Today in Sports History

Published: Feb 23, 2014 13:34pm EST
By taylorzanew, Sports Writer for Konsume Sports

Please Note: This article was updated Feb 23, 2014 @ 01:40pm EST


Full Name: Wilton Norman Chamberlain

Born: 8/21/36 in Philadelphia

Died: 10/12/99 in Los Angeles

High School: Overbrook (Philadelphia)

College: Kansas

Drafted: Philadelphia Warriors (1959)

Transactions: Traded to Phila. 76ers, 1/15/65, Traded to L.A. Lakers, 7/9/68

Height: 7-1; Weight: 275 lbs.

Honors: Elected to Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame (1978); NBA champion (1967, '72); NBA Finals MVP (1972); NBA MVP (1960, '66, '67, '68); All-NBA First Team (1960, '61, '62, '64, '66, '67, '68); Second Team ('63, '65, '72); All-Defensive First Team (1972, '73); Rookie of Year (1960); One of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History (1996).

Few players changed the landscape of their sport like Wilt Chamberlain. During his career, his dominance caused many rules changes. These included widening the lane, instituting offensive goaltending and revising rules governing inbounding the ball and shooting free throws. Chamberlain being notoriously bad at free throws, he was always trying new “methods” to get the ball in the basket that the league didn’t always agree with.

Chamberlain's career is full of amazing accomplishments. He was the only NBA player to score 4,000 points in a season. Most consecutive field goals (18), most rebounds (55), and lest we forget He set NBA single-game records for most points (100). In the 1961-62 season he averaged 50.4 points per game and 48.5 minutes per game. Could you fathom a player averaging those kind of numbers for a season in the league today?

He retired as the all-time leader in career points with 31,419, which was later surpassed by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Michael Jordan, and Kobe Bryant. He is tops in rebounds with 23,924. He led the NBA in scoring seven years in a row. He was the league's top rebounder in 11 of his 14 seasons.

In today’s league I don’t know if we will ever see the kind of dominance Chamberlain displayed. Sure there are great players that have come after him, Jordan, Bryant, James, but none that I can think of that have averaged or will average the kind of career numbers he had.

G: 1045 FG%: .540 RPG: 22.9 APG: 4.4 PPG 30.1

That being said if Chamberlain played in today’s league I don’t believe his numbers would be as high. Now that’s not to say I don’t think he wouldn’t be an all-star still. The man had the size and strength to match up with today’s players. He also had the coordination to cause today’s big men fits in the middle. It would be a sight to see, Chamberlain in his prime going up against someone like Dwight Howard. Or if we could have any fantasy I’d love to see Shaquille O'Neal in his prime go against Chamberlain in his prime. I’d pay good money to see that matchup.

Chamberlain is consistently in everyone’s top ten players ever. He was easily voted into NBA’s top 50 players ever. I would definitely put him on my NBA Mount Rushmore. Where does he fall in your top ten? I put him at number two behind Michael Jordan, but that’s just me.


Comments (2)

  • taylorzanew   Feb 24, 2014 @ 10:47AM
    My Mt. Rushmore is similar but I give it to Magic over Jabbar. I almost want to get Bird in there but who do you take off? Maybe we could have him carved on the other side of the mountain. I love how Lebron has been taking about himself being on there. Shouldn’t you let other people vote you on and not just proclaim yourself? -

  • Anonymous   Feb 24, 2014 @ 01:07AM
    My Mt. Rushmore: Chamberlin, Jordan, Russell, Jabbar (gets the edge over Bird and Magic for his role in Airplane) -

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