Originally written on NBA 24/7 365  |  Last updated 12/30/11
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After spending the past year or so playing overseas Ricky Davis wants to make a return to the NBA, and the path that he hopes will lead him back to the league begins in my home state of Maine.  Just a few days ago Davis signed a deal to join the Maine Red Claws of the NBA’s Development League, and he debuted against the Canton Charge last night in Ohio.  He’ll play his first game in front of the people of Portland, Maine’s largest city, tomorrow evening.  Davis was only able to score six points in his first D-League run, but at age 32 it’s hardly ridiculous to hope that he has enough left in the tank to fare pretty well against minor-league competition.  Via ESPN…

Former Celtics swingman Ricky Davis made his D-League debut for Maine Thursday night, chipping in six points, two rebounds and four assists in 25 minutes of play as the Maine Red Claws fell to the Canton Charge 111-98. Not quite a triple-double, but Davis still has a sense of humor about such accomplishments. From the Canton Repository:

A high-flying guard with flair who could score in a variety of ways, Davis gained a reputation for being a high-volume shooter and a me-first player.

A parent now and a man who has played in three countries since last playing in the NBA with the Clippers in 2009-10, Davis seems a bit more introspective today.

“It brings a whole different perspective on life,” Davis said of his experiences. “But I think it’s a good journey. I don’t regret anything really.”

Davis pauses a beat before adding with a laugh, “Well, the triple-double, but … that’s my only thing.”

Davis gained infamy when he shot at the wrong basket during a March 2003 game in an effort to gain a rebound and record his first career triple-double. It’s a moment that has seemingly overshadowed an otherwise strong pro career.

“You’ve got to carry your skeletons with you,” Davis said. “I’m not trying to hide them at all. They’re there.”

I’ve always liked Ricky Davis.  He was, in my opinion, the most exciting player on a Boston Celtics team that I grew up watching.  This was before I was introduced to NBA league pass, so most nights it was just the Celtics and their opponent.  I remember when Ricky threw down that reverse alley-oop against the Lakers, and I remember the botched between-the-legs dunk.  I also remember that he was a fan favorite with an entire cheering section called “The Buckets Brigade,” even though I once saw him speed away from a group of kids who chased his SUV down the street as he left the Garden.

I hope to find out that Ricky still has most of the athleticism and all of the eccentricity that made him so much fun to watch when he and I were younger.  He says his knee feels good–”I’m back,” that’s how he recently put it–and I’m excited that his basketball career has led him to my stomping grounds, even if it is in it’s twilight years.  I hope to attend a Red Claws game while he’s with the team, and I’ll be sure to document the experience if I do. 

Good luck with your comeback, Ricky!  Get Buckets!

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