Wilt Chamberlain Myths

Hoops Maestro
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Wilt Chamberlain Myths

A lot of basketball fans seem to deny Wilt Chamberlain belongs in the conversation when the greatest player of all time is discussed, despite his dominance in the record books. Here are some of the biggest knocks on Wilt, and why they don't hold water:

1. Wilt wasn't a winner.

Hardly. He won 2 NBA championships, and always gave his team a chance in the playoffs.
He ranks first all-time in NBA Win Shares per 48 minutes, and second all-time in Win Shares. And winning NBA titles was pretty tough for anyone who didn't play for Boston back then.

2. Bill Russell owned him.

Not really. Wilt went 74-88 against Russell in head-to-head matchups, with Russell nearly always on the superior team. Wilt averaged 28.7 points and 28.7 rebounds in those games, against 14.5 points and 23.7 rebounds for Russell. Wilt was a slightly better rebounder and twice the scorer.

3. Wilt didn't play against anyone good (outside of Russell).

Actually, the league was smaller so he was playing a top-ten center every night. Most of those guys are in the Hall of Fame. Take 1967 for instance. Wilt faced guys like Bill Russell, Jerry Lucas, Walt Bellamy, Willis Reed, LeRoy Ellis, Nate Thurmond, Zelmo Beaty, Darrall Imhoff, etc. EVERY NIGHT.

4. Wilt was a selfish player who played only for stats.

That must be why he led the NBA in total assists in 1968 (at 8.6 per game) and racked up 7.8 assists per game the year before.

5. Wilt was just a tall skinny guy without the strength or athleticism to play in the modern game.

This is the funniest one of all. Wilt was a great track and field athlete (and volleyball player) in addition to being an unstoppable basketball force. He won the Big 8 high jump title 3 times at Kansas. He ran the 100 yard dash in 10.9 seconds, shot put 56 feet, triple-jumped over 50, and ran the 440-yard dash in high school in 49.0 seconds. When he played with the GlobeTrotters, he would throw the 210-pound Meadowlark Lemon high in the air and catch him.

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Naughty Wilt

What about the myth Wilt Chamberlain spread about sleeping with over 10,000 women?

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Good post. It's funny because

Good post. It's funny because a lot of my buddys know about Bill Russel but have never even heard of Wilt. When I mention he scored a hundred in a game they always don't believe me and end up googling it on their phones. Great player though.

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I thought it was 20000 women

I thought it was 20000 women

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