The NBA world is saddened after the death of Los Angeles Lakers legend Elgin Baylor. Baylor was considered the greatest small forward of all time during his prime and was one of the most dominant players to ever live.
He was also one of the unluckiest players ever, as he had to coexist with Bill Russell's Boston Celtics and could never win an NBA Championship. In fact, the Lakers won the ring the very same season he was forced to retire with an injury.
That's perhaps why younger fans don't often talk about Baylor when addressing the all-time greats, even though he was a walking bucket, a dominant rebounder on both ends of the floor, and even a solid defender.
Kobe Bryant Once Said Elgin Baylor Was Like Dr. J & Michael Jordan
And if you were to ask Kobe Bryant about Elgin Baylor and the way he played the game, he'd say that he was a combination of Julius 'Dr. J' Erving and Michael Jordan because of the way he could finish at the rim at will:
“Everything I heard about Elgin, everything I read about Elgin, was that he was Dr. J and Michael Jordan before Dr. J. & Michael Jordan. He gets to the basket and does all these incredible things. But I want to know how to get to the basket. It’s cool to be able to do all those fancy things, but how did you get there?… He had great footwork, very explosive first step and very strong. And we forget his size, how big he was and how strong he was. So once he did that shoulder and got by players, it was basically… at his mercy," the Black Mamba said in an interview in 2010.
It's been a tough couple of years for the Los Angeles Lakers as they've now lost two of their greatest players in franchise history. At least, we can be sure that they're both hooping right now in a better place.