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Earl Lloyd

Born: April 28, 1928
Birthplace: Alexandria, Va.
Basketball forward

On Oct. 30, 1950, Earl Lloyd became the first African-American to play in a National Basketball Association game. As a member of the Washington Capitols, he was one of three black players to enter the NBA that season—Charles Cooper of the Boston Celtics and Nat Clifton of the N.Y. Knicks were the other two. After Washington he spent six years with the Syracuse Nationals and then went on to the Detroit Pistons until his retirement in 1960. Over his career he averaged 8.4 points per game and 6.4 rebounds per game. In 1968–70 he became a Pistons assistant coach and chalked up another African-American first. The 1970–71 season saw him as Detroit's head coach (the second black head coach in the NBA) posting a 45–37 record. He then spent five years as a scout. Lloyd was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2003.


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