Wilt Chamberlain

From ArticleWorld

There are few that can lay claim to the level of dominance that Wilt Chamberlain has had throughout his career. He has been the maker of over 100 records, with some of them appearing unbreakable.


His Early Years

Chamberlain was drawing national attention when he played at Overbrook High School in west Philadelphia. During his time there in 1951 through 1955, he led the high school to the City Championships in 1954 and 1955. He scored 90 points, including an astounding 60 points within a 10 minute span, against Roxborough High School. In his first 16 games of his final year there he scored 800 points and was named High School All American. In his four years there he scored 2,252 points.

Going Pro

Wilt went to the University of Kansas for only two years and left to join the NBA, but had to wait until his class graduated. Instead he spent the next two years playing with the Harlem Globetrotters, he as then the regional pick for the Philadelphia Warriors.

In his first year with the Warriors he led the league with a scoring average of 37.6 points a game and 27 rebounds a game. He was the first of only two people to be named Rookie of the Year and MVP. The Warriors lost to the Celtics in the Conference Finals that year, which was to be a theme in Chamberlain’s career.

Scoring Record

In 1962, Wilt made a record that may never be broken. He scored a career and all time record 50.4 points per game. The closest to this average aside from Wilt was Elgin Baylor with 38.3 points per game.

He would play one final year with the Warriors after they moved to San Francisco, and then was traded back to Philadelphia where the 76ers now were.

Philadelphia 76ers

Chamberlain was the centerpiece of the formidable 1967 Sixers team, which included future Hall of Famers Greer and Billy Cunningham, as also noted players Chet Walker and Luke Jackson. The team tore through its first 50 games at 46-4, setting a record 68 regular-season wins.

In the playoffs, they finally knocked off the dominating Celtics before going on to capture the NBA title, which was Chamberlain's first by defeating the San Francisco Warriors in six games.

In that series, Chamberlain scored a modest 17.7 points per game, but snared an incredible 28.7 rebounds per game. His glass-cleaning feat was made even more astonishing by the fact that the opposing center was top rebounder Nate Thurmond, who himself averaged 26.7 rebounds per game over that series.

In 1967-68, Chamberlain was selected league Most Valuable Player for his fourth and final time. He won this while leading the league in total assists with 702, which is 8.6 assist per game.

Los Angeles Lakers

During this time Wilt would revamp his playing style more into a stopping presence that would elevate the level of play in everyone else and made it possible to them to win one more championship for Wilt. His average in scoring dipped, but his rebounds shot upward as he continued to become a bigger presence in the middle as the end of his career was near the end. He retired that the tender age of 37.