Suns legend Hawkins dead at 75


Connie Hawkins, a Basketball Hall of Fame forward who starred for the Harlem Globetrotters as well as the NBA Phoenix Suns, has died aged 75, the Suns announced on Saturday.

"The Hawk" launched his career on the famed New York outdoor courts of Rucker Park and led two unbeaten high school teams to titles.

Hawkins was linked to a college basketball gambling scandal in 1961 but was never arrested or indicted. Despite that, he was denied a place at top US college teams or in the NBA.

He spent three years with the Globetrotters and four more with minor-league basketball clubs before reaching a settlement with the NBA in 1969 that saw him join the expansion Suns.

His flamboyant style of play, acrobatic leaps and slam dunks matching artistry and flair with skill and athleticism, made him a pioneer of the style used by such players as Michael Jordan that popularized the sport worldwide.

"'The Hawk' revolutionized the game and remains to this day an icon of the sport and one of basketball's great innovators," a statement from the Suns said. "His unique combination of size, grace and athleticism was well ahead of its time and his signature style of play is now a hallmark of the modern game."


Knee injuries limited Hawkins to only seven NBA campaigns but he averaged 18.7 points, 8.8 rebounds and 4.1 assists a game for the Suns, Los Angeles Lakers and Atlanta Hawks.

Hawkins was the first superstar sports figure in Phoenix, taking a new club and making it a contender. His jersey number, 42, was retired by the Suns and he was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1992.

"Connie's passion for the game was only matched by his desire to give back to the Phoenix community, a role which he played proudly as a Suns community ambassador, spreading warmth and kindness to everyone he encountered," the team statement said.

"We will miss Hawk dearly... we mourn the passing of a true Suns legend."

Next Story
Bowled out! Why our cricket team was run out of world top order

Kenya failed to capitalise on the World Cup success and rather than maintaining an upward trend, the standards took a nosedive

Mourinho praises midfielder in Brighton win backs youngster to bounce after playing “worst game”

Man United progressed to the semi-finals of the competition with a 2-0 victory at Old Trafford

Gor Mahia ready to shock Esperance

Gor Mahia seems to have an uphill task of making the impossible possible in Rades, but the scoreless result in Machakos left the tie wide open

Mourinho tears into Man United players after dealing with the fans

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho took aim at his players after a lacklustre performance in their 2-0 FA Cup win over Brighton and Hove Albion.

Wananchi Group and Eurobonde from the Standard Chartered Staff category win fully funded trip to home of Liverpool

Wananchi Group and Eurobonde from the Staff category are winners of 7th edition of Standard Chartered Bank Road to Anfield football tournament

Tottenham star Dele Alli opens up on diving accusations

Then there is the controversy of being labelled a cheat by some fans.

More Stories
Champs Laiser Hill, St Anthony’s retain titles

National boys’ basketball and hockey champions Laiser Hill and St Anthony’s Boys Kitale retained the regional titles in 2018.

NBA: Russell Westbrook reaches triple ton as Thunder strikes Hawks

Russell Westbrook snared the 100th triple-double of his career on Tuesday as the Oklahoma City Thunder closed in on a playoff berth with a 119-107

Schools: Kaya Tiwi reign supreme in county games

Kaya Tiwi School won both the boys and girls' basketball titles during the Kwale County Secondary Schools Term One Games at Mazera Boys High School at

Big shots in bruising battle

Big shots in chase for county slots

Champs Kaya Tiwi in ‘group of death’

Champs Kaya Tiwi in ‘group of death’

KUSA: Zetech students raid Co-operative’s safe

Zetech reigned supreme over Co-operative University in a Kenya Universities Sports Association basketball match at the University of Nairobi over the

College Games: KISE retain men and women goalball titles

Thogoto Teachers Training College yesterday retained their Nairobi Region women’s basketball title on the final day of this year’s Nairobi Region Teac

NBA great Kobe Bryant scoops Oscars award for the Best Animated short film

Kobe Bryant wins prestigious Oscars award for the Best Animated Short film.

Basketball: Kenya Ports Authority raid clubs for new players

There is little time to rest for newly crowned national men's basketball champions Kenya Ports Authority (KPA).

Off to flying start: Kaya Tiwi shrug off opponents to top Matuga Sub County games

Off to flying start: Kaya Tiwi shrug off opponents to top Matuga Sub County games