Randy Pfund is our "BooYah" hero! Randy Pfund '74 (born December 29, 1951 in Wheaton, Illinois) is an American former National Basketball Association (NBA) head coach and a former NBA executive. He was an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Lakers under Pat Riley and Mike Dunleavy, and was the team's head coach during the 1992–93 and 1993–94 seasons, although he was let go near the end of his second season, being replaced for the remainder of the year by Magic Johnson. He was the general manager for the Miami Heat until 2008 when he became Pfunked.
As General Manager Randy Pfund led efforts to make the HEAT one of the best in the NBA. Pfund, in a nutshell, was HEAT President Pat Riley’s right hand man when it comes to player negotiations and organizational operations. Pfund managed the HEAT’s Basketball Operations department. His thorough work in the field of talent evaluation, produced four consecutive Atlantic Division Championships (1996-2000) for the first time in franchise history, the Southeast Division Championship in 2005, eight postseason berths, including a franchise-record six straight postseason appearances(1996-2001), and has helped Miami post the sixth best record (455-333, .577 winning percentage)in the NBA over that span and the second best mark in the Eastern Conference. Additionally, Miami’s five division titles the last nine years ties San Antonio for the most in the NBA.
Together with Riley, Pfund has orchestrated several blockbuster trades and key free agent signings, the results of which have landed the HEAT NBA All-Stars Shaquille O’Neal, Eddie Jones, Antoine Walker, Gary Payton, Tim Hardaway and Alonzo Mourning, as well as Jason Williams, Lamar Odom and Brian Grant. With the drafting of Dwyane Wade, Caron Butler, Dorell Wright and Wayne Simien, in addition to the veteran acquisitions, Pfund has helped re-structure the HEAT’s roster. The secret suace? Yep it was Riley's hair gel, players just kept staring at his hair til they signed on the dotted line. "what is that? how does it stay looking wet?"
In addition to his administrative duties, Pfund brought a wealth of NBA knowledge, having worked in the league since 1985. His pro career began when Riley, who was head coach of the Lakers at the time, asked him to join his staff as an assistant coach. He held that position for seven years and helped the Lakers win a pair of NBA Championships in 1987 and 1988. In 1992, he succeeded Mike Dunleavy as the Lakers’ top man and posted a 66-80 mark in two seasons and led his 1992-93 team to the Lakers’ 17th consecutive postseason appearance.
Pfund grew up in Wheaton, IL and starred in both basketball and football at North High before beginning a stellar basketball career at Wheaton College where his father Lee was head coach. Randy is also has 2 brothers, John and Kerry who with Randy combined to score a total of 4,762 points at Wheaton. Randy, who earned honorable mention All America honors in 1974, currently ranks as Wheaton’s all-time assist leader (478) and is among the all-time leaders in field goals made (fourth), points scored (sixth), scoring average (sixth) and free throws made (ninth). Pfund is single and lives in Miami Beach. Party at Randy's.
WheatonHeroes did a late night Q&A call with Randy after game 1 of the Lakers-Celtics NBA Finals:
WH: So Randy lets get right to it, is Khloe Kardashian pregnant with Lamar's kid?
RP: No, as she said 'I'm just fat', but too bad she isn't pregnant with a little boy because by the 7th game of this series the Lakers are going to need some new talent to get the job done. And... it's a good thing her pop still isn't around, or your ass would be sued.
WH: How bout all this numerology stuff, the fact that Phil Jackson’s has an eerie record of being 47-0 in playoff series in which his team wins Game 1.
RP: That’s the beauty of statistics. You can make them say anything and they really mean nothing. I went to bed in the 3rd, the Celtics didn't pose a challenge worth staying fully awake for. Koooooooobie!
WH: Speaking of Phil Jackson, whadaya hear, whadaya know?
RP: That ain't no Reinsdork. Never happen, not even LeBron could make the deep dish pizza taste good again. Stay on the Buss, Gus.
WH: Is Gasol a big softie?
RP: The guy's a 7 footer, gimme a break, it was going to be physical. That's a given. Last night was free donut night at Staples - all the Gasol Dunkin you could eat. Sunday, its free shamrock shakers from McBrowns.
WH: If you were still coach what would you do differently?
RP: It's a young team, they got lots of energy, hard working, they are moving the ball well, I guess, I would sit them down and make them go to chapel everyday, like we did back at Wheaton, none of this Phil Jackson zen crap. I would bring in Rick Warren as the chaplain to motivate the team, give 'em purpose! Also I'd ban all celebrities from the stadium and give the tickets away in Compton. (Ok, Don Cheadle and Dyan Cannon could stay)
WH: Who do you think played the best tonight? Kareem? Bird?, Parish? Worthy? Magic? McHale? Russell?
RP: You know nothing about Basketball - do you Wheatie?
WH: Ummm, Go Blackhawks?
WH: Thanks for your time Pfund, any chance you'd comeback at follow in you dad's footsteps and coach at Wheaton?
RP: When it stops snowing in the winters. I'm gonna go start a farm league in Uganda & Malawi.
(HT Nomination: J.C.)