Former NBA and ABA star Maurice Lucas dead at age 58

Maurice Lucas died on Sunday October 31, 2010. He was 58. He died at his home in Portland, Oregon.

Lucas underwent surgery for bladder cancer in April 2009.

Used to love to watch this man play, whether if be with Marquette, with the Spirits of St. Louis or with the 1977 NBA Champion Portland Trailblazers….He was an enforcer and he brought his lunch with him when he came to work, cause he was ready to play, he was gonna stay all day and he did it his way and if you got in his way, you had a price to pay….Loved Maurice Lucas and the way he approached the game and we almost got to call him our own, since the Carolina Cougars became the Spirits of St. Louis and Lucas ended up with St. Louis in the ABA, before he hit Portland….

Lucas also hit the Greensboro Coliseum when he and his Marquette Warriors lost to the N.C State Wolpack in the NCAA title game at the Coliseum on a Monday night back in 1974….Marquette was coached by Al McGuire and they featured Lucas, Bo Ellis and others…..

Notable teammates of Mo Lucas from his 1977 NBA title team with Portland:
Jack Ramsay-coach
Bill Walton
Lionel Hollins
Bob Gross
Dave Twardzik
Lloyd Neal

Here is the word on Maurice Lucas from wikipedia.com…..CLICK HERE
Maurice Lucas (February 18, 1952 – October 31, 2010) was an American professional basketball player and assistant coach with the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) Portland Trail Blazers.

Lucas played college basketball at Marquette University for two years, leading it to the NCAA championship game(Greensboro Coliseum) in 1974. Although Marquette did not win the title, Lucas played the full 40 minutes of the game, leading his team with 21 points and 13 rebounds.

ABA
In 1974 Lucas was selected by the Chicago Bulls with the 14th pick of that year’s NBA Draft. Instead, he joined the American Basketball Association’s (ABA) Spirits of St. Louis where he was named to the 1974–75 ABA All-Rookie 2nd team. Part way through his second season with the Spirits, he was traded to the Kentucky Colonels and remained with them until the ABA-NBA merger in 1976. Lucas was an ABA All-Star for the 1975–76 season.

NBA
After the ABA folded, Lucas would be selected by the Portland Trail Blazers in the subsequent dispersal draft. They had traded Geoff Petrie and Steve Hawes to the Atlanta Hawks for the 2nd overall pick, which they used to select Lucas. In the 1976–77 NBA season, Lucas led the Trail Blazers in scoring, minutes played, field goals, free throws, and offensive rebounds. Not only did the team qualify for their first trip to the playoffs that season, but Lucas and teammate Bill Walton led the Trail Blazers past the favored Los Angeles Lakers, sweeping them 4–0 in the Western Conference Finals, and stunning the league in a come-from-behind 4–2 upset victory over the Philadelphia 76ers for the championship.

In that NBA Finals series, Lucas asserted his “enforcer” role in Game 2. With the 76ers comfortably ahead late in the game, the Blazers streaked down the floor on a fast break. Lionel Hollins missed the shot, both Bob Gross and Darryl Dawkins went up and wrestled for the rebound, and both came crashing to the floor. The two appeared ready to come to punches before Lucas slapped Dawkins from behind and challenged him to fight him instead of Gross. Both benches emptied and Dawkins and Lucas were ejected. Although the 76ers would go on to win the game and go up 2–0 in the series, Lucas’ actions appeared to alter the momentum of the series in favor of the Blazers. Inspired, Portland won the next two games at home in blowouts, then won at Philadelphia, and closed out the 76ers at home to win the series. Lucas remained with Portland until 1980 when he was traded to the New Jersey Nets.

Lucas moved around the league, playing for the New York Knicks, Phoenix Suns,Los Angeles Lakers, and Seattle SuperSonics before returning to Portland for his final professional season in 1987–88.

In his 14-year career (two in the ABA, 12 in the NBA), Lucas scored 14,857 points, pulled down 9,306 rebounds, and was a five-time All-Star (one ABA, four NBA). He was named to the 1978 All-NBA-Defense First team, the 1978 All-NBA Second team and the 1979 All-NBA-Defense Second team.

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