Kareem Abdul-Jabbar headlines AP's 1970s all-decade NBA team
The 1970s all-decade team for the NBA as voted on by AP Sports staffers directly engaged with the season-long NBA At 75 series. The team members are:
The master of the skyhook remains the leading scorer in NBA history. He won his first NBA title as Lew Alcindor with the Milwaukee Bucks in 1971 before changing his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar later that year as part of his conversion to Islam. He won the MVP award as Alcindor in 1971 and as Abdul-Jabbar in 1972, claiming scoring titles both years. He won five of his six league MVP awards in the 1970s -- two for the Bucks and three for the Los Angeles Lakers. His best statistical season was in 1971-72, when he averaged 34.8 points and 16.6 rebounds per game. He was an all-defense first- or second-team selection eight times in the decade. He was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1995.
Barry was a versatile 6-foot-7 scoring machine. He was a capable slasher with a potent jump shot, but he’s perhaps best known for his underhand free throws. He led the league in free throw percentage in five of his final six seasons and retired as the most accurate free-throw shooter in NBA history. In 1975, he was NBA Finals MVP and led the Golden State Warriors to the NBA title. He was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1987.
WALT “CLYDE” FRAZIER
Frazier perhaps was as well known for his flashy clothes as he was for his play. But there was plenty of on-court substance. The elite floor general and perimeter defender led the New York Knicks to their only NBA titles in 1970 and 1973. He was an All-Star each year from 1970 to 1976 and was on the all-defensive first team each year from 1969 to 1975. He was the 1975 All-Star Game MVP. He was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1987.
Havlicek won the last two of his eight NBA titles for the Boston Celtics in the 1970s. He was the NBA Finals MVP in 1974, when he led the Celtics past Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s Milwaukee Bucks. He was an All-NBA first-team selection each year from 1971 to 1974 and was all-defense first- or second-team seven times in the decade. In his best season, he averaged 28.9 points 9.0 rebounds and 7.5 assists in 1970-71. He was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1984. He passed away in 2019.
Hayes, a model of consistency, was an All-Star every year of the decade. The 6-9 power forward helped the Washington Bullets win the 1978 NBA title against the Seattle SuperSonics. He led the league in rebounding in 1970 and 1974. Known for his mid-range turnaround jumper, he averaged 21 points and 12.5 rebounds in his career. He is the 11th-leading scorer and fourth-leading rebounder in NBA history. He was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1990.
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