Robert Lee Pettit Jr. (born December 12, 1932) is an American retired professional basketball player. He played 11 seasons in the NBA, all with the Milwaukee/St. Louis Hawks (1954–1965). He was the first recipient of the NBA's Most Valuable Player Award. He also won the NBA All-Star Game MVP award four times, a feat matched only by Kobe Bryant. He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1970.
Pettit in 1962
|Born||December 12, 1932|
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
|Listed height||6 ft 9 in (2.06 m)|
|Listed weight||205 lb (93 kg)|
|High school||Baton Rouge|
(Baton Rouge, Louisiana)
|NBA draft||1954 / Round: 1 / Pick: 2nd overall|
|Selected by the Milwaukee Hawks|
|Position||Power forward / Center|
|1954–1965||Milwaukee/St. Louis Hawks|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NBA statistics|
|Points||20,880 (26.4 ppg)|
|Rebounds||12,849 (16.2 rpg)|
|Assists||2,369 (3.0 apg)|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
|Basketball Hall of Fame as player|
|College Basketball Hall of Fame|
Inducted in 2006
Pettit's basketball career had humble beginnings. At Baton Rouge High School, he was cut from the varsity basketball team as both a freshman and sophomore. He played church league basketball as a sophomore and grew five inches in less than a year. His father, Sheriff of East Baton Rouge Parish (1932–1936), pushed him to practice in the backyard of the Kemmerly house until he improved his skills. It worked: Pettit became a starter and made the All-City prep team as a junior. As a 6-7 senior, he led Baton Rouge High to its first State Championship in over 20 years. Pettit was then selected to play in a North–South all-star game at Murray, Kentucky.
After high school, Pettit had scholarship offers from 14 universities but he accepted a scholarship to play at Louisiana State University. He was a three-time All-Southeastern Conference selection and a two-time All-American as a member of the LSU men's basketball team. (Freshmen were not allowed to play varsity basketball in those days.) During those three years, Pettit averaged 27.8 points per game. He was also a member of the Zeta Zeta Chapter of Delta Kappa Epsilon at LSU.
Pettit made his varsity debut at LSU in 1952. He led the SEC in scoring for his first of three consecutive seasons, averaging 25.5 points per game. He ranked third in the nation in scoring and also averaged 13.1 rebounds per game, helping his team to a 17-7 win-loss record for a second-place finish in the league, and was selected to the All-SEC team.
During his junior year, Pettit helped the Tigers sail through a 23-game regular-season schedule with only one loss (to Tulsa). A clean sweep of SEC Conference opponents became LSU's second SEC Title (their first came in 1935) and the school's first NCAA Final Four. He averaged 24.9 points and 13.9 rebounds per game for the 1953 season. He was honored with selections to both the All-SEC and All-American teams.
Pettit averaged 31.4 points and 17.3 rebounds per game during his senior year and once again led LSU to an SEC Championship and garnered All-SEC and All-American honors. He set a then-SEC scoring record of 60 points against Louisiana College in his second game, and also the SEC record for scoring average, with both records being broken by Pete Maravich. Pettit also was the second player in major-college basketball history to average more than 30 points a game.
In 1954, his number 50 was retired at LSU. He was the first Tiger athlete in any sport to receive this distinction. In 1999, he was named Living Legend for LSU at the SEC Basketball Tournament. He is a member of the LSU Hall of Fame. Bob Pettit Boulevard in Baton Rouge, Louisiana is named after him.
In 1954, the Milwaukee Hawks selected Pettit second in the first round of the NBA Draft after the Baltimore Bullets' selection of Frank Selvy. With $100 in the bank, he signed a contract with Hawks owner Ben Kerner for $11,000 – an all-time high for an NBA rookie then. Pettit's awkward ballhandling and a lack of strength to battle NBA bruisers weighing 200 pounds that early in his career, had Hawks coach Red Holzman move him from center, his position at LSU, to forward in his first training camp. "In college I played the standing pivot", he said in a April 1957 issue of SPORT magazine interview. "My back was to the basket. In the pros, I'm always outside. Everything I do is facing the basket now. That was my chief difficulty in adjusting, the fact that I had never played forward before." Though many were skeptical about Pettit making the transition from college to the rough-and-tumble NBA, in 1955 he won the NBA Rookie of the Year Award after averaging 20.4 points and 13.8 rebounds per game. He became the second rookie to win all-NBA honors but the team finished last in the Western Division. After the season, the Hawks moved to St. Louis.
He helped the Hawks improve during their first year in St. Louis by winning 33 games during 1955–56. In his second season, Pettit adjusted his game so that he would get to the free-throw line for easy points for his team and foul trouble for his opponents. Being a phenomenal offensive rebounder and an instinctive scorer, he told basketball historian Terry Pluto that "Offensive rebounds were worth eight to 12 points a night to me. Then I'd get another eight to 10 at the free-throw line. All I had to do was make a few jump shots and I was on my way to a good night."  Pettit won his first scoring title with a 25.7 average, and led the league in rebounding (1164 for a 16.2 average). He was also named MVP of the 1956 NBA All-Star Game after scoring 20 points with 24 rebounds and 7 assists; he would win subsequent MVP All-Star Game honors in 1958, 1959, and 1962. He also won his first of two NBA regular season MVP awards (the other was in 1959).
Retooling before the 1956–57 season, the Hawks acquired Ed Macauley and rookie Cliff Hagan from the Boston Celtics for the draft rights to Bill Russell. The team added guard Slater Martin in an early-season deal with the New York Knicks while Alex Hannum arrived a few weeks later after being released by the Fort Wayne Pistons. Hannum became the team's third coach that season by taking over as player-coach with 31 games left on the schedule. Though they posted a 34-38 record in 1956–57, a series of tie-breaking playoff games against the Pistons and a three-game sweep of the Minneapolis Lakers had them in the NBA Finals. In Game 1 of the 1957 NBA Finals at the Boston Garden, Pettit scored 37 points as the Hawks shocked the Bill Russell-led Boston Celtics in double overtime. Pettit won his team the third game in the series with a late basket in St. Louis. His two free throws with six seconds left in Game 7 forced overtime, but Pettit's 39 points and 19 rebounds in 56 minutes weren't enough to win a double-overtime game. Pettit averaged 29.8 points and 16.8 rebounds per game during their 1957 playoff run.
A franchise record 41 wins and a division crown allowed the Hawks to get back at the Celtics in the 1958 NBA Finals. Pettit led the Hawks to an NBA Championship with a then-playoff record 50 points in the Hawks' 110-109 series clinching victory in game 6. Both teams would later meet in the 1960 and 1961 Finals, with Boston winning each time. For the season, Pettit scored 24.6 ppg and pulled down 17.4 rpg, and earned All-Star Game MVP honors with a performance that included 28 points and 26 rebounds.
St. Louis finished at the top of the Western Division in each of the next three seasons. Pettit's league leading scoring average of 29.2 points per game in the 1958–59 season was an NBA record at the time, and he was named the Sporting News NBA MVP. In the 1960–61 season, Pettit averaged 27.9 points per game and pulled down 20.3 rebounds per game, making him one of only five players to ever break the 20 rpg barrier. He along with Wilt Chamberlain and Jerry Lucas are the only three people who averaged more than twenty points and twenty rebounds in an NBA season.
In the following season, he scored a career best 31.1 points per game, but the Hawks slipped to fourth place. After missing 30 games because of injuries, Pettit ended his career in 1965 still near the peak of his game. He was the first NBA player to eclipse the 20,000 points mark (20,880 for a 26.4 average). Of the 20,880 points he scored in the NBA, 6,182 of them (nearly 30 percent) came from free throws. His 12,849 rebounds were second most in league history at the time he retired, and his 16.2 rebounds per game career average remains third only to Wilt Chamberlain and Bill Russell.
Pettit was an NBA All-Star in each of his 11 seasons, was named to the All-NBA First Team ten times, and was named to the All-NBA Second Team once. Pettit still holds the top two NBA All-Star Game rebounding performances with 26 in 1958 and 27 in 1962, and has the second highest All-Star Game points per game average with 20.4 (behind only Oscar Robertson). Pettit averaged at least 20 points per game and at least 12 rebounds per game in each of his 11 NBA seasons. He never finished below seventh in the NBA scoring race and no other retired player in NBA history other than Pettit and Alex Groza (who played only two seasons) has averaged more than 20 points per game in every season they've played (note: Michael Jordan averaged exactly 20 points per game in his final season).
In 1970, he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Pettit was named to the NBA's 35th Anniversary Team in 1980, and was named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History in 1996.
Pettit worked in the banking industry in Baton Rouge and Metairie for 23 years before entering financial consulting in 1988. In 2006, he retired from Equitas Capital Investors, a financial consulting company that he co-founded.
He was married to his wife Carole, who died in 2010, and has three children and 10 grandchildren.
|GP||Games played||MPG||Minutes per game|
|FG%||Field-goal percentage||FT%||Free-throw percentage|
|RPG||Rebounds per game||APG||Assists per game|
|PPG||Points per game||Bold||Career high|
|†||Denotes seasons in which Pettit won an NBA championship|
The 1887 Chicago White Stockings season was the 16th season of the Chicago White Stockings franchise, the 12th in the National League and the 3rd at the first West Side Park. The White Stockings finished third in the National League with a record of 71–50.1953 NCAA Men's Basketball All-Americans
The consensus 1953 College Basketball All-American team, as determined by aggregating the results of six major All-American teams. To earn "consensus" status, a player must win honors from a majority of the following teams: the Associated Press, Look Magazine, The United Press International, the Newspaper Enterprise Association (NEA), Collier's Magazine and the International News Service.1954 NCAA Men's Basketball All-Americans
The consensus 1954 College Basketball All-American team, as determined by aggregating the results of six major All-American teams. To earn "consensus" status, a player must win honors from a majority of the following teams: the Associated Press, Look Magazine, The United Press International, the Newspaper Enterprise Association (NEA), Collier's Magazine and the International News Service.1955–56 NBA season
The 1955–56 NBA season was the 10th season of the National Basketball Association. The season ended with the Philadelphia Warriors winning the NBA Championship, beating the Fort Wayne Pistons 4 games to 1 in the NBA Finals.1955–56 St. Louis Hawks season
The 1955–56 St. Louis Hawks season was the tenth season for the franchise. After 4 last-place seasons in Milwaukee, the Hawks relocated to St. Louis. The city had once been home to the St. Louis Bombers, an early BAA franchise that folded in 1950. The Hawks were on the verge of becoming one of the top teams in the NBA. Led by 2nd year forward Bob Pettit, Pettit would earn the very first MVP award in NBA history. The Hawks would finish in 2nd place with a 33–39 record.
In the playoffs against the Minneapolis Lakers, the Hawks were triumphant in Game 1 by a single point. Game 2 was played in Minneapolis, and the Hawks were blown out by 58 points in Game 2. The third game was contested in St. Louis. Once again, the Hawks would win by 1 point to advance to the Western Finals. In the three games, the Hawks were outscored by 56 points. In the Western Finals, the Hawks would win the first 2 games against the Fort Wayne Pistons. However, the Pistons would rebound to take the next 3 games and win the series.1957–58 St. Louis Hawks season
The 1957–58 St. Louis Hawks season was the third for the franchise in St. Louis and the 12th season overall in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Coming off their trip to the 1957 NBA Finals, the Hawks won the Western Division by 8 games with a record of 41 wins and 31 losses. Bob Pettit ranked 3rd in scoring and 2nd in rebounding. In the Western Finals, the Hawks would beat the Detroit Pistons in 5 games. The Hawks would then face the Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals. After Games 1 and 2, the teams headed to St. Louis with the series tied at a game apiece. The Hawks took Game 3, as the Celtics lost Bill Russell to an ankle injury. Despite playing without Russell, the Celtics were triumphant in Game 4. The Hawks pulled out a 2-point victory in the Game 5 to take control of the series. Needing one more win for their first NBA Championship, the Hawks beat the Celtics 110–109 in Game 6. Bob Pettit scored 50 points playing against an injured Bill Russell as the Hawks and owner Ben Kerner won their first NBA Title.1958–59 NBA season
The 1958–59 NBA Season was the 13th season of the National Basketball Association. The season ended with the Boston Celtics winning the NBA Championship (the first of what would be 8 straight), beating the Minneapolis Lakers 4 games to 0 in the NBA Finals.1958–59 St. Louis Hawks season
The 1958–59 St. Louis Hawks season was the franchise's 13th season in the NBA. Despite winning the NBA Championship, Alex Hannum was replaced as coach of the Hawks in 1958–59. The new coach was Andy Phillip, and he lasted 10 games before being replaced by Ed Macauley.
The Hawks made player changes. Clyde Lovellette was brought in from the Cincinnati Royals.
The Hawks won the Western Division with a record of 49 wins and 23 losses. Bob Pettit won his 2nd NBA MVP award as he led the league in scoring with 29.2 points per game.
In the Western Division Finals, the Hawks were defeated by the Minneapolis Lakers in 6 games.1960 NBA Finals
The 1960 NBA World Championship Series was the championship series of the 1960 NBA Playoffs, which concluded the National Basketball Association 1959–60 season. The best-of-seven series was played between the Western Conference champion St. Louis Hawks and the Eastern Conference champion Boston Celtics. It was Boston's fourth trip to the NBA Finals and St. Louis' third. The Celtics beat the Hawks 4–3. The Finals featured Hall of Famers Bill Russell, Bob Cousy, Tom Heinsohn, Frank Ramsey, Sam Jones, K.C. Jones, Coach Red Auerbach, Bob Pettit, Cliff Hagan, Slater Martin, Clyde Lovellette, and Coach Alex Hannum.
This was the last time the NBA Finals would be played in March.1961–62 NBA season
The 1961–62 NBA season was the 16th season of the National Basketball Association. The season ended with the Boston Celtics winning their 4th straight NBA Championship, beating the Los Angeles Lakers 4 games to 3 in the NBA Finals.All-NBA Team
The All-NBA Team is an annual National Basketball Association (NBA) honor bestowed on the best players in the league following every NBA season. The voting is conducted by a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. The team has been selected in every season of the league's existence, dating back to its inaugural season in 1946. The All-NBA Team originally had two teams, but since 1988 it is typically composed of three five-man lineups—a first, second, and third team.
Players receive five points for a first team vote, three points for a second team vote, and one point for a third team vote. The five players with the highest point totals make the first team, with the next five making the second team and so forth. In the case of a tie at the fifth position of any team, the roster is expanded. If the first team consists of six players due to a tie, the second team will still consist of five players with the potential for more expansion in the event of additional ties. A tie has occurred only once, in 1952, when Bob Davies and Dolph Schayes tied in votes received. From 1946 to 1955, players were selected without regard to position; however, since 1956, each team has consisted of two guards, two forwards, and one center.Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Kobe Bryant and Tim Duncan hold the record for the most total selections with fifteen. Karl Malone, Shaquille O'Neal, and LeBron James follow with fourteen total honors, while Schayes, Bob Cousy, Jerry West, Hakeem Olajuwon, Dirk Nowitzki have twelve selections. James has the most All-NBA first team honors with twelve, while Malone and Bryant are tied for second-most with eleven.Atlanta Hawks
The Atlanta Hawks are an American professional basketball team based in Atlanta, Georgia. The Hawks compete in the National Basketball Association (NBA) as a member of the league's Eastern Conference Southeast Division. The team plays its home games at State Farm Arena.
The team's origins can be traced to the establishment of the Buffalo Bisons in 1946 in Buffalo, New York, a member of the National Basketball League (NBL) owned by Ben Kerner and Leo Ferris. After 38 days in Buffalo, the team moved to Moline, Illinois, where they were renamed the Tri-Cities Blackhawks. In 1949, they joined the NBA as part of the merger between the NBL and the Basketball Association of America (BAA), and briefly had Red Auerbach as coach. In 1951, Kerner moved the team to Milwaukee, where they changed their name to the Hawks. Kerner and the team moved again in 1955 to St. Louis, where they won their only NBA Championship in 1958 and qualified to play in the NBA Finals in 1957, 1960 and 1961. The Hawks played the Boston Celtics in all four of their trips to the NBA Finals. The St. Louis Hawks moved to Atlanta in 1968, when Kerner sold the franchise to Thomas Cousins and former Georgia Governor Carl Sanders.The Hawks currently own the second-longest drought (behind the Sacramento Kings) of not winning an NBA championship at 60 seasons. The franchise's lone NBA championship, as well as all four NBA Finals appearances, occurred when the team was based in St. Louis. Meanwhile, they went 48 years without advancing past the second round of the playoffs in any format, until finally breaking through in 2015. However, the Hawks are one of only four NBA teams that have qualified to play in the NBA playoffs in 10 consecutive seasons in the 21st century. They achieved this feat between 2008 and 2017. The other teams that have made it to at least 10 consecutive playoff appearances in the 21st century are the San Antonio Spurs (1998–present), Denver Nuggets (2004–2013), and Dallas Mavericks (2001–2012).Bob Pettit (baseball)
Robert Henry "Bob" Pettit (July 19, 1861 in Williamstown, Massachusetts – November 1, 1910 in Derby, Connecticut), was a professional baseball player who played pitcher and outfielder in the Major Leagues from 1887 to 1891. He played for the Chicago White Stockings and Milwaukee Brewers.Field goal percentage
Field goal percentage in basketball is the ratio of field goals made to field goals attempted. Its abbreviation is FG%. Although three-point field goal percentage is often calculated separately, three-point field goals are included in the general field goal percentage. Instead of using scales of 0 to 100%, the scale .000 to 1.000 is commonly used. A higher field goal percentage denotes higher efficiency. In basketball, a FG% of .500 (50%) or above is considered a good percentage, although this criterion does not apply equally to all positions. Guards usually have lower FG% than forwards and centers. Field goal percentage does not completely tell the skill of a player, but a low field goal percentage can indicate a poor offensive player or a player who takes many difficult shots. In the NBA, Center Shaquille O'Neal had a high career FG% (around .580) because he played near the basket making many high percentage layups and dunks. Guard Allen Iverson often had a low FG% (around .420) because he took the bulk of his team's shot attempts, even with high difficulty shots.
The NBA career record for field goal percentage is held by DeAndre Jordan at 0.671. The highest field goal percentage for a single season was set by Wilt Chamberlain with 0.727 in the 1972–73 season.
Field goal percentages were substantially lower in the NBA until the mid-to-late 1960s. For this reason, many early NBA stars have low field goal percentages, such as Bob Cousy at .375, and George Mikan, Bob Pettit, and Bill Russell, whose career field goal percentages of .404, .436, and .440, respectively, are much lower than later post players.Three-point field goal percentage is usually kept as additional statistics. Its abbreviation is 3FG%. A 3FG% of .400 and above is a very good percentage.List of National Basketball Association career playoff scoring leaders
This article provides two lists:
A list of National Basketball Association players by total career playoff points scored.
A progressive list of scoring leaders showing how the record increased through the years.NBA All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award
The National Basketball Association All-Star Game Most Valuable Player (MVP) is an annual National Basketball Association (NBA) award given to the player(s) voted best of the annual All-Star Game. The award was established in 1953 when NBA officials decided to designate an MVP for each year's game. The league also re-honored players from the previous two All-Star Games. Ed Macauley and Paul Arizin were selected as the 1951 and 1952 MVP winners respectively. The voting is conducted by a panel of media members, who cast their vote after the conclusion of the game. The player(s) with the most votes or ties for the most votes wins the award. No All-Star Game MVP was named in 1999 since the game was canceled due to the league's lockout. As of 2019, the most recent recipient is Golden State Warrior forward Kevin Durant.
Bob Pettit and Kobe Bryant are the only two players to win the All-Star Game MVP four times. Oscar Robertson, Michael Jordan, Shaquille O'Neal, and LeBron James have each won the award three times, while Bob Cousy, Julius Erving, Isiah Thomas, Magic Johnson, Karl Malone, Allen Iverson, Russell Westbrook, and Kevin Durant have all won the award twice. James' first All-Star MVP in 2006 made him the youngest to have ever won the award at the age of 21 years, 1 month. Kyrie Irving, winner of the 2014 All-Star Game MVP, is the second-youngest at 21 years, 10 months. They are notable as being the two youngest to win the award, both as Cleveland Cavaliers. Four of the games had joint winners—Elgin Baylor and Pettit in 1959, John Stockton and Malone in 1993, O'Neal and Tim Duncan in 2000, and O'Neal and Bryant in 2009. O'Neal became the first player in All-Star history to share two MVP awards as well as the first player to win the award with multiple teams. The Los Angeles Lakers have had eleven winners while the Boston Celtics have had eight. Duncan of the U.S. Virgin Islands and Irving of Australia are the only winners not born in the United States. Both Duncan and Irving are American citizens, but are considered "international" players by the NBA because they were not born in one of the fifty states or Washington, D.C. No player trained entirely outside the U.S. has won the award; Irving lived in the U.S. since age two, and Duncan played U.S. college basketball at Wake Forest.
Bob Pettit (1958, 1959) and Russell Westbrook (2015, 2016) are the only players to win consecutive awards. Pettit (1956), Bob Cousy (1957), Wilt Chamberlain (1960), Bill Russell (1963), Oscar Robertson (1964), Willis Reed (1970), Dave Cowens (1973), Michael Jordan (1988, 1996, 1998), Magic Johnson (1990), Shaquille O'Neal (2000), and Allen Iverson (2001) all won the All-Star Game MVP and the NBA Most Valuable Player Award in the same season; Jordan is the only player to do this multiple times. 14 players have won the award playing for the team that hosted the All-Star Game: Macauley (1951), Cousy (1957), Pettit (1958, 1962), Chamberlain (1960), Adrian Smith (1966), Rick Barry (1967), Jerry West (1972), Tom Chambers (1987), Michael Jordan (1988), Karl Malone (1993), John Stockton (1993), O'Neal (2004, 2009), Bryant (2011) and Davis (2017); Pettit and O'Neal did this multiple times. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has the distinction of playing in the most All-Star Games (18) without winning the All-Star Game MVP, while Adrian Smith won the MVP in his only All-Star Game.NBA All-Star Game records
This article lists all-time leading figures achieved in the NBA All-Star Game in every major statistical category recognized by the league. This includes statistical records set by individuals in single All-Star games and over the course of their careers.NBA Most Valuable Player Award
The National Basketball Association Most Valuable Player Award (MVP) is an annual National Basketball Association (NBA) award given since the 1955–56 season to the best performing player of the regular season. The winner receives the Maurice Podoloff Trophy, which is named in honor of the first commissioner (then president) of the NBA, who served from 1946 until 1963. Until the 1979–80 season, the MVP was selected by a vote of NBA players. Since the 1980–81 season, the award is decided by a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada.
Each member of the voting panel casts a vote for first to fifth place selections. Each first-place vote is worth 10 points; each second-place vote is worth seven; each third-place vote is worth five, fourth-place is worth three and fifth-place is worth one. Starting from 2010, one ballot was cast by fans through online voting. The player with the highest point total wins the award. As of June 2018, the current holder of the award is James Harden of the Houston Rockets.
Every player who has won this award and has been eligible for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame has been inducted. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar won the award a record six times. He is also the only player to win the award despite his team not making the playoffs back in the 1975–76 season. Both Bill Russell and Michael Jordan won the award five times, while Wilt Chamberlain and LeBron James won the award four times. Russell and James are the only players to have won the award four times in five seasons. Moses Malone, Larry Bird and Magic Johnson each won the award three times, while Bob Pettit, Karl Malone, Tim Duncan, Steve Nash and Stephen Curry have each won it twice. Only two rookies have won the award: Chamberlain in the 1959–60 season and Wes Unseld in the 1968–69 season. Hakeem Olajuwon of Nigeria, Duncan of the U.S. Virgin Islands, Nash of Canada and Dirk Nowitzki of Germany are the only MVP winners considered "international players" by the NBA.Curry in 2015–16 is the only player to have won the award unanimously. Shaquille O'Neal in 1999–2000 and James in 2012–13 are the only two players to have fallen one vote shy of a unanimous selection, both receiving 120 of 121 votes. Since the 1975–76 season, only two players have been named MVP for a season in which their team failed to win at least 50 regular-season games—Moses Malone (twice, 1978–79 and 1981–82) and Russell Westbrook (2016–17).