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DonRocks

Basketball Trivia

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Who is the person that:

* was co-NBA Rookie of the Year in 1970-1971 along with Dave Cowens?

* is the only eligible NBA player ever to average over 21 points-per-game for his career, and not be in the Hall of Fame?

* is generally credited as the first player, certainly the first major player, to switch from Converse to Nike shoes?

Think hard before you mouse over the answer ... Geoff Petrie

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I’m going to guess:  It’s not a function of thinking but mora function of age and basketball geekery—Petrie from Princeton??

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This is a fairly interesting question: Who are the only three players in NBA history to have won three-consecutive MVP awards?

Mouse over for the answer: Bill Russell (61-63), Wilt Chamberlain (66-68), and Larry Bird (84-86).

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4 hours ago, DonRocks said:

This is a fairly interesting question: Who are the only three players in NBA history to have won three-consecutive MVP awards?

Mouse over for the answer: Bill Russell (61-63), Wilt Chamberlain (66-68), and Larry Bird (84-86).

I knew Larry Bird won 3 in a row.  He was phenomenal and managed this in a decade of strong competition.  It was the only one wherein I could spout out an automatic response.  The earlier ones make sense considering the two players dominance during their eras  I didn't come up with them.   In a sense, considering their individual dominance during different eras its a little surprising that neither Michael Jordan or LeBron James haven't won 3 in a row.  On the other hand that might suggest the level of individual excellence and competition has been greater in the Jordan and James eras.   It might also suggest the voters in the latter 80's /90's with Jordan and the voters in the last 12/13 years wanted to spread the MVP around to other players. 

In light of those 3 players (Bird, Russell, and Chamberlain) gaining 3 MVP's in a row I checked some other super stars:

Michael Jordan had a total of 5 MVP's and 5 finishes when he was 2 or 3d

LeBron James has 4 MVP's and 6 finishes of 2nd or 3rd.

Kareem had 6 MVP's and I think 3 finishes of 2nd or 3rd all in a 10 year period

and Magic Johnson had 3 MVP's and 6 2nd or 3rd's in the voting over 9 straight years. 

....and that defines a lot of consistently great talent over many decades

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3 hours ago, DaveO said:

I knew Larry Bird won 3 in a row.  He was phenomenal and managed this in a decade of strong competition.  It was the only one wherein I could spout out an automatic response. 

I'm old enough to realize that people are going to forget how incredible Bird was (this is *exactly* why I wrote the Brooks Robinson series - people have already forgotten how unbelievable he was). They've done it with Bob Cousy, Oscar Robertson, and Elgin Baylor, and incredibly, they're beginning to do it with Michael Jordan. Somehow, I think George Mikan might be remembered more in line with Wilt Chamberlain and Bill Russell - a towering giant in an era when there were few. And Magic Johnson has one of the greatest nicknames in all of sports, like Elroy "Crazy Legs" Hirsch - that will help his legacy. I suspect there are a lot of young basketball fans who have no idea about John Stockton and Karl Malone, but being a duo always helps (Laurel and Hardy, Ozzie and Harriet, Abbott and Costello).

Someone here typed that modern players are better than older players, period - I'm not convinced of this, not at the highest level, at least not after how the game of basketball has changed in the past few years; on the other hand, when I was growing up, Tracy Jackson was about the only player in Montgomery County who could windmill dunk; now, it seems like every team has high-flyers.

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On 6/6/2019 at 9:34 PM, DonRocks said:

Name this Hall of Famer:

HOF.jpg

Don:   So I cheated...using google image search.   The relevant descriptive element is that this "guy" was skinny...all arms and legs.   Who was he??

Your guy, Brooks Robinson.   Like his compadre, Frank Robinson...a high school basketball star. BTW:   The photo comes from what must be a great book.  Did you reference it?   Here is the link to the page that describes the earliest interactions between Frank and Brooks and how terrific the Orioles, under Brooks, were in welcoming Frank.   A great story.

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10 hours ago, DaveO said:

Don:   So I cheated...using google image search.   The relevant descriptive element is that this "guy" was skinny...all arms and legs.   Who was he??

Your guy, Brooks Robinson.   Like his compadre, Frank Robinson...a high school basketball star. BTW:   The photo comes from what must be a great book.  Did you reference it?   Here is the link to the page that describes the earliest interactions between Frank and Brooks and how terrific the Orioles, under Brooks, were in welcoming Frank.   A great story.

Dave, great job! I was going to include the photo of his "Hall of Fame teammate" as a hint - the difference between the Robinsons' physiques in high school was shocking. 

That link was where I found the photo - this one, too: His "Hall of Fame teammate" is in the upper-right:

HOF2.jpeg

(If anyone gets sick of me fawning over Brooks, let me know - I admit to being a devoted fan-boy, maybe more so than anyone, with the possible exceptions of Tom Boswell and Roy Firestone. The thought that Brooks is 82-years old makes me Google him with dread, almost daily, probably a lot like you and Yogi a couple of years ago ... I know very much how you felt: Unless I die young, there's going to be a time of deep, heavy grieving for me.)

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