NBA Draft Slated for Monday


March 26,1961

St. Louis – – National Basketball Association club owners gather her Monday for their annual player draft, but pickings are slim indeed.

“This is one of the leanest years I can remember,” said Ben Kerber, owner of the St. Louis Hawks and one of the shrewdest judges of basketball talent in the business.

“We’ve done more scouting this year than ever before and the good pro prospects just aren’t there.”

Chicago the NBA’s ninth and newest franchise, get the first choice and is expected to select Walt Bellamy, Indiana’s fine 6-foot-11 center from New Bern, N.C. After Chicago, the draft order is New York, Cincinnati, Detroit, Los Angeles, Syracuse, Philadelphia, St. Louis and Boston based on won-lost records during the regular season.

The new club also get the first five picks of the second round plus the last one (No. 23). Chicago draft ninth in succeeding rounds, with the Knickerbockers picking first.

Source: Associated Press


Chicago Picks Walt Bellamy in NBA Draft

 March 28,1961

St. Louis – The field of senior college talent chiefly in super-tall players was supposed to be leanest in years at the annual National Basketball Association draft, but most coaches and owners came away smiling.

Indiana’s 6-foot-11 Olympic player, Walt Bellamy, was the No. 1 choice, and St. Bonaventure’s 6-foot-5 Tom Stith, a tremendous offensive player, was the second choice, as expected.

Then the NBA owners started reaching into the services, the amateur ranks and the Eastern League, for some talented players who won’t be under the pressure of their press clippings when they try to crack the NBA next season. Only 12 rookies made it this season.

It was obvious these “sleeper” picks were bringing the smiles Monday. Chicago the NBA’s ninth and newest club, chose Bellamy and was given the first five choices plus the last one in the second round. Coach Jim Pollard seemed pleased over his picks four of them 6-6 or over.

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