RIP Bill Walton

Bill Walton, a two-time NBA champ and Hall of Famer who later became a legendary announcer, died Monday after a battle with cancer, the NBA announced. He was 71 years old. Walton won two national championships under John Wooden at UCLA and was the No. 1 overall pick by the Potland Trail Blazers in the 1974 NBA draft. He led Portland to a NBA title in 1977 and was later the sixth man for the 1986 Boston Celtics team that won the championship.

If you weren’t an 80’s basketball fan, you’d have to read the chapter of Bill Simmons’s book on basketball devoted to his pilgrimage to Bill Walton’s house and subsequent interview of the man to understand what a unique athlete, and unique individual, he was.