Earl Yogi Strom was an American professional basketball referee for 29 years in the National Basketball Association and for three years in the American Basketball Association. Strom is credited as one of the greatest referees in the history of the NBA and was known for his flamboyant style, nicknamed The Pied Piper, the assertive Strom made foul calls with his whistle by using a tweet-pause-tweet-tweet tune and pointing at the offending player. In addition to calling fouls with flair, he was known for ejecting players from games with style, over the course of his career, he officiated 2,400 professional basketball regular season games,295 playoff games,7 All-Star games, and 29 NBA and ABA Finals. For his extensive contributions to the game, Strom was posthumously elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1995, Strom was born December 15,1927 in Pottstown, Pennsylvania to Max and Bessie Strom. Earls father, was a foreman at a bakery, as a child, he became interested in athletics and competing in sports, and this interest lasted throughout his childhood and into high school.
At Pottstown High School, Strom played football, after finishing high school in 1945, he joined the United States Coast Guard towards the end of World War II. Returning from service, Strom attended Pierce Junior College in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where he graduated in 1951, following school, the young Strom continued participating in sports and played for a local semi-professional basketball team in his early 20s. Following the advice of the referee, Strom decided to get into officiating and he officiated high school games for nine years as well as college games in the East Coast Athletic Conference for three years. In 1952, he married Yvonne Trollinger, and the couple went on to have five children, outside of officiating, Strom worked at General Electric in customer relations starting in 1956 and continued in this role through his first stint in the NBA. He felt this day job provided security to his family since officiating in the NBA did not at the time, Strom became an NBA referee with the start of the 1957–58 NBA season after accepting an invitation to join the league from Jocko Collins, supervisor of officials.
He further developed his skills in the league by learning from other such as Mendy Rudolph, Norm Drucker. Strom ascended to the top of the ladder by the end of his third season in the league as he was assigned playoff games. The following year and Rudolph made NBA history when they officiated the 1961 NBA Finals between the Boston Celtics and St. Louis Hawks. This was the time in NBA history that the same two officials worked an entire series, which was the result of the two teams not agreeing on any other officials to use in the series. Six years into his NBA career, Strom had worked every playoff game in the semi-finals and finals along with Rudolph, in fact, the former was assigned to any seventh and deciding game in a series during this time. He was involved in one of the most memorable moments in NBA history during the 1965 Eastern Conference finals between the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers, in the seventh and final game, the 76ers trailed the Celtics 110–109 with five seconds left.
The 76ers had possession of the ball and attempted to inbound the pass as the Celtics John Havlicek tipped the pass thrown by Hal Greer, Celtics radio announcer Johnny Most made his most fabled call, Havlicek stole the ball. And all this while, Strom had officiated the game in a cast as he had broken his hand punching a fan during an altercation at a game the previous night
Lionel Eugene Hollins is an American basketball coach and former professional basketball player. He most recently served as the coach of the Brooklyn Nets of the National Basketball Association. During his ten-year NBA career playing as a point guard he played for five teams, prior to his two seasons at Arizona State, he played two years at Dixie College in St. George, Utah. He graduated from Arizona State University in 1986 with a degree in sociology and he was a member of Trail Blazers 1976–77 championship team, and made his only All-Star Game appearance one year later. He was a member of the NBA All-Defensive team twice, in 1978 and 1979, on April 18,2007, the Portland Trail Blazers retired his #14 jersey. Prior to his coaching career, Hollins served as an assistant coach at Arizona State in the 1985–86 season. He served as an assistant for the Phoenix Suns under head coaches Cotton Fitzsimmons, in the 1999–2000 season, Hollins acted as the interim head coach while the Grizzlies were still located in Vancouver.
He served another stint as coach of the Grizzlies in 2004. On May 14,2008, Hollins was hired as one of Milwaukee Bucks head coach Scott Skiles assistants, on January 25,2009, Hollins was named the Grizzlies head coach for the third time in the franchises history. On February 11,2011, Hollins won his 100th career victory, as coach of the Memphis Grizzlies and that season, he led his team to a 46–36 record, earning the eighth seed in the playoffs. The Grizzlies defeated the number-one seed San Antonio Spurs before losing to the Oklahoma City Thunder in seven games in the Western Conference semifinals, in the lockout-shortened 2011–12 NBA season, Hollins Grizzlies finished the season with a 41–25 record and the best winning percentage in franchise history. After guiding the Grizzlies to a 13–3 record during the month of April and this streak helped the Grizzlies earn the four seed in the Western Conference, with home court advantage for the first time in franchise history. They lost in the first round to the Los Angeles Clippers in seven games, in 2012–2013, Hollins led Memphis to a franchise record 56-win season.
Memphis lost to the San Antonio Spurs in the Western Conference Finals in a four-game sweep, differing views between Hollins and management seemed to be pointing to an eventual change despite Hollins success. He led them to three playoff appearances, their first playoff win, a franchise best.683 winning percentage. In the time between Memphis and Brooklyn, Hollins chose Kauffman Sports Management Group as his representation, on July 2,2014, Hollins and the Brooklyn Nets reached an agreement for him to serve as the teams head coach for the next four seasons. On July 7,2014, he was introduced by the Nets at a press conference. In his first season as coach, he guided the Nets to the playoffs
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 club of the leagues Western Conference Pacific Division. The Lakers are one of the most successful teams in the history of the NBA, as of 2015, the Lakers are the second most valuable franchise in the NBA according to Forbes, having an estimated value of $2.7 billion. The franchise began with the 1947 purchase of a disbanded team, the new team began playing in Minneapolis, calling themselves the Minneapolis Lakers in honor of the states nickname, Land of 10,000 Lakes. The team was propelled by center George Mikan, who is described by the NBAs official website as the leagues first superstar, after struggling financially in the late 1950s following Mikans 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 Boston Celtics, beginning their long and storied rivalry.
After the retirement of West and Chamberlain, the team acquired another center, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who had won multiple MVP awards and this team featured Hall of Famers in Johnson, Abdul-Jabbar, and James Worthy, and a Hall of Fame coach, Pat Riley. After Abdul-Jabbar and Johnsons retirement, the team struggled in the early 1990s before acquiring Shaquille ONeal, led by ONeal and another Hall of Fame coach, Phil Jackson, Los Angeles won three consecutive titles between 2000 to 2002, securing the franchise its second three-peat. After losing both the 2004 and 2008 NBA Finals, the Lakers won two championships by defeating the Orlando Magic in 2009 and Boston in 2010. The Lakers hold the record for NBAs longest winning streak,33 straight games,21 Hall of Famers have played for Los Angeles, while four have coached the team. Four Lakers—Abdul-Jabbar, Johnson, ONeal, and Bryant—have won the NBA MVP Award for a total of eight awards, Minneapolis sportswriter Sid Hartman played a key behind the scenes role in helping put together the deal and the team.
Inspired by Minnesotas nickname, Land of 10,000 Lakes, 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 roster which featured forward Jim Pollard, playmaker Herm Schaefer, and center George Mikan. In their first season, they led the league with a 43–17 record, in 1948, the Lakers moved from the NBL to the Basketball Association of America, and Mikans 28.3 point per game scoring average set a BAA record. In the 1949 BAA Finals they won the championship, beating the Washington Capitols four games to two, 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, 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, finishing second in their division.
They faced the New York Knicks in the NBA Finals, which won in seven games
Mutual Broadcasting System
The Mutual Broadcasting System was an American radio network in operation from 1934 to 1999. In the golden age of U. S. radio drama, Mutual was best known as the network home of The Lone Ranger and The Adventures of Superman. For many years, it was a broadcaster for Major League Baseball, the National Football League. From the mid-1930s and for decades after, Mutual ran a highly respected news service accompanied by a variety of popular commentary shows, during the 1970s, Mutual pioneered the nationwide late night call-in radio show and introduced the country to Larry King. Of the four networks of American radios classic era, Mutual had for decades the largest number of affiliates. For the first 18 years of its existence, Mutual was owned and operated as a cooperative, Mutuals member stations shared their own original programming and promotion expenses, and advertising revenues. From December 30,1936, when it debuted in the West and its business structure would change after General Tire assumed majority ownership in 1952 through a series of regional and individual station acquisitions.
Not long after the sale, one of the new executive teams was charged with accepting money to use Mutual as a vehicle for foreign propaganda. The networks reputation was damaged, but soon rebounded. Attempts at establishing cooperatively owned radio networks had been made since the 1920s, in 1929, a group of four radio stations in the major markets of New York City, Chicago and Detroit organized into a loose confederation known as the Quality Network. Five years later, a similar or identical group of stations founded the Mutual Broadcasting System, Mutuals original participating stations were WOR–Newark, New Jersey, just outside New York, WGN–Chicago, WXYZ–Detroit, and WLW–Cincinnati. WOR and WGN, based in the two largest markets and providing the bulk of the programming, were the leaders of the group. On October 29,1934, Mutual Broadcasting System, Inc. was incorporated, with Bamberger, in contrast, the Mutual Broadcasting System was run as a true cooperative venture, with programming produced by and shared between the groups members.
The majority of the programming, from WOR and WGN, consisted of musical features. WOR had The Witchs Tale, an anthology series whose hunner-an-thirteen-year-old narrator invited listeners to douse all lights. Now draw up to the fire an gaze into the embers. gaaaaze into em deep, an soon yell be across the seas, in th jungle land of Africa. Hear that chantin and them savage drums, WGN contributed the popular comedy series Lum and Abner. Detroits WXYZ provided The Lone Ranger, which had debuted in 1933 and was already in demand and it is often claimed that Mutual was launched primarily as a vehicle for the Western serial, but Lum and Abner was no less popular at the time
His nickname, Chocolate Thunder, was bestowed upon him by Stevie Wonder. He was known for his dunks, which led to the NBA adopting breakaway rims due to his shattering the backboard on two occasions in 1979. Dawkins averaged double figures in scoring nine times in his 14 years in the NBA and he played in the NBA Finals three times as a member of the Philadelphia 76ers in the late 1970s and early 1980s. On the flip side, Dawkins set an NBA record for fouls in a season, as a 610 senior at Maynard Evans High School in Orlando, Dawkins averaged 32 points and 21 rebounds to lead his team to the state championship. He was heavily recruited by Division I colleges across the country, in a surprise move, Dawkins opted to directly enter the NBA draft out of high school, instead of attending college. He made his decision because he wanted to make money to help his grandmother, mother. He became the first high school player to enter the NBA after his high school graduation. With the fifth pick in the 1975 NBA draft, the Philadelphia 76ers selected Dawkins.
He was drafted behind David Thompson, David Meyers, Marvin Webster and he signed a seven year contract worth a total of $1 million. Dawkins languished on the Sixers bench for his first two seasons, the Sixers won both playoff series and advanced to the NBA Finals that year. Matched up against Portlands Bill Walton, Dawkins helped the Sixers take the first two games before the Trail Blazers won the four to win the series in six games. Now 20 years old, Dawkins was averaging 11.7 points and 7.9 rebounds in nearly 25 minutes per game, while ranked second in the league in field-goal percentage at.575. For the second year, the Sixers earned the top seed in the East and advanced to the Conference Finals. Prior to the 1978–79 season Philadelphia traded McGinnis to the Denver Nuggets, over the next three seasons Dawkins and Caldwell Jones split time at the center and power forward positions. In 1979–80 he averaged 14.7 points and a career-high 8.7 rebounds, helping the Sixers back to the NBA Finals, in the 1981 season Dawkins produced a.607 field-goal percentage, second in the NBA to Artis Gilmores.670.
Dawkins averaged 14 points and 7.2 rebounds for the year, the club met the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals and lost in seven games. The 76ers suffered another postseason disappointment in 1982 when they reached the Finals, Dawkins was traded to the Nets during the 1982 off-season in exchange for a first round draft pick, which was used as part of the Sixers trade to acquire Moses Malone. At age 25, Dawkins joined a Nets club that included Albert King, Buck Williams and his first two seasons with the Nets were successful for both sides, as Dawkins experienced a career renaissance of sorts and the Nets had their most successful seasons to that point
Patrick James Riley is an American professional basketball executive, and a former coach and player in the National Basketball Association. He has been the president of the Miami Heat since 1995. He is regarded as one of the greatest NBA coaches of all time, Riley has served as the coach of five championship teams, four with the Los Angeles Lakers. He was named NBA Coach of the Year three times and he was head coach of an NBA All-Star Game team nine times, eight times with the Western Conference team and once with the Eastern team. In 1996 he was named one of the 10 Greatest Coaches in the NBA history, as a player, he played for the Lakers championship team in 1972. Riley most recently won the 2012 and 2013 NBA championships with the Heat as their team president and he is the first North American sports figure to win a championship as a player and executive. He received the Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award from the NBA Coaches Association on June 20,2012, Riley was born in Rome, New York and raised in Schenectady.
His father, Leon Riley, played twenty-two seasons of minor league baseball as an outfielder and first baseman, Riley played basketball for Linton High School in Schenectady, New York under head coach Walt Przybylo and his assistants Bill Rapavy and Ed Catino. In 1991, Riley called it, One of the greatest games in the history of Schenectady basketball, Riley was a versatile athlete in college, participating in both basketball and football. Coached by Adolph Rupp, UK lost to Texas Western, a game that was reenacted in the movie Glory Road, in his senior year Riley made First Team All-SEC, one of the only players in storied Kentucky Basketball history to make two or more First Team All-SEC teams. He was selected by the San Diego Rockets in the 1st round of the 1967 NBA draft and he retired after the 1975–76 NBA season as a member of the Western Conference champion Phoenix Suns. Riley finished his NBA playing career with a 7.4 points per game scoring average, Riley returned to the NBA in 1977 as a broadcaster for the Lakers.
During the 1979–80 season, when the head coach, Jack McKinney, was injured during a near fatal bicycle accident, assistant coach Paul Westhead took over the teams head coaching duties. Riley moved from the broadcast booth to the bench as one of Westheads assistant coaches, the team lost in the playoffs the next year to the Moses Malone-led Houston Rockets. Six games into the 1981–82 season, Magic Johnson said he wished to be traded because he was playing for Westhead. Shortly afterward, Lakers owner Jerry Buss fired Westhead, at an ensuing press conference, with Jerry West at his side, Buss named West head coach. West, however and Buss awkwardly tried to name West as offensive captain and named West, West made it clear during the press conference that he would only assist Riley, and that Riley was the head coach. Thereafter, Riley was the head coach, until his status became permanent
In basketball, an official is a person who has the responsibility to enforce the rules and maintain the order of the game. The title of official applies to the scorers and timekeepers, officials are usually referred to as referees, generally there is one lead referee and one or two umpires, depending on whether there is a two- or three-person crew. In the NBA, the official is called the crew chief. In FIBA-sanctioned play, two-man crews consist of a referee and an umpire, both classes of officials have equal rights to control almost all aspects of the game. In most cases, the lead official performs the jump ball to begin the contest, though NFHS, in American high school and college basketball, the officials generally wear black and white striped shirts with black side panels, black pants and black shoes. Some state high school association allow officials to wear shirts with black pin strips instead of the black. NBA officials wear shirts with black slacks and black shoes. The NBA shirt is grey with black colored shoulders and sleeves, the WNBA referee shirt is similar to the NBA referee shirt, except that its shoulder and sleeve colors are orange and the WNBA logo takes the place of the NBA logo.
FIBA officials wear a grey and black official referee shirt, black trousers, black socks, officials in competitions organized by Euroleague Basketball —the Euroleague and Eurocup—wear an orange referee shirt. Officials in the Israel Basketball Association generally wear the Euroleagues orange uniform shirt, most officials slacks are currently belt-less, while most officials shirts are collar-less, V-neck shirts. All officials wear a whistle that is used to play as a result of a foul or a violation on the court. In all instances of officiating, hand signals are used to indicate the nature of the infraction or to administer the game, in higher levels of college and professional ball, all officials wear a timing device on the belt-line called PTS. The device is used by on court officials to start and stop the clock in a timely manner, rather than waiting for the scoreboard operator to do so. The officials must ensure that the game runs smoothly, and this encompasses a variety of different responsibilities, from calling the game to player and spectator management.
They carry a duty of care to the players they officiate and to ensure that the court and all equipment used is in a safe and usable condition. Should there be an issue that inhibits the safe playing of the game, quite often, the job of an official surpasses that of the game at hand, as they must overcome unforeseen situations that may or may not have an influence on the game. There are two methods for officiating a basketball game, either two-person or three-person mechanics depending on how many officials are available to work the game. In two-person mechanics, each official works either the lead or the trail position, the lead position is normally along the baseline of the court, with the trail position having its starting point at the free throw line extended on the left side of the court facing the basket
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
NBA on CBS
CBS aired NBA games from the 1973–1974 NBA season until the 1989–90 NBA season. During CBS first few years of covering the NBA, CBS was accused of mishandling their NBA telecasts, regular features included a pre-game show that consisted of mini-teams of celebrities, and active and former NBA players competing against each other, and a halftime show called Horse. The NBA eventually took notice of the criticisms and managed to persuade CBS to eliminate its original halftime show, in its place, came human-interest shows about the players. There was a possibility that CBS would start televising a single game on Sunday afternoons. Other adjustments that CBS made in hopes of improving its coverage included hiring reporter Sonny Hill to cover the league on a full-time basis, CBS put microphones and cameras on team huddles to allow viewers to see and hear coaches at work. Finally, CBS introduced a segment called Red Auerbach on Roundball. The segment intended to not only educate CBS viewers about the complexities of the pro game and they subtly introduced audiences to an all-star team based on Auerbachs criteria such as screening and passing.
Don Criqui was the host of this particular competition, the final, which pitted Larry McNeill of the Golden State Warriors against eventual winner Darnell Dr. Dunk Hillman of the Indiana Pacers, took place during Game 6 of the 1977 NBA Finals. At the time of the final, Hillmans rights had been traded to the New York Nets, since he was not officially a member of any NBA team, instead of wearing a jersey, he competed in a plain white tank top. Other players to compete in the slam dunk tournament included Julius Erving, George Gervin, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, CBS, anxious for star power, gave David Thompson the opportunity to be eliminated three times. During the 1977–78 season, CBS held a H-O-R-S-E competition at halftime of the Game of the Week telecasts, Don Criqui hosted with Mendy Rudolph officiating. 32 players, including Rick Barry, Pete Maravich, George Gervin, JoJo White, Doug Collins, Paul Westphal and Bob McAdoo, Barry was eliminated in the first round by journeyman Earl Tatum of the Los Angeles Lakers.
Maravich and Westphal made it all the way to the final, Maravich was injured and unavailable, so CBS instead had Westphal shoot a free-throw against Bag-Man. Westphal, with a bag over his head as well, made the free throw while Barry missed, from 1975 to 1979, CBS aired all NBA Finals games live, live NBA Finals game coverage on the network resumed in 1982. During this era, CBS aired weeknight playoff games from earlier rounds on tape delay at 11,30 p. m. Eastern Time, CBS continued this practice until at least the mid-1980s. CBS did not want sportscasters to give the score on the late-evening newscasts aired by its local affiliates. The network preferred the games to not be over by that time if they were going to be aired on that night. Most CBS games were either 8,30 or 9,00 p. m. local starts, for instance, CBS aired Games 1–3 of the 1981 Western Conference Finals, between the Houston Rockets and Kansas City Kings
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
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is an American retired professional basketball player who played 20 seasons in the National Basketball Association for the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers. During his career as a center, Abdul-Jabbar was a record six-time NBA Most Valuable Player, a record 19-time NBA All-Star, a 15-time All-NBA selection, and an 11-time NBA All-Defensive Team member. A member of six NBA championship teams as a player and two as an assistant coach, Abdul-Jabbar twice was voted NBA Finals MVP, in 1996, he was honored as one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History. NBA coach Pat Riley and players Isiah Thomas and Julius Erving have called him the greatest basketball player of all time, drafted by the one-season-old Bucks franchise in the 1969 NBA draft with the first overall pick, Alcindor spent six seasons in Milwaukee. After winning his first NBA championship in 1971, he adopted the Muslim name Kareem Abdul-Jabbar at age 24, using his trademark skyhook shot, he established himself as one of the leagues top scorers.
In 1975, he was traded to the Lakers, with whom he played the last 14 seasons of his career, Abdul-Jabbars contributions were a key component in the Showtime era of Lakers basketball. Over his 20-year NBA career his team succeeded in making the playoffs 18 times and past the 1st round in 14 of them and he remains the all-time leading scorer in the NBA, and is ranked 3rd all-time in both rebounds and blocks. In 2007, ESPN voted him the greatest center of all time, in 2008, they named him the greatest player in basketball history. Abdul-Jabbar has been an actor, a coach. In 2012, he was selected by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to be a U. S. global cultural ambassador, in 2016, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama. Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, Jr. was born in New York City, the child of Cora Lillian, a department store price checker. At birth, he weighed 12 pounds 11 ounces and was 22 1⁄2 inches long and he was raised as a Roman Catholic and attended Power Memorial Academy, a Catholic high school in Manhattan.
From an early age, Lew Alcindor began his record-breaking basketball accomplishments and this earned him a nickname—The tower from Power. His 2,067 total points were a New York City high school record, the team won the national high school boys basketball championship when Alcindor was in 11th grade, and was runner-up his senior year. Alcindor played on the UCLA freshman team only because the rule was in effect. In his first college game, Lew set a UCLA single game record with 56 points, in 1967 and 1968, he won USBWA College Player of the Year which became the Oscar Robertson Trophy. Alcindor became the player to win the Helms Foundation Player of the Year award three times. The 1965–66 UCLA Bruin team was the preseason #1, but on November 27,1965, the freshman team led by Alcindor defeated the varsity team 75–60 in the first game in the new Pauley Pavilion