Bill Russell Rumors
Bob Pettit: I played against some of the greatest players to ever play the game. When you start picking centers, it’s hard to beat Wilt and Bill Russell. In my opinion, Russell is the greatest player who ever played. I’d pick him to start my team, in his prime, any time. Then the Lakers had both Elgin Baylor and Jerry West. They were such wonderful players. You have to include Oscar Robertson, too. He’s one of the greatest all-around players to ever play. These guys can play any time, anywhere and be extremely successful. You can build a team around any of them today.
Bill Russell, who was inducted as a player in 1975, was honored for his coaching career; he is the fifth person to be inducted as both a player and a coach. But to former President Barack Obama, his greatest role was what he accomplished off the court during the civil rights movement of the 1960s. “Bill Russell, perhaps more than anyone else, knows what it takes to win and what it takes to lead,” Obama said in a video. “As tall as Bill Russell stands, his example and his legacy rise far, far higher.”
The Undefeated: Barack Obama congratulates Bill Russell on his @Hoophall induction. “I could not be more honored to celebrate Bill Russell for the way he played, the way he coached, the way he led, the way he lives he lives his life.” #NBAHOF (via @NBATV)
Marc J. Spears: Chris Webber made mention of Negro Leagues Legend Turkey Stearns, who Satchel Paige once called “one of the greatest hitters we ever had” in his speech. C-Webb also thanked Bill Russell, John Carlos, Spencer Haywood and Dr. Harry Edwards in his induction speech.