Detroit Pistons legend Bob Lanier dies at 73


Bob Lanier. whose glittering career with the Detroit Pistons in the 1970s was hampered by both injuries and his desire for the title, has died at 73, the NBA announced Tuesday night.

Lanier, taken No. 1 overall by the Pistons in 1970 from St. Bonaventure, spent 10 seasons with the franchise, averaging 22.7 points, 11.8 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game in 681 games in Detroit. He then played five seasons with the Milwaukee Bucks while chasing a championship that eluded him at the college and pro levels. He finished his NBA career in 1984 with averages of 20.1 points, 10.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists.

Detroit Pistons center Bob Lanier takes on Atlanta Hawks forwards John Drew (22) and Steve Hawes (10).

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Eight-time All-Star, Lanier was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1992. This came despite at least eight serious knee injuries, including one before he even signed his rookie contract with the Pistons. . A torn ACL sustained in St. Bonaventure’s Elite Eight victory over Villanova on March 14, 1970, kept him out of the NCAA Tournament National Semifinals, which the Bonnies lost days later. The Pistons signed him on March 23, 1970, then reportedly signed him from his hospital bed after knee surgery.


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