George Mikan

George Mikan is considered to be the first great big man in the game, his Lakers are considered to be the first basketball dynasty. In the 1947-48 NBL season, Mikan donned his trademark number 99 Minneapolis Lakers jersey for the first time and joined high-flying Jim "The Kangaroo Kid" and fellow wing man Vern Mikkelsen to form one of the first great frontlines of professional basketball. They won the NBL Finals that year 3-1 against the Rochester Royals, Mikan averaged 27.5 PPG. After the 1948 season was over the Minneapolis Lakers, Rochester Royals, Fort Wayne Zollner Pistons and Indianapolis Kautskys left the NBL and joined the BAA who had big name teams already such as the New York Knicks, Boston Celtics, Philadelphia Warriors and Chicago Stags. In the 1948-49 BAA season, Mikan scored an unbelievable 28.3 points per game accompanied by 3.6 assist per game, scoring one-third of the Lakers point total and winning the scoring title by a huge margin. In 1949 the Lakers made it to the BAA Finals, where Mikan's team played against the Washington Capitols, coached by Red Auerbach. The Lakers quickly took a 3-0 edge, but then, Mikan broke his wrist in Game 4. The Capitols escaped with the win, and also won Game 5, despite Mikan scoring 22 points with his hand in a cast. However, in Game 6, the Lakers convincingly won 77-56 and won the BAA championship. In that playoffs series, Mikan averaged an incredible 30.3 points per game, despite playing half the series with a broken hand. After that season the BAA and NBL merged to form the NBA. In the 1949 season Mikan helped the Lakers win the first ever NBA championship. In the 1950 season they started to keep track of rebounds and Mikan finished second in the league with 14.1 per game, he lead the league in scoring with 28.4 points per game. It was not the only time he lead the NBA in scoring, he did it many times. There was once a game when the Fort Wayne Pistons played against his Lakers, the Pistons took a 19-18 lead. Afraid that Mikan would mount a comeback if he got the ball, the Pistons passed the ball around without any attempt to score a basket. With no shot clock invented yet to force them into offense, the score stayed 19-18 to make it the lowest-scoring NBA game of all time. So, in some sense, Mikan was indirectly responsible for the shot clock that came four years later. As a side note, Mikan scored 15 of the Lakers' 18 points, thus scoring 83.3% of his team's points, setting an NBA all-time record which will be probably never be broken.