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Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Best Basketball Player Ever

The Best Basketball Player Ever

No need for you ladies to read this post, it is about sports, you would not understand it anyway.


A Mr. Suldog of Watertown Mass. recently started a Facebook discussion over who were the best athletes in various sports.  This is an impossible argument to arrive at a consensus, but it always provokes interesting comments. 

The basketball player that many including myself claimed to be the greatest ever was Bill Russell. 

Bill Russell was not the best scorer of his time, and he seldom led the league in assists, blocked shots or steals.  He did seem to always lead the league in wins. 

All Bill Russell ever did was win. 

At the University of San Francisco, Russell led his team to two National Championships, and fifty-five straight wins.  In the NBA, Russell led his Celtics to eleven championships in thirteen years, eight were in a row.  His last three years in the NBA, Russell was player coach, and he won  two championships in that capacity.

I remember Bill Russell as a commentator on NBA TV broadcasts.

Bill Russell spoke a different language, and explained things in a way foreign from any basketball commentator today, or before him.  He saw everything as psychological.  His explanations of events were always cerebral.  If not for his unparalleled success as a player I would have thought he was a buffoon, clearly he was just head and shoulders above everyone in the world of basketball both physically and mentally.

To me, an inept player and non-student of the game, his broadcasts sounded like this:

“Well Marv, the reason he did that fake left move was to plant the idea into Johnson’s mind that he could go that way, then when he go right, Johnson don’t look left and that is when Brown go left and he owns Johnson.  See it is simply the way a small big man can play big, while I always liked to play big small, but it changes with the temperature of the game and the voracity of the opposition.  Either way, if you spin on the low post, you own your man and he don’t stand a chance.  It’s not how you dribble or shoot that wins a game, but you gotta get in the other guy’s head.  Once you get into his head the game is over.  See?”

Hey, the dude never, ever lost!

Read it anyway didn’t you ladies.  See I learned my psychology from Bill Russell!          


  1. It's pretty hard to argue with that, particularly since I'm in agreement.

  2. No I didn't read this because it's about sports. I don't care about sports. I just wanted to say good morning.

    Good morning and have a fabulous day. ☺

  3. Your version of his broadcast made perfect sense to me--should I be worried?

  4. I always loved Bill Russell. And I believe he did like to play big small.

  5. I'll take your word.
    Now if you want to talk baseball------

  6. I never kept up with basketball, so I can offer no comment. I never even heard of many of the powerhouse basketball schools. WTF is a Duquesne anyway? ;)

  7. I guess you can toss me in with the ladies---please! I don't follow sports but I read your post anyway. I'd probably read your posts if you posted from the phone book.

  8. I remember reading a story about Russell when he was still at USF

    Some reporters wanted to do some kind of gimmick story, so the got him together with Swede Halbrook, the Oregon State center who was something over 7' tall

    The idea was they were going to have Halbrook hold a basketball up to his full extension and then shoot a picture of Russell reaching for it

    It didn't quite pan out

    When Russell fully unlimbered himself, his hand was resting on top of the ball

  9. Definitely agree. Clueless pundits the world over seem to think that there are others in the running but in this case the body of work is incomparable. Wilt? Great scorer, terrific rebounder, below average teammate. Jordan? Great scorer, probably wins the ego war hands down, but below average teammate. Kareem, Magic, Lebron, Kobe, and Larry all had good qualities but not one of them teamed like Bill. And that is the point, right? Teaming for championships.

  10. "Once you get into his head the game is over. See?”

    Yeah. No need for women to read all that. We already know it. It's why we always win.

  11. Bill is the best? Okay, I'll take your word for it.

  12. Just visiting to say Hi to you and the Mrs.

  13. What Val said... kind of. :)

    Actually, I'll use all this info on my sports obsessed husband. It won't be long before the opportunity comes up to talk about it.