Bob Pettit Named To NBA 75th Anniversary Team; More Announced 2 PM on ESPN
BATON ROUGE – The National Basketball Association rolled out the first 25 names on its 75th anniversary team Tuesday night on TNT’s NBA pregame show and an icon of LSU and NBA history, Bob Pettit, was among those announced.
He is expected to be the first of multiple LSU players announced to the team which will have its next 25 announced later today (Wednesday) on ESPN at 2 p.m. CT.
Pettit’s NBA career with the St. Louis Hawks includes an NBA championship, two NBA MVP honors, four NBA All-Star MVP awards as he was both an 11-time NBA All-Star and All-NBA selection. Pettit was one of the NBA’s first truly great scorers, playing 11 seasons and amassing 20,000 points – the first player in NBA history to reach that mark in a career that spanned the 1950s and early 1960s.
He was the No. 2 overall pick in the 1954 NBA draft after leading LSU to the NCAA Final Four in 1953 and back to the NCAA Tournament in 1954. He averaged 20.4 points and 13.8 rebounds to claim Rookie of the Year honors. In 1958, Pettit and the Hawks were able to dethrone the Boston Celtics in six games, scoring 50 points in the 110-109 title clinching win.
At LSU, Pettit was an All-America in 1953 and 1954 and the first LSU player to have his number retired in 1954. In 1999, he was chosen by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association as one of their Top 25 Louisiana Athletes of the Century and the Louisiana Association of Basketball Coaches All-Louisiana Team of the Century.
He was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 1971, the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame in 1973, the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006 and a statue was dedicated to him in front of the Maravich Assembly Center practice facility in February 2016.
He remains to this day the third all-time leading scorer at LSU with 1,916 points in 70 games and he is fourth in rebounds with 1,010.