The Los Angeles Lakers introduced Monday afternoon the passing of Hall of Fame participant Elgin Baylor, who died of pure causes on the age of 86. Baylor had a adorned profession within the NBA, profitable Rookie of the Year throughout the 1958-59 season, being an 11-time All-Star and a 10-time First Team All-NBA choice.

“Elgin was the love of my life and my best friend,” Elaine Baylor, Elgin’s spouse, stated. “And like everyone else, I was in awe of his immense courage, dignity and the time he gave to all fans. At this time we ask that I and our family be allowed to mourn his passing in privacy.”

Baylor was drafted with the No. 1 general decide within the 1958 NBA Draft by the Lakers, who have been beforehand the Minneapolis Lakers. During his rookie marketing campaign, he averaged 24.9 factors, 15 rebounds and 4.1 assists and earned All-Star honors to go together with profitable Rookie of the Year. Baylor’s phenomenal play in his first season with the crew carried the Lakers all the best way to the NBA Finals, which exemplifies how impactful of a participant he was, given the Lakers completed in final place the yr previous to drafting him.

Jeanie Buss provided the next feedback on Baylor’s contributions to not solely the Lakers franchise however his nation. 

“Elgin was THE superstar of his era – his many accolades speak to that,” Lakers Governor Jeanie Buss stated. “He was one of the few Lakers players whose career spanned from Minneapolis to Los Angeles. But more importantly he was a man of great integrity, even serving his country as a U.S. Army reservist, often playing for the Lakers only during his weekend pass. He is one of the all-time Lakers greats with his No. 22 jersey retired in the rafters and his statue standing guard in front of STAPLES Center. He will always be part of the Lakers legacy. On behalf of the entire Lakers family, I’d like to send my thoughts, prayers and condolences to Elaine and the Baylor family.”

Shortly after the Lakers confirmed the information of Baylor’s demise, NBA commissioner Adam Silver issued an announcement on Elgin’s life and his contributions to the sport of basketball, amongst different issues. 

“Elgin Baylor set the course for the modern NBA as one of the league’s first superstar players. An 11-time All-Star during his Hall of Fame career with the Lakers, Elgin produced remarkable results with his athleticism and groundbreaking style of play, including setting an NBA Finals record with 61 points in Game 5 of the 1962 championship series – a performance made all the more extraordinary by the fact that he had spent part of that season away from his team while on active duty in the Army.

“In addition to his legendary enjoying profession, Elgin was a person of precept. He was a number one activist throughout the top of the civil rights motion within the Nineteen Fifties and Nineteen Sixties and an influential voice amongst his fellow gamers. After his retirement, Elgin remained part of the NBA household as each a coach and an government, imparting his knowledge to generations of NBA expertise. Elgin can be deeply missed, and we ship our ideas and prayers to his spouse, Elaine, his household and buddies.”

Additionally, Baylor’s former Lakers teammate, and fellow NBA legend, Jerry West, provided the next ideas on Elgin’s passing to Jorge Sedano of ESPN Los Angeles.

“I loved him as a person and shared my career with him,” West replied. “Never had a teammate like him, great, great player but an even better person. Very sad day for me and his family.”

Baylor was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1977, and a statue in his honor stands outdoors the Lakers’ area. For nearly all of his profession, he was one of many Lakers’ most necessary gamers alongside Jerry West. With Baylor’s impactful play, he helped lead L.A. to eight Finals appearances. Injuries hampered Baylor’s profession in his later years, and he retired 9 video games into the 1971-72 season as a consequence of lingering knee issues. When the Lakers went on to win the championship in a while that season, they awarded Baylor a hoop to honor his profession with the franchise. 

After his enjoying days have been over, Baylor transitioned into teaching, ultimately changing into the top coach of the New Orleans Jazz in 1974 and retired from teaching in 1979. He then grew to become the vp of basketball operations for the Los Angeles Clippers in 1986, a place he held for 22 years earlier than stepping down in 2008. He was named Executive of the Year for the 2005-06 season, because the Clippers went on to win their first playoff collection since 1976, again when the crew was the Buffalo Braves.

Baylor performed the sport with some aptitude when he was on the court docket. He was a dominant scorer, an elite passer and regardless of being undersized for a ahead throughout that point, he was a robust rebounder. The approach he performed within the 50s and 60s mirrors how some modern-day wings assault the sport, which exhibits simply how influential he was within the NBA and basketball as a complete.

— Originally revealed by CBS Sports.

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