Philadelphia 76ers

This Date in NBA History (Nov. 13): Darryl Dawkins shatters the backboard with monster dunk

On Nov. 13, 1979, Darryl Dawkins, aka Chocolate Thunder, lived up to his nickname by delivering one of the most iconic NBA moments, shattering the backboard on a dunk attempt.

Midway through the Philadelphia 76ers' 110-103 loss to Kansas City at the Municipal Auditorium, Dawkins leaped over Kansas City Kings forward Bill Robinzine, shattering the backboard with a monster dunk, which he later named "The Chocolate-Thunder-Flying, Robinzine-Crying, Teeth-Shaking, Glass-Breaking, Rump-Roasting, Bun-Toasting, Wham-Bam, Glass-Breaker-I-Am-Jam."

Just a few weeks later, Dawkins did it again, bringing down the backboard at the Philadelphia Spectrum, which resulted in NBA Commissioner Larry O'Brien saying he would fine Dawkins $5,000 and suspend him every time he broke a backboard.

The league quickly installed shatter-proof backboards with breakaway rims in every arena.

"The first one was an accident, but I wanted to see if I could do it again when I got back to Philadelphia," Dawkins told The New York Times in 2004. "All the fans were hollering, 'You've got to do one for the home crowd,' so I went ahead and brought it down. Everybody was in awe. Fans were running out grabbing the glass. People's hands were bleeding. I felt like I was doing something no other human could do.

''Everybody says a dunk is only two points, but it gets your team hyped, gets the crowd all excited and takes the starch out of other teams, especially when you dunk on somebody,'' Dawkins said. ''And I always dunked on somebody.''

Other notable events on Nov. 13

  • In 1990, Los Angeles Lakers Magic Johnson became just the second guard in NBA history to reach 9,000 career assists (joining Oscar Robertson) in a 112-111 loss to Phoenix at the Great Western Forum. Utah Jazz point guard John Stockton later surpassed them both in career assists and sits at the top of the all-time list with 15,806. To date, only nine players in NBA history have reached the 9,000 assist mark.
  • In 1998, William "Red" Holzman, who coached the New York Knicks to their only two NBA championships in 1970 and 1973, died at age 78.
  • In 1999, the Cleveland Cavaliers honoured former All-Star point guard Mark Price by retiring his #25 jersey.
  • In 2010, Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love recorded 31 points and 31 rebounds in a 112-103 win over the New York Knicks. It was the first 30-30 game in 28 years, since Moses Malone had 32 points and 38 rebounds for Houston against Seattle in 1982.

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