1967–68 Seattle SuperSonics season

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1967–68 Seattle SuperSonics season
Head coach Al Bianchi
General manager Don Richman
Arena Seattle Center Coliseum
Results
Record 23–59 (.280)
Place Division: 5th (Western)
Playoff finish Did not qualify

Stats @ Basketball-Reference.com
Local media
Television KTNT-TV
Radio KOMO
1968–69 >

The 1967–68 Seattle SuperSonics season was the inaugural season for the expansion Seattle SuperSonics franchise in the National Basketball Association. The team's official arena was the Seattle Center Coliseum.

With a team built in its majority from the 1967 expansion draft featuring Walt Hazzard and six-year veteran Tom Meschery,[1] and with Al Bianchi at the head coach position, the Sonics finished the season with a 23–59 record and fifth place in the Western Division, six games behind the Chicago Bulls, and couldn't make it to the playoffs.

Draft picks[edit]

The twelve-man roster for the 1967–68 season consisted of three rookies from the 1967 NBA Draft and nine players from the expansion draft. Al Bianchi's choice of player-coach Richie Guerin from the St. Louis Hawks came as a surprise to most, since Guerin had already announced his retirement, and thus did not play for the Sonics.[2] He would return for the 1968–69 season to play for the relocated Atlanta Hawks after Seattle traded him in the offseason. Selecting Tom Meschery from the San Francisco Warriors was made possible after the Warriors unprotected him for the draft, after Meschery informed the San Francisco front office that he desired to join the Peace Corps. Seattle's offer, however, was accepted by Meschery.[3] The SuperSonics planned to sign former Seattle University player Charlie Williams before the start of the regular season, but league rules prohibited the Seattle franchise to offer him a contract, since Williams was expelled from college after a point shaving scandal.[4][5]

Round Pick Player Position Nationality College
1 6 Al Tucker SF  United States Oklahoma Baptist
2 19 Bob Rule C / PF  United States Colorado State
5 54 Plummer Lott SF / SG  United States Seattle

Roster[edit]

1967–68 Seattle SuperSonics roster
Players Coaches
Pos. No. Name Height Weight DOB (YYYY-MM-DD) From
PG 42 Hazzard, Walt 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) 185 lb (84 kg) 1942–04–15 UCLA
F/C 10 Akin, Henry 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 225 lb (102 kg) 1944–07–31 Morehead State
SG 11 Kron, Tommy 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1943–02–28 Kentucky
SF 43 Lott, Plummer 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1945–12–11 Seattle
PF 14 Meschery, Tom 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 215 lb (98 kg) 1938–10–26 Saint Mary's
F/C 41 Murrey, Dorie 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 215 lb (98 kg) 1943–09–07 Detroit
F/C 24 Olsen, Bud 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1940–07–25 Louisville
F/C 45 Rule, Bob 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1944–06–29 Colorado State
SG 44 Thorn, Rod 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 195 lb (88 kg) 1941–05–23 West Virginia
SF 33 Tucker, Al 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1943–02–24 Oklahoma Baptist
PG 12 Weiss, Bob 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) 180 lb (82 kg) 1942–05–07 Penn State
C 15 Wilson, George 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 225 lb (102 kg) 1942–05–09 Cincinnati
Head coach

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (DP) Unsigned draft pick
  • (FA) Free agent
  • (S) Suspended
  • Injured Injured

Regular season[edit]

Tom Meschery and Bob Rule of the Seattle SuperSonics going up against Wilt Chamberlain and the Philadelphia 76ers during the NBA's 1967-68 season.

Seattle kicked off the regular season with a game against the San Francisco Warriors on October 13 at the Cow Palace, where they fell 114–116.[6] Walt Hazzard had a high scoring debut, leading the Sonics' offense with 30 points, followed by Tom Meschery with 26.[7] After a week off, the Sonics played in consecutive days against the other expansion franchise, the San Diego Rockets, splitting the series and thus winning their first regular season game in franchise history.[8] After two streaks of four and eight straight losses,[8] the Sonics found themselves quickly near the bottom of the Western Division by the end of the first four weeks of competition.[9] A few surprising results stood out, including their only victory[8] against Bill Russell's Boston Celtics in a double-header in Philadelphia,[10] with the Celtics trailing by as much as 44 points after the first half,[11] and an outstanding performance by rookie Bob Rule, with 47 points in a victory against the Los Angeles Lakers.[12] On the other hand, the SuperSonics were on the losing end of two NBA scoring records. First, in December with a 122–160 loss against defending champions Philadelphia 76ers, that set a new NBA record for most points by a team in a quarter[13] and a 123–154 loss against the Lakers on January that tied a franchise record for Los Angeles for most points in a game.[14] With six games left in the regular season the Sonics were behind two games from the Chicago Bulls in a last effort to obtain a berth in the playoffs,[15] But in spite of defeating the Bulls in two of those six games,[8] Chicago managed to pull away with the fourth place in the Western Division and the last spot in the playoff race, six games above the Sonics.[16]

The SuperSonics registered an attendance of 202,263 during the regular season, the sixth best in the league in that regard.[17] Walt Hazzard was selected to represent the West in the 1968 NBA All-Star Game[18] and Bob Rule and Al Tucker were selected to the NBA All-Rookie First Team.[19]

Season standings[edit]

Western Division W L PCT GB Home Road Neutral Div
x-St. Louis Hawks 56 26 .683 25–7 22–13 9–6 31–9
x-Los Angeles Lakers 52 30 .634 4 30–11 18–19 4–0 28–12
x-San Francisco Warriors 43 39 .524 13 27–14 16–23 0–2 24–16
x-Chicago Bulls 29 53 .354 27 11–22 12–24 6–7 11–29
Seattle SuperSonics 23 59 .280 33 10–21 7–24 6–14 15–25
San Diego Rockets 15 67 .183 41 8–33 4–26 3–8 11–29


Record vs. opponents[edit]

1967–68 NBA records
Team BAL BOS CHI CIN DET LAL NYK PHI SDR SFW SEA STL
Baltimore 3–5 2–5 5–3 4–4 3–4 3–5 0–8 7–0 2–5 5–2 2–5
Boston 5–3 5–2 3–5 6–2 4–3 6–2 4–4 7–0 4–3 6–1 4–3
Chicago 5–2 2–5 5–2 3–4 1–7 2–5 1–6 4–4 2–6 3–5 1–7
Cincinnati 3–5 5–3 2–5 4–4 1–6 3–5 3–5 7–0 4–3 6–1 1–6
Detroit 4–4 2–6 4–3 4–4 2–5 4–4 1–7 5–2 4–3 6–1 4–3
Los Angeles 4–3 3–4 7–1 6–1 5–2 4–3 2–5 7–1 4–4 4–4 6–2
New York 5–3 2–6 5–2 5–3 4–4 3–4 3–5 6–1 5–2 4–3 1–6
Philadelphia 8–0 4–4 6–1 5–3 7–1 5–2 5–3 6–1 4–3 7–0 5–2
San Diego 0–7 0–7 4–4 0–7 2–5 1–7 1–6 1–6 2–6 3–5 1–7
San Francisco 5–2 3–4 6–2 3–4 3–4 4–4 2–5 3–4 6–2 7–1 1–7
Seattle 2–5 1–6 5–3 1–6 1–6 4–4 3–4 0–7 5–3 1–7 0–8
St. Louis 5–2 3–4 7–1 6–1 3–4 2–6 6–1 2–5 7–1 7–1 8–0

Game log[edit]

1967–68 game log
Total: 23–59 (Home: 10–21; Road: 7–23; Neutral: 6–15)
1967–68 season schedule

Player statistics[edit]

Legend
  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
Player GP GS MPG FG% 3FG% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
Henry Akin 36 7.2 .336 .645 1.6 .4 3.1
Walt Hazzard 79 33.7 .441 .774 4.2 6.2 24.0
Tommy Kron 76 23.6 .396 .790 4.7 3.7 9.7
Plummer Lott 44 10.9 .311 .613 2.1 .8 2.5
Tom Meschery 82 34.8 .469 .707 10.2 2.4 14.5
Dorie Murrey 81 18.4 .436 .689 7.4 .8 7.3
Bud Olsen 73 12.3 .456 .274 2.8 1.0 3.8
Bud Olsen 73 12.3 .456 .274 2.8 1.0 3.8
Bob Rule 82 29.6 .489 .658 9.5 1.2 18.1
Rod Thorn 66 25.3 .451 .737 4.0 3.5 15.2
Al Tucker 81 29.2 .442 .707 7.5 1.4 13.1
Bob Weiss 82 19.7 .430 .839 1.8 4.2 9.8
George Wilson 77 16.1 .359 .703 6.1 .7 6.1

Awards and records[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Associated Press (May 4, 1967). Meschery Going to Seattle, The Palm Beach Post. Retrieved June 22, 2012.
  2. ^ "Seattle Makes Sure Guerin Stays Retired". The Free Lance–Star. Associated Press. May 2, 1967. Retrieved October 25, 2011. 
  3. ^ United Press International (May 4, 1967). Meschery signs to play with Sonics, The Bulletin. Retrieved June 22, 2012.
  4. ^ Associated Press (September 2, 1967). Sonics Lose Sweet Charlie, The Spokesman-Review. Retrieved June 22, 2012.
  5. ^ United Press International (September 1, 1967) Williams Says Ruling Wrecked Hopes of Pro Basketball Play, The Modesto Bee. Retrieved June 22, 2012.
  6. ^ Associated Press (October 14, 1967). Oaks Win in ABA Debut; Warriors Trounce Seattle, The Portsmouth Times. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  7. ^ Seattle SuperSonics at San Francisco Warriors Box Score, October 13, 1967. Basketball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  8. ^ a b c d 1967–68 Seattle SuperSonics Schedule and Results. Basketball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  9. ^ United Press International (November 15, 1967). Coaches of Royals and Bulls Having It Tough, The Dispatch. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  10. ^ Ralph Bernstein, Associated Press (November 24, 1967). You Had to See It to Know It Wasn't a Joke, Lewiston Evening Journal. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  11. ^ Seattle SuperSonics vs Boston Celtics Box Score, November 23, 1967. Basketball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  12. ^ United Press International (November 22, 1967). Rule Scores 47 as Seattle Halts Los Angeles Lakers, The Beaver County Times. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  13. ^ Associated Press (December 21, 1967). Sonics Pounded–Mightily, Ellensburg Daily Record. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  14. ^ United Press International (January 22, 1968). Baylor & West Set Scoring Record As Lakers Dump Sonics, The Bryan Times. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  15. ^ Associated Press (March 12, 1968). Bulls Nearing Playoff Spot, Spokane Daily Chronicle. Retrieved June 24, 2012.
  16. ^ Bulls Clinch Playoff Spot With Victory, The Beaver County Times. March 14, 1968. Retrieved June 24, 2012.
  17. ^ 1967–68 Seattle SuperSonics Roster and Statistics. Basketball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
  18. ^ Associated Press (January 23, 1968). West Stars—Lost Their Glitter?, Meriden Journal. Retrieved June 24, 2012.
  19. ^ Monroe Leads All-Rookie Five, The Washington Afro American. April 9, 1968. Retrieved June 24, 2012.