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Bill Russell, a superior athlete and civil rights activist

Bill Russell had more rings than he had fingers, and a cluster of awards to fill the walls of his entire house. But awards and statistics tell only a portion of this NBA Hall of Famer, who died peacefully Sunday, according to a statement from his family. He was 88. 

One line in the statement from his family spoke volumes about his achievements: he was the most prolific winner in American sports history. They were making reference to Russell’s incomparable 11 NBA titles with the Boston Celtics, eight of them consecutively, thereby surpassing the New York Yankees’ five straight World Series championships; and the Montreal Canadiens’ five straight Stanley Cup titles.

 Few could speak with absolute authority of Russell’s prowess like Red Auerbach, his coach and mentor. For him Russell was “the single most devastating force in the history of the game.” There is a long list of numbers to back up this comment, including five-time NBA MVP and...

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NBA creates annual Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Award

nba social justice sports May 13, 2021

NEW YORK — The NBA today announced the creation of the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion award, a new annual honor that will recognize a current NBA player for pursuing social justice and upholding the league’s decades-long values of equality, respect and inclusion.

The award is named after six-time NBA champion and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.  The recipient will have advanced Abdul-Jabbar’s mission to drive change and inspired others to reflect on injustice and take collective action in their communities over the previous year.

The winner of the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion honor will select an organization to receive a $100,000 contribution on his behalf.  The other four finalists will each select an organization to receive a $25,000 contribution.

“I’m honored and grateful to be associated with this award that will recognize the dedicated and selfless people fighting to...

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