Served as envoy
- 2011 – India
George Gervin’s playing record speaks volumes. Only Wilt Chamberlain and Michael Jordan have won more league scoring titles than Gervin’s four, and he was the first guard ever to win three in a row. His career scoring average of 26.2 points per game is among the game’s best as is his combined NBA/ABA total of 26,595 points.
George “The Iceman” Gervin was born April 27, 1952 in Detroit, Michigan. Gervin, who began his career in the American Basketball Association (ABA) with the Virginia Squires, later played in the NBA for the San Antonio Spurs and Chicago Bulls. Gervin averaged at least 14 points per game in all 14 of his ABA and NBA seasons, and finished with an NBA career average of 26.2 points per game.
Nicknamed Iceman for his cool demeanor on the court, Gervin was primarily known for his scoring talents. He led teams at both Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Michigan and Long Beach State. After leaving college, Gervin signed with the Virginia Squires of the ABA. According to legend, Gervin made 22 of 25 three-point attempts at the tryout and was immediately signed.
His first three scoring titles were consecutive from 1978 to 1980 and his fourth came in 1982. In 1978, he narrowly edged David Thompson for the scoring title by seven hundredths of a point (27.22 to 27.15), overcoming Thompson’s historic 73 points on the last night of the season with his own 63 point night, including a record 33 points in the second quarter. Gervin earned five selections to the All-NBA First Team and appeared in nine straight NBA All-Star Games during his NBA career.
When he left the NBA, Gervin played for several years in Italy for Banco Roma during the 1986-87 season, and in the Spanish National Basketball League for TDK Manresa team. He averaged 25.5 points, 5 rebounds and 1.2 assists, and in his last match he scored 31 points and grabbed 15 rebounds to keep Manresa in the Spanish first division.
After his playing days were completed Gervin worked as a community relations representative for the Spurs until 1992, when Head Coach John Lucas made him an assistant. After two seasons on the bench, he returned to his position in the community relations department in 1994.
Gervin’s No. 44 jersey has been retired by the Spurs. And in 1996, Gervin enjoyed a banner year as he was named to the NBA 50th Anniversary All-Time Team and was also inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.