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The NBA mourns a legend

The basketball world has just lost one of its greatest legends. Bill Russell died this Sunday evening at the age of 88, at the end of a life of success. The man became with the legendary Celtics of the 60s the most successful player in the history of American sport. His fight for equality and justice will also have contributed to making Bill Russell someone immortal.

Terrible news as this to end a weekend. What to say ? Where to start ? The mere name of Bill Russell speaks volumes, is responsible for great progress in sport and for minority justice. Celtics legend, basketball legend, big player in the fight for justice for minorities in the United States. Russell died aged 88, passed away peacefully and accompanied by his wife Jeannine. In a statement, his loved ones recalled everything that makes Bill one of the greatest to ever step on a basketball court. Eleven-time NBA champion – record all time -, five times MVP, twelve times All-Star. the man will obviously have marked the history of North American sport, being the lleader of a Celtics team that sickened the league for an entire decade. A band he coached while playing beginning in 1966. Second best rebounder in league history behind his great rival Wilt Chamberlain, Bill will be inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1975 and will logically be part of the 50 greatest in 1996 then 75 greatest This year. His exceptional defensive skills also pushed the NBA as a whole to revolutionize the concepts of individual and collective defense.

Bill Russell is also the fight for the civil rights of African-Americans. From the beginning of the 1960s and while the United States was still operating with segregation, he would commit himself in particular by boycotting an exhibition match in 1961, and would support throughout his life the movements that worked to improve daily life. minorities. The best proof of this fight? In 2011, he became the first NBA player to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedomthe highest civilian honor in the countries of Uncle Sam. Never far from the league, his image will be taken as an example by a very large number of players. His absolute will to win marked and will continue to mark beyond basketball, making him an icon of collective sport as a whole. In the wake of the announcement of his death, the NBA issued a press release for it too to pay tribute to all the immensity of the player and the man. Bill Russell is also about humility. His track record has never been a reason to put himself too much forward, and he will see with a very good eye the multiplication of talents evolving in the league. Tonight, therefore, it’s the whole orange ball that is sad, but which pays tribute to someone who has greatly contributed to making basketball what it is today.

The NBA loses one of its greatest representatives tonight. Bill Russell wrote his story on and off the court. He is leaving today, leaving behind him a basketball world in pain, but a grateful basketball world… but his legend is immortal.

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Source : ESPN.

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