Hall of Famer Bill Walton, 71, dies of cancer

May 27, 2024, 01:17 PM ET Basketball legend Costs Walton, who led the UCLA Bruins to 2 nationwide titles before winning two champions during his NBA career, has actually passed away at the age of 71 after an extended fight with cancer.Walton passed away Monday while surrounded by his enjoyed ones, his family stated in a declaration released by the NBA.

“Costs Walton was genuinely one of a kind,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement.He was the NBA’s MVP

in the 1977-78 season and a member of the league’s 50th and 75th anniversary groups. That all followed a college career in which he was a two-time champ at UCLA and a three-time national player of the year under iconic coach John Wooden.Bill Walton:


– Born Nov. 5, 1952, in La Mesa, California – College: UCLA
– Two-time national champ at UCLA (1972, 1973); group was 86-4 in his 3 seasons, consisting of two 30-0 seasons
– Scored 44 points on 21-of-22 shooting in 1973 national championship vs. Memphis State (most points, most basket and highest FG pct.– min. 10 makes– in Last 4 history)
– No. 1 choice in 1974 NBA draft (Portland Trail Blazers)
– 1977-78 NBA MVP; two-time NBA All-Star (1976-77, 1977-78)
– Two-time NBA champion (1977 with Portland, 1986 with Celtics)
– Inducted into Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Popularity in 1993

“What I will keep in mind most about him was his passion for life,” Silver stated in his statement. “He was a regular presence at league occasions– constantly upbeat, smiling ear to ear and looking to share his wisdom and heat. I valued our close relationship, envied his limitless energy and appreciated the time he took with every person he experienced.

“As a valued member of the NBA family for 50 years, Costs will be deeply missed out on by all those who familiarized and love him.”

The 6-foot-11 Walton, who was enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1993, was larger than life on the court, off the court and throughout his broadcasting career.His NBA profession–

interrupted by persistent foot injuries– lasted just 468 games with the Portland Trail Blazers, LA (and formerly San Diego) Clippers and Boston Celtics. He averaged a double-double in those games– 13.3 points and 10.5 rebounds.Though neither of those numbers is near record-setting, his

effect on the game was massive.Editor’s Picks 1 Associated”Bill Walton was a true legend– a remarkable player, gifted broadcaster, and important part of the Blazers company,”the Trail Sports jackets stated in a statement.”… Bill was a lot more than basketball. He was larger than life. His upbeat and vibrant character will permanently be kept in mind and cherished, and he will be deeply missed by our organization, Rip City and all who experienced him.” His most famous game was the 1973 NCAA title match, UCLA versus Memphis State, in which he shot an unbelievable 21-for-22 from the field and led the Bruins to another nationwide championship.The Bruins kept giving the ball to Walton, and he kept delivering in an efficiency for the ages. Expense Walton was a component at UCLA, where he led the Bruins to 2 championship games under legendary coach John Wooden, and as an alumnus and broadcaster.”It’s hard to imagine a season in Pauley Pavilion without him,” Bruins coach Mick Cronin stated. Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire”It’s very tough to put into words what he has actually indicated to UCLA’s program, as well as his incredible influence on college basketball,”UCLA coach Mick Cronin said Monday.”Beyond his exceptional achievements as a player, it’s his ruthless energy, interest for the game and undeviating candor that have been the hallmarks of his larger than life personality. “As an enthusiastic UCLA alumnus and broadcaster, he liked being around our players, hearing their stories and sharing his wisdom and suggestions. For me as a coach, he was truthful, kind and constantly had his heart in the

ideal place. I will miss him quite. It’s hard to picture a season in Pauley Structure without him.”Walton ended up being a charter member of the UCLA Athletics Hall of Popularity in 1984, and his No. 32 was signed up with by the No. 33 of previous UCLA excellent Kareem Abdul-Jabbar( known in college as Lew Alcindor )as the very first two guys’s basketball jersey numbers to be retired by the Bruins in 1990. Today I had to say goodbye to a terrific buddy that I will always miss….@UCLAAthletics @UCLAMBB @NBA pic.twitter.com/JIA3sORJgY!.?.!— Kareem Abdul-Jabbar(@kaj33) May 27, 2024″ My very friend, fellow Bruin, and NBA rival Costs Walton passed away today, “Abdul-Jabbar published to X.”And the world feels so much heavier now. On the court, Bill was a fierce player, however off the court he wasn’t delighted unless he did whatever he could to make everyone around him

delighted.”He was the best people.”Walton retired from

the NBA and turned to broadcasting, something he never thought he could be proficient at– and an opportunity he often wasn’t sure would be possible for him– since he had a pronounced stutter sometimes in his life.Turns out, he was exceptional at that, too: Walton was an Emmy winner.” As a Hall of Fame player

, he redefined the

center position,”Silver stated.”Costs then equated his contagious enthusiasm and love for the game to broadcasting, where he provided informative and colorful commentary which captivated generations of basketball fans.” Walton initially joined ESPN and ABC in 2002 as a lead expert for NBA games before shifting to college basketball in 2012. He also worked for CBS and NBC and was called one of the top 50 sports broadcasters of all time by the American Sportscasters Association in 2009. There will never be another quite like Expense Walton.His ESPN household will miss him dearly pic.twitter.com/mvS0Sh5iWZ!.?.!— ESPN(@espn )May 27, 2024 Rip City icon & basketball legend

. Rest in Peace, Expense pic.twitter.com/czZ4IiX6m2!.?.!— Portland Path Blazers(@trailblazers)May 27, 2024 Costs Walton was among the most consequential players of his period. A Hall of Famer, Most Valuable Gamer, and two-time NBA Champ, Walton could do it all, having terrific timing, total vision of the flooring, excellent

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