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Elgin Baylor

From Academic Kids

Elgin Gay Baylor (born September 16 1934 in Washington, DC) was one of the most graceful and acrobatic forwards to ever play the game of basketball playing 15 seasons for the NBA's Minneapolis and Los Angeles Lakers.

Elgin Baylor played college basketball at the College of Idaho and Seattle University, leading the SU Chieftains to the NCAA championship game in 1958 (where they lost to the Kentucky Wildcats). Following his junior season, Baylor joined the Minneapolis Lakers for the 1958-1959 season and moving with them to Los Angeles in 1960.

In 1959, Baylor was named the NBA Rookie of the Year and from the 1960-61 to the 1962-63 seasons, he averaged 34.8, 38.3 and 34.0 points per game, leading the Lakers to the NBA Finals eight times (although never winning). Baylor was a 10-time All-NBA First Team selection and went to the NBA All-Star Game 11 times.

Baylor began to be hampered with knee problems during the 1963-64 season and, while still a very powerful force, was never quite the same player, never averaging above 30 points per game again. During Baylor's career, the Lakers were a consistently powerful team, but were continuously overshadowed by the Boston Celtics dynasty of the time.

Baylor finally retired during the 1971-72 season because of his nagging knee problems. His retirement resulted in two great ironies. First, the Lakers' next game after his retirement was the first of an NBA record of 33 consecutive wins. Second, the Lakers went on to win the NBA Championship that season, something that Baylor never achieved. He finished his career with an astonishing 23,149 points, 3,650 assists and 11,463 rebounds over 846 games.

In 1974, Baylor was hired to be an assistant coach and later the head coach for the New Orleans Jazz, but had a lackluster 86-135 record and retired following the 1978-79 season. In 1986, Baylor was hired by the Los Angeles Clippers as the team's vice president of basketball operations, where he still is today.

In 1977, Baylor was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame and in 1980 he was named to the NBA 35th Anniversary All-Time Team and again in 1996, he was named to the NBA 50th Anniversary All-Time Team.de:Elgin Baylor

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