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Lenny Wilkens

9X
NBA All-Star
1X
NBA All-Star Game MVP
1X
NBA Assist Champion

Things to Know


Greatness spanning beyond court.

Lenny Wilkens was one of the best floor generals ever, immediately starting as rookie for a Hawks team that made it all the way to the 1961 Finals.

The nine-time All-Star was a standout player for each of his teams and one of the first stars the Sonics and Cavs franchises ever had. He is one of four NBA players in the Hall of Fame as both a player and coach (Bill Russell, Tom Heinsohn and Bill Sharman are the others).

Career
Wilkens was required to fulfill military duty after his rookie campaign in 1960-61, limiting him to just 20 games in 1961-62. His third season with the Hawks began a run of five playoff appearances in a six-year span to go along with five All-Star nods in the same timeframe.

The Hawks traded Wilkens to a fledgling Seattle SuperSonics team after eight seasons, landing there in 1968-69. He was tasked with a player-coach role in his second season in Seattle, serving in that capacity until the Sonics traded him to the Cavaliers in 1972. However, he was stellar as a player, emerging as an All-Star -- the second in franchise history. In his stint as player-coach of the Sonics, Wilkens went 121-125 and failed to reach the playoffs in each season.

Wilkens played two seasons for the Cavaliers in a player-only capacity before he was drawn to the Trail Blazers to take one final swing at coaching as an active player. He went 38-44 with the Blazers as player-coach and then went 37-45 before retiring and moving into a front-office role with the Sonics.

In 15 years as a player Wilkens scored 17,772 points and dished out 7,211 assists, was a nine-time All-Star and was MVP of the 1971 All-Star Game.

Just 22 games into the 1977-78 season, Wilkens was pressed into coaching duty after the Sonics began the year 5-17. He was able to turn the team around, leading Seattle to The Finals in each of the following two seasons, nabbing a title in 1979.

Wilkens would coach for a total of 32 years and six different teams (, finishing with the most wins among coaches at the time of his retirement with 1,332 victories. He would serve as an assistant coach on the original Dream Team, adding a gold medal to his collection of awards.

Highlights


NBA 75th Anniversary Team: Lenny Wilkens

NBA 75th Anniversary Team: Lenny Wilkens

Lenny Wilkens

Lenny Wilkens: The Player's Coach

Stats


16.5
PPG
4.7
RPG
6.7
APG

* Through the 2020-21 season

Career regular season stats

Seasontmagegpminptsfgmfgafg%3pm3pa3p%ftmftaft%orebdrebrebaststlblktovpf
1974-75POR376517.96.52.14.743.9---2.33.076.80.61.31.83.61.20.1-1.5
1973-74CLE367433.616.46.213.446.5---3.94.980.11.12.73.77.11.30.2-2.2
1972-73CLE357539.620.57.617.044.9---5.36.382.8--4.68.4---2.9
1971-72SEA348037.418.06.012.846.6---6.07.877.4--4.29.6---2.6
1970-71SEA337137.219.86.615.841.9---6.58.180.3--4.59.2---2.8
1969-70SEA327537.417.86.014.242.0---5.87.478.8--5.09.1---2.8
1968-69SEA318242.222.47.917.844.0---6.78.777.0--6.28.2---3.6
1967-68STL308238.620.06.715.243.8---6.78.776.8--5.38.3---3.1
1966-67STL297838.117.45.713.343.2---5.97.578.7--5.35.7---3.6
1965-66STL286939.018.06.013.843.1---6.17.779.3--4.76.2---3.6
1964-65STL277836.616.55.613.441.4---5.37.274.6--4.75.5---3.6
1963-64STL267832.412.04.310.441.3---3.54.774.0--4.34.6---3.7
1962-63STL257534.311.84.411.139.9---3.04.369.6--5.45.1---3.4
1961-62STL242043.518.27.018.238.5---4.25.576.4--6.65.8---3.2
1960-61STL237525.311.74.410.442.5---2.94.071.3--4.52.8---2.9
Overall107735.316.55.713.343.2---5.06.577.40.82.04.76.71.30.2-3.1
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75thAnniversary Team
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Selected for being pioneers that have helped shape, define, and redefine the game. This is the NBA 75th Anniversary Team.