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Old 06-05-2007, 08:36 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RhymesayersDU View Post
I agree, however, in fairness, I think at the time it made sense, it was believed that he was just as big of a part of the rings as MJ, etc.

But yeah, looking back, let's just call it the 49 best of all time.
Dominique Wilkins should have made the list over Pippen. Wilkins was the best player on some excellent Hawks teams in the 80's that likely would have made it to a couple of NBA Finals had it not been for the Celtics dominating the Eastern Conference for most of the decade.
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Old 06-05-2007, 08:42 PM   #27
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Clockwork Orange is on the clock. He has until 7:00 PM CST on Wednesday to make his selection.
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Old 06-05-2007, 09:01 PM   #28
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With the 5th selection of the all-time NBA Draft, I am proud to select Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, C, Bucks/Lakers.



Code:
 Season  Ag Tm  Lg     G   MP   FG  FGA  3P  3PA   FT  FTA  ORB  DRB  TRB  AST STL BLK  TO  PF  PTS
+------------------+----+----+----+----+---+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+---+---+---+---+----+
 1969-70 22 MIL NBA   82 43.1 11.4 22.1           5.9  9.1           14.5  4.1             3.5 28.8
 1970-71 23 MIL NBA   82 40.1 13.0 22.5           5.7  8.3           16.0  3.3             3.2 31.7
 1971-72 24 MIL NBA   81 44.2 14.3 24.9           6.2  9.0           16.6  4.6             2.9 34.8
 1972-73 25 MIL NBA   76 42.8 12.9 23.3           4.3  6.1           16.1  5.0             2.7 30.2
 1973-74 26 MIL NBA   81 43.8 11.7 21.7           3.6  5.2  3.5 11.0 14.5  4.8 1.4 3.5     2.9 27.0
 1974-75 27 MIL NBA   65 42.3 12.5 24.4           5.0  6.6  3.0 11.0 14.0  4.1 1.0 3.3     3.2 30.0
 1975-76 28 LAL NBA   82 41.2 11.1 21.1           5.5  7.8  3.3 13.5 16.9  5.0 1.5 4.1     3.6 27.7
 1976-77 29 LAL NBA   82 36.8 10.8 18.7           4.6  6.5  3.2 10.0 13.3  3.9 1.2 3.2     3.2 26.2
 1977-78 30 LAL NBA   62 36.5 10.7 19.4           4.4  5.6  3.0  9.9 12.9  4.3 1.7 3.0 3.4 2.9 25.8
 1978-79 31 LAL NBA   80 39.5  9.7 16.8           4.4  5.9  2.6 10.2 12.8  5.4 1.0 4.0 3.5 2.9 23.8
 1979-80 32 LAL NBA   82 38.3 10.2 16.9 0.0  0.0  4.4  5.8  2.3  8.5 10.8  4.5 1.0 3.4 3.6 2.6 24.8
 1980-81 33 LAL NBA   80 37.2 10.5 18.2 0.0  0.0  5.3  6.9  2.5  7.8 10.3  3.4 0.7 2.9 3.1 3.1 26.2
 1981-82 34 LAL NBA   76 35.2  9.9 17.1 0.0  0.0  4.1  5.8  2.3  6.4  8.7  3.0 0.8 2.7 3.0 2.9 23.9
 1982-83 35 LAL NBA   79 32.3  9.1 15.5 0.0  0.0  3.5  4.7  2.1  5.4  7.5  2.5 0.8 2.2 2.5 2.8 21.8
 1983-84 36 LAL NBA   80 32.8  9.0 15.5 0.0  0.0  3.6  4.9  2.1  5.2  7.3  2.6 0.7 1.8 2.8 2.6 21.5
 1984-85 37 LAL NBA   79 33.3  9.2 15.3 0.0  0.0  3.7  5.0  2.1  5.8  7.9  3.2 0.8 2.1 2.5 3.0 22.0
 1985-86 38 LAL NBA   79 33.3  9.6 16.9 0.0  0.0  4.3  5.6  1.7  4.4  6.1  3.5 0.8 1.6 2.6 3.1 23.4
 1986-87 39 LAL NBA   78 31.3  7.2 12.7 0.0  0.0  3.1  4.4  1.9  4.8  6.7  2.6 0.6 1.2 2.4 3.1 17.5
 1987-88 40 LAL NBA   80 28.9  6.0 11.3 0.0  0.0  2.6  3.4  1.5  4.5  6.0  1.7 0.6 1.2 2.0 2.7 14.6
 1988-89 41 LAL NBA   74 22.9  4.2  8.9 0.0  0.0  1.6  2.2  1.4  3.1  4.5  1.0 0.5 1.1 1.3 2.6 10.1
+------------------+----+----+----+----+---+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+---+---+---+---+----+
 20 Seasons         1560 36.8 10.2 18.1 0.0  0.0  4.3  6.0  2.4  7.6 11.2  3.6 0.9 2.6 2.7 3.0 24.6
  • 19 time All-Star
  • 6 time league MVP
  • 2 time Finals MVP
  • 10 time All-NBA 1st team
  • 5 time All-NBA 2nd team
  • 5 time All-Defense 1st team
  • 6 time All-Defense 2nd team
  • 1969-70 NBA Rookie of the Year
  • Ranks in the top 10 all time in the following categories, games played (2nd), minutes played (1st), points (1st), field goals (1st), field goal attempts (1st), field goal percentage (9th), free throws made (7th), free throws attempted (5th), defensive rebounds (6th), total rebounds (4th), blocked shots (3rd), blocks per game (9th)
  • Won 6 NBA Championships
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Old 06-05-2007, 09:09 PM   #29
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Look at all these Lakers!
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Old 06-05-2007, 09:23 PM   #30
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There should be a run on Celtics before too long.
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Old 06-05-2007, 09:29 PM   #31
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With the 6th selection of the All-Time NBA Draft:

Edit: new picture!


Last edited by RhymesayersDU; 06-05-2007 at 11:05 PM..
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Old 06-05-2007, 11:01 PM   #32
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Despite the photo malfunction, I believe Rhyme's selection is Shaquille O'Neal.
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Old 06-05-2007, 11:03 PM   #33
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Jesus, they got me hot linking for like an hour!

Word, I pick Shaq. I had a SWEET Kazaam movie picture up. What a flop.
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Old 06-05-2007, 11:59 PM   #34
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Who did -Slap- pick? I only see the NBA logo, so I must be missing something.

Last edited by Killericon; 06-06-2007 at 12:39 AM..
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:04 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killericon View Post
Who did -Slap- pick? I only see the NBA logo, o I msut be missing something.
Jerry West is the silhouette in the photo. -Schlep- picked Jerry West.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:39 AM   #36
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Quote:
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Jerry West is the silhouette in the photo. -Schlep- picked Jerry West.
I knew I was missing something.
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:49 AM   #37
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Freak6 is on the clock. He has until 9 PM CST on Wednesday to make his selection.

Gentlemen, please remember to record the time of your selection in the post. I can never get the damn OM clock to function correctly. Also, if you announce who is on the clock that'd be helpful as well. Thanks!
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:28 PM   #38
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"The Mantis" is still on the board.
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:41 PM   #39
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We were going pretty strong, but we have our first missed selection already. Ah well, whattaya gonna do?

Phibacka is on the clock. He has until 9 PM CST Thursday to make his pick.

Freak 6 may make a selection at any time.
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Old 06-07-2007, 12:53 AM   #40
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I wonder when Mad Yak selects Dirk?
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Old 06-07-2007, 01:23 AM   #41
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With the 7th pick in the Draft Phibacka31 selects

Tim Duncan C/PF SA SPURS






Pick made: 12:19 AM Thusday
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Old 06-07-2007, 02:02 AM   #42
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Default angryllama - Bill Russell, C Boston Celtics

This dude possibly should have gone #2, so I'll gladly sweep him up at pick #9. He's what Greg Oden can only dream of becoming, and is arguably the greatest defensive player to ever lace up the canvas kicks.

While Chamberlain was padding stats, Russell was winning championships.



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Old 06-07-2007, 02:05 AM   #43
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Full Name: William Felton Russell
Born: 2/12/34 in Monroe, La.
High School: McClymonds (Oakland)
College: San Francisco
Drafted: St. Louis Hawks, 1956
Transactions: Draft rights traded to Boston Celtics, 4/29/56
Height: 6-10; Weight: 220 lbs Honors: Elected to Naismith Basketball Basketball Hall of Fame (1975); NBA champion (1957, '59, '60, '61, '62, '63, '64, '65, '66, '68, '69); NBA MVP (1958, '61, '62, '63, '65); All-NBA First Team (1959, '63, '65); Eight-time All-NBA Second Team; NBA All-Defensive Team (1969); 12-time NBA All-Star (1958-69); All-Star MVP (1963); One of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History (1996); Olympic gold medalist (1956). Complete Bio | Summary

Bill Russell was the cornerstone of the Boston Celtics' dynasty of the 1960s, an uncanny shotblocker who revolutionized NBA defensive concepts. A five-time NBA Most Valuable Player and a 12-time All-Star, the angular center amassed 21,620 career rebounds, an average of 22.5 per game and led the league in rebounding four times. He had 51 boards in one game, 49 in two others and a dozen consecutive seasons of 1,000 or more rebounds.
//Define properties of image var imageLocation = "/media/history/russell_bio_lg.jpg"; var imageCaption = "Bill Russell won 11 championships with the Celtics in 13 seasons."; var imageCredit = "Ken Regan/NBAE/Getty Images"; var imageWidth = 200; var imageHeight = 300; var buyPhotoURL = "";E-mail photo | Buy photos
Bill Russell won 11 championships with the Celtics in 13 seasons.
Ken Regan/NBAE/Getty ImagesHis many individual accolades were well deserved, but they were only products of Russell's philosophy of team play. His greatest accomplishment was bringing the storied Celtics 11 championships in his 13 seasons. Until the ascent of Michael Jordan in the 1980s, Russell was acclaimed by many as the greatest player in the history of the NBA.
William Felton Russell was born on February 12, 1934, in Monroe, Louisiana. His family moved cross-country to the San Francisco Bay Area, where Bill attended McClymonds High School in Oakland. He was an awkward, unremarkable center on McClymonds's basketball team, but his size earned him a scholarship to play at the University of San Francisco, where he blossomed.
Russell grew to be a shade over 6-9, and he teamed with guard K. C. Jones to lead the Dons to 56 consecutive victories and NCAA Championships in 1955 and 1956 (although Jones missed four games of the 1956 tournament because his eligibility had expired). Russell was named the NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player in 1955.
Russell averaged 20.7 points and 20.3 rebounds in his three-year varsity career. By his senior season he had matured into a dominant force who could control a game at the defensive end. With the 1956 NBA Draft approaching, Boston Celtics Coach and General Manager Red Auerbach was eager to add Russell to his lineup. Auerbach had built a high-scoring offensive machine around guards Bob Cousy and Bill Sharman and undersized center Ed Macauley, but he hadn't been able to muster the defense and rebounding needed to transform the Celtics into a championship-caliber club. Russell, Auerbach felt, was the missing piece to the puzzle.
However, because of their second-place finish the year before, the Celtics would be picking too late in the draft to get Russell. And because Auerbach wanted to use a territorial selection to nab Holy Cross star Tom Heinsohn, Boston would forfeit its first-round pick altogether. So Auerbach began to think trade, and he set his sights on the St. Louis Hawks, who owned the second overall pick in the draft.
The first pick belonged to the Rochester Royals, but that team already had a promising young rebounder in Maurice Stokes, and Auerbach knew that Royals owner Les Harrison was not going to pay Russell the $25,000 signing bonus he was asking for. Rochester selected guard Sihugo Green, who played nine seasons in the league with five different teams (including, ironically, the Celtics in 1965-66).
St. Louis owner Ben Kerner was willing to talk trade, and the key was Macauley. The 6-8 center was a six-time All-Star at that point and a local hero in St. Louis, where he had grown up and then starred for St. Louis University. Auerbach could afford to give up Macauley if he was getting Russell, but it was not until Boston agreed to add rookie Cliff Hagan to the mix that Kerner consented to the trade. The deal brought the Hawks a championship in 1958, but it brought the Celtics a dynasty.
In that same draft, Boston added Heinsohn, who would be NBA Rookie of the Year for 1956-57, and K. C. Jones, Russell's college teammate who would also become a stalwart of the Boston juggernaut.
Russell didn't join the Celtics until December because he was a member of the 1956 U.S. Olympic basketball team, which won a gold medal at the Melbourne Games in November. The Celtics had bolted to a 13-3 start, and when Russell arrived he adapted quickly. Playing in 48 games, he pulled down 19.6 rpg, the best average in the league, while scoring 14.7 ppg.
Boston's starting five of Russell, Heinsohn, Bob Cousy, Bill Sharman, and Jim Loscutoff was a high-octane unit. They posted the best regular-season record in the NBA in 1956-57, waltzed through the playoffs, and were heavily favored in the Finals against Bob Pettit's St. Louis Hawks. The teams traded victories until the series came down to a dramatic Game 7 in Boston. Tom Heinsohn scored 37 points for Boston, but the Celtics couldn't pull away. Last-second scores by the Hawks sent the game into overtime and then into a second extra period. The Celtics finally prevailed, 125-123, for their first NBA Championship.
In only part of a season Russell had added a new element to the Celtics and to professional basketball. For the previous few years, the Celtics had been an unstoppable offensive machine led by 20-point scorers Cousy and Sharman, both future Hall of Famers. But Boston had lacked the rebounding and defense to win it all. Now Russell brought a new level of defensive artistry, intimidating opponents with blocked shots and proving that it didn't take a scorer to dominate a game.
Energized by their championship, the Celtics won 14 straight games to start the 1957-58 season, and they kept rolling. In his first full season in the NBA, Russell took command and led the league with 22.7 rpg. Early in the season, against the Philadelphia Warriors, he set an NBA record for rebounds in a half by grabbing 32 and wound up with 49 for the contest. Although he was tough and durable, the slender Russell was not a muscleman or a big banger. His rebounding prowess derived from positioning, anticipating where the shot would come off of the rim and moving quickly to the ball. His game was as much analytical and mental as it was physical.
Boston posted the league's best regular-season record that year, finishing atop the Eastern Division at 49-23. The Celtics then returned to the NBA Finals for a rematch with the Hawks, who had won the West with a 41-31 mark. The teams split the first two games at Boston Garden, but when Russell went down with an ankle injury in Game 3, the Celtics' fortunes plummeted. With Russell ineffective the rest of the way, St. Louis won that game and two of the next three to take the series.
Russell was voted the NBA Most Valuable Player for 1957-58. Oddly enough, he was only named to the All-NBA Second Team. In fact, during the five years that Russell was voted league MVP, only twice did he make the All-NBA First Team. The argument was that, while other centers were better than Russell -- that is, they had more conventional skills -- no player meant more to his team.
Russell repeated as the NBA rebounding leader in 1958-59, grabbing 23.0 per game, the first of seven consecutive campaigns in which he averaged at least 23 boards. Russell was also known for extending his effort at critical moments, both within a game and within a season. Consequently, he typically improved his rebounding numbers during the playoffs, and in the 1959 postseason he pulled down 27.7 boards per game.
The Celtics reached the NBA Finals for a third straight season and regained the crown with a four-game sweep of the Minneapolis Lakers. Russell set a Finals record with 29.5 rpg in the series, and he helped launch the greatest championship run in the history of professional sports. Boston's 1959 title began an unprecedented and unequaled string of eight consecutive NBA Championships.
Interestingly, although Russell was not considered a skilled offensive player, he was a selective shooter and in his early years ranked regularly among the NBA's top five in field-goal percentage. In 1958-59, for example, his .457 mark was second in the league.
Russell's greatest adversary, Wilt Chamberlain, entered the NBA and joined the Philadelphia Warriors for the 1959-60 season, setting up a decade-long rivalry. The debate over who was the greater player would last even longer. Chamberlain put up incredible numbers during the period in which the two went head to head, but Russell helped the Celtics hang nine NBA championship flags in the Garden in his first 10 seasons.
As Celtics player Don Nelson told the Boston Herald, "There are two types of superstars. One makes himself look good at the expense of the other guys on the floor. But there's another type who makes the players around him look better than they are, and that's the type Russell was."
Chamberlain led the league in scoring (37.6 ppg) in his first season, and he took the rebounding crown from Russell, 27.0 to 24.0 rpg. The Celtics' center had one monstrous game, however, when he pulled down 51 rebounds against the Syracuse Nationals in the 1959-1960 season. It ranks as the second-best rebounding effort in NBA history, behind Chamberlain's 55 against the Celtics on the next season.

"There are two types of superstars. One makes himself look good at the expense of the other guys on the floor. But there's another type who makes the players around him look better than they are, and that's the type Russell was."
-- Don Nelson
What became clear, both during the 1959-60 season and over the next several years, was that basketball was a team game. As Russell later wrote: "To me, one of the most beautiful things to see is a group of men coordinating their efforts toward a common goal, alternately subordinating and asserting themselves to achieve real teamwork in action. I tried to do that, we all tried to do that, on the Celtics. I think we succeeded."
Chamberlain was great, but the Celtics were better. They improved their regular-season record to 59-16 in 1959-60, at one point running off 17 straight victories. They eliminated Chamberlain and the Warriors in the division finals, then met St. Louis again in the 1960 NBA Finals. Russell stepped up his play in the title series, setting an NBA Finals record with 40 rebounds in Game 2 (surpassed by Chamberlain with 41in 1967) . The Hawks extended the series to seven games, but Russell dominated Game 7, contributing 22 points and 35 rebounds as the Celtics won, 122-103, and notched their second consecutive championship.
While Russell was changing the way the NBA viewed defense, the league still appeared to be in an era of runaway offense, with Chamberlain leading the way. Even the defense-oriented Celtics averaged 124.5 points. Russell's impact on the game can't really be tracked through NBA statistics. Blocked shots were not an official statistic until 1973-74, and the league only recorded total rebounds, without distinguishing between offensive and defensive boards until that same season.
Russell was revolutionizing the game in ways that were clearly understood, even if they weren't measured. His ability to leave his man and slide over to cover an opponent driving to the hoop was startling. He was unmatched at swooping across the lane like a big bird to block and alter shots. The rest of the Celtics defenders began to funnel their men toward Russell and become more daring with their perimeter defense, knowing that he was looming behind.
All of this played mind games with opposing shooters near the basket and had a disrupting effect as they began to sense Russell's imposing presence. Furthermore, other centers started to model their own defensive play after Russell's, and while they might not have been as skillful at it, it changed the way the game was played. Interestingly, Russell's style of play also rejuvenated Boston's offense. Many of the Celtics' points now came when Russell plucked a defensive rebound and fired an outlet pass to Bob Cousy, who would start Boston's vaunted and deadly fast break.
The dynasty was beginning to establish itself under Red Auerbach, and "Boston Celtics" and "NBA champions" became practically synonymous as the decade progressed. The team was multitalented, with many great players, but the enduring image was that of Russell, his head thrust forward from the slight hunch of his shoulders, his eyes scanning the court, his long left arm snaking out to deflect a shot. Boston won the title again in 1960-61, and Russell was named NBA Most Valuable Player, the first of his three consecutive MVP Awards.
The next season, 1961-62, saw Russell register an 18.9 scoring average, his career high. Chamberlain's individual accomplishments were mind-boggling: he won the scoring title by averaging 50.4 points, while the team-oriented Celtics didn't place anybody in the top 10. The NBA players, voting for MVP, chose Russell over Chamberlain.
The Celtics added another future Hall of Famer, John Havlicek, in the 1962 NBA Draft and lost Bob Cousy to retirement at the end of the 1962-63 season. In what had become an annual routine, Boston won its fifth consecutive NBA title in 1963, and Russell claimed his third consecutive MVP Award.
The legendary center later called the 1963-64 Celtics team the best of his era. Although it was merely competent on offense, he felt it was the best defensive unit ever. Russell once again led the league in rebounding, with 24.7 rpg, his all-time high. The Celtics, rolling inexorably, topped the San Francisco Warriors in the Finals in five games, taking their sixth consecutive title, something no team in any sport at the major league level had accomplished before.
It was an era of such sustained achievement, for Russell and for the team, that even spectacular accomplishments seemed almost routine. Russell repeated as NBA rebounding leader in 1964-65, collecting 24.1 rpg, including a 49-rebound game against the Detroit Pistons that season. He also ranked fifth in the league in assists with 5.3 per game. The season's most dramatic moments came in Game 7 of the Eastern Division Finals, when the Celtics led, 110-109, with five seconds remaining against Chamberlain and the Philadelphia 76ers. Russell's inbounds pass hit a wire supporting the basket, giving the Sixers the ball with no time elapsed on the clock. Philadelphia's Hal Greer inbounded to Chet Walker, but Havlicek stole the ball to seal the victory.
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Old 06-07-2007, 02:08 AM   #44
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(continued from above)

That moment as called by famed Celtics broadcaster Johnny Most is an NBA treasure. In his gravelly voice Most screamed, "Havlicek steals it. Over to Sam Jones. Havlicek stole the ball! It's all over! Johnny Havlicek stole the ball!"
The NBA Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers was almost anticlimactic, as the Celtics claimed the championship in five games. For his play that season, Russell won his fifth and final NBA Most Valuable Player Award.
Following another NBA Championship in 1965-66, Red Auerbach retired, and Russell took over as player-coach the following season, becoming the first African-American coach in the league. He led Boston to a 60-21 regular-season record, but the Celtics finally had their string of championships snapped when they lost to a powerful Philadelphia 76ers team in the Eastern Division Finals. The Sixers went 68-13 in the regular season and is considered one of the league's best ever, trounced the Celtics in five games to advance to the NBA Finals.
After that one-year hiatus, Boston returned to form in 1967-68, recapturing the championship under Russell's direction. In the Eastern Division Finals, the club came back from a two-game deficit to force a seventh game with Chamberlain and the 76ers. The Celtics were leading, 97-95, with 34 seconds left when Russell took over. He sank a foul shot, blocked a shot by Walker, grabbed a rebound off a Greer miss, and fed the ball to Sam Jones, who made the final basket in a 100-96 triumph. Boston then beat Los Angeles in six games in the NBA Finals.
The 1968-69 season was even more gratifying. The aging Celtics barely made it into the playoffs with a 48-34 record, then caught fire in the postseason. In Russell's third year as player-coach, Boston repeated as NBA champion by defeating the Lakers, who had acquired Chamberlain, in a seven-game battle for the title. The great Celtics leader promptly retired, having guided the team to 11 championships in 13 years. Russell had amassed 21,620 career rebounds, second in NBA history only to Chamberlain's 23,924.
In 1973, Russell resurfaced as head coach and general manager of the Seattle SuperSonics. He took a team that had won only 26 games the year before and put it on a winning track, notching 36 victories the next season and then compiling a 43-39 record to earn a playoff berth in 1974-75. But Russell became frustrated at the players' reluctance to embrace his team concept. Some suggested that the problem was Russell himself; he was said to be aloof, moody and unable to accept anything but the Celtics' tradition. In any event, his enthusiasm for the task waned after his fourth season in 1976-77, and he departed.
Ironically, Lenny Wilkens guided Seattle to a championship two years later, preaching the same team concept that Russell had tried unsuccessfully to instill in his players. A decade after he left Seattle, Russell gave coaching another try, replacing Jerry Reynolds as coach of the Sacramento Kings early in the 1987-88 season. The team staggered to a 17-41 record, and Russell departed in midseason.
Between coaching stints Russell was most visible as a color commentator on televised basketball games. For a time he was paired with the equally blunt Rick Barry; the duo provided brutally frank commentary on the game. Russell was never comfortable in that setting, though, explaining to the Sacramento Bee, "The most successful television is done in eight-second thoughts, and the things I know about basketball, motivation and people go deeper than that." He also dabbled with acting, performing in a Seattle Children's Theatre show and an episode of Miami Vice and he wrote a provocative autobiography, Second Wind.
Russell's lack of consistent success in other endeavors hasn't diminished his place in basketball history, and he has had no shortage of postcareer honors over the years. In 1970, he was named to the NBA 25th Anniversary All-Time Team. In 1974, Russell was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. In 1980, he was named to the NBA 35th Anniversary All-Time Team. That same year, he was voted Greatest Player in the History of the NBA by the Professional Basketball Writers Association of America.
Although the arrival of Michael Jordan later in the decade may have reopened the debate over who was truly the game's best player, what remains irrefutable is that Russell radically changed people's thinking about how basketball games are won.

Career Statistics GFG%FT%RebsRPGAstsAPGPtsPPG963.440.56121,62022.54,1004.314,52215.1
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Old 06-07-2007, 02:11 AM   #45
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Bill Russell

Career Statistics


YrTeamGPPTSFG%FT%RPGAPGPFBOS: Boston Celtics.1956-57BOS4870642.749.219.61.81431957-58BOS69114244.251.922.72.91811958-59BOS70116845.759.823.03.21611959-60BOS74135046.761.224.03.72101960-61BOS78132242.655.023.93.41551961-62BOS76143645.759.523.64.52071962-63BOS78130943.255.523.64.51881963-64BOS78116843.355.024.74.71901964-65BOS78110243.857.324.15.32041965-66BOS78100541.555.122.84.82211966-67BOS81107545.461.021.05.82581967-68BOS7897742.553.718.64.62421968-69BOS7776243.352.619.34.9231TOTAL9631452244.056.12 2.54.32592
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Old 06-07-2007, 09:03 AM   #46
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Hakeem Olajuwon, C, Houston Rockets

Think about this: He brought back to back championships to HOUSTON. When has a sports franchise from Houston done anything besides these Rockets?

During his 18-year career, Nigeria-born Hakeem Olajuwon staked his claim as one of the greatest players in NBA history. Long considered a physical marvel since his days at the University of Houston, his aesthetic and productive play -- highlighted by his Houston Rockets’ back-to-back NBA titles -- earned him a place among the game’s best.

In 1993-94 he had a storybook season, becoming the first player to be named NBA MVP, NBA Defensive Player of the Year and NBA Finals MVP in the same season. The following season he rallied the Rockets from a sixth seed in the playoffs to their second straight NBA crown, making Houston the fifth NBA franchise ever to win back-to-back titles.

Hakeem Olajuwon was a force in the middle for 18 NBA seasons.
Olajuwon was the third of six children and acquired the basic values that pushed him to succeed from his parents, who were middle-class and owned a cement business in Lagos, Nigeria.

"They taught us to be honest, work hard, respect our elders, believe in ourselves," the NBA great has said.

Olajuwon, which translates into “always being on top,” began playing basketball at the late age of 15. Olajuwon's high school, the Muslim Teachers College, was an entry in the basketball tournament at the All-Nigeria Teachers Sports Festival in Sokoto -- but Olajuwon was on the handball team. A fellow student approached the coach and asked if Olajuwon could play for the team. Permission was granted and a basketball superstar was born.

Two years later he enrolled at the University of Houston under the name of Akeem Abdul Olajuwon. He dropped references to "Abdul" prior to entering the NBA and officially adopted "Hakeem" on March 9, 1991. To paraphrase Shakespeare; a great basketball player by any other name is still a great basketball player.

Although his athletic career began as a soccer goalkeeper and handball player, which ultimately helped give him the footwork and agility to balance his overpowering strength and size in basketball, he quickly became a dominating player at Houston. He played three seasons at Houston and help push the Cougars into the Final Four each year.

In 1982, Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler were on a Houston squad that made it to the NCAA semifinals but lost 68-63 to the North Carolina Tar Heels, led by James Worthy and Michael Jordan. The next year in the semifinals, the Cougars -- by this time known as "Phi Slamma Jamma" for their above-the-rim play -- soared above an equally athletic Louisville squad 94-81 in perhaps the most exciting end-to-end, high-flying act the NCAA Final Four has ever seen. However, the Cougars were upset 54-52 in a thrilling championship game on a shot at the buzzer by North Carolina State, an overwhelming underdog.

In 1983-84, Olajuwon averaged 16.8 points and led the NCAA in rebounding (13.5 rpg), blocked shots (5.6 per game) and field-goal percentage (.675). He was a First Team All-America selection that season, but Patrick Ewing and the Georgetown Hoyas defeated Olajuwon's Cougars 84-75 in the championship game.

After the Rockets won a coin flip with the Portland Trail Blazers for the first pick in the 1984 NBA Draft -- one year before the institution of the Draft Lottery -- Houston selected Olajuwon. Although the talented Jordan was also available (he would be picked third by the Chicago Bulls), almost all in the basketball world thought Olujawon was the correct selection at No. 1.

One year earlier, the Rockets won a coin flip with the Indiana Pacers, allowing the franchise to select the University of Virginia's Ralph Sampson. Thus, the fickle flips of a coin created the “Twin Towers” of 7-0 Olajuwon and 7-4 Sampson -- two agile giants.

In his rookie year, Olajuwon averaged 20.6 points and 11.9 rebounds while shooting .538 from the field and finished second to Jordan in Rookie of the Year balloting. The Rockets went from a 29-53 record before Olajuwon’s arrival to a 48-34 mark, but they were eliminated in five games by the Utah Jazz in the first round of the 1985 NBA Playoffs.

Olajuwon ranked fourth in the league in rebounding and second in blocked shots with 2.68 per game. He played in the 1985 NBA All-Star Game and was named to the NBA All-Rookie Team and the NBA All-Defensive Second Team. He and Sampson became the first teammates since Wilt Chamberlain and Elgin Baylor in 1970 to both average better than 20 points and 10 rebounds.

The next year, Olajuwon and Sampson powered the Rockets into the 1986 NBA Finals. On the way there, they defeated the reigning champion Los Angeles Lakers in a five-game Western Conference Finals. In the series' final three games, Olajuwon scored 40, 35 and 30 points to lead the Rockets. The Boston Celtics, champs in 1981 and 1984, had a formidable front line of Larry Bird, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish and defeated the Rockets in six games.

In 1986-87, Sampson began to suffer from injuries and the following season he was traded to the Golden State Warriors. Olajuwon's production simply increased as he developed into one of the game’s top big men. Olajuwon led the Rockets in 13 statistical categories, including scoring, rebounding, steals and blocked shots. He began a string of selections to the All-NBA First Team (1987 to 1989) and NBA All-Defensive First Team (1987, 1988 and 1990), and was the starting center for the Western Conference All-Stars four years in a row (1987-90).

Olajuwon regularly placed among the league leaders in scoring, rebounding, blocked shots and steals. He won rebounding titles in 1989 and 1990, averaging 13.5 and 14.0 boards, respectively. And in 1989 he became the first player to finish among the league’s top 10 in scoring, rebounding, steals and blocked shots for two straight seasons. That same year against the Milwaukee Bucks, Olajuwon had 18 points, 16 rebounds, 11 blocks and 10 assists, recording the rare quadruple-double. He also led the NBA in blocked shots in 1989-90 with 4.59 per game and in 1990-91 at 3.95 per contest.

During this run, Olajuwon came back from two serious injuries. He took an elbow in the eye from the Chicago Bulls’ Bill Cartwright in the middle of the 1990-91 season, suffering a blowout fracture of the bones that surround the eyeball and forcing him to miss the Rockets’ next 25 games. In 1991-92, he missed seven contests early in the season after an episode of atrial fibrillation (an irregular heartbeat).

Despite Olajuwon’s play, the Rockets had settled into mediocrity since the team’s trip to the NBA Finals in 1986 -- Houston didn’t win a playoff series from 1988 through 1992. But beginning in 1992-93, midway through his career, Olajuwon got even better, taking himself and the Rockets to new levels of success.

The man called "Hakeem the Dream" had now developed a set of patented moves with either his back to the basket or facing opponents, and he abused defenders with numerous fakes, all of which became known as the "Dream Shake."

Because of stagnated contract negotiations, many thought he had played his last game for Houston at the end of the 1991-92 campaign. But on a flight to Japan, where the Rockets played the first two games of the 1992-93 season against the Seattle SuperSonics, Olajuwon and Houston owner Charlie Thomas smoothed out their differences. In the next three seasons he would average 26.1 points, 27.3 points and 27.8 points, respectively.

Whether the contract squabbles had affected Olajuwon’s 1991-92 performance may never be known, but that year he failed to make an All-NBA Team or an NBA All-Defensive Team for the first time in his career. And he certainly experienced a resurgence in 1992-93. Coach Rudy Tomjanovich began his first full season with the Rockets, preaching defense and imploring the team to feed off of Olajuwon’s energy.

The eight-year veteran, who later in the season became a naturalized United States citizen on April 2, 1993, was simply spectacular throughout the year. He averaged 26.1 points, 13.0 rebounds and 4.17 blocks, which established him as the league-leader in blocked shots for the third time in four seasons. More importantly, he led a Rockets team that had finished 42-40 the previous year to a 55-27 mark and the Midwest Division championship.

At season’s end, Olajuwon finished second to Charles Barkley in the voting for the NBA Most Valuable Player award. He was also named NBA Defensive Player of the Year for the first time, while reclaiming spots on the All-NBA First Team and the NBA All-Defensive First Team.

Akin to an athlete who shared his faith of Islam, Muhammad Ali, who devised the strategy of the rope-a-dope later in is career, Olajuwon introduced a new line of spins, fadeaway shots and jumpers, and he became virtually unstoppable on offense. The man called "Hakeem the Dream" had now developed a set of patented moves involving great footwork with ball and head fakes with either his back to the basket or facing opponents abusing defenders. All of which became known as the "Dream Shake."

During the 1995 postseason run culminating in Houston's second NBA championship, the Rockets defeated the San Antonio Spurs and the Orlando Magic, two teams with great centers who were left bewildered by Olajuwon's moves.

In a Life magazine story, San Antonio's David Robinson seemed perplexed. "Solve Hakeem?" said Robinson. "You don't solve Hakeem."

Orlando's Shaquille O'Neal felt the same way after going down in a Finals sweep . "He's got about five moves, then four countermoves," said a stunned O'Neal. " That gives him 20 moves."

This new Olajuwon had evolved after the dispute with management prompted him to reflect and then rededicate himself. His maturation as a player and in his faith carried onto the floor as a team leader, offensive powerhouse and defensive stalwart.

The transformation was apparent when the Rockets advanced to the 1993 Western Conference Semifinals. However, the team lost a tough Game 7, 103-100 in overtime, against a Seattle SupeSonics team led by Gary Payton and a young, explosive Shawn Kemp.

But in 1993-94, Olajuwon attained the pinnacle of achievement when he won both the league and NBA Finals MVP awards while leading Houston to its first-ever NBA crown. Following a brilliant regular season, the Houston center also earned his second straight NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award.

The Rockets won the title after a grueling seven-game defeat of the Patrick Ewing-led New York Knicks. The center's defensive prowess put an end to the Knicks' attempt to win the series in Game 6, when he blocked John Starks' potential game-tying three-point shot at the end of the game. The 10-year veteran was simply brilliant in the Finals, contributing 29.1 points, 9.1 rebounds and 3.86 blocks per game.

In 1994-95, Olajuwon had a career-best 27.8 ppg along with 10.8 rpg. Despite Olajuwon’s impressive performance, the league’s Most Valuable Player Award went to Robinson after he led the Spurs to the NBA’s best record. Olajuwon also became the Rockets’ all-time leading scorer when he passed Calvin Murphy early in the season. In February, Olajuwon was reunited with college teammate Drexler, who came over from the Portland Trail Blazers in a trade for forward Otis Thorpe.

While trying to adjust to Drexler’s presence, the Rockets closed out the season in bumpy fashion and entered the playoffs seeded sixth in the Western Conference. But Drexler was terrific in the playoffs and Olajuwon averaged 33.0 points on .531 shooting from the field, 10.3 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 1.2 steals and 2.81 blocks per game in the postseason as Houston captured its second consecutive title. Matched against the Spurs in the Western Conference Finals, Olajuwon averaged 35.3 points to Robinson’s 25.5.

In the NBA Finals, Houston met the Magic and the league’s great young center, O’Neal. The two big men had similar numbers as Olajuwon averaged 32.8 points, 11.5 rebounds and 5.5 assists to O’Neal’s 28.0 points, 12.5 rebounds and 6.3 assists. But the Rockets swept the series, making Houston the fifth NBA franchise to win back-to-back titles. For his spectacular play, Olajuwon was awarded his second consecutive NBA Finals MVP award.

Olajuwon believes that his religious faith supported his drive to a great career. During an NBA season he observes Islam's Ramadan, which includes periods of fasting. He would awaken before dawn to eat precisely seven dates -- the traditional Muslim fast-breaking food -- and to drink a gallon of water. He would follow with a prayer for strength and have no food or liquid until sunset.

When he played an afternoon game, he would pant for water -- but did not drink a drop. Still, he would say, “I find myself full of energy, explosive. And when I break the fast at sunset, the taste of water is so precious.”

This transcendent dedication and performance earned him mention among the greatest winners in recent history, including Jordan, Bird, Magic Johnson and Isiah Thomas.

After winning the championships, Olajuwon maintained his productive play over the next two seasons. However, the team was swept by the Sonics in the 1996 conference semifinals. And even with the addition of Barkley before the 1996-97 season, which reinvigorated the Rockets, the team lost in six games to the Jazz in the Western Conference Finals.

Beginning in the 1997-98 season, Olajuwon began to miss time due to injuries and played just 47 games that year. He returned to play close to a full schedule during the lockout season of 1998-99. However, his production was slipping and he played just two more years in Houston, averaging less than 12.0 ppg and 7.5 rpg. He retired after playing one season for the Toronto Raptors in 2001-02, interrupting 20 years, including his college career, of playing in the city of Houston.

His impact in the city, however, did not go unrecognized. The Rockets' all-time leader at the time of his retirement in a host of categories, including points, rebounds, steals, and blocked shots (All-time NBA leader with 3, 830) had his jersey No. 34 retired on Nov. 9, 2002. At the ceremony, it was announced that a life-sized statue of Olajuwon would be on display at the Rockets' new downtown arena, scheduled to open for the 2003-04 season.
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Old 06-07-2007, 09:06 AM   #47
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Man-Goblin is on the clock at 8:00 AM CST. He has until 8:00 AM Friday to select.

Freak6 may still make a selection at any time.

If Freak 6 misses his first and second round picks he is out of the NBA all time draft.

If any owner misses 3 picks in a row a new owner will be recruited to take their place.
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Old 06-07-2007, 01:43 PM   #48
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At first glance, these guys I would bump off of the all-time top 50 list:

Bill Sharman
Dave Bing
Scottie Pippen
James Worthy
Hal Greer
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Old 06-07-2007, 05:57 PM   #49
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My bad for being late. I'll go with Larry Legend!

Can I not post pics or am I doing it wrong?

<img src="http://espn.go.com/i/page2/photos/060802/g_bird2_275.jpg">

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Old 06-07-2007, 07:02 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freak6 View Post
My bad for being late. I'll go with Larry Legend!

Can I not post pics or am I doing it wrong?

<img src="">


Hit insert image and put the address in it.

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