1960s Sports – Basketball

1960s Sports – Basketball finally came into it’s own spotlight. Much of the previous decade was spent in the shadow of College basketball but superstars like Bill Russell and Wilt Chamberlain brought attention and respect to the professional side of the game.

No mention of 1960s basketball is complete without talking about the Boston Celtics. With center Bill Russell and guard Bob Cousy the Celtics dominated the game winning nine out of ten championships in the 1960s not to mention 1957 and 1959. Boston won eight consecutive titles and eleven total. Bill Russell became the first black coach and the first player-coach when he took over for the retiring Red Auerbach in 1967.

1960

1960 NBA Finals  (7 games)
Boston Celtics – 4 games (second consecutive Championship)
St. Louis Hawks – 3 games

Other Stats & Highlights:

  • MVP – Wilt Chamberlain
  • PPG (Points per game) Leader: Wilt Chamberlain (37.6)
  • RPG (Rebounds per game) Leader: Wilt Chamberlain (27.0)
  • APG (Assists per game) Leader: Bob Cousy (9.5)
  • Minneapolis Lakers move the team to Los Angeles for financial reasons
  • The USA Olympic team with Jerry West won eight straight to win Gold, they had to defeat
    the USSR, Italy and Brazil in the finals, this is considered the best amateur basketball team ever put together

1961

1960s Bill Russell

bob petit

1961 NBA Finals  (5 games)
Boston Celtics – 4 games (3rd consecutive Championship)
St. Louis Hawks – 1 games

Other Stats & Highlights:

  • MVP – Wilt Chamberlain
  • Points Leader – Elgin Baylor of the Lakers with (457) points & (38.1) per game
  • Rebounds Leader – Bill Russell – per game (29.9) & total (299)
  • Assists Leader – Bob Cousy (9.1)
  • The Minneapolis Lakers relocate the team to Los Angeles who had bid heavily for it
  • Chicago gets a franchise, the Chicago Packers

1962

1960s Wilt Chamberlain

1962 NBA Finals  (7 games)
Boston Celtics – 4 games (4th consecutive Championship)
Los Angeles Lakers – 3 games

Other Stats & Highlights:

  • MVP – Bill Russell, Boston Celtics
  • Points Leader – Wilt Chamberlain with (4029) points & (50.4) per game
    both of these stats represent career highs and stand as records today
  • Rebounds – Wilt Chamberlain (2052) with (25.6) per game
  • Assists – Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati with (899) & (11.4) per game
  • Wilt Chamberlain set another record by scoring 100 points in a single game
    it was against the New York Knicks
  • Oscar Robertson was the first player to ever average a triple double for
    an entire season with 30.8 points, 11.4 assists, and 12.5 rebounds per game

1963

Bill1960s Boston Celticslogo-celtics1

1963 NBA Finals  (6 games)
Boston Celtics – 4 games (5th consecutive Championship)
Los Angeles Lakers – 2 games

Other Stats & Highlights: (pretty much the same as last year)

  • MVP – Bill Russell, Boston Celtics
  • Points Leader – Wilt Chamberlain with (3586) points & (44.8) per game
  • Rebounds – Wilt Chamberlain (1946) with (24.3) per game
  • Assists – Guy Rodgers / San Francisco Warriors with (825) & (10.4) per game
  • the Philadelphia Warriors a team that’s been in Philly since 1920 moves to San Francisco
    this was a huge upset and leaves Philadelphia with no team until next year when the Syracuse Nationals move there
  • The Chicago Packers are renamed the Chicago Zephyrs but this doesn’t last long either as they’ll move next year
  • The owner of the Globetrotters having been snubbed for a new franchise in Los Angeles
    starts a new league the ABA, American Basketball Association,
    the league would survive until 1976 when it merges with the NBA

1964

60s Oscar Robinson1960s Cincinnati Royals

1964 NBA Finals  (5 games)
Boston Celtics – 4 games (6th consecutive Championship)
San Francisco Warriors – 1 games

Other Stats & Highlights:

  • MVP – Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati Royals
  • points leader was again Wilt Chamberlain (2948) with (36.9) per game
  • Bill Russell beat out Chamberlain to gain the most rebounds (1930) with (24.7) per game
  • Assists goes to Oscar Robertson (868) and (11.0) per game
  • Philadelphia gets an NBA team back when the Syracuse Nationals move there and become the 76ers
  • Chicago loses an NBA team when the Zephyrs move to Baltimore to become the Bullets
    they would get an expansion franchise in 1966 named the Bulls

1965

60s Wilt Chamberlain1960s Pliladelphia 76ers

1965 NBA Finals  (5 games)
Boston Celtics – 4 games (7th consecutive Championship)
Los Angeles Lakers – 1 games

Other Stats & Highlights:

  • MVP – Bill Russell, Boston Celtics
  • Total Points – Wilt Chamberlain (2534) with (34.7) per game
  • Rebounds – Bill Russell (1878) with (24.1) per game
  • Assists – Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati Royals (861) and (11.5) per game
  • Wilt Chamberlain was traded to the Philadelphia 76ers mid season from the San Francisco Warriors

1966

60s Celtics

1966 NBA Finals  (7 games)
Boston Celtics – 4 games (8th consecutive Championship)
Los Angeles Lakers – 3 games

Other Stats & Highlights:

  • MVP – Wilt Chamberlain, Philadelphia 76ers
  • Points Leader – (guess!) Wilt Chamberlain (2649) with (33.5) per game
  • Rebounds – (guess again!) Wilt Chamberlain (1943) and 24.6) per game
  • Assists – (3rd consecutive year) Oscar Robertson (847) with (11.1) per game
  • Philly met Boston in the East final, it was billed as the real championship game
    with Russell against Chamberlain, Boston took four of the five games to win the East
  • Red Auerbach, coach of the Celtics, retires from coaching to join Boston’s front office staff

1967

60s Sports

1967 NBA Finals  (6 games)
Philadelphia 76ers – 4 games
San Francisco Warriors – 2 games

Other Stats & Highlights:

  • MVP – Wilt Chamberlain, Philadelphia 76ers
  • Total Points – Rick Barry, San Francisco Warriors (2775) with (35.6) per game
  • Rebounds – Wilt Chamberlain (1957) and (24.2) per game
  • Assists – Guy Rodgers, Chicago Bulls (908) with 11.2) per game
  • Chicago starts play with its’ expansion team and names it the Bulls
  • Bill Russell took over the coaching duties for the Celtics while still playing
  • Philadelphia again met Boston for the East final, this year Philly dominated, winning 4 – 0

1968

American Basketball AssociationNational Basketball Association

1968 NBA Finals  (6 games)
Boston Celtics – 4 games
Los Angeles Lakers – 2 games

Other Stats & Highlights:

  • MVP (this is a three-peat) – Wilt Chamberlain, Philadelphia 76ers
  • Points Leader Total – Dave Bing, Detroit Pistons (2142)
  • Points Per Game – Oscar Robertson averaged (29.2)
  • Rebounds – Wilt Chamberlain (1952) with an average of (23.8) per game
  • Assists – Wilt Chamberlain (702)
  • Assists per Game – Oscar Robertson (9.7) average
  • The league adds two more expansion teams, The Seattle SuperSonics and the San Diego Rockets
  • The ABA (American Basketball Association) began playing with eleven teams
    only four teams would be included in the merger between the Leagues in 1976

1969

Title

1969 NBA Finals  (7 games)
Boston Celtics – 4 games (two in a row and eleven out of thirteen championships)
Los Angeles Lakers – 3 games

Other Stats & Highlights:

  • MVP – Wes Unseld, Baltimore Bullets
  • Points Leader – Elvin Hayes, San Diego Rockets (2327) with an average (28.4)per game
  • Rebounds – Wilt Chamberlain (1712) with (21.1) per game
  • Assists – Oscar Robertson (772) and (9.8) per game (his fifth time in six years)
  • The NBA expands by two more teams, The Phoenix Suns and the Milwaukee Bucks
    this make fourteen teams in the league
  • The St Louis Hawks relocate to Atlanta but keep the Hawks name
  • Bill Russell retires as both player and coach after the playoff series (what a loss!!)
    He had eleven NBA Championships, two NCAA Championships and an Olympic Gold Medal