George Mikan Rumors
Justin Kubatko: Devin Booker scored 31 points last night, becoming just the fifth player in NBA history to record at least 30 points in each of the first two playoff games of his career. Booker joins George Mikan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Julius Erving, and backcourt mate Chris Paul. pic.twitter.com/HlijpXQOEQ
You can’t discard Abdul-Jabbar, who former Lakers head athletic trainer Gary Vitti argues remains “the most accomplished.” Abdul-Jabbar became the NBA’s all-time leading scorer (38,387 points), led the Lakers in scoring for a team-best 11 consecutive seasons (1975-86) and won three of his six regular-season MVPs in a purple and gold uniform. “That’s a really tough conversation to have because there are so many great players that have played for the Lakers,” Abdul-Jabbar told USA TODAY Sports. “That starts with the original Minneapolis Lakers with George Mikan. He has won five world championships. The franchise has had a lot of success. It’s kind of hard to pick one.”
There’s been a recent groundswell of support to change the logo’s silhouette from West to Bryant. Frazier, during MSG Network’s telecast of the Knicks’ 109-90 win over the Pistons, proposed a logo that would feature a bunch of greats, dating to the original big man, George Mikan. “First of all if you just use one guy you’re embarrassing a lot of other guys,” said Frazier, who led the Knicks to two NBA championships. “I would start with George Mikan. What about George Mikan? Without George Mikan these guys would not be around. What about Wilt Chamberlain, Bill Russell? They saved the league at that point. That brought us to the 70s.
Mikan was seeking $12,000, which “was a ton of money” at the time, Hartman said in his book. The Lakers initially dragged their feet, and Mikan decided he was flying back to Chicago, which could have ended the Lakers’ chances. “Max [Winter, who had become a team executive] and I talked it over and figured that if Mikan got on that flight, he was gone for good,” Hartman said. “So I drove Mikan to the airport, and I made sure to get lost on the way. I drove north toward Anoka, rather than south toward the airport. After Mikan missed his flight, we put him up in a downtown hotel, then brought him to the Lakers office in the Loeb Arcade the next morning and agreed to give him the $12,000.”
Davis’ 34 points put him in the company of all-time Lakers greats like Shaquille O’Neal, George Mikan and Elgin Baylor for most points in a finals debut, further entrenching Davis with the tradition-rich franchise. “To be in that category is definitely a huge honor for me,” Davis said. “What makes it even more sweeter is winning it. And so obviously that’s a great honor, but I also want to be mentioned in categories with champions. So that’s the next step.”