1950–51 Rochester Royals season

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1950–51 Rochester Royals season
First NBA Championship
Head coach Lester Harrison
Arena Edgerton Park Arena
Record 41–27 (.603)
Place Division: 2nd (Western)
Playoff finish NBA Champions

Stats @ Basketball-Reference.com
< 1949–50 1951–52 >

The 1950-51 NBA season was the Royals 5th season in the NBA. The Royals finished the season by winning their first NBA Championship. The Royals scored 84.6 points per game and allowed 81.7 points per game.[1] Rochester was led up front by Arnie Risen, a 6-9, 200-pound center nicknamed tilts, along with 6-5 Arnie Johnson and 6-7 Jack Coleman. The backcourt was manned by Bob Davies and Bobby Wanzer. Among the key reserves was a guard from City College of New York named William Red Holzman.[2]

Draft picks[edit]

Pick Player Position School/Club Team


Depth chart[edit]

Pos. Starter Bench Reserve Inactive
C Arnie Risen Joe McNamee
PF Arnie Johnson Paul Noel
SF Jack Coleman Bill Calhoun
SG Bob Davies Pep Saul
PG Bobby Wanzer Red Holzman

Regular season[edit]


Western Division W L PCT GB Home Road Neutral Div
x-Minneapolis Lakers 44 24 .647 - 29-3 12-21 3-0 24-12
x-Rochester Royals 41 27 .603 3 29-5 12-22 - 18-15
x-Fort Wayne Pistons 32 36 .471 12 27-7 5-27 0-2 18-6
x-Indianapolis Olympians 31 37 .456 13 19-12 10–24 2-1 15-20
Tri-Cities Blackhawks 25 43 .368 19 22-13 2–28 1-2 12-24

Season Schedule[edit]



West Division Semifinals[edit]

(2) Rochester Royals vs. (3) Fort Wayne Pistons: Royals win series 2-1

  • Game 1 @ Rochester: Rochester 110, Fort Wayne 81
  • Game 2 @ Fort Wayne: Fort Wayne 83, Rochester 78
  • Game 3 @ Rochester: Rochester 97, Fort Wayne 78

West Division Finals[edit]

(1) Minneapolis Lakers vs. (2) Rochester Royals: Royals win series 3-1

  • Game 1 @ Minneapolis: Minneapolis 76, Rochester 73
  • Game 2 @ Minneapolis: Rochester 70, Minneapolis 66
  • Game 3 @ Rochester: Rochester 83, Minneapolis 70
  • Game 3 @ Rochester: Rochester 80, Minneapolis 75

NBA Finals[edit]

The Royals took Game 1 easily, 92-65, as Risen and Wanzer recorded 24 and 19 points. Rochester won Game 2 99-84, behind 24 points from Davies and 28 rebounds from Coleman.[2] Three nights later, the finals shifted to the 69th Regiment Armory in New York, but the result was no different. The Royals defeated the Knicks 78-71 and took a 3-0 series lead, thanks to 27 points and 18 rebounds from Risen. The Knicks rebounded in Game 4 by a score of 79-73. The Knicks key player was Harry Gallatin who scored 22 points and 14 rebounds. Game 5 took place in Rochester and the Knicks won 92-89. Connie Simmons had 26 points; and then tied the series by taking Game 6 back in New York 80-73. Max Zaslofsky led the way with 23 points.[2] The seventh and deciding game was held on April 21 back in Rochester. The Royals jumped to an early 14-point lead, but the Knicks came back. With 44 seconds left and the score tied at 75, Davies was fouled by the Knicks’ Dick McGuire and sunk two free throws. Rochester would go on to win the seventh game and the NBA Championship. Davies finished the game with 20 points, and Risen scored 24 points and 13 rebounds in the deciding game.[2] Risen finished the series with averages of 21.7 points and 14.3 rebounds, Davies averaged 17 points and 5.3 assists, Wanzer 12.4 points and Coleman 13.1 rebounds. The Knicks remain the only time in NBA history a team has bounced back from a 3-0 deficit to force a Game 7.[2]

Game Date Home Team Result Road Team
Game 1 April 7 Rochester 92-65 New York
Game 2 April 8 Rochester 99-84 New York
Game 3 April 11 New York 71-78 Rochester
Game 4 April 13 New York 79-73 Rochester
Game 5 April 15 Rochester 89-92 New York
Game 6 April 18 New York 80-73 Rochester
Game 7 April 21 Rochester 79-75 New York


  • Won NBA Finals (4-3) over New York Knickerbockers

Player statistics[edit]

  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game


Bill Calhoun
Jack Coleman
Bob Davies
Red Holzman
Arnie Johnson
Joe McNamee
Ed Mikan
Paul Noel
Arnie Risen
Pep Saul
Bobby Wanzer


Bill Calhoun
Jack Coleman
Bob Davies
Red Holzman
Arnie Johnson
Joe McNamee
Paul Noel
Arnie Risen
Pep Saul
Bobby Wanzer

Awards and honors[edit]