José Manuel Calderón Borrallo (born September 28, 1981) is a Spanish professional basketball player for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA). With the Spanish national basketball team, he won a FIBA World Cup title in 2006, two Olympic silver medals in 2008 and 2012, as well as a bronze medal at the 2016 Summer Olympics. He also won a EuroBasket title in 2011, two silver medals in 2003 and 2007 as well as a bronze in 2013. Calderón earned an All-Eurobasket Team selection in 2007.
Calderón entered the NBA when former Raptors GM Rob Babcock persuaded the Spanish guard to sign with the Toronto Raptors on August 3, 2005. Known as a talented playmaker, Calderón struggled with his shooting in his first year in the NBA. By the end of the 2005–06 season, he was ranked third among all rookies in assists with 4.5 per game. He finished the season with 64 played games, having started in 11 of them. He averaged 5.5 points, 4.5 assists, 2.2 rebounds and an assists-per-turnover ratio of 2.85.
Throughout the 2006–07 season, Calderón played primarily as backup to T. J. Ford, turning in solid numbers from the bench. As acknowledged by coach Sam Mitchell as well as his teammates, Calderón’s form was instrumental to the Raptors’ push for a playoff spot, and later, the Atlantic Division title. He ended his regular season with improved averages of 8.8 points and 5.1 assists per game and .525 in field goal percentage, even though he had less playing time compared to his rookie season. In the 2007 NBA Playoffs, Calderón played in all of Toronto’s games in the series against the New Jersey Nets, but the Raptors were defeated 4–2. Calderón averaged 13.0 points and 5.3 assists per game in his first NBA playoff season.
The Raptors underwent a significant roster overhaul in the preseason, such as bringing Jarrett Jack from Indiana to play as Calderón’s back-up and point forward Hedo Türkoğlu to share in ball-handling duties. With a third of the season gone, the Spaniard picked up an injury that put him out for 12 games, resulting in Jack holding on to the starting spot even upon the former’s return, paralleling the Ford-Calderón scenario in 2007–08. Still, the pair combined well and helped bring the Raptors to a 21–20 record at the mid-season mark.
During the early stages of the 2010 offseason, the Raptors had a deal in place to send Calderon and Reggie Evans to the Charlotte Bobcats for Tyson Chandler and Boris Diaw. However, Michael Jordan, the owner of the Bobcats, nixed the deal right before it was finalized, which allowed Calderon to remain with the Raptors.
On February 12, 2012, Calderón scored a career high 30 points in a 94–92 loss against the Lakers. Calderón led the league in assists per turnover (4.5) for the third time in five years at the conclusion of the regular season.
On January 30, 2013, Calderón was traded to the Detroit Pistons in a three-team trade which sent Tayshaun Prince, Austin Daye, and Ed Davis to the Memphis Grizzlies and Rudy Gay and Hamed Haddadi to Toronto. He became the starting point guard for the Pistons, and in just his fourth game for the franchise, he recorded 23 points and 10 assists in the 105-100 win over the Milwaukee Bucks.
On July 11, 2013, Calderón signed with the Dallas Mavericks to a reported four-year, $28 million contract. He became the Mavericks lead point guard, starting in 81 games. He had his best game on December 20, 2013 against his former team, the Toronto Raptors, where he recorded 23 points and 9 assists. Calderón finished the season averaging 11.4 points and 4.7 assists per game.
On June 25, 2014, Calderón, along with Shane Larkin, Wayne Ellington, Samuel Dalembert and two 2014 second-round picks, was traded to the New York Knicks in exchange for Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton. In the process, he re-joined former Raptor teammate Andrea Bargnani. After a preseason injury kept him on sidelines for the first 13 games of the season, he made his Knicks debut on November 22, 2014 as he recorded 3 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals in the 91-83 win over the Philadelphia 76ers.
On March 23, 2015, Calderón was ruled out for the rest of the season after undergoing a procedure on his strained left Achilles tendon.
On March 13, 2016, Calderón made a game-winning three-point shot with 0.2 seconds left on the clock to defeat the Los Angeles Lakers.
On June 22, 2016, Calderón was traded, along with Jerian Grant and Robin Lopez, to the Chicago Bulls in exchange for Derrick Rose, Justin Holiday and a 2017 second-round draft pick. On July 7, he was traded again, this time with two future second-round picks to the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for the rights to Ater Majok. On December 5, 2016, he was ruled out for two to four weeks with a right hamstring strain.
Career highlights and awards
King’s Cup champion (2004)
Silver medal – second place 2008 Beijing Team
Silver medal – second place 2012 London Team
Bronze medal – third place 2016 Rio de Janeiro Team
Gold medal – first place 2006 Japan
Gold medal – first place 2011 Lithuania
Silver medal – second place 2003 Sweden
Silver medal – second place 2007 Spain
Bronze medal – third place 2013 Slovenia