Jo Jo White

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This article is about the former basketball player. For the Major League Baseball player, see Jo-Jo White.
Jo Jo White
USMC-090814-M-8345L-001.jpg
White during his Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame induction ceremony
No. 10, 12
Point guard
Personal information
Born (1946-11-16) November 16, 1946 (age 67)
St. Louis, Missouri
Nationality American
Listed height 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Listed weight 197 lb (89 kg)
Career information
High school McKinley (St. Louis, Missouri)
College Kansas (1965–1969)
NBA draft 1969 / Round: 1 / Pick: 9th overall
Selected by the Boston Celtics
Pro playing career 1969–1981
Career history
19691979 Boston Celtics
1979–1980 Golden State Warriors
1980–1981 Kansas City Kings
Career highlights and awards
Career statistics
Points 14,399 (17.2 ppg)
Assists 4,095 (4.9 apg)
Rebounds 3,345 (4.0 rpg)
Stats at Basketball-Reference.com

Joseph Henry "Jo Jo" White (born November 16, 1946) is an American former professional basketball player. As an amateur, he played for the University of Kansas Men's Basketball team and represented the U.S. Men's Basketball team during the 1968 Summer Olympics. As a professional, he is best known for his ten-year stint with the Boston Celtics of the NBA, where he led the team towards two NBA championships, played nine seasons, and set a franchise record of 488 consecutive games played.[1]

Early life and amateur career[edit]

White was born in St. Louis, Missouri, the son of a minister.[2] He played college basketball at the University of Kansas, entering the 1966 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament and losing a double overtime thriller to Texas Western, currently known as the University of Texas at El Paso, in the Midwest regional final (Texas Western went on to win the championship) in what would later be turned into the film Glory Road. White took and made the final shot in overtime, but was ruled out of bounds. He made the All-Big Eight team the three subsequent years and graduated with a degree in physical education.[3] He was voted by Associated Press to the 3rd team All-American in 1968 and 2nd team in 1969.[4]

After college, White played on the 1968 USA Olympic basketball team in Mexico City, Mexico. Although many future Basketball Hall of Fame players either declined to participate (e.g. Lew Alcindor, Elvin Hayes) or were not chosen (e.g. Pete Maravich, Calvin Murphy), the U.S. Men's team, led by White and Spencer Haywood went undefeated (9-0), beating Yugoslavia 65-50 in the title game.[5] This victory would prove to be the last in a streak of seven consecutive gold medals for the US Men's team.

Professional career[edit]

After the Olympics, White was drafted in 1969 in the first round (9th pick overall)[6] by the NBA's Boston Celtics, who at that time had just won their 11th championship in 13 years.[7] There was some reluctance during the time of the draft as White had a mandatory two-year military commitment.[8] Then Boston general manager, Red Auerbach, was able to shorten White's commitment and allow him to participate in the 1969–70 NBA season. White was also drafted by the Dallas Cowboys and the Cincinnati Reds.[3]

However, before White even reported to training camp, the Celtics' center and player-coach Bill Russell announced his retirement and cut ties to the organization.[9] Also, the team's long-time Shooting Guard Sam Jones would end his career, requiring White to replace those duties. Without the sudden departure of Russell and Jones, White would endure a rebuilding season where the franchise experience their first losing season (38-48)[10] since 1950[11] (the year before Red Auerbach was hired[12]). White made the All-NBA rookie team during the 1970

The Celtics got back on track by drafting Dave Cowens, trading for Paul Silas, retaining veteran John Havlicek, and hiring of coach Tommy Heinsohn. With White leading the attack from the point guard position, the team returned to its winning ways in 1971. He was an All-Star for seven straight years from 1971 through 1977, finishing in the top ten in the league in assists from 19731977. In 1974, White and the Celtics reached the 1974 NBA Finals. They would face the Milwaukee Bucks who were returning with their championship-winning core from the 1971 NBA Finals, including future Hall of Fame members Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Oscar Robertson. With the Bucks starting point guard, Lucius Allen, injured at the onset of the playoffs, White would lead a small, quick line-up (featuring undersized, All-Star Cowens at Center) towards the first Celtics championship in the Post-Russell era.[13] The following season, White led the Celtics in minutes in a season where they would finish 1st in NBA Atlantic Division with a 60-22 record but lost the Eastern Conference Finals.[14]

In 1976, White was part of a dominance Celtics squad which featured 5 veterans averaging double-digit scoring.[15] During the playoffs, White led the Celtics to the NBA championship and was a starring player in what is often referred to as "the greatest game ever played"[16][17][18][19] in NBA history. In the triple overtime win against the Phoenix Suns in game 5 of those finals, White was the game's high scorer with 33 points, had a game high 9 assists, leading the Celtics to a 128-126 win. Logging 60 minutes of play time, only the Suns' Garfield Heard (61) played more minutes. White was named the most valuable player of the 1976 NBA Finals. White went on to become one of professional basketball's first "iron men", playing in all 82 games for five consecutive seasons during the 1970s and setting a franchise record of 488 consecutive games played. With the end of the streak, the aging Celtics became a less effective squad and followed their championship with an exit from playoff semifinals in 1977 and then two losing seasons.

Unable to retain his all-star form, White was traded by the Celtics to the Golden State Warriors in the middle1979, and retired in 1981, with the Kansas City Kings. He returned to the Jayhawks as an assistant coach from 1982–83. In 1987 at the age of 41, White attempted a professional comeback as a player-assistant coach with the Topeka Sizzlers of the Continental Basketball Association.[20]

Legacy[edit]

On Friday, April 9, 1982, his number 10 was hung from the rafters at the Boston Garden. He is in currently in the top 100 in the NBA for career total field goals made, field goals attempted, assists, free throw percentage, minutes per game, and defensive rating. He made the All-NBA Second Team in the 1974–75 and 1976–77 NBA seasons. White continues to be involved in basketball and is currently director of special projects and community relations with the Celtics, while continuing to attend most home games.

His exclusion from the Basketball Hall of Fame is a common topic when discussing players who have long been eligible but have not been inducted. According to Basketball Reference, White has the highest calculated probability of induction among eligible candidates,[21] yet ranks 156th in Win Shares among 2014 eligible candidates.[22] He and Cedric Maxwell are the only NBA Finals MVP's, out of that the 19 that are eligible, to not be inducted. NBA.com lists White as an "NBA Hall of Famer" in his player profile.

In 1997, he was inducted into the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame.[23] He is was inducted in the Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame with the class of 2009.[24] He also joined the 2013 class of the St. Louis Sports Hall of Fame.[25]

Personal[edit]

White was born with six older brothers and sisters.

White has married twice, currently to Deborah White and previously to Estelle Bowser.[26]

Chris Chambliss is a cousin of White's.[27]

Additionally, he appeared in two movies with diminutive roles: 1980's Inside Moves and 2007's The Game Plan, in which his son, actor Brian J. White, also starred.[28]

In 2010, White underwent a procedure to remove a tumor on the back of his brain, which he has since mostly recovered.[29] During recovery, his attorney authored a biography "Make it Count" that was released in 2012.[30]

Career statistics[edit]

Collegiate career[edit]

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
1965-66 Kansas 9 .393 .538 7.6 11.3
1966-67 Kansas 27 .409 .819 5.6 14.8
1967-68 Kansas 30 .407 .722 3.6 15.3
1968-69 Kansas 18 .469 .734 4.7 18.1
Career Kansas 84 .420 .733 4.9 15.3

[31]

NBA Regular season[edit]

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
1969-70 BOS 60 22.1 .452 .822 2.8 2.4 12.2
1970-71 ★ BOS 75 37.2 .464 .799 5.0 4.8 21.3
1971-72 ★ BOS 79 41.3 .431 .831 5.6 5.3 23.1
1972-73 ★ BOS 82 39.6 .431 .781 5.0 6.1 19.7
1973-74 ★† BOS 82 39.5 .449 .837 4.3 5.5 1.3 0.3 18.1
1974-75 ★ BOS 82 39.3 .457 .834 3.8 5.6 1.6 0.2 18.3
1975-76 ★† BOS 82 39.7 .449 .838 3.8 5.4 1.3 0.2 18.9
1976-77 ★ BOS 82 40.6 .429 .869 4.7 6.0 1.4 0.3 19.6
1977-78 BOS 46 35.7 .419 .858 3.9 4.5 1.1 0.2 14.8
1978-79 BOS 47 31.0 .428 .888 2.7 4.6 1.1 0.1 12.5
1978-79 GSW 29 30.4 .475 .870 2.5 4.6 0.9 0.1 12.3
1979-80 GSW 78 26.3 .476 .851 2.3 3.1 1.1 0.2 9.9
1980-81 KCK 13 18.2 .439 .611 1.6 2.8 0.8 0.1 6.4
Career 837 35.8 .444 .834 4.0 4.9 1.3 0.2 17.2

[32]

NBA Playoffs[edit]

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
1971-72 BOS 11 39.3 .495 .833 5.4 5.3 23.5
1972-73 BOS 13 44.8 .450 .907 4.2 6.4 24.5
1973-74 † BOS 18 42.5 .426 .739 4.2 5.4 0.8 0.1 16.6
1974-75 BOS 11 42.0 .441 .818 4.5 5.7 1.0 0.4 20.6
1975-76 † BOS 18 43.9 .445 .821 3.9 5.4 1.3 0.1 22.7
1976-77 BOS 9 43.9 .453 .848 4.3 5.8 1.6 0.0 23.3
Career 80 42.9 .449 .828 4.4 5.7 1.1 0.1 21.5

[32]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.nba.com/celtics/history/legends/jo-jo-white.html
  2. ^ Sepia (Sepia Pub. Corp.) 27 (1-6): 48. 1978. 
  3. ^ a b [1]
  4. ^ http://www.basketball-reference.com/awards/all_america.html
  5. ^ http://hemeroteca.mundodeportivo.com/preview/1968/10/24/pagina-10/1426202/pdf.html
  6. ^ http://www.basketball-reference.com/draft/NBA_1969.html#
  7. ^ http://www.nba.com/history/nba-season-recaps/
  8. ^ http://www.celtic-nation.com/interviews/jojo_white/jojo_white_page1.htm
  9. ^ Taylor, John (2005). The Rivalry: Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain, and the Golden Age of Basketball. New York City: Random House. pp. 358–359. ISBN 1-4000-6114-8. 
  10. ^ http://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/BOS/1970.html
  11. ^ http://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/BOS/1950.html
  12. ^ Hilton,Lisette Auerbach's Celtics played as a team, espn.go.com/classic. Retrieved August 28, 2009.
  13. ^ http://www.nba.com/history/finals/19731974.html
  14. ^ http://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/BOS/1975.html
  15. ^ http://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/BOS/1976.html
  16. ^ http://www.nba.com/suns/history/greatestgame_index.html
  17. ^ "Greatest Game Ever Played | Celtics.com - The official website of the Boston Celtics". Nba.com. 1976-06-04. Retrieved 2012-08-08. 
  18. ^ http://boston.sportsthenandnow.com/2011/06/03/35-years-ago-the-celtics-and-the-suns-play-the-greatest-nba-finals-game-ever-played/
  19. ^ http://bleacherreport.com/articles/82496-the-phoenix-suns-the-unluckiest-franchise-in-professional-sports
  20. ^ "Jo Jo White Makes a Return at 41 With a Helping Hand as His Goal". The New York Times. 1987-11-18. 
  21. ^ [2]
  22. ^ [3]
  23. ^ [4]
  24. ^ [5]
  25. ^ [6]
  26. ^ http://books.google.com/books?id=7Bj5tQv8ugsC&lpg=PA122&ots=IEb91FKDdV&dq=white%20estelle%20bowser%20%22make%20it%20count%22&pg=PA122#v=onepage&q=white%20estelle%20bowser%20%22make%20it%20count%22&f=false
  27. ^ Flanagan, Jeffrey (1994-09-29). "List grows to four Chambliss is candidate for the Royals' managerial job". The Kansas City Star. p. D1. Retrieved August 2013.  (subscription required)
  28. ^ http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0924973/
  29. ^ http://www.masslive.com/celtics/index.ssf/2013/11/boston_celtics_great_jojo_whit_1.html
  30. ^ https://sports.yahoo.com/news/nba--celtics-great-jojo-white-makes-determined-recovery-from-brain-surgery-081353120.html.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  31. ^ http://www.sports-reference.com/cbb/players/jo-jo-white-1.html
  32. ^ a b http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/w/whitejo01.html

External links[edit]