Just a quick reminder that the LB Meet-up is next week. For those attending, please iron your Sunday's awkward best. Don't make eye contact. Or make too much eye contact. Drink beer with a straw. Speak only in haikus. Whatever.
I was cruelly reminded by my editor that I haven't written a non-recap in three months. Ok, ok. Guess I can't blame the new layout any longer. Let's reminisce. Let's remember.
You're up, Eric Leckner.
Name: Eric Leckner
Nickname: Hannibal Leckner
Sixers Tenure: 1993-1994
Semi-Believable Dialogue from 1993:
I like this Bradley and Leckner tandem. Mad Dog needs to play them together more.
"Yep, Thunder and Lightning."
The Sixers plucked center, Eric Leckner, from the Italian League in 1993. Now, Leckner wasn't the first big man we found roaming the streets in Italy. Just a few years prior, ownership fell in love with half-man, half-Amphibian, Charles Shackleford, who swam across the pond to join the Sixers in ‘91. The Italy to Philadelphia pipeline was a hot bed of player movement: give us your weak, your tired, and especially your defensive-minded.
Leckner was a first round pick in the 1988 Draft, but bounced around the NBA, including stints with Utah and the Hornets before landing in Italy. His game was limited. His 4.1 PPG average for his career put him squarely in the Frozone. Did Baby Derek Bodner profile him in '88, scribbling down Leckner's strength and weaknesses with a crayon? Probably, but that's because Baby Derek was always working on his craft. It was like in my youth, when my friend, Bailey, and I would get drunk off two Miller Lites and dissect Barenaked Ladies lyrics. Looking back, no in-depth analysis was really needed.
"If I had a million dollars? WHAT IS BNL TRYING TO SAY HERE, Bailey?"
If he didn't have great hair, Leckner would be almost entirely unrecognizable to the common fan. Slap a buzz cut on Big Leck and I'd ask Mr. Montross for his autograph. But what great hair it was. Nary a strand out of place. Well-manicured and collected, I say with absolute certainty that Leckner did most of his shopping at Structure. He looked like one of Heather Locklear's love interests on Melrose Place.
"Oh, that's Eric, the new hotshot ad exec from San Diego. He's arrogant, sure; but he really fills out that turtleneck, doesn't he, Amanda?"
The mid 90s Sixers strung together a couple of well-groomed 57-loss campaigns. They lost a lot, but they looked good doing it. Do you kids think Chase Utley is the first Philly athlete to use hair gel? Leckner has been running L.A. Looks (Just $2.99 at Walgreen's) through his hair since Chase was in an onesie. Leckner's lone season with the Sixers was in 1993-1994, a dismal year where our lone rooting interests were counting Jeff Malone running jumpers, and following Clarence Weatherspoon's potential All-Star Reserve bid. (In January of 1994, I championed a letter to Eastern Conference All-Star head coach, Lenny Wilkens, entitled, "Got ‘Spoon?" Lenny did not respond).
Shawn Bradley and Eric Leckner (along with Tim Perry, an aging Moses, and Warren Kidd) anchored a Sixers front-court that makes this year's outfit look like Hakeem and Sampson. But such was life in 1994. You started Bradley, then you put in Leckner.
You counted Jeff Malone running jumpers to pass the time.
Your Eric Leckner-Inspired Box Score
Leckner started 34 games for the Sixers, including one monster performance against the T-Wolves. 11 points and 17 boards. Where were you on March 15th, 1994? Where were you?
If Eric Leckner Was a Pro Wrestler
"Pretty Boy" Eric Leckner would be an entrepreneur, or an oil tycoon. He would feud with Savio Vega, including one epic double count-out at an In Your House pay per view.
Eric Leckner is a Wyoming product. The Sixers have employed two other players from the University of Wyoming in the last ten years. Name them.