 1 stl @Hou (10/30), 39 mins @Hou (10/30), 5 FGM (2x), 2 FTM (3x).

2000-01: Always viewed as one of the NBA's premier shotblockers, Ratliff was gaining recognition for his all-around contributions and was preparing for the greatest honor of his career before injury struck on February 7. He suffered a stress fracture in his right wrist in the fourth quarter of that night's contest against Houston and the injury forced him to miss the rest of the 2000-01 season ... Not only did the 6-10 center miss the remaining 28 games of the year, but the injury prevented him from playing in his first NBA All-Star Game ... He was voted the Eastern Conference starter by the fans and was unable to perform ... One of Philly's key forces as the Sixers had the East's best record through the break, Sixers management was forced to make a tough decision when they realized they would be without his services because of the injury ... As a result, they sent Ratliff (and three teammates) to Atlanta for Dikembe Mutombo and Roshown McLeod ... He still won the NBA's blocked shots crown with 3.74 bpg, in addition to averaging career highs in scoring average (12.4 ppg) and rebounding average (8.3 rpg) ... He made 49.9 percent of his shots from the field and 76.0 percent from the FT line ... Finished the season with 12 double-doubles (pts/rebs) ... HIGH GAMES: 22 pts @NJ (2/4), 17 rebs @Orl (11/3), 4 assts v/Char (12/1), 3 stls v/Char (1/15), 9 blks v/Wash (11/29), 9 FGM @NJ (2/4), 9 FTM v/NJ (1/19), 52 mins v/Orl (2/2). 1999-2000: Activated from the injured list on 11/13 after missing the first six games of the season due to a stress fracture in his left ankle ... Activated from the injured list on 1/9, after missing three weeks with a sore left ankle ... Tallied 25 points and 13 rebounds in a 101-100 win in Dallas on 2/1. 1998-99: Named to the 1998-99 NBA All-Defensive Second Team after leading the 76ers in blocked shots (2.98 bpg, 3rd in the NBA) as the Sixers made the playoffs for the first time in eight seasons ... Only player to start all 50 games for Sixers in 1998-99 ... Led team in rebounding at 8.1 rpg (20th in the NBA) as well as shotblocking, and was third in scoring at 11.2 ppg ... Logged 11 double-doubles ... Posted 16 points, 14 rebounds and 7 blocked shots in an 83-67 victory over the Boston Celtics on 4/9 ... Recorded 16 points (7-11 FG, 2-2 FT), 9 blocked shots and 8 rebounds in a 95-90 overtime win over the Vancouver Grizzlies on 3/24 ... Registered 23 points (9-15 FG, 5-6 FT) and team-highs of 11 rebounds and 7 blocked shots in a 100-93 overtime win over the New Jersey Nets on 3/12 ... Totaled 21 points (9-12 FG, 3-3 FT) and game-highs of 13 rebounds and 8 blocked shots against the Milwaukee Bucks on 2/16 1997-98: The Philadelphia 76ers, seeking a defensive presence in the middle, obtained Ratliff from Detroit along with Aaron McKie and a first-round pick on December 18, 1997 in exchange for Jerry Stackhouse, Eric Montross and a second-round pick ... Ratliff averaged 3.50 bpg as a Sixer to finish the season with a 3.15 average, fourth in the NBA. ... Posted 20 points, 10 rebounds and 8 blocked shots in a 113-107 victory over the L.A. Lakers on 1/4 ... Totaled 17 points (8-10 FG) and 7 rebounds, in his 76ers debut, against the Miami Heat on 12/19. 1996-97: Ratliff led the Pistons in blocked shots for the second year in a row, his 1.46 average ranking 19th in the NBA even though he played just 17.0 minutes per game. ... Played in 76 games, starting exactly half of them at center. He was a DNP-CD in six games. ... Averaged 5.8 ppg and 3.4 rpg ... Scored 25 points, grabbed a season-high 12 rebounds and blocked five shots in a 92-85 win over Milwaukee on April 16. Posted eight blocked shots in a 104-95 win over Philadelphia on Jan. 25. ... Saw only brief action in three of Detroit's five playoff games, totaling eight points, four rebounds and four blocks in 18 minutes. 1995-96: Led the Pistons in blocked shots as a rookie with 116, his 1.55 per game average ranking 19th in the NBA. He blocked at least two shots in 36 games, posting a season-high five blocks on three occasions. ... Averaged one block for every 11.2 minutes of action ... Also averaged 4.5 points and 4.0 rebounds in 17.4 minutes per game, appearing in 75 contests, all but two of them off the bench. Ratliff sat out six games due to a coach's decision and one because of illness. Ranked second on the Pistons in field goal percentage at .557, shooting 128-for-230. ... Was scoreless in four minutes in one playoff appearance against Orlando. COLLEGE: Was named to the Western Athletic Conference First Team in his final season at Wyoming and was a two-time All-WAC Defensive Team selection ... Ended his career with 425 blocked shots, the second-best total in NCAA history behind Alonzo Mourning's 453 ... Only the fifth player in NCAA history to block 400 or more shots during his career, he holds the third-best blocked shots average per game (3.83) in NCAA history behind David Robinson (5.24) and Shaquille O'Neal (4.58) ... Ratliff finished 10th in rebounding and 15th in scoring on Wyoming's all-time list and was a member of the 1993 USA Basketball under-22 world championship team.
Personal

He and wife Kristina have four children - Stacia, Yasmeen, Alexis and Sasha A member of the NBA’s All-Star Reading Team, Ratliff is a frequent participant in the Hawks’ Read to Achieve program Not only has he been active in several of the team’s community activities, but he has also sponsored a local reading contest for metro Atlanta students the last two years Enjoys reading, listening to music and watching TV His favorite food is his wife’s lasagna Most memorable movie is “Malcolm X” His boyhood idols were Magic Johnson and Walter Payton In the summer of 1993, he played on USA Basketball’s Under-22 World Championship team Ratliff majored in communications at Wyoming His favorite actor/actress are Samuel L. Jackson and Ashley Judd He is a fan of R&B music and anything by Gerald Levert His favorite TV show - BET’s “ComicView” Loves playing at the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia, but considers Atlanta the best of the NBA cities Next to the Hawks, Ratliff’s favorite sports team is the NFL’s St. Louis Rams
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