When former Pistons player and coach Donnis (Donnie) Butcher was diagnosed with an advanced stage of kidney cancer about a month ago, he did what he always did — he fought. But ultimately he lost his fight Monday when he died at 76. Hartland basketball coach Denny Butcher recalled the life of his father Tuesday. You can marvel at the life of a man who said the toughest player he ever had to guard was NBA legend Jerry West and relished trying to check Oscar Robertson, the only man in NBA history to average a triple-double for a season. And Butcher scored 10 points off the bench for the Knicks the night Wilt Chamberlain scored 100 for the Philadelphia Warriors in 1962. “The stories he told from that time are just amazing,” Denny Butcher said. “It was just a different time with doubleheaders at Madison Square Garden and Cobo (Hall).”
Donnie Butcher Rumors
Former Detroit Pistons player and coach Donnie Butcher died today at the age of 76, according to his son, Denny, a basketball coach in Hartland. Butcher was traded from the New York Knicks to the Pistons on Dec. 16, 1963 as a part of a three-team, four-player deal. He would play with Detroit until 1966. During the ’66-’67 season, he was named Pistons head coach, replacing then player-coach Dave DeBusschere.