Hall of Famer Bob Lanier dies at 73



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Hall of Famer Bob Lanier dies at 73

Bob Lanier, NBA Hall of Famer since 1992, has died at the age of 73 after an illness. To announce it NBA in a statement. for the past 30 years, Lanier had remained working for the NBA as global ambassador and special assistant to commissioner David Stern and later to Adam Silver.

Silver wrote in the official statement: "For more than 30 years he has traveled the world teaching the values ​​of the game and making a positive impact wherever he went. For Bob it was a labor of love, and he is one of the kindest and most loving people I've ever come in contact with.

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Bob Lanier's NBA career

Lanier, in the 1970 NBA draft, was selected with the 1st call overall by the Detroit Pistons, preceding that of other parquet legends such as Pete Maravich and Dave Cowens. Bob immediately established himself among the best centers around in the NBA, despite the fierce competition of those years.

Already in his second year as a professional he could afford excellent averages of over 25 points and 14 rebounds per game, which he managed to keep for a couple of seasons. 1974 is remembered as perhaps the most important year in the player's career, who set his seasonal averages to over 22 points, 13 rebounds and 3 blocks per match and won the All-Star Game best player award and placed 3rd in the MVP voting for the entire season; the excellent season of their leader led the Pistons to their first play-off participation in many years, during which they were eliminated in the second round despite Lanier's stratospheric level of play.

There followed a series of several consecutive seasons that ended with the achievement of the post-season, but without the Pistons, further weakened by the departure of Dave Bing, ever reaching the top floors of the grid; in 1977, in particular, Lanier played another splendid regular season, which ended with reaching 4th place in the MVP voting, but in the play-offs, despite his incredible games, his Pistons were eliminated in the first round.

The team's management acknowledged the difficulties, and decided to shake things up by ceding their star to the Milwaukee Bucks in the middle of the 1979-80 season. The Bucks, thanks to the services of the 31-year-old Lanier, entered the playoffs four seasons in a row.

Continuing to maintain important figures despite advancing age, in 1984 Lanier decided to say enough to professionalism, leaving the NBA after 14 seasons without ever falling below 10 points and 5 rebounds per game. The overall figures of him speak of 959 games played at an average of 20.1 points and 10.1 rebounds and shooting with 51.4% from the field.

Lanier, with his impeccable technique in the low post and the effectiveness of his jump shot and his hook, is remembered as one of the most representative players of the 70s and one of the rulers of the painting at the time, as evidenced by his constant presence among the first 3-4 places for all the 70s in the efficiency rankings.