Death of Bill Walton (1952-2024) • Basket USA

Death of Bill Walton (1952-2024) • Basket USA
Death of Bill Walton (1952-2024) • Basket USA

Hall of Famer, 1978 MVP, 1977 Finals MVP, member of the Top 75 best players in history… He is one of the greatest interior players of all time, in the person of Bill Walton, who left us today, as communicated by the NBA. He was 71 years old and had been battling cancer for several years.

A genius of the 1970s, whose career was unfortunately shattered by injuries, despite a short period of intense domination, Luke Walton’s father reigned over the second half of that decade, after being a success in the NCAA under the colors of UCLA (two championship titles, three best university player trophies, two Final Four MOP trophies, etc.).

Leader of a team of Blazers crowned champion in 1977 and who imposed his rule on the entire league, Bill Walton was undoubtedly the most “valuable” basketball player in the NBA at that time. Confirming, then, the expectations placed on him when he was selected in first position in the 1974 Draft…

As talented as fragile

Basketball is a sport played by five players. » explained, for example, the illustrious Julius Erving, beaten by Portland during the 77 Finals. “ The Blazers practice it like they invented it. We were a team with great one-on-one skills, but Portland played like a group, without any heads sticking out. In the end, the collective principle wins. »

It didn’t last long, but long enough to mark the memories of an entire generation, before his body decided to ruin his life more seriously (ankle and foot). Bill Walton will nevertheless succeed in finding color among the Celticsafter an uneventful stint with the Clippers, notably winning a new title in 1986 and a Sixth Man of the League trophy that same year.

In total, the man nicknamed “Big Red” missed an incredible total of… 680 matches between 1974 and 1988. Playing only ten seasons during this time and playing on average only 47 matches per year. Leaving behind the memory of a basketball player with talent as immense as his physical fragility.

Bill Walton Percentage Rebounds
Season Team MJ Min Shots 3pts L.F. Off Def Early Pd Party Int Bp Ct Pts
1974-75 POR 35 33 51.3 68.6 2.0 9.0 12.6 4.0 3.0 0.0 0.0 2.0 12.8
1975-76 POR 51 33 47.1 58.3 2.0 10.0 13.4 4.0 2.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 16.1
1976-77 POR 65 35 52.8 69.7 3.0 11.0 14.4 3.0 2.0 1.0 0.0 3.0 18.6
1977-78 POR 58 33 52.2 72.0 2.0 11.0 13.2 5.0 2.0 1.0 3.0 2.0 18.9
1979-80 SDC 14 24 50.3 0.0 59.3 2.0 7.0 9.0 2.0 2.0 0.0 2.0 2.0 13.9
1982-83 SDC 33 33 52.8 0.0 55.6 2.0 7.0 9.8 3.0 3.0 1.0 3.0 3.0 14.1
1983-84 SDC 55 27 55.6 0.0 59.7 2.0 6.0 8.7 3.0 2.0 0.0 3.0 1.0 12.2
1984-85 LAKE 67 25 52.1 0.0 68.0 2.0 6.0 9.0 2.0 2.0 0.0 2.0 2.0 10.1
1985-86 BOS 80 19 56.2 0.0 71.3 1.0 5.0 6.8 2.0 2.0 0.0 1.0 1.0 7.6
1986-87 BOS 10 11 38.5 0.0 53.3 1.0 2.0 3.1 0.0 2.0 0.0 1.0 1.0 2.8
Total 468 28 52.1 0.0 66.0 2.0 8.0 10.5 3.0 2.0 0.0 2.0 2.0 13.3

How to read the stats? MJ = matches played; Min = Minutes; Shots = Successful shots / Attempted shots; 3pts = 3-points / 3-points attempted; LF = free throws made / free throws attempted; Off = offensive rebound; Def=defensive rebound; Tot = Total rebounds; Pd = assists; Fte: Personal fouls; Int = Intercepts; Bp = Lost balls; Ct: Against; Pts = Points.

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