Bob Lanier, one of the most outstanding players of the 70s and 80s in the NBA, died in the early hours of this Wednesday supported by his family in his last moments, as announced by the league in a statement. Although the causes have not been revealed and he was managed as “a short illness”, in 2019 The Athletic reported that he was being treated for bladder cancer.
“He was one of the kindest and most genuine people I’ve ever been with.”, wrote the commissioner of the NBA, Adam Silver, by way of farewell to whom they considered more than a legend on the field of play. “For more than 30 years, Bob was our global ambassador and served as a special assistant to the Commissioner David Stern and also mine, traveling the world to teach the values of the game and have a positive impact on young people around the world, ”he added in thanks.
Lanier was elected in eight times for the All Star and, in 1992, inducted into Hall of Fame for his tremendous career. However, in these emotional farewells, what they remember the most is the great heart with which she worked to improve his environment through sports. In 1978, he received the J. Walter Kennedy Best Citizen Awardan award that the NBA awards annually to a player or coach who shows a genuine commitment to community social work, and collaborated in other youth integration programs promoted by the league.
Bob Lanier’s arrival in the NBA occurred in 1970, when the Pistons chose him with the first pick in the draft., and immediately became one of the best in the squad. During that decade with Detroit he was considered for the All Star in 1974 and named MVP of that edition. “As fierce and commanding as Bob was on the court, he was equally lovable and impactful in the community,” wrote Tom Gores, owner of the team to pay tribute to him after the news of his death.
After a decade, he was traded to the Milwaukee Bucks, where Lanier won five consecutive division titles between 1980 and 1984. “Even more than his success in basketball, which included his participation in the All-Star Game in 1982, Bob was one of the most popular players among Bucks fans and known throughout the community for his generosity and kindness.”, they stated in a statement.
In the goodbye messagethe NBA highlights Lanier’s ability to recover from injuries and the intense pain in his back, elbows, hands and toes that accompanied him throughout his career. In September 1984, Bob left basketball after 14 seasons dedicated to shining in the NBA and in an act that represents the greatest show of honor in team sports, In both the Pistons and the Bucks, number 16 was retired in recognition of his career and no one else will be able to use it again in the franchises.
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Bob Lanier, the basketball legend who was in the Hall of Fame, has died