Suns Legends Matchup: Hawkins or Chambers?
Posted: Oct. 4, 2011
When you scroll back through Suns history, you realize how many outstanding players have played for Phoenix. We at Suns.com's thought it would be interesting to see who Suns fans thought were the best of the best. In today’s matchup, we pit Connie Hawkins and Tom Chambers against each other. Check out their respective cases and tell us which player has had a greater contribution to the Suns' legacy.|
Hawkins was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1992.
A New York City playground icon, Connie Hawkins didn’t suit up for his first NBA game until he was 27. After playing in the American Basketball League for a year (winning the league’s MVP) and three years with the Harlem Globetrotters, “Hawk” caught on with the ABA’s Pittsburgh Pipers during the league’s inaugural 1967-68 season.
An All-Star each of the first four seasons in Phoenix, “Hawk” averaged 20.5 points and nine rebounds a game in his five seasons for the purple and orange. After the 1973-74 season, Hawkins was traded to the Lakers.
The NBA’s all-time scoring leader, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, would later list Hawkins as one of the top 15 players to ever grace the hardwood. The former Sun was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1992.
Chambers was the All-Star Game MVP in 1987.
Like Hawkins, Tom Chambers was known for his soaring dunks and aerial antics during the prime of his career. A 6-10 forward out of Utah, Chambers signed with the Suns as the first-ever unrestricted free agent in NBA history, averaging 20.6 points a game during his time in Phoenix.
When he landed in the Valley of the Sun in 1988, he became the team’s go-to scorer, pouring in 25.7 points a night his first season. He bettered that his second season in Phoenix, averaging 27.2 points a game.
Those two scoring averages remain the highest ever in team history and he was rewarded by earning All-NBA Second Team honors in those two seasons. In addition, Chambers hold the club record for most points in game, racking up 60 against his former club (Seattle SuperSonics).
In 16 seasons, Chambers was an All-Star four times, taking home the NBA All-Star MVP in 1987. Chambers was inducted into the the Suns' Ring of Honor in 1999 after finishing his career with 20,049 total points and a career average of 18.1 points per game.