Oscar “Ossie” Schectman, the former New York Knicks guard who scored the first basket in NBA history nearly seven decades ago, died Tuesday. He was 94.
Schectman’s son Peter confirmed his father’s death, which was also announced by the Knicks. Peter Schectman said his father did not have a prolonged illness and succumbed after developing complications related to respiratory failure.
“Ossie Schectman was a true NBA pioneer,” NBA Commissioner David Stern said, adding that scoring the league’s first basket “placed him permanently in the annals of NBA history.”
Schectman scored the opening basket of a game in what was then known as the BAA on Nov. 1, 1946 for the Knicks against the Toronto Huskies, a layup after cutting down the centre of the lane. The Knicks wound up winning that game at Toronto’s Maple Leaf Gardens 68-66, and Schectman went on to average 8.1 points that season, his only…
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