October 25, 2013
The NBRPA offers condolences to the family of former NBA player and coach Bill Sharman, who passed away at the age of 87. A 6-foot-1 guard, Sharman was a second round draft pick of the Washington Capitals in 1950. Renowned for his shooting ability, Sharman became the first NBA player to have a fieldgoal percentage above .400 for a season.
He is ranked as one of the NBA’s top freethrow shooters of all-time. Most of his 11-year career in the NBA was spent with the Boston Celtics. Sharman appeared in eight NBA All-Star games and won four titles as a player before retiring in 1961. Nearly a decade later, in 1971, Sharman became the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers and led the team to its first NBA championship.
Prior to the NBA, he signed with the Dodgers in 1950 and played professional baseball for five years. Sharman was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a player in 1976. In 2004, he was inducted as a coach, becoming one of only three men to be honored in both roles. In 1996, he was selected as one of the 50 greatest player’s of the NBA’s first 50-years.