RIP Wes Unseld


Well-Known Member
Jan 7, 2007
Today we lost a legend. Wesley Unseld passes away at age 74.

June 2 (UPI) -- Hall of Fame basketball player Wes Unseld -- the 1968-1969 NBA MVP -- died Tuesday. He was 74.

Unseld's family announced his death in a statement released by the Washington Wizards. Unseld had a history of health issues, which included a recent bout with pneumonia.



Well-Known Member
Apr 14, 2011
I thought he was a victim of the protester when I saw he passed away


Well-Known Member
Aug 17, 2018
In the minds of the ignorant
When Elvin Hayes was traded from the Rockets to the Baltimore Bullets in 1972, he needed a place to stay while he settled in with his new team.

Wes Unseld invited Hayes and his family to stay at his home.

“We stayed together in his home for two months,” Hayes said Tuesday after Unseld died at 74. “Very few people would just open up their house for two months. He had a heart of gold.”

Before becoming teammates, the two future Hall of Famers had crossed paths in college — Hayes at the University of Houston and Unseld at the University of Louisville — and early in their NBA careers. In the 1968 draft, Hayes was the No. 1 overall pick by the Rockets, while Unseld went to the Bullets with the second pick.

But Hayes said he really got to know Unseld when he joined the Bullets, forming one of the league’s most dominating frontcourt combinations.

Together, Unseld and Hayes made three NBA Finals appearances, winning the Bullets’ only championship in 1978.

And no one, Hayes said, was tougher than Unseld.

“If you had to go to war and wanted one guy to go with you, it would be Wes Unseld,” said Hayes, who played nine seasons with Unseld from 1972-81. “You wanted him in the middle. He brought it every night, all the time.”

Hayes recalled how Unseld overcame bad knees and still found a way to play.

“Here’s a guy that knees were so bad,” Hayes said. “I used to sit and watch them doctor him and he would pull that knee pad wrap up and on the court he goes.”

It was that toughness that allowed the 6-7 Unseld to hold his own against taller players. Unseld finished with 13,769 career rebounds, the most for a player 6-8 or shorter, according to ESPN.

I remember (Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) made a statement once, ‘When Wes gets into your side, you can’t get him out,’” Hayes said. “Wes would go against those big 7-footers and 6-11s and you couldn’t move him. He was a man. He was tough.

“He was a guy you were really glad that you were on the team with him and didn’t have to play against him. He was really an amazing athlete.”

Hayes remembered one other part of Unseld’s game that set him apart from others — powerful and accurate outlet passes that usually covered the length of the court.

“Anytime you saw Wes under the basket, I used to take off,” Hayes said. “He could literally stand on one baseline and throw the ball all the way to the other baseline with just the flick of his wrist. And if you got out on a fast break, the ball was going to be there.

"He was one of the most amazing passers to ever play this game of basketball.”

Hayes, who was traded back to the Rockets in 1981, said he kept up with Unseld through the years and knew he was in declining health.

“We all tried to stay in touch with him and keep his morale up,” Hayes said. “He was an amazing friend, an amazing person and an amazing teammate.”