Former Boston Celtics center Bill Russell died Sunday morning, his family announced. Russell was 88 years old.
During Russell’s 13-year NBA career, he earned 12 All-Star appearances, led the Celtics to 11 championships, made 11 All-NBA teams and won five MVP awards. He was selected to the NBA’s 75th Anniversary team last season, which recognized the league’s 76 greatest players in history. The Finals MVP award is named after him.
He held career averages of 15.1 points, 22.5 rebounds and 4.3 assists. Blocks were not tracked when he played, nor was Defensive Player of the Year an award. He surely would’ve excelled in both regards.
Following his playing days, he spent eight years as a head coach and won a pair of titles with Boston in 1967-68 and 1968-69. He also coached the Seattle Supersonics from 1973-77 and the Sacramento Kings in 1987-88.
In college, he won back-to-back NCAA titles at University of San Francisco and amassed a 57-1 record over that span. He garnered two consensus All-American selections and was the 1955-56 California Basketball Association Player of the Year.
In addition to — and even more important than — his profound and historic on-court legacy, Russell was a champion for racial and labor equality, supporting various Civil Rights efforts and advocating for the rights of his NBA peers. He was truly a wonderful human and athlete. He will be missed dearly.