Sunday, June 4 2023
Dec. 13, 1972; Atlanta, GA, USA; FILE PHOTO; New York Knicks center Willis Reed (19) against the Atlanta Hawks at The Omni.

Dec. 13, 1972; Atlanta, GA, USA; FILE PHOTO; New York Knicks center Willis Reed (19) against the Atlanta Hawks at The Omni. / Manny Rubio-USA TODAY Sports

Willis Reed, who played his entire legendary career in a Knicks uniform, died on Tuesday at the age of 80.

A seven-time All-Star, five-time All-NBA selection and the 1969-70 NBA MVP, Reed won two championships with the Knicks (1970, 1973) and was the Finals MVP both times.

Reed was induced into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1982 and was named a member of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA history in 1996 and the NBA 75th Anniversary Team in 2021.

“The Knicks organization is deeply saddened to announce the passing of our beloved Captain, Willis Reed,” the team said in a statement. “As we mourn, we will always strive to uphold the standards he left behind – the unmatched leadership, sacrifice and work ethic that personified him as a champion among champions. His is a legacy that will live forever. We ask everyone to please respect the family’s privacy during this difficult time.”

With career averages of 18.7 points and 12.9 rebounds, Reed was a dominant center perhaps most well known for his appearance in Game 7 of the 1970 finals against the Los Angeles Lakers. Despite a torn thigh muscle keeping him out of Game 6, Reed took the floor in Game 7, scoring the Knicks’ first two baskets of the game. Reed averaged 23.0 points and 10.5 rebounds per game in that series.

Born in Dubach, La., Reed retired after the 1973-74 season, as injuries cut his career short.

Reed went on to coach with the Knicks in 1977-78, and also served as an assistant with the Atlanta Hawks and Sacramento Kings before serving as Nets head coach in 1988-89.

Source: Yahoo Sports


Willis Reed, leader on Knicks’ two title teams, dies at 80


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