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August 21, 2014, 3:59 pm

50 Memorable Sixers

Team celebrates half century in Philadelphia


The Philadelphia 76ers are celebrating their 50th season in Philadelphia this year. Before coming to Philly and becoming the 76ers in 1963, the franchise was known as the Syracuse Nationals and played there for 14 seasons, winning an NBA title in 1955.

Since then, the Sixers have won two NBA championships in Philadelphia in 1967 and 1983. The franchise has produced a lot of outstanding players such as Wilt Chamberlain, Julius Erving, Moses Malone, Billy Cunningham, Charles Barkley and Allen Iverson.

The Philadelphia Tribune has selected 50 players over the last half century who should bring back some great memories for fans.

Wilt Chamberlain

7-1, 275 pound center

Chamberlain was undoubtedly one of the greatest players of all time. He led the 76ers to an NBA championship in 1966-67. He averaged 24.1 points a game that season. That team was voted one of the top 10 greatest teams in NBA history.

Julius Erving

6-6, 200 pound forward

Erving was one of the game’s most spectacular players. He guided the Sixers to the 1983 NBA title. Fans will always remember his spectacular dunk over Lakers guard Michael Cooper.

Moses Malone

6-10, 275 pound center

Malone was the missing piece to the Sixers championship puzzle in 1983. He was a great scorer and rebounder. He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2001.

Billy Cunningham

6-6, 220 pound forward

Cunningham was one of the greatest sixth men in NBA history. He averaged 18.5 points a game for the 76ers 1966-67 championship team. He won a championship as a player and coach in the Sixers organization.

Hal Greer

6-2, 175 pound guard

Greer was a tremendous shooter from 15 feet. Once he got his feet set he rarely missed a shot. He was a key player on the Sixers 1966-67 championship team.

Chet Walker

6-61/2, 215 pound forward

Walker was recently inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. He was a great player on the Sixers 1966-67 championship team. Walker was known for backing his man down and shooting the fade away shot.

Charles Barkley

6-5, 250 pound forward

Barkley was a special player with his size. He had the ability to get position around the basket against anybody. Barkley could really jump and dunk the basketball and was a great rebounder. During the 1985-86 season, he grabbed 1,026 rebounds.

Allen Iverson

6-0, 175 pound guard

Iverson was a scoring machine. He was the No. 1 overall pick in the 1996 NBA Draft. He could break his man down and take the ball to the basket like no other. Iverson led the 2001 Sixers to the NBA Finals. He was an MVP and four-time NBA scoring champion.

Maurice Cheeks

6-1, 180 pound guard

Cheeks was a great floor general. He looked for the open man. He didn’t turn the ball over. A lot of fans will remember the dunk he had in the final game of the Sixers NBA championship series victory over the Los Angeles Lakers in 1983.

Andrew Toney

6-3, 185 pound guard

Toney had a great first step off the dribble. He could shoot from long range. Unfortunately, injuries to both feet shortened his career. Toney was a big part of the Sixers 1983 championship team. In 1982 he scored 34 points against the Boston Celtics in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals to lead the Sixers to victory.

Wali Jones

6-2, 180 pound guard

Jones played in the backcourt with Hal Greer on the Sixers 1966-67 NBA championship team. He was a great ballhandler, shooter and defender. Jones was a hometown favorite. He was a big star at Overbrook High and Villanova.

Bobby Jones

6-9, 210 pound forward

Jones was a tremendous defensive player. He usually guarded the opposing team’s best scorer. He was the sixth man on the Sixers 1983 NBA championship team.

Luke Jackson

6-9, 250 pound forward

Jackson was a rugged rebounder. If Wilt Chamberlain didn’t get the rebound, that meant Jackson usually had it. He was the starting power forward on the Sixers 1966-67 NBA championship team.

Archie Clark

6-2, 175 pound guard

Clark was known for his shake and go moves. He used to make some terrific moves to the basket. Clark also played in the Baker League during the summer months.

Doug Collins

6-6, 180 pound guard

Collins was the No. 1 overall pick in the 1973 NBA Draft. He did a great job of getting open for his shots. He moved well without the ball. He was a good shooter. He played on the Sixers 1976-77 team that reached the NBA Finals. He’s now the Sixers head coach.

George McGinnis

6-8, 235 pound forward

McGinnis helped put the Sixers back on the NBA map. McGinnis and Julius Erving led the Sixers to the NBA Finals in 1977. He was known for his one hand push shots. He could handle the ball, too.

Andre Iguodala

6-6, 207 pound guard

Iguodala was traded to the Denver Nuggets this past summer. He spent eight seasons with the Sixers. Iguodala had arguably his best season last year, leading the Sixers to a first round playoff series win over the Chicago Bulls. He was named to the all-star team and won a gold medal with the U.S. Olympic basketball team.

Aaron McKie

6-5, 209 pound guard

McKie played eight years with the Sixers. He was a real fan favorite growing up in Philly playing at Simon Gratz and Temple. In 2001, he was named the NBA Sixth Man of the Year. He also helped the Sixers get to the NBA Finals. He’s now an assistant coach with the Sixers.

Dikembe Mutombo

7-2, 260 pound center

Mutombo was named the NBA Defensive Player of the Year in 2001. He was a great shotblocker and rebounder. He played on the Sixers team that reached the 2001 NBA Finals.

Caldwell Jones

6-11, 217 pound center

Jones was a terrific defender. He had great timing in terms of shotblocking. He played on three Sixers teams that went to the NBA Finals.

Darryl Dawkins

6-11, 250 pound center

Dawkins was known for his spectacular dunks. In fact, he had names for some of his dunks like Chocolate Thunder, Spine-Chiller Supreme and Sir Slam. He played on some of the Sixers best teams.

World B. Free

6-2, 185 pound guard

When he first came to Philly, he was known as Lloyd Free. He’s now World B. Free. He used to shoot those rainbow jumpshots. He was a magnificent scorer. He scored 17,955 career points.

Ron Anderson

6-7, 215 pound forward

Anderson was one of the great sixth men in the Sixers organization. He played with Charles Barkley and Rick Mahorn.

Fred Carter

6-3, 185 pound guard

Carter played on the Sixers 1972-73 team that had a horrible 9-73 record. He was the best player on that team. He averaged 20.0 points a game that season. Carter also played with Doug Collins and George McGinnis on the Sixers 1975-76 playoff team that lost to the Buffalo Braves in a best of three games series.

Rick Mahorn

6-10, 260 pound center

Mahorn and Charles Barkley formed one of the toughest frontcourts in the NBA. They were known as “Thump and Bump.” Mahorn was a very physical player around the basket.

Armen Gilliam

6-9, 250 pound forward

Gilliam was a great low post player. He was a good scorer. He played three seasons with the Sixers. He played with Charles Barkley and Rick Mahorn. Gilliam passed away in 2011.

Hersey Hawkins

6-3, 190 pound guard

Hawkins was a good shooting guard. He played on three playoff teams. He averaged 20.3 points a game his final season (1992-93) with the Sixers.

Andre Miller

6-2, 200 pound guard

Miller had great three years with the Sixers. Two of those years, the Sixers made the playoffs. He was a sensational point guard. He’s still one of the league’s savvy playmakers.

Steve Mix

6-7, 215 pound forward

Mix had a special place on the court. It was called Mixville. It was in the corner on the right hand side of the basket. That’s where he scored most of his points. He played nine seasons with the Sixers.

Jerry Stackhouse

6-6, 218 pound guard

Stackhouse was a first round pick of the Sixers in 1995. He played two seasons with the Sixers. In 1996, Stackhouse and Allen Iverson both averaged over 20 points a game. They were one of the NBA’s top scoring backcourts.

Clarence Weatherspoon

6-7, 240 pound forward

Weatherspoon played six years with the Sixers. He usually had to play against players a lot bigger than him up front. Nevertheless, Weatherspoon had some big years with the Sixers. In 1994, he averaged 18.4 points a game.

Lou Williams

6-1, 175 pound guard

Williams played seven seasons with the Sixers. He signed with the Atlanta Hawks over the summer. Williams was a second round pick of the Sixers right out of South Gwinnett High School near Atlanta, Ga. He could shoot the basketball. He led the Sixers in scoring (14.9) off the bench last season.

Eric Snow

6-3, 204 pound guard

Snow was the floor leader on the Sixers 2001 NBA Finals team. He was a tough defender. He took care of the ball. Snow did a good job of getting the ball to Allen Iverson in scoring position.

Dana Barros

5-11, 165 pound guard

Barros could really shoot the basketball. He played just two seasons with the Sixers. He averaged 20.6 points a game in 1994-95. He also made the all-star team in 1995.

Elton Brand

6-9, 254 pound forward

Brand was a big free agent signing in 2008. He had shoulder surgery in 2009, but bounced back from the injury to play some good basketball for the Sixers during his four years. The team released him last summer with the NBA’s amnesty clause. He now plays for the Dallas Mavericks.

Derrick Coleman

6-10, 270 pound forward

Coleman could play inside as well as outside. He could handle the ball. He had some of his best games in the playoffs.

Johnny Dawkins

6-2, 170 pound guard

Dawkins played in the backcourt with Hersey Hawkins. They formed a tandem of Dawkins and Hawkins. Dawkins also played with Charles Barkley and Rick Mahorn. He’s now the head basketball coach at Stanford.

Willie Green

6-3, 201 pound guard

Green played seven seasons with the Sixers. He was a solid player. Green was a second round pick out of Detroit Mercy. He started and came in off the bench for the Sixers.

Lionel Hollins

6-3, 185 pound guard

Hollins played on two great Sixers teams. In 1980, he helped the Sixers get to the NBA Finals. He brought a lot of experience with him from Portland where he guided the Trail Blazers to the 1977 NBA title. He played in the backcourt with Maurice Cheeks. He’s now the head coach of the Memphis Grizzlies.

Larry Costello

6-1, 190 pound guard

Costello played for head coach Alex Hannum with the Sixers. He played on the Sixers 1966-67 NBA championship team. Unfortunately, he tore his Achilles tendon that season. He had a good career as a player. He also was an NBA head coach with the Chicago Bulls and Milwaukee Bucks.

Theo Ratliff

6-10, 225 pound forward

Ratliff was a great defender and rebounder. He could run the floor. He had two stints with the Sixers. He played well both times.

Mike Gminski

6-11, 250 pound center

Gminski played with Rick Mahorn and Charles Barkley. The Sixers had a solid frontline with him. He had the ability to step out and hit the 12 to 13 foot shot. He played four seasons with the Sixers.

Harvey Catchings

6-9, 218 pound forward

Catchings could really jump. He was a great shotblocker. He ran the floor. He hustled for loose balls. He played five seasons for the Sixers (1974-79). Catchings played on the Sixers 1977 team that went to the NBA Finals.

Joe Bryant

6-9, 200 pound forward

Bryant played four seasons with the Sixers. He was a very popular high school player at Bartram and La Salle respectively. He played on the 1977 NBA Finals team, which featured Julius Erving, George McGinnis and Doug Collins. Bryant came off the bench with Darryl Dawkins and World B. Free. Of course, he’s the father of Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant.

Jeff Hornacek

6-4, 190 pound guard

Hornacek came to the Sixers from the Phoenix Suns in the Charles Barkley deal. He spent two seasons in Philly. In 1993, he had his best season averaging 19.1 points a game.

Jeff Malone

6-4, 205 pound guard

Malone played three seasons for the Sixers. He was a great shooter. He had a knack of getting open for his shots by using picks. In 1995, he averaged 18.4 points a game.

Sedale Threatt

6-2, 185 pound guard

Threatt was a sixth round pick out of West Virginia Tech by the Sixers in the 1983 NBA draft. He came into camp and landed a spot with the Sixers. Threatt played four seasons with the Sixers. He also played in the Charles Baker League during the summer months.

Henry Bibby

6-1, 185 pound guard

Bibby was an All-American at UCLA. He won three NCAA championships. He won a NBA championship with the New York Knicks. He played on two Sixers teams, which advanced to the NBA Finals (’77, ’80). He was a good ballhandler with a nice touch from long range.

George Lynch

6-8, 230 pound forward

Lynch did all the little things to help the Sixers get to the 2001 NBA Finals. He played defense, rebounded and hit some timely jumpshots. He was a big contributor.

Earl Cureton

6-9, 210 pound forward

Cureton was good player off the bench. He played defense, rebounded and went after loose balls. Cureton’s big moment came during the Sixers championship run in 1983. He hit a hook shot over Kareem Abdul-Jabbar with the shot clock winding down in the second game of the championship series. It was a big play for him as well as the Sixers.

The Sixers open their 50th season on October 31 when they host the Denver Nuggets at the Wells Fargo Center.


Contact staff writer Donald Hunt at (215) 893-5719 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .