Morris Russell Peterson Jr. (born August 26, 1977) is an American retired professional basketball player. He is also a cousin of former basketball player of the Indiana Pacers and the New York Knicks, Jonathan Bender. Peterson currently serves as an analyst for a Canadian broadcaster, The Sports Network, on its coverage of his former team, the Toronto Raptors and other capacities including coverage of the NCAA March Madness tournament, where Peterson was part of the Michigan State Spartans Men’s Basketball team, won the National Championship in 2000.
Peterson posted career highs in points and rebounds averaging 16.8 points and 4.6 rebounds and threw in 2.3 assists per game through 82 games played in the 2005–06 season.
Perhaps the biggest highlight of his career occurred against the Washington Wizards on March 30, 2007 in a game that helped determine the two teams’ playoff seeding. The Raptors trailed 109–106 with only 3.8 seconds left and no timeouts remaining. The Wizards’ Michael Ruffin intercepted the full-court pass and tried to toss the ball high into the air so that the clock would run out. But the ball slipped from his hands and was not thrown high enough. There was still enough time on the clock as Peterson caught the ball and launched a “Hail Mary” three-pointer and sank it to send the game into overtime. Peterson only played 55 seconds in the game, with his first shift beginning with only 9.3 seconds left in the fourth quarter. The Raptors went on to defeat the Wizards, 123–118.
After signing Bryan Colangelo, it became apparent that the re-building process of the Raptors would not include Peterson. It was only a matter of time before his contract expired in the summer of 2007 that he would be gone.
On February 24, 2011, Peterson was traded to the Charlotte Bobcats along with D.J. White in exchange for Nazr Mohammed. He was waived four days later when his contract was bought out by the Bobcats
Career highlights and awards
NBA All-Rookie First Team (2001)
NCAA champion (2000)
Consensus second-team All-American (2000)
Big Ten Player of the Year (2000)
No. 42 retired by Michigan State