Maurice Lucas Rumors
The annual award was created in 2010-11 to honor the Trail Blazers player who best represents the indomitable spirit of Maurice Lucas through his contributions on the court and in the community, as well as in support of his teammates and the organization. In honor of the award, the Trail Blazers will make a $5,000 donation to a charity chosen by Aminu.
Lucas gave a young Luke Walton what he called a “bad-ass poster” of himself inscribed with this message: “To Little Luke: To make it in this world, you have to be tough.” Underneath the message, Lucas inscribed his name as “Big Luke.” “Whenever there was a big moment for little Luke,” Bill Walton said, “big Luke would show up unannounced to make sure it all turned out right.” Luke Walton kept Lucas’ poster in his room while growing up in San Diego before heading to the University of Arizona in 1999.
“He was a bad man in the NBA world, but he was one of the nicest guys of all time,” Luke Walton said of Lucas. “I’d go back and watch video and couldn’t believe that is the same guy. He was a monster on the court. But he was the easiest guy to talk to about basketball, life, school or whatever. He always had great answers and was always supportive.”
During pregame introductions of Game 3, after Blazers fans unrelentingly booed Dawkins, Lucas was introduced before a sellout Memorial Coliseum crowd. But instead of jogging to stand next to his teammates, as was common practice, Lucas trotted toward the 76ers’ bench to stand face-to-face with a stunned Dawkins. Some in the crowd gasped and Philadelphia players backed away from the two hulking men, no doubt because they expected another brouhaha. But instead of raising his fists, Lucas reached for Dawkins’ right hand, squeezed hard and said: “No hard feelings.” Dawkins was frozen. “After that, he was done,” Lucas told The Oregonian/OregonLive in 2010. “One of the smartest things I ever did.”
23 Apr 14