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NBA: Bill Russell, Celtics icon and one of basketball’s greats, passes away nba 2021

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Pivot, who won 11 rings in 13 seasons in Boston, has died at the age of 88. He was the first black star and civil rights activist in NBA history.

Bill Russell, in one of his last public appearances.steven seneAP

Already lives on the Olympus of basketball bill russell (Monroe, Louisiana, 1934), who died this Sunday at the age of 88, a great player not only for his achievements, an unparalleled record, but also because he played one of the most successful franchises in world sport. Changed history and became the first black NBA star.

When he retired in 1969, at the age of 36 (averaged 15 points and 22.5 rebounds per game)He did this by winning his 11th ring in 13 years as a professional with the Boston Celtics. Like everything in his career, the bye was historic, the seventh game in Los Angeles against the Lakers, eternal rivals. Russell, who had a historical rivalry with Wilt ChamberlinWho was able to dominate basketball from defense like never before, wrote some of the greenest chapters of the Green franchise.

he came to the celtics Auerbach Network Before his college veteran and after turning down an astronomical offer from the Harlem Globetrotters. He conquered the NCAA for two consecutive years (1956 and 1957) after winning 55 career games with San Francisco. He grew up in Oakland, where he immigrated from Louisiana at the age of nine and where his family faced problems of racism. His 207 centimeters, his impressive size and his privileged feet made him a true defensive expert, memorizing the movements of his rivals. He won a gold medal at the Melbourne Olympics and made his Celtics debut in December: in his fourth game he scored 34 rebounds against Philadelphia.

Russell, with Auerbach.Bill ChaplisAP

Under Russell, the Celtics were establishing one of the longest dynasties in sporting history. He had already won the ring in his first season, although in the following, in which he was named MVP, he fell in the final against the Hawks after injuring his ankle and had to play less. Thereafter, they would win the NBA eight times in a row.

from russell and those great celtics Bob Cousy, Jon Havlisek. Tom Henson, Bill Sharman or Sam JonesPassed on, among others, franchises destined to win and great players. But there was no rivalry like him with Chamberlain, two opposing axes. They met face-to-face 142 times, with 88 wins for Russell and 74 for Chamberlain, having won none of the seven-match series against the Celtics.

“Chamberlain had the most incredible physique I ever knew. There was nothing he couldn’t do on the basketball court. One year he scored over 50 points. But there was one thing he couldn’t do, beat us I remember how Bill Russell, very light, ran the court from top to bottom until tired”, Auerbach recalled those doubles from the Giants.


At the end of the 65/66 season, Auerbach announced Russell as his replacement on the green bench, combining the position with his work at the track. Pvot became the first black coach in the history of professional sports in America. The streak ended, but Russell knew how to take the Celtics to two more rings. Later, already retired, he coached the SuperSonics and Kings without much success.

In 2009, David Stern He named the trophy awarded to the final MVP after himself. Five-time MVP, 12 All-Stars… but, above all, as Adam Silver admitted in a statement, “The greatest champion in the history of team sports“And a huge fighter against the racism he faced in his childhood and even in his college years. San Francisco, the first team to field black players, was ridiculed, humiliated, and even That also faced the refusal of hotels to accept guests of that color.

“I never let myself be a victim,” repeated Russell, who received in 2010 Medal of FreedomThe highest distinction a citizen can aspire to in the United States.

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Reference from www.elmundo.es

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