Mikan, George Lawrence

(redirected from George Mikan)
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Mikan, George Lawrence

(mĭk`ən), 1924–2005, American basketball player, b. Joliet, Ill. After leading De Paul Univ. to the 1945 National Invitational Tournament title and being named All-American three times (1944–46), he played (1948–54, 1955–56) for the Minneapolis Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA), and led them to five championships from 1949 to 1954. The first dominant "big man" in the NBA and a key figure in the rise of professional basketball, Mikan subsequently became a lawyer and was later (1967–69) the first commissioner of the rival American Basketball Association.

Bibliography

See biography by M. Schumacher (2007).

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At 6-foot-10, George Mikan was the first superstar of professional basketball -- the first big-man who could run the floor and dominate at the rim on both ends.
With George Mikan in the middle and Kundla the calm, steady hand directing the team, the Lakers won the 1949 championship in the BAA - the league that preceded the NBA - and NBA titles in 1950 and 1952-54, cementing the franchise's place as the league's first true dynasty.
Schayes, who played for the Syracuse National (a franchise that became the Philadelphia 76ers in 1963), played in the same (shot clock) era as Bill Russell, Elgin Baylor, Oscar Robertson, George Mikan, Bill Pettit, and Wilt Chamberlain, whom he later coached in Philadelphia, was described as "a bridge to modern basketball" by The New York Times.
Laska remembers shooting the ball over the backboard because he was so startled that Cousy had thrown a behind-his-back pass to him through the legs of DePaul center George Mikan.
In 1954 the Lakers won the last title of the George Mikan Era.
It would put Duncan's name alongside other greats such as Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson and George Mikan, three titans of the game who stood on top of the NBA mountain five times.
Legendary stars such as George Mikan, Bobby McDermott, Bill Tosheff, Harry Litwack, Joe Dean, and John Wooden will be featured in the collection.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Elgin Baylor, Wilt Chamberlain, Magic Johnson, George Mikan, Shaquille O'Neal, Jerry West and James Worthy, all on the NBA's 50th anniversary squad, spent a majority of their career, or a large part of it, in a Lakers uniform (we'll not count Karl Malone).
With the arrival of bigger and more mobile centers like George Mikan and later Wilt Chamberlain, the existing lane was rendered practically useless.
Reports of the Globetrotters winning 127 of 128 games in Hawaii, 103 straight, and 48 of 54, usually accompanied by a photo of Tatum "palming" two basketballs at once, were common in black papers, and articles detailing the Globetrotters' game with the Minneapolis Lakers, emphasizing the marquee match-up between Tatum and Lakers superstar George Mikan, appeared in all newspapers throughout the country.
The last month brought the deaths of a pair of those giants, golf writer Herbert Warren Wind and basketball star George Mikan, the first big man to have a real impact on his sport.