March 23 -- Moses Malone
Fellow basketball fans out there these days know PRECISELY who I speak of when they read the title of this one…
Since Moses Malone, the closest we will have gotten to him in the current league as far as a 2-way player is my as-mentioned most improved player Kevin Love.
Except for the fact that Kevin Love gets his on 100% effort in a league where such things are not exactly common. Moses Malone had to come up in a league where one needed to know how to take a punch and deliver one as well.
Today marks the date that Moses was born, about 2ish hours up I-85 from me in Petersburg VA.
A veteran of the old ABA and then in the NBA post-merger, Moses Malone retired after 19 professional seasons as the LAST holdover from the pre-merger ABA days.
- 1 – time NBA champion in 1983
- 1 – time NBA finals MVP (same year)
- 13 – time NBA All-Star
- 3 – time NBA MVP
- 2001 Naismith Hall-of-Fame inductee
- 2nd all-time in free throws attempted and made
- … and the one that impresses me most, for someone with such a defensive pedigree…
did not foul out of a game in his last 1,212 games, something never done before or since.
Arguments abound about how certain players would fare in the current league, and I am one of the ones who FULLY believes that Moses Malone would have had JUST as dominant a career in the current NBA as he did in his own era.
Let us not forget who worked with University of Houston center Hakeem Olajuwon, who himself would become quite a big deal in his own time.
I say all that to say that today is Moses Malone’s birthday, and he is well worth the bid from all whose eyes fall upon this a happy 56th.