Donald Arvid Don Nelson is an American former NBA player and head coach. He coached the Milwaukee Bucks, the New York Knicks, the Dallas Mavericks, an innovator, Nelson is credited with, among other things, pioneering the concept of the point forward, a tactic which is frequently employed by teams at every level today. His unique brand of basketball is often referred to as Nellie Ball and he was named one of the Top 10 coaches in NBA history. On April 7,2010, he passed Lenny Wilkens for first place on the all-time NBA wins list with 1,333 wins. After a very high school career at Rock Island High School. He was drafted 19th overall by the Chicago Zephyrs of the NBA and he played for the Zephyrs one season, and was acquired by the Los Angeles Lakers in 1963. After two years with the Lakers, he was signed by the Boston Celtics, in his first season with Boston, Nelson averaged 10.2 points and 5.4 rebounds, helping the Celtics to the 1966 NBA title as one of their role players. Four more championships with Boston followed in 1968,1969,1974, the shot, taken with just over a minute to go in the game and the Celtics clinging to a 103–102 lead, helped secure Bostons 11th NBA title in 13 seasons.
A model of consistency, Nelson would average more than 10 points per game every season between 1968–69 and 1974–75 and he led the NBA in field-goal percentage in 1974–75. Nelson was coined as one of the best sixth men ever to play in the NBA and he was known for his distinctive one-handed style for shooting free throws. He would place the ball in his hand, lean in almost off-balance and toe the free-throw line with his right foot. He would push the ball toward the basket completely with his hand while springing with his right knee. This technique helped him to a career 76. 5% free-throw shooting percentage, Nelson retired as a player following the 1975–76 season. His number 19 jersey was retired to the Boston Garden rafters in 1978, Nelson was named the general manager and head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks in 1976, and began to show what would become his signature style of wheeling and dealing players. He made his first trade of Swen Nater to the Buffalo Braves and turned the draft pick he received into Marques Johnson, in 1980, he sent off an underachieving Kent Benson to the Detroit Pistons for Bob Lanier.
And, in 1986, he would deal Alton Lister to the Seattle SuperSonics for Jack Sikma and it was in Milwaukee where Nelson became known for his unorthodox, innovative basketball philosophy. He pioneered the concept of the point forward – a tactic wherein small forwards are used to direct the offense, in Nelsons tenure with the Bucks, he used 6–5 small forward Paul Pressey for the role. This enabled Nelson to field shooting guards Sidney Moncrief and Craig Hodges or Ricky Pierce at the time without worrying about who would run the offense
Jerry Alan West is an American retired basketball player who played his entire professional career for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association. His nicknames include Mr. Outside, in reference to his play with the Los Angeles Lakers. Wests NBA career was highly successful, West holds the NBA record for the highest points per game average in a playoff series with 46.3. He was a member of the first five NBA All-Defensive Teams, having played in nine NBA Finals, he is the only player in NBA history to be named Finals MVP despite being on the losing team. West was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 1980, after his playing career, West was head coach of the Lakers for three years, leading Los Angeles into the playoffs each year and earning a Western Conference Finals berth once. Working as a player-scout for three years, West was named manager of the Lakers prior to the 1982–83 NBA season. Under his reign, Los Angeles won six championship rings, in 2002, West became general manager of the Memphis Grizzlies and helped the franchise win their first-ever playoff berths.
For his contributions, West won the NBA Executive of the Year Award twice, once as a Lakers manager, Wests son, played college basketball for the West Virginia Mountaineers team. Jerry Alan West was born into a household in Chelyan. He was the fifth of six children of his mother Cecil Sue West, a housewife, and her husband Howard Stewart West, a coal mine electrician. West was a shy, introverted boy, who even more withdrawn when his closest brother David died in the Korean War at age 22 when Jerry was 12. He was so small and frail that he needed vitamin injections from his doctor and was kept apart from childrens sports, to prevent him from getting seriously hurt. Growing up, West spent his days hunting and fishing, West attended high school in East Bank, West Virginia from 1952 to 1956. During his first year, he was benched by his coach Duke Shaver due to his lack of height. Shaver emphasized the importance of conditioning and defense, lessons which the teenager appreciated, West became the captain of the freshman team and, during the summer of 1953, he grew to 6 ft 0 in.
Eventually becoming the starting small forward, West quickly established himself as one of the finest West Virginian high school players of his generation.2 points per game. Wests mid-range jump shot became his trademark and he used it to score while under pressure from opposing defense. After graduating from school in 1956, more than 60 universities showed interest in West
Robert Joseph Bob Cousy is an American retired professional basketball player and member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Cousy played point guard with the Boston Celtics from 1950 to 1963, Cousy was initially drafted as the third overall pick in the first round of the 1950 NBA draft by the Tri-Cities Blackhawks, but after he refused to report, he was picked up by Boston. He was named to 12 All-NBA First and Second Teams, known as Cooz, he was regularly introduced at Boston Garden as Mr. Basketball. After his playing career, he coached the Royals for several years, Cousy became a broadcaster for Celtics games. Upon his election to the Hall of Fame in 1971 the Celtics retired his #14 jersey and he was the first president of National Basketball Players Association. Cousy was the son of poor French immigrants living in New York City. He grew up in the Yorkville neighborhood of Manhattans East Side and his father Joseph was a cab driver, who earned extra income by moonlighting. The elder Cousy had served in the German Army during World War I, shortly after the war, his first wife died of pneumonia, leaving behind a young daughter.
He married Julie Corlet, 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 and he spent his early days playing stickball in a multicultural environment, regularly 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 St. Albans, Queens. That summer, the elder Cousy put a $500 down payment for a $4,500 house four blocks away and 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. Pascals elementary school, the following year, he entered Andrew Jackson High School in St Albans. His basketball success was not immediate, and in fact he was cut from the team in his first year.
The next year, however, he was cut during the tryouts for the school basketball team. That same year, he out of a tree and broke his right hand. The injury forced him to play left-handed until his hand healed, 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 school basketball coach saw him play
Marvin Mendy Rudolph was an American professional basketball referee in the National Basketball Association for 22 years, from 1953 to 1975. Regarded as one of the greatest officials in NBA history, Rudolph officiated 2,112 NBA games and was the first league referee to work 2,000 games and he was selected to referee eight NBA All-Star Games and made 22 consecutive NBA Finals appearances. He was a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2007, born in Philadelphia, Rudolph was raised in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. His father, Harry Rudolph, was a prominent basketball referee, Mendy Rudolph played basketball as a child and eventually chose the same profession as his father. Upon graduating from James M. Coughlin High School, he began officiating basketball games at the Wilkes-Barre Jewish Community Center and worked scholastic games. At age 20, he was recruited to referee games alongside his father, at the same time, he served in the United States Air Force during the Korean War.
Rudolph was married twice during his life and his first marriage was to his childhood sweetheart and together they raised three children. But the relationship became troubled and eventually ended, in 1961, Mendy Rudolph met Susan, a receptionist at the WGN office in New York City, while both worked for the station. At the time, Rudolph worked at WGN as a job outside of officiating. Mendy and Susan Rudolph were married in 1973, two years later, their first child, Jennifer Rudolph, was born. Throughout his life, Rudolph suffered from a problem and was labeled a compulsive gambler. He would often spend his leisure time placing bets at race tracks and Las Vegas, Nevada, at that time, NBA referees were allowed to gamble, but this practice has since been prohibited. As he incurred gambling losses, Rudolph was once offered by a Las Vegas gambler to erase his debt by participating in point shaving. However, he refused to accept the offer and said to his wife, I love the game too much, respect it too much.
I couldnt do it to the memory of my father, and I couldnt do it to myself, If I have to go into bankruptcy, something Id hate to do, Id do it, according to in a 1992 New York Times interview with Susan Rudolph. Rudolph had cashed in his $60,000 pension fund to pay debts, while he refused to seek professional help, Rudolph cut back on his gambling habit in his life. Rudolph was hired by the NBA in February 1953, midway through the 1952–53 NBA season, in his early years with the NBA, Rudolph quickly became an established official as he worked playoff games within his first two years in the league. Rudolph officiated the 1955 NBA Finals between the Syracuse Nationals and Fort Wayne Pistons, which was notable for its actions by fans, fights between players, and attacks on referees
Thomas Ernest Satch Sanders is an American retired college and professional basketball player and coach. He was a 66,210 lb power forward, Sanders is tied for third for most NBA championships in a career, and is one of three NBA players with an unsurpassed 8–0 record in NBA Finals series outcomes. On April 4,2011, it was announced that Sanders was elected to the 2011 class to enter the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame as a contributor, in NBA history, only teammates Bill Russell and Sam Jones have won more championship rings during their playing careers. He ended his career in 1973, following his playing career Sanders became the basketball coach at Harvard University, a position he held until 1977. Sanders became the first African-American to serve as a coach of any sport in the Ivy League. In 1978, Sanders became the coach of the Boston Celtics. Sanders returned the following season, however after a 2–12 record he was replaced by Dave Cowens, list of NBA players with most championships BasketballReference.
com, Satch Sanders BasketballReference. com, Satch Sanders
The NBA Finals is the championship series of the National Basketball Association played between the Western and Eastern champions of the Conference Finals. The first team to win four games in the game series is declared the league champion and is awarded the Larry OBrien Championship Trophy. Winners from 1946 to 1983 received the Walter A. Brown Trophy redesigned in 1977 to the current form, the NBA Finals has been played at the end of every NBA and Basketball Association of America season in history, the first being held in 1947. Most NBA Finals series were played under the 2–2–1–1–1 format prior to 1985, the series was named the BAA Finals from 1947 to 1949 and changed to the NBA World Championship Series from 1950 to 1982. The following two years, the league used Showdown 83 and Showdown 84 and it returned to NBA World Championship Series in 1985, before settling on NBA Finals in 1986. During the first decade the Minneapolis Lakers had the first NBA dynasty, the team featured George Mikan, one of the greatest players in NBA history.
The Boston Celtics went 11–1 in the NBA Finals during 13 seasons and they won eight straight NBA championships from 1959 through 1966. With the establishment of the Celtics dynasty in 1957, Bill Russell became the star of the league, Game 7 of the NBA Finals was decided on a Celtics basket in the final seconds of the second overtime. For most of the late 1950s and 1960s, the Celtics always seemed to have the hand on Wilt Chamberlains teams. The following season, he joined the Philadelphia 76ers, the former Syracuse Nationals team that had moved to cover the vacancy created with the departure of the Warriors, a clash between the two stars in the playoffs was in 1966 and Boston won it 4–1. Chamberlains coach told him to play a game, not an individual game. His new-found team spirit brought them to a new record of 68 wins the season, and they defeated the Celtics and advanced to, and won. In 1968, Boston overcame a 3–1 deficit against Philadelphia to once again arrive in the Finals and they went on to defeat the Los Angeles Lakers for the sixth straight time,4 games to 2.
In 1969, the Celtics overcame even longer odds, Boston was an aging team and had injuries to a number of players. They barely qualified for the playoffs, finishing fourth in the East, the Lakers, who in the offseason added Chamberlain to join West and Elgin Baylor, won the West and were prohibitive favorites to finally win it all for the first time since relocating to L. A. They won the first two games at the Los Angeles Forum, when the series shifted to Boston Garden, the Celtics won Game 3 110–105. Game 4 was the point, as the Lakers led 87–86 and had the ball with 10 seconds to play. But after a turnover, Sam Jones put up a shot hit the front of the rim, the back heel, rolled around
National Basketball Association
The National Basketball Association is the major mens professional basketball league in North America, and is widely considered to be the premier mens professional basketball league in the world. It has 30 teams, and is a member of USA Basketball. The NBA is one of the four professional sports leagues in the United States. NBA players are the worlds best paid athletes by average annual salary per player, the league was founded in New York City on June 6,1946, as the Basketball Association of America. The league adopted the name National Basketball Association on August 3,1949, the leagues several international as well as individual team offices are directed out of its head offices located in the Olympic Tower at 645 Fifth Avenue in New York City. NBA Entertainment and NBA TV studios are directed out of offices located in Secaucus, the Basketball Association of America was founded in 1946 by owners of the major ice hockey arenas in the Northeastern and Midwestern United States and Canada. On November 1,1946, in Toronto, the Toronto Huskies hosted the New York Knickerbockers at Maple Leaf Gardens, the first basket was made by Ossie Schectman of the Knickerbockers.
During its early years, the quality of play in the BAA was not significantly better than in competing leagues or among leading independent clubs such as the Harlem Globetrotters. For instance, the 1948 ABL finalist Baltimore Bullets moved to the BAA and won that leagues 1948 title, Following the 1948–49 season, the BAA took in the remainder of the NBL, Anderson, Tri-Cities, Sheboygan and Waterloo. The new league had seventeen franchises located in a mix of large and small cities, as well as arenas and smaller gymnasiums. The process of contraction saw the leagues smaller-city franchises move to larger cities, the Hawks shifted from the Tri-Cities to Milwaukee in 1951, and to St. Louis in 1955. The Rochester Royals moved from Rochester, New York, to Cincinnati in 1957, japanese-American Wataru Misaka broke the NBA color barrier in the 1947–48 season when he played for the New York Knicks. He remained the only player in league history prior to the first African-American, Harold Hunter. During this period, the Minneapolis Lakers, led by center George Mikan, won five NBA Championships, to encourage shooting and discourage stalling, the league introduced the 24-second shot clock in 1954.
If a team does not attempt to score a goal within 24 seconds of obtaining the ball, play is stopped. In 1957, rookie center Bill Russell joined the Boston Celtics, who already featured guard Bob Cousy and coach Red Auerbach, and went on to lead the club to eleven NBA titles in thirteen seasons. Center Wilt Chamberlain entered the league with the Warriors in 1959 and became a dominant individual star of the 1960s, russells rivalry with Chamberlain became one of the greatest rivalries in the history of American team sports. The 1960s were dominated by the Celtics, led by Russell, Bob Cousy and coach Red Auerbach, Boston won eight straight championships in the NBA from 1959 to 1966
Norm Drucker was a major influence in professional basketball officiating for over 35 years. Drucker was born in New York City, New York and he was hired as a referee by the National Basketball Association in 1953. By the early 60s he was regularly officiating two to four games in the NBA Finals each season and their contracts were the first multi-year officiating contracts in pro basketball history. Such was Druckers stature and reputation, that his salary, as a referee and Supervisor of Officials. It made him, at time, the highest paid referee in the history of basketball. Within a year, all other pro basketball officials benefited, as their salaries more than doubled, as a result, officiating professional basketball evolved from a part-time second job, to a full-time career, with greatly improved working conditions and pension plans. In the ABA, Drucker officiated and served as the leagues Supervisor of Officials, with the ABA-NBA merger in 1976, Drucker was one of only a handful of ABA referees hired by the NBA to return.
When he retired after the 1976-77 NBA season to become the NBAs Supervisor of Officials and it remains the record for longest tenure for a pro referee among those whose entire career was during the era of only two referees per game. During that span he officiated 6 All-Star Games, a higher total than any official in pro basketball history other than Mendy Rudolph. When he retired, his total of 38 NBA and ABA championship round games officiated was the second highest in pro basketball history. In his 24-year officiating career, Drucker was well known for his even-handed officiating for visiting teams in an era when many officials were criticized as homers - favoring the home team. For 14 seasons, from 1963 through 1977, Drucker along with Mendy Rudolph, of the nearly 400 referees who have officiated in the NBA and ABA, only two others Mendy Rudolph and Joe Crawford have officiated in more deciding games. In the late 1950s and early 1960s he was involved in what the press called a heated feud with legendary Boston Celtic coach Red Auerbach and his second ejection of Auerbach in a one-month period led to the coachs 3-game suspension by NBA president Maurice Podoloff on November 13,1961.
Druckers career gave him a view of key moments of the NBAs first 35 seasons. He was the last active NBA referee to have officiated in 1953-54—the last season before the NBA introduced the 24-second clock. That same season, he was selected to officiate the only game in NBA history that experimented with rims 12 feet, rather than 10 feet. He officiated the games when Bob Pettit scored his 15, 000th career point and Wilt Chamberlain scored his 25, Drucker is the link to referees whose careers span the entire history of the NBA. At the end of his career, Drucker demonstrated a commitment to improving the salary, benefits
In basketball, a block or blocked shot occurs when a defensive player legally deflects a field goal attempt from an offensive player. The defender is not allowed to contact with the offensive players hand or a foul is called. In order to be legal, the block must occur while the shot is traveling upward or at its apex. A deflected field goal that is made does not count as a blocked shot, every successful blocked shot is counted as a missed field goal attempt for the shooter. Also, on a foul, a blocked shot cannot be awarded or counted. If the ball is heading downward when the defender hits it, it is ruled as goaltending, goaltending is called if the block is made after the ball bounces on the backboard. Nicknames for blocked shots include rejections, bushed, fudged, or notably double-fudged, swats, blocked shots were first officially recorded in the NBA during the 1973–74 season. To be a good shot-blocker, a player needs great court sense and timing, one tactic is that a shot-blocker can intimidate opponents to alter their shots, resulting in a miss. A chase-down block occurs when a player pursues an opposing player who had run ahead of the defense, the block involves hitting the ball into the backboard as the opponent tries to complete a lay-up.
Pistons announcer Fred McLeod, who first witnessed this style of blocks from Prince, during the 2008–09 NBA season, the Cavaliers began tracking chase-down blocks, crediting LeBron James with 23 that season and 20 the following season. Career block leaders on Basketball-Reference. com Bill Russell Block Art on YouTube
John Thompson (basketball)
John Robert Thompson Jr. is a former American college basketball coach for the Georgetown Hoyas. He is now a radio and TV sports commentator. Thompson was born and raised in Washington, D. C. and is a practicing Roman Catholic, as a child, his mother insisted on sending him to Catholic schools for the educational opportunities and academic challenges. At Archbishop Carroll High School, Thompson emerged as a standout center, in 1959, Carroll All-Mets Thompson, Monk Malloy, George Leftwich and Tom Hoover won over Cardozo 79–52. The next year and Leftwich led the Lions over the Ollie Johnson/Dave Bing led Spingarn, during his senior year, Thompson led Carroll to a 24–0 record, preserving their 48-game winning streak along the way. Thompson finished the season as the top scorer in the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference and he was an All-American in his senior year of 1964. Upon graduation, Thompson was the Friars all-time leader in points, scoring average, and field goal percentage, Thompson is 11th on the all-time scoring list at PC, fourth in scoring average, sixth in field goal percentage, and third in rebounds.
He was drafted in the round in 1964 and played two years in the National Basketball Association for the Boston Celtics in 1964–1966. At 6 ft 10 in and 270 lb, he backed up Bill Russell, nicknamed The Caddy for his secondary role to Russell, he averaged 3.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in 74 games played. He retired in 1966 to begin a more successful career in coaching. Before retiring as a player in 1966, Thompson was selected by the Chicago Bulls in that years expansion draft, Thompson was the head coach at St. Anthony High School in Washington, D. C. from 1966 to 1972, racking up a 122–28 record. After coaching St. Anthony, Thompson was hired to become the coach of the mens basketball team at Georgetown University. Thompson, a figure on the sidelines who towered over many opposing coaches, was often noted for the trademark white towel that he carried on his shoulder during the games. Inheriting a Georgetown team which had been 3–23 the year before, Thompson quickly and dramatically improved the team and he won seven Coach of the Year awards, Big East, United States Basketball Writers Association and The Sporting News, National Association of Basketball Coaches and United Press International.
Thompson coached many players, including Patrick Ewing, Sleepy Floyd, Alonzo Mourning, Dikembe Mutombo. John Thompsons career as coach of Georgetown was not without controversy. Perhaps one of the most controversial incidents was the hanging of a sign in the McDonough Gymnasium, in 1975, after another perceived mediocre year, a sign was hung at the top of the rafters reading Thompson the nigger flop must go. The university quickly took down the sign and silenced talks for his termination, at the height of his empire, Edmond became very friendly with several Hoyas players
The Philadelphia 76ers are an American professional basketball team based in Philadelphia metropolitan area. The 76ers compete in the National Basketball Association as a club of the leagues Eastern Conference Atlantic Division. Founded in 1946 and originally known as the Syracuse Nationals, they are one of the oldest franchises in the NBA and they have won three NBA championships, with their first coming as the Syracuse Nationals in 1955. The second title came in the 1966–67 season, a team which was led by Chamberlain, the third title came in the 1982–83 season, won by a team led by Erving and Malone. The 76ers have only been back to the NBA Finals once since then, in 2001, while in the NBL with teams largely consisting of small Midwestern towns, the Nationals put together a 21–23 record, finishing in 4th place. In the playoffs, the Nats would be beaten by the fellow upstate neighbor Rochester Royals in 4 games, in their second season, 1947–48, the Nationals would struggle, finishing in 5th place with a 24–36 record.
Despite their struggles, the Nats would make the playoffs, getting swept by the Anderson Duffey Packers in 3 straight games, several teams began to leave the NBL for the BAA as the foundation for an absorption was laid. The Nationals recipe for success began by recruiting Leo Ferris, in the playoffs the Nationals would make quick work of the Hammond Calumet Buccaneers, winning the series in 2 straight games. However, in the semifinals the Nats would fall to the Anderson Duffey Packers for the second season in 4 games. In 1949, the Nationals were one of seven NBL teams that were absorbed by the Basketball Association of America to form the NBA, the Nationals were an instant success in the NBA, winning the Eastern Division in the 1949–1950 season, with a league best record of 51–13. In the playoffs the Nationals continued to play basketball, beating the Philadelphia Warriors in 2 straight. Moving on to the Eastern Finals, the Nationals battled the New York Knickerbockers, in the NBA Finals, the Nationals faced fellow NBL alums the Minneapolis Lakers.
In Game 1 of the Finals the Nats lost just their home game of the season 68–66. The Nats did not recover, as they fell behind 3 games to 1 before falling in 6 games, despite several teams leaving the NBA for the National Professional Basketball League before the 1950–1951 season, the Nationals decided to stay put. In their second NBA season the Nationals played mediocre basketball all season, however, in the playoffs the Nats played their best basketball of the season as they stunned the 1st place Philadelphia Warriors in 2 straight, taking Game 1 on the road in overtime 91–89. In the Eastern Finals the Nationals were beaten by the New York Knickerbockers in a hard-fought 5-game series, in the playoffs the Nats knocked off the Philadelphia Warriors again in a 3-game series. However, in the Eastern Finals the Nats fell to the New York Knickerbockers again, the Nationals would finish in 2nd place in a hard fought 3-way battle for first place in the Eastern Division for the 1952–1953 season, with a record of 47–24.
In the playoffs the Nationals would face the Boston Celtics dropping Game 1 at home 87–81, the Nationals acquired Alex Groza, and Ralph Beard as the Indianapolis Olympians folded leaving the NBA with just 9 teams for the 1953–1954 season