The Paul Bunyan of Basketball

The Paul Bunyan of Basketball
by Alex Crawford

The New York Knicks knew Wilt Chamberlain was going to get the ball and they knew he was going to shoot it.  His teammates had been feeding him the ball all night and Wilt the Stilt had been taking advantage of it.  By the start of the 4th quarter, he had 69 points and there was absolutely nothing the Knicks could do to stop him.  They altered their defense to do everything they could just to shut down the 7’ 1” center from the Philadelphia Warriors.  They even started hacking him to send him to the free throw line with his notoriously low free throw shooting percentage of 51 percent.  But March 2, 1962 was Wilt Chamberlain’s night; a night where he had all the momentum, all the cards on his side, and couldn’t be stopped.  He made 28 of 32 free throws that night and according to him he cared more about making his free throws than scoring a lot of points.  “I wasn’t even thinking about hitting 100 (points),” Chamberlain said. “But after putting in nine straight free throws, I was thinking about a foul-shooting record.”  Whether he was thinking about the free throw record or the points scored record it didn’t matter because he got both.  It was a record setting night overall, even the Knicks got in on the action setting a record for points scored in a loss.  As most sports fan know, Wilt Chamberlain finished that game with a perfect 100 points, a record that still stands.

To this day Wilt Chamberlain still holds the record for points scored in a game along with numerous other records and amazing statistics.  Sometimes players and even people in everyday life seem to get everything going for them.  Call it luck or good fortune, call it good timing, or call it hard work but sometimes a person is going to succeed at something no matter what.  Wilt Chamberlain was a person who had that happen more often than not.  It did not matter that it was just a regular season game no one seemed to care about (barely over 4000 people showed up to watch). Wilt Chamberlain was a man who knew how to get things done; whether it meant scoring 100 points in a game, averaging 48.5 minutes per game over the course of a season that featured regulation games only lasting 48 minutes, or being exceptionally good at getting women to come home with him after games.  Everyone experiences good luck in their life, Wilt Chamberlain experienced it almost everyday.


Newport Beach, California born and raised, Alex Crawford currently attends Oregon State University where he is majoring in New Media Communications.  Alex is the host of a sports talk radio show on the OSU radio station KBVR and someday hopes to have a career in film or television.

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  1. I justed to watch those games with my Dad. I like these sports stories. I read them to my two boys.