Los Angeles Lakers
The Los Angeles Lakers are an American professional basketball team based in Los Angeles. The Lakers compete in the National Basketball Association, as a member of the league's Western Conference in the Pacific Division; the Lakers play their home games at Staples Center, an arena shared with the NBA's Los Angeles Clippers, the Los Angeles Sparks of the Women's National Basketball Association, the Los Angeles Kings of the National Hockey League. The Lakers are one of the most successful teams in the history of the NBA, have won 16 NBA championships, the second-most behind the Boston Celtics; the franchise began with the 1947 purchase of a disbanded team, the Detroit Gems of the National Basketball League. The new team began calling themselves the Minneapolis Lakers. A member of the NBL, the Lakers won the 1948 NBL championship before joining the rival Basketball Association of America, where they would win five of the next six championships, led by star George Mikan. After struggling financially in the late 1950s following Mikan's retirement, they relocated to Los Angeles before the 1960–61 season.
Led by Hall of Famers Elgin Baylor and Jerry West, Los Angeles made the NBA Finals six times in the 1960s, but lost each series to the Celtics, beginning their long and storied rivalry. In 1968, the Lakers acquired four-time NBA Most Valuable Player Wilt Chamberlain, won their sixth NBA title—and first in Los Angeles—in 1972, led by new head coach Bill Sharman. After the retirement of West and Chamberlain, the team acquired Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who won multiple MVP awards, but was unable to make the Finals in the late 1970s; the 1980s Lakers were nicknamed "Showtime" due to their fast break-offense led by Magic Johnson. The team won five championships in a nine-year span, contained Hall of Famers Johnson, Abdul-Jabbar, James Worthy, was led by Hall of Fame coach Pat Riley. After Abdul-Jabbar and Johnson retired, the team struggled in the early 1990s, before acquiring Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant in 1996. With the duo, who were led by another Hall of Fame coach Phil Jackson, the team won three consecutive titles between 2000 to 2002, securing the franchise its second "three-peat".
The Lakers won two more championships in 2009 and 2010, but failed to regain their former glory in the following decade. The Lakers hold the record for NBA's longest winning streak, 33 straight games, set during the 1971–72 season. 21 Hall of Famers have played for Los Angeles. Four Lakers—Abdul-Jabbar, Johnson, O'Neal, Bryant—have won the NBA MVP Award for a total of eight awards; the Lakers' franchise began in 1947 when Ben Berger and Morris Chalfen of Minnesota purchased the disbanded Detroit Gems of the National Basketball League for $15,000 from Gems owner Maury Winston. Minneapolis sportswriter Sid Hartman played a key behind the scenes role in helping put together the deal and the team. Inspired by Minnesota's nickname, "Land of 10,000 Lakes", the team christened themselves the Lakers. Hartman helped them hire John Kundla from College of St. Thomas, to be their first head coach, by meeting with him and selling him on the team; the Lakers had a solid roster, which featured forward Jim Pollard, playmaker Herm Schaefer, center George Mikan, who became the most dominant player in the NBL.
In their first season, they led the league with a 43–17 record winning the NBL Championship that season. In 1948, the Lakers moved from the NBL to the Basketball Association of America, Mikan's 28.3 point per game scoring average set a BAA record. In the 1949 BAA Finals they won the championship; the following season, the team improved to 51–17, repeating as champions. In the 1950–51 season, Mikan won his third straight scoring title at 28.4 ppg and the Lakers went 44–24 to win their second straight division title. One of those games, a 19–18 loss against the Fort Wayne Pistons, became infamous as the lowest scoring game in NBA history. In the playoffs, they defeated the Indianapolis Olympians in three games but lost to the Rochester Royals in the next round. During the 1951 -- 52 season, the Lakers won 40 games, they faced the New York Knicks in the NBA Finals. In the 1952–53 season, Mikan led the NBA in rebounding, averaging 14.4 rebounds per game, was named MVP of the 1953 NBA All-Star Game.
After a 48–22 regular season, the Lakers defeated the Fort Wayne Pistons in the Western playoffs to advance to the NBA Finals. They defeated the New York Knicks to win their second straight championship. Though Lakers star George Mikan suffered from knee problems throughout the 1953–54 season, he was still able to average 18 ppg. Clyde Lovellette, drafted in 1952, helped the team win the Western Division; the team won its third straight championship in the 1950s and fifth in six seasons when it defeated the Syracuse Nationals in seven games. Following Mikan's retirement in the 1954 off-season, the Lakers struggled but still managed to win 40 games. Although they defeated the Rochester Royals in the first round of the playoffs, they were defeated by the Fort Wayne Pistons in the semifinals. Although they had losing records the next two seasons, they made the playoffs each year. Mikan came back for the last half of the 1955–56 season, but struggled and retired for good after the season. Led by Lovellette's 20.6 points and 13.5 rebounds, they advanced to the Conference Finals in 1956–57.
The Lakers had one of the worst seasons in team history in 1957–58 when they won a league-low 19 games. They had hired Mikan, the team's general manager for the previous two seasons, as head coach to replace Kundla. Mikan was fired in January when
The Atlanta Hawks are an American professional basketball team based in Atlanta, Georgia. The Hawks compete in the National Basketball Association as a member of the league's Eastern Conference Southeast Division; the team plays its home games at State Farm Arena. The team's origins can be traced to the establishment of the Buffalo Bisons in 1946 in Buffalo, New York, a member of the National Basketball League owned by Ben Kerner and Leo Ferris. After 38 days in Buffalo, the team moved to Moline, where they were renamed the Tri-Cities Blackhawks. In 1949, they joined the NBA as part of the merger between the NBL and the Basketball Association of America, had Red Auerbach as coach. In 1951, Kerner moved the team to Milwaukee. Kerner and the team moved again in 1955 to St. Louis, where they won their only NBA Championship in 1958 and qualified to play in the NBA Finals in 1957, 1960 and 1961; the Hawks played the Boston Celtics in all four of their trips to the NBA Finals. The St. Louis Hawks moved to Atlanta in 1968, when Kerner sold the franchise to Thomas Cousins and former Georgia Governor Carl Sanders.
The Hawks own the second-longest drought of not winning an NBA championship at 60 seasons. The franchise's lone NBA championship, as well as all four NBA Finals appearances, occurred when the team was based in St. Louis. Meanwhile, they went 48 years without advancing past the second round of the playoffs in any format, until breaking through in 2015. However, the Hawks are one of only four NBA teams that have qualified to play in the NBA playoffs in 10 consecutive seasons in the 21st century, they achieved this feat between 2008 and 2017. The other teams that have made it to at least 10 consecutive playoff appearances in the 21st century are the San Antonio Spurs, Denver Nuggets, Dallas Mavericks; the origins of the Atlanta Hawks can be traced to the Buffalo Bisons franchise, founded in 1946. The Bisons were a member of the National Basketball League, played their games at the Buffalo Memorial Auditorium; the club was coached by Nat Hickey. Their first game – a 50–39 victory over the Syracuse Nationals – was played on November 8, 1946.
On the team was William "Pop" Gates, along with William "Dolly" King, was one of the first two African-American players in the NBL. The team, which needed to draw 3,600 fans per game to break struggled to draw 1,000 fans per game to the Auditorium; the franchise lasted only 38 days in Buffalo when, on December 25, 1946, Leo Ferris, the team's general manager, announced that the team would be moving to Moline, which at that time was part of an area known as the "Tri-Cities": Moline, Rock Island and Davenport, Iowa. Upon relocation to Moline, the team was renamed the Tri-Cities Blackhawks, played their home games at Wharton Field House, a 6,000-seat arena in Moline; the team featured guard/forward and coach Deanglo King, was owned by Leo Ferris and Ben Kerner. Pop Gates remained on the Blackhawks roster, finished second on the team in scoring behind future 1948 NBL MVP Don Otten. A Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame member, Gates helped to integrate the league and become the first African-American coach in a major sports league, coaching Dayton in 1948.
In 1949 the Blackhawks became one of the National Basketball Association's 17 original teams after a merger of the 12-year-old NBL and the three-year-old Basketball Association of America. They reached the playoffs in the NBA's inaugural year under the leadership of coach Red Auerbach; the following season, they drafted three-time All-American Bob Cousy, but they were unable to reach a deal and traded him to the Chicago Stags. The Blackhawks missed the playoffs. By it was obvious that the Tri-Cities area was too small to support an NBA team. After the season, the franchise relocated to Milwaukee and became the Milwaukee Hawks. In 1954, the Hawks drafted Bob Pettit, a future NBA MVP. Despite this, the Hawks were one of the league's worst teams, in 1955 the Hawks moved, this time to St. Louis, Milwaukee's rival in the beer industry, became the St. Louis Hawks. In 1956, the St. Louis Hawks drafted legendary Bill Russell in the first round, they traded Russell to the Boston Celtics for Cliff Hagan and Ed Macauley, both Hall of Fame members.
In 1957, the Hawks finished four games under.500. However, the Western Division was weak that year, they won the division title and a bye to the division finals after defeating the Minneapolis Lakers and Fort Wayne Pistons in one-game tiebreakers. They defeated the Lakers in the division finals to advance to the Finals, losing to the Boston Celtics in a double-overtime thriller in game seven. In 1958, after tallying their first winning record, they again advanced to the Finals, where they avenged their defeat against the Celtics from the previous year, winning the series 4–2 and giving the Hawks their first and only NBA Championship. Bob Pettit scored 50 points in the final game of the series; the Hawks remained one of the NBA's premier teams for the next decade. In 1960, under coach Ed Macauley, the team advanced to the Finals, but lost to the Celtics in another game seven thriller; the following year, with the acquisition of rookie Lenny Wilkens, the Hawks repeated their success, but met the Celtics in the Finals again and lost in five games.
They would remain contenders for most of the 1960s, advancing deep into the playoffs a
NBA All-Star Weekend H–O–R–S–E Competition
The NBA All-Star H–O–R–S–E Competition was a National Basketball Association contest which began at the 2009 NBA All–Star Weekend in Phoenix and only lasted for two years. It was canceled from the All-Star festivities prior to the 2011 weekend; the contest had been held on the Saturday night prior to the All-Star Game. The NBA had held H–O–R–S–E competitions during the 1977–78 season. Throughout that season, CBS broadcast NBA games during the playoffs; the host was Don Criqui and the NBA official was retired referee Mendy Rudolph. There were a total of 32 players and the finals had a match up of Pete Maravich verse Paul Westphal. Maravich was replaced by Rick Barry who lost to Westphal. During halftime of those games, they showed a pre-taped H–O–R–S–E tournament pitting players from the NBA against each other, it featured, among others, Pete Maravich, Bob McAdoo, Kevin Grevey, George Gervin. There was a Battle of the Sexes match where Karen Logan, a female, beat Jerry West in 1975 and was matched against Oscar Robertson where she took a 7-0 lead.
Her claim was that they changed the rules and she lost 10-8. The modern-day All-Star Competition was similar to that of regular H–O–R–S–E, where each participant took shots from unconventional locations and in unconventional ways to diminish their opponents' chances of duplicating the shot. Certain rule adjustments were made, that differed from conventional H–O–R–S–E competition: No dunking was allowed. Players had 24 seconds each to mimic shots. An NBA referee authenticated any mimic shot; the game took place on a 45 feet 0 inches × 50 feet 0 inches court, one-half the size of a regulation length basketball court. Photo of the court and rig used for 2009 H-O-R-S-E Competition
Robert Joseph Cousy is an American retired professional basketball player. Cousy played point guard with the Boston Celtics from 1950 to 1963 and with the Cincinnati Royals in the 1969–70 season. Making his high school varsity squad as a junior, he went on to earn a scholarship to the College of the Holy Cross, where he led the Crusaders to berths in the 1948 NCAA Tournament and 1950 NCAA Tournament and was named an NCAA All-American for 3 seasons. Cousy was drafted by the Tri-Cities Blackhawks as the third overall pick in the first round of the 1950 NBA draft, but after he refused to report, he was picked up by Boston, he had an exceptionally successful career with the Celtics, leading the league an unprecedented 8 straight years in assists, playing on six NBA championship teams, being voted into 13 NBA All-Star Games in his 13 full NBA seasons. He was named to 12 All-NBA First and Second Teams and won the 1957 NBA Most Valuable Player Award. En route to his assist streak, unmatched either in number of crowns or consecutive years, Cousy introduced a new blend of ball-handling and passing skills to the NBA that earned him the nickname "The Houdini of the Hardwood".
Known as "Cooz", he was introduced at Boston Garden as "Mr. Basketball". After his playing career, he coached the Royals for several years, capped by a seven-game cameo comeback for them at age 41. Cousy became a broadcaster for Celtics games. Upon his election to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1971 the Celtics retired his #14 jersey and hung it in the rafters of the Garden. Cousy was named to the NBA 25th Anniversary Team in 1971, the NBA 35th Anniversary Team in 1981, the NBA's 50th Anniversary All-Time Team in 1996, making him one of only four players that were selected to each of those teams, he was the first president of National Basketball Players Association. Cousy was the only son of poor French immigrants living in New York City, he grew up in the Yorkville neighborhood of Manhattan's East Side, in the midst of the Great Depression. His father Joseph was a cab driver; the elder Cousy had served in the German Army during World War I. Shortly after the war, his first wife died of pneumonia.
He married a secretary and French teacher from Dijon. At the time of the 1930 census, the family was renting an apartment in Astoria, for $50 per month; the younger Cousy spoke French for the first 5 years of his life, started to speak English only after entering primary school. He spent his early days playing stickball in a multicultural environment playing with African Americans and other ethnic minority children; these experiences ingrained him with a strong anti-racist sentiment, an attitude he prominently promoted during his professional career. When he was 12, his family moved to a rented house in Queens; that summer, the elder Cousy put a $500 down payment for a $4,500 house four blocks away. He rented out the bottom two floors of the three-story building to tenants to help make his mortgage payments on time. Cousy took up basketball at the age of 13 as a student at St. Pascal's elementary school, was "immediately hooked"; the following year, he entered Andrew Jackson High School in St Albans.
His basketball success was not immediate, in fact he was cut from the school team in his first year. That year, he joined the St. Albans Lindens of the Press League, a basketball league sponsored by the Long Island Press, where he began to develop his basketball skills and gained much-needed experience; the next year, however, he was again cut during the tryouts for the school basketball team. That same year, he broke his right hand; the injury forced him to play left-handed until his hand healed, making him ambidextrous. In retrospect, he described this accident as "a fortunate event" and cited it as a factor in making him more versatile on the court. During a Press League game, the high school basketball coach saw, he was impressed by the budding star's two-handed ability and invited Cousy to come to practice the following day to try out for the junior varsity team. He did well enough to become a permanent member of the JV squad, he continued to practice day and night, by his junior year was sure he was going to be promoted to the varsity.
He joined the varsity squad midway through the season, scoring 28 points in his first game. He had no intention of attending college, but after he started to make a name for himself on the basketball court he started to focus on improving in both academics and basketball skills to make it easier for him to get into college, he again excelled in basketball his senior year, leading his team to the Queens divisional championship and amassing more points than any other New York City high school basketball player. He was named captain of the Journal-American All-Scholastic team, he began to plan for college. His family had wanted him to attend a Catholic school, he wanted to go somewhere outside New York City. Boston College recruited him, he considered accepting the BC offer, but it had no dormitories, he was not interested in being a commuter student. Soon afterward, he received an offer from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts about forty miles west of Boston, he was impressed by the school, accepted the basketball scholarship it offered him.
He spent the summer before matriculating working at Tamarack Lodge in the Catskill Mountains and playing in a local basketball league along with a number of established college players. Cousy was one of six freshmen on
William Walton Sharman was an American professional basketball player and coach. He is known for his time with the Boston Celtics in the 1950s, partnering with Bob Cousy in what some consider the greatest backcourt duo of all time; as a coach, Sharman won titles in the ABL, ABA, NBA, is credited with introducing the now ubiquitous morning shootaround. He was the first North American sports figure to win a championship as a player and executive, he was a 10-time NBA champion, a 12-time World Champion in basketball overall counting his ABL and ABA titles. Sharman is a two-time Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame inductee, having been being inducted in 1976 as a player, in 2004 as a coach. Only John Wooden, Lenny Wilkens and Tommy Heinsohn share this double honor. Sharman completed high school in the Central California city of California, he served during World War II from 1944 to 1946 in the US Navy, was a graduate of the University of Southern California. He played 1st base on the 1948 USC Trojans' College World Series championship team.
Following his senior year, Sharman was selected as one of the 1950 NCAA Men's Basketball All-Americans. From 1950 to 1955 Sharman played professional baseball in the Brooklyn Dodgers minor league system, he did not appear in a game. He was part of a September 27 game in which the entire Brooklyn bench was cleared from the dugout for arguing with the home plate umpire over a ruling at the plate; this has led to the legend that Sharman holds the distinction of being the only player in baseball history to have been ejected from a major league game without appearing in one. However, although Sharman was among the Dodger bench players that had to go to the clubhouse, none of them were barred from playing in the game. In fact, in the top of the ninth, one of the other dismissed players, Wayne Terwilliger, was used as a pinch-hitter in the game. Sharman was drafted by the Washington Capitols in the 2nd round of the 1950 NBA draft. Following the disbanding of the Capitols, he was selected by the Fort Wayne Pistons in the dispersal draft and was subsequently traded to the Boston Celtics for Chuck Share prior to the 1951–52 season.
Sharman played a total of ten seasons for the Celtics, leading the team in scoring between the 1955–56 and 1958–59 seasons and averaging over 20 points per game during three of them. Sharman was one of the first NBA guards to shoot better than.400 from the field. He led the NBA in free throw percentage a record seven times, his mark of 93.2% in the 1958–59 season remained the NBA record until Ernie DiGregorio topped it in 1976–77. Sharman still holds the record for consecutive free throws in the playoffs with 56. Sharman was named to the All-NBA First Team from 1956 through 1959, was an All-NBA Second Team member in 1953, 1955, 1960. Sharman played in scoring in double figures in seven of them, he was named the 1955 NBA All-Star Game MVP after scoring ten of his fifteen points in the fourth quarter. Sharman still holds the NBA All-Star Game record for field goals attempted in a quarter with 12. Sharman ended his NBA playing career after 11 seasons in 1961. Sharman coached the Cleveland Pipers of the American Basketball League to the league championship in 1962.
He next went on to coach Los Angeles State for two seasons. In 1970–71 he coached the Utah Stars to an ABA title and was a co-recipient of the ABA Coach of the Year honors. After resigning as coach for the Utah Stars, Sharman signed a contract to coach the Los Angeles Lakers. Controversy ensued when the owner of the Utah Stars brought suit against Sharman for breach of contract stemming from his resignation, a tort case against the owner of the Los Angeles Lakers for inducing such breach of contract. Sharman was ordered to pay $250,000 in damages, but appealed the trial court decision and reversed the judgement; the following season, he guided the Wilt Chamberlain and Jerry West-led Los Angeles Lakers to an NBA record 33 game win streak, a then-record 69-13 win-loss mark, the first Lakers championship in Los Angeles and the first for the team in more than a decade. That season, Sharman was named NBA Coach of the Year, he is one of two men to win ABA championships as a coach. Sharman invented, he took the shootaround with him to his first coaching jobs in the ABL, the ABA, the NBA.
After the Lakers won the championship in 1972, every other team in the league added the shootaround to its game-day regimen. Sharman was enshrined in the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1976 as a player and again in 2004 as a coach, he is one of only four people to be enshrined in both categories, the others being John Wooden, Lenny Wilkens and his former teammate Tom Heinsohn. In 1971, Sharman was named to the NBA 25th Anniversary Team. On October 29, 1996, Sharman was named one of the NBA's 50 Greatest Players; as Lakers General Manager, Sharman built the 1980 and 1982 NBA Championship teams, as Lakers President he oversaw the 1985, 1987 and 1988 NBA Championship teams. Sharman retired from the Lakers front office in 1991 at age 65. Sharman was the author of two books, Sharman on Basketball Shooting and The Wooden-Sharman Method: A Guide to Winning Basketball with John Wooden and Bob Selzer; the gymnasium at Po
Field goal (basketball)
In basketball, a field goal is a basket scored on any shot or tap other than a free throw, worth two or three points depending on the distance of the attempt from the basket. Uncommonly, a field goal can be worth other values such as one point in FIBA 3x3 basketball competitions or four points in the BIG3 basketball league. "Field goal" is the official terminology used by the National Basketball Association in their rule book, in their box scores and statistics, in referees' rulings. The same term is the official wording used by the National Collegiate Athletic Association and high school basketball. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar holds the NBA record for field goals made in a career with 15,837. Wilt Chamberlain, one of the most prolific scorers of all time, holds the top four spots for most field goals made in a season and has the two top field goal percentages for a season. One of the greatest field-goal shooters of all time is Michael Jordan, who led the NBA in field goals made ten times. Shaquille O'Neal has the record for most seasons with the best field goal percentage, Artis Gilmore has the record for highest career field goal percentage.
Steve Nash was one of the greatest all-around shooters in the history of the NBA, holding the record for 50–40–90 seasons, a mark of all-around shooting for two-point field goals, three-point field goals, free throws. Nash recorded four of the eleven 50–40–90 seasons in NBA history. One type of field goal is called a slam dunk; this occurs when a player jumps near the basket with possession of the ball, throwing the ball down through the basket while airborne. The word "slam" is derived onomatopoeically from the sound of the player's hands hitting, grabbing releasing the hoop. NBA records
The Sacramento Kings are an American professional basketball team based in Sacramento, California. The Kings compete in the National Basketball Association as a member of the Western Conference's Pacific Division; the Kings are the only team in the major professional North American sports leagues located in Sacramento. The team plays its home games at the Golden 1 Center; the Kings are one of the oldest continuously operating professional basketball franchises in the nation. They originated in Rochester, New York, as the Rochester Seagrams in 1923 and joined the National Basketball League in 1945 as the Rochester Royals, they jumped to the Basketball Association of America, forerunner of the NBA, in 1948. As the Royals, the team was successful on the court, winning the NBA championship in 1951; the team, found it difficult to turn a profit in the comparatively small market of Rochester and relocated to Cincinnati in 1957, becoming the Cincinnati Royals. In 1972 the team relocated to Kansas City and was renamed the Kansas City-Omaha Kings because it split its home games between Kansas City and Omaha, Nebraska.
In 1975, the Kings ceased playing home games in Omaha and became the Kansas City Kings. The team again failed to find success in its market and moved to Sacramento in 1985; the Royals defected to the NBL's rival, the Basketball Association of America, in 1948. In 1949, as a result of that year's absorption of the NBL by the BAA, the Royals became members of the newly formed NBA along with the Fort Wayne Pistons, Minneapolis Lakers, Indianapolis Jets. A year the BAA absorbed the remaining NBL teams to become the National Basketball Association; the move to the BAA took away Rochester's profitable exhibition schedule, placed it in the same Western Division that Minneapolis was in. Of the two best teams in pro basketball, only one of them could play in the league finals from 1949 to 1954. Minneapolis, with George Mikan, was always a little better at playoff time than the Royals. With their smallish arena and now-limited schedule, the Royals became less profitable as Harrison maintained a remarkably high standard for the team, which finished no lower than second in its division in both the NBL and BAA/NBA from 1945 to 1954.
Harrison knew that the NBA was outgrowing Rochester, spent most of the 1950s looking for a buyer for his team. The Royals won the NBA title in 1951 by defeating the New York Knicks 4–3, it is the only NBA championship in the franchise's history. The title, did not translate into profit for the Royals; the roster turned over except for Bobby Wanzer. Now a losing team filled with rookies, the Royals still did not turn a profit. Meanwhile, the NBA was putting pressure on Harrison to relocate his team to a larger city. With this in mind, the 1956–57 season was the Royals' last in Rochester; the Royals' stay in Rochester featured the services of nine future members of the Basketball Hall of Fame, one member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, a Hollywood Walk of Famer: Al Cervi, Bob Davies, Alex Hannum, Les Harrison, Red Holzman, Arnie Risen, Maurice Stokes, Jack Twyman, Bobby Wanzer, Otto Graham, Chuck Connors and Jack McMahon. In April 1957, the Harrison brothers moved the Royals to Cincinnati; this move followed a well-received regular season game played at Cincinnati Gardens on February 1, 1957.
The change of venue had been said to have been suggested by Jack Twyman and Dave Piontek, who were two of several roster players on the new Royals from that region. Cincinnati, which had a strong college basketball fan base and no NFL franchise to compete with, was deemed the best choice for the Harrisons; the Royals name continued to fit in Cincinnati known as the "Queen City". During the team's first NBA draft in Cincinnati, the team acquired Clyde Lovellette and guard George King, they teamed with the 1–2 punch of Maurice Stokes and Twyman to produce a budding contender in the team's first season in the Queen City. Injury to Marshall and the loss of star guard Si Green to military service dropped the team into a tie for second place in the NBA Western Division during the 1957–58 season's second half. In the season's finale, All-Pro star Maurice Stokes struck his head when he fell after pursuing a rebound, he shook off the effects of the fall as he had been unconscious. After Game One in the playoffs three days Stokes' head injury was aggravated by airplane cabin pressure during the flight back to Cincinnati for Game Two.
He suffered a seizure and was permanently hospitalized, a tragedy that shook the team. Stokes, a tremendous talent who could play center and guard, was 2nd in the NBA in rebounds and 3rd in assists, a double-feat only Wilt Chamberlain has matched for a full season. Without Stokes, the team nearly folded. Fellow All-Star Twyman rose to All-Pro level the next two seasons for Cincinnati as the team posted two 19-win seasons; the 1958–59 Cincinnati team featured five rookies, with Lovellette and other key players having left the team in the wake of Stokes' tragic injury. The Harrisons, under pressure to sell to a local group, sold to a local ownership headed by Thomas Woods; the fact that Stokes was dumped by the team and the new ownership infuriated many. Jack Twyman came to the aid of his teammate, legally adopted Stokes. Raising funds for Stokes' medical treatment, Twyman helped him until his death in April 1970; the 1973 feature film Maurie, which co-starred actors Bernie Casey and Bo Svenson, dramatized their story.
Shooting for the beleaguered team, Twyman was the second NBA player to average 30 points per game for an NBA season. Twyman and Stokes were late