Tuesday
Jul072009

Earl F. Lloyd

Enshrined 2003
Alexandria, VA
Born: April 3, 1928

Biography

On the night of October 31, 1950, Earl Lloyd, a forward with the Washington Capitols, became the first African-American to play in a NBA game. From that moment, Lloyd would forever change how African-Americans would integrate into professional basketball. Lloyd's ability to conduct himself with grace, style and professionalism both on-and-off court during an era of segregation became the model for others to follow. Lloyd was a two-time All-America selection at West Virginia State where he helped lead his school to an undefeated 30-0 season in 1947-48, a Conference championship and an unofficial "national champions" status as voted by several black newspapers. The 6-foot-8 Lloyd enjoyed a solid NBA career with the Capitols, Syracuse Nationals and Detroit Pistons. A rugged power forward who became a starter on Syracuse's NBA championship team in 1955, Lloyd was known for his defensive play on the opponent's top scorer, rugged rebounding and effective offensive game.

Career Highlights

Named CIAA "Player of the Decade" for the 1940s
NAIA Silver and Golden Anniversary Teams
Member of NBA Championship Team, 1955
First African-American bench coach, 1968