George Gervin Rumors
“I’m saying, like, wait a minute, y’all. Y’all are making it seem like what I did was just regular,” he said, laughing again. “I ain’t mad at the kid doing what he did. But what I’m saying is, let’s let the fans know what really happened, and let them be the judge of it.”
It was, by any measure, an electrifying, unfathomable performance, worthy of praise and a place in the history books. Just not the same history books that Gervin occupies, at least according to Gervin. “I don’t feel—and it’s funny, everybody laughs—I don’t feel he broke my record,” Gervin told Bleacher Report in a phone interview. “I feel he set a new record. He set a new record for the new NBA.”
The 62-year-old Gervin had two immediate reactions when he learned of Thompson’s incredible feat. First: “I said, ‘Wowwwww, that’s pretty impressive.'” Then: “But I’d like to see him try to get 33 or 37 in a quarter when there wasn’t no three-point line.” Within seconds, Gervin’s friendly baritone gives way to a hearty, mischievous chuckle. The former high flyer and Hall of Famer, who still answers to the nickname Iceman, is speaking from pride, not bitterness, with an eye toward historical accuracy.
Former ABA players Julius Erving, David Thompson and Gervin won All-Star MVP awards in three of the first four years after the NBA-ABA merger in 1976. “I think I was kind of an unknown,” Gervin, a four-time ABA All-Star, said Tuesday of his first NBA All-Star Game. “We played against a lot of the NBA guys in the summertime, so they knew that we could play. We always had something to prove because you are coming into a new league, you want to show everyone that you can play. Guys like myself, Doc, David Thompson, we kind of took charge. “I guess after three or four years they were convinced that we belonged.”