Dale Ellis (born August 6, 1960) is a retired American professional basketball player, who played in the National Basketball Association.
Ellis was selected ninth overall in the 1983 NBA Draft by the Dallas Mavericks. His time as a shooting guard with the Mavericks was rather unremarkable as he played scant minutes and was often relegated to sitting on the bench.
Ellis’ fortunes changed dramatically after he found himself traded to the Seattle SuperSonics for Al Wood on July 23, 1986. His playing time increased significantly, and his regular season scoring average reflected this as it jumped from 7.1 points per game with the Mavericks to 24.9 points per game with the SuperSonics. Ellis’ rise with the SuperSonics was recognized around the league, which awarded him the NBA Most Improved Player Award in 1987.
After signing with the Denver Nuggets, and then later in his career traded to the SuperSonics once again, the Orlando Magic (for whom he never played), again to the Bucks, and the Charlotte Hornets, he saw a more reduced playing role. The Hornets traded him to the Miami Heat after the 1999–2000 season; but was waived prior to the start of the next season.
Ellis played in 1,209 games and had career averages of 15.7 points per game, 3.5 rebounds per game, a .479 field goal percentage, and a .403 three point field goal percentage. He set the NBA record for most minutes played in a single game when he scored 53 points in 69 minutes (out of a possible 73) for the SuperSonics in a 155-154 quintuple-overtime loss to the Bucks on November 9, 1989. His 1,719 career made three-pointers ranked second in NBA history at the time of his retirement.
Career highlights and awards
NBA All-Star (1989)
All-NBA Third Team (1989)
NBA Most Improved Player (1987)
NBA Three-Point Shootout champion (1989)
Consensus first-team All-American (1983)
Consensus second-team All-American (1982)
2× SEC Player of the Year (1982–1983)
No. 14 retired by the University of Tennessee