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Wilt Chamberlain, one of the greatest NBA players

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Wilt Chamberlain
Wilt Chamberlain, one of the greatest NBA players. Photo/ SI Vault - Sports Illustrated.
  • When the discussion is about NBA greats, Wilt Chamberlain is a name that must pop up. 
  • Several NBA legends, players and publications have stated that Wilt Chamberlain is the greatest NBA player of all time.
  • Some of his records in the scoring, rebounding and durability categories stand up to date. 

When the discussion is about NBA greats, Wilt Chamberlain is a name that must pop up. This is a man whose legacy lives on.

Several NBA legends, players and publications have stated that Wilt Chamberlain is the greatest player to ever play in the NBA.

Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain. Photo/ SI Vault – Sports Illustrated.

This is considering his performance on the court and achievements during his 14 seasons in the NBA. Wilt played for the Harlem Globetrotters, Philadelphia/ San Francisco, Philadelphia 76ers and Los Angeles Lakers.

At the time of his retirement, Wilt was a two-time NBA champion, four-time NBA Most Valuable Player and NBA Finals MVP.

The legend was a 13-time NBA All-Star, seven-time All-NBA First Team, three-time All-NBA Second Team and two-time NBA All-Defensive First Team.

Wilt Chamberlain was also NBA’s leading assist provider in 1968 and seven-time NBA scoring champion from 1960 to 1966.

Some of his records in the scoring, rebounding and durability categories stand up to date. Wilt is the only player in NBA history to score 100 points in a single NBA game.

His No. 13 jersey is retired by Los Angeles Lakers, Philadelphia 76ers, Golden State Warriors, Harlem Globetrotters and Kansas Jayhawks.

Wilt Chamberlain enjoyed rivalry with Bill Russell doing his days in the NBA.

Early Life 

Wilt Chamberlain was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on August 21, 1936. Wilt was a frail child who nearly died of pneumonia in his early days.

He missed a whole year of school because of the sickness. Growing up, Wilt did not like basketball. He decided to put all of his focus on track and field.

However, he later began playing basketball, as it was the most popular sport in Philadelphia. The future NBA star was a very tall child, standing 6 ft 0 in when he was just ten years old.

Young Wilt Chamberlain was a nightmare to opposing players on the court. He had stamina, stature and athleticism.

Wilt Chamberlain attended Overbrook High School, where he continued to play basketball. He made his college basketball debut in 1957 and led his team to the finals the following year.

He decided to quit college so as to begin playing professional basketball but was not allowed because he first had to finish school. As a result, he played for Harlem Globetrotters.

NBA Career

Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain. Photo/ Biography (BIO.).

On October 24, 1959, Wilt Chamberlain made his NBA debut playing for Philadelphia Warriors. During the 1962 season, Wilt became the first person to score 100 points in a game.

Throughout the 1963-64 season, he averaged 37 points. He decided to return to his hometown the following season and joined the Philadelphia 76ers.

Wilt Chamberlain was traded to Los Angeles Lakers in 1968. He captained the Lakers in the 1972 NBA Finals and led them to five straight victories over New York Knicks.

His last season as an NBA player was the 1972-73 season. Chamberlain impressed in the Finals as his team faced the Knicks. His individual score was 23 points and 21 rebounds. However, it was the Knicks who emerged victorious.

Post-Playing Career 

Wilt Chamberlain signed a $600,000 salary with the San Diego Conquistadors as a player-coach in 1973. However, the Lakers sued him because he was still under contract with them for one year, and so he never played a game for the ABA side.

Chamberlain often left the coaching duties to his assistant after he was barred from playing. He retired from basketball after the end of that season.

The NBA legend got into business immediately after his retirement. He made money in stocks and real estate.

Wilt opened a nightclub and also appeared in several commercials. Soon, he gained an interest in volleyball and played really well.

In 1974, Wilt became a board member of the newly founded International Volleyball Association (IVA). He became the president of the league the following year.

Chamberlain found a new passion in movies in 1976. He played a villainous character in the film Canon the Destroyer, whose staring was Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Wilt Chamberlain died on October 12, 1999, at the age of 63. According to his agent Sy Goldberg, Wilt died of congestive heart failure.

Abraham Odhiambo is an avid sports fan who loves to write about football, boxing and wrestling. He's a big supporter of Manchester United. He's pursuing a bachelor's degree in Communication and Media at Egerton University.

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