An American who played basketball professionally was named William Felton Russell. On February 12, 1934, he was born, and on July 31, 2022, he died.

He served as the team captain for the American men’s national basketball team in the 1956 Summer Olympics. From 1956 to 1969, he played with the Boston Celtics, where he earned five NBA Most Valuable Player honours.

In the National Basketball Association (NBA), Bill Russell was the first African-American player to be regarded as a superstar. He was also the first black coach in any professional sport in North America.

Bill Russell

He was rewarded and recognized for his playing career by being elected into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1975.

Russell was picked to be a member of the NBA 75th Anniversary Team in 2021 after being named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History in 1996.

Russell was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011 by President Barack Obama in honour of his accomplishments on the bench and in the fight for civil rights.

Bill Russell Awards and Trophies

Bill is a five-time winner of the NBA Most Valuable Player award and a 12-time winner of the NBA All-Star game. He was the pivotal player for the Celtics dynasty that won 11 NBA titles during his 13 years with the team.

As player:

As a coach:

Career NBA playing statistics
Points 14,522 (15.1 ppg)
Rebounds 21,620 (22.5 rpg)
Assists 4,100 (4.3 apg)
Career coaching record
NBA 341–290 (.540)
Basketball Hall of Fame as a player
Basketball Hall of Fame as coach
FIBA Hall of Fame as a player
College Basketball Hall of Fame
Inducted in 2006


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