First Black NBA Player Dies During Black History Month

Earl Lloyd’s basketball legacy remembered

(Image: File)

It was a solemn weekend for the NBA as two greats from the league passed away. Most are familiar with the name Anthony Mason, who played along with other sports household names such as Patrick Ewing, John Starks and Charles Oakley who took the New York Knicks to the 1994 NBA finals. But little is known about the first African-American to ever play for the NBA, Earl Lloyd.

[Related: Remembering NBA Superstar Anthony Mason]

Both Mason and Lloyd passed away at the end of Black History Month. Mason died on February 28 at the age of 48. (See NBA Superstar Anthony Mason Remembered (LINK). Lloyd died on February 26 at the age of 86.
During Black History Month, @BESportsBiz highlighted the accomplishment of Lloyd in the online feature “History Makers: Starting Five African-Americans to Play in the NBA”.

According to The Washington Post Lloyd was drafted into the Korean War after playing only seven games with the Capitols but he returned to play for the Syracuse Nationals, which became the Philadelphia 76ers.   The Post further reports that Lloyd won a NBA title in 1955 with the Nationals, and two more titles with the Detroit Pistons before retiring in 1960.

See the full article in The Washington Post here.

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