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Although he was an All-American in 1962, Havlicek was overshadowed at Ohio State by Jerry Lucas, a three-time All-American center. Lucas and Havlicek led Ohio State into three straight NCAA tournament finals, winning in 1960 and losing to the University of Cincinnati in both 1961 and 1962.
Drafted by the Boston Celtics, came off the bench as either a guard or a forward to add instant offense. He was quick and clever around the basket and could score from the 18- to 20-foot range with his unusual jump shot, christened the "leaping leaner" by Celtics announcer Johnny Most. Instead of leaping vertically, Havlicek jumped up and forward, inclining his body toward the basket as he shot.
He played for six championship teams in his first seven seasons, went through a few years when the Celtics were down, and then played for two more championship teams before retiring after the 1977-78 season. He was named most valuable player in the 1974 playoffs.
Havlicek could score--he averaged 28.9 points a game in 1968-69 and was the first NBA player to score 1,000 or more points for 16 consecutive seasons--but he was also a fine defensive player, named to the NBA all-defensive team eight times.
In his 16 seasons, Havlicek played 1,270 regular season games and scored 26,395 points, an average of 20.8 per game. He had 8,007 rebounds and 6,114 assists.
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