Paul Hoffman (basketball)

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Paul Hoffman
Personal information
Born(1925-05-05)May 5, 1925
DiedNovember 12, 1998(1998-11-12) (aged 73)
Baltimore, Maryland
Listed height6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Listed weight195 lb (88 kg)
Career information
High schoolJasper (Jasper, Indiana)
CollegePurdue (1943–1947)
BAA draft1947 / Round: 5 / Pick: 42nd overall
Selected by the Toronto Huskies
Playing career1947–1955
PositionGuard / Forward
Number32, 11, 12, 14
Career history
19471954Baltimore Bullets
1954–1955New York Knicks
1955Philadelphia Warriors
Career highlights and awards
Career BAA and NBA statistics
Points3,234 (10.2 ppg)
Rebounds1,129 (5.1 rpg)
Assists911 (2.9 apg)
Stats at

Paul James Hoffman (May 5, 1925 – November 12, 1998)[1] was an American professional basketball player.

High school and college career[edit]

Hoffman, a 6'2" guard/forward, attended Jasper High School in Jasper, Indiana from 1939 to 1943;[2] his coach was the legendary Cabby O'Neill. After high school, he attended Purdue University, where he played under head coach Ward Lambert. He became the only four time First Team-All Big Ten selection in Boilermaker history and one of the first two players to be selected in the NBA draft with teammate Bulbs Ehlers. He led Purdue in scoring all four seasons and won the MVP award for his performance in the 1947 All-American All-Star game at Madison Square Garden. Hoffman was a three-time second team Helms Foundation All-American[3]

Professional playing career[edit]

Hoffman was drafted by the Toronto Huskies in the 1947 BAA draft, but never played for the team as it folded before the season began. He instead signed with the Baltimore Bullets, and averaged 10.5 points per game in his rookie season and was named NBA Rookie of the Year—a designation not currently sanctioned by the NBA for the 1947–48 season. The Bullets went on to win the 1948 BAA Finals and were crowned BAA champions. Hoffman wanted to have his salary raised following his successful debut season, but the team refused, so Hoffman left to return to Indiana and become a salesman at Montgomery Ward.[4] Hoffman re-signed with the team for the 1949–50 season.

After playing for five seasons with the Bullets, the team disbanded in November 1954, fourteen games into the 1954-55 season. Hoffman was selected by the New York Knicks in the dispersal draft. He only played for the Knicks for less than two months before being sold to the Philadelphia Warriors. Hoffman retired from playing basketball after the season. He averaged 10.2 points, 2.9 assists and 5.1 rebounds over his career.[5]

Coaching career[edit]

From 1956 to 1959, he was head baseball coach at Purdue, replacing Hank Stram; his career totals were 52-49-2 (.505) all games and 18-30-1 (.367) in Big Ten Conference games. He was replaced as the head baseball coach by former Boilermaker star Joe Sexson. He also worked as an assistant for the basketball team under head coach Ray Eddy.

Later years[edit]

He served as general manager for the Baltimore Bullets.[6] from June 1963 through May 1965; the Bullets recorded an overall record of 68-92 (.425) and reached the NBA Western Division Finals in the 1964–65 season.[7]

In 1977, he was inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame. In 1993, at age 68, he was named to the named to the Indiana All-Stars, for the 1942–43 season. The All-Stars, an all High School Senior team, are named at the conclusion of the school year; the team originated in 1939. However, World War II, kept a team from being named and staging the annual 2-game series with the State of Kentucky. The Indianapolis Star sponsored the team for decades and the Lions Club was the largest recipient of charitable donations from the series.[6]

He died of a brain tumor at 73 in 1998.[2]

BAA/NBA career statistics[edit]

  GP Games played  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game
 PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high
Denotes season in which Hoffman won a BAA championship

Regular season[edit]

1947–48 Baltimore 37 .348 .662 0.6 10.5
1949–50 Baltimore 60 .341 .665 2.7 14.4
1950–51 Baltimore 41 .318 .673 4.9 2.7 8.8
1952–53 Baltimore 69 28.3 .366 .655 4.6 3.4 10.2
1953–54 Baltimore 72 34.8 .332 .716 6.8 4.0 10.0
1954–55 New York 18 14.5 .269 .548 2.2 1.4 3.3
1954–55 Philadelphia 20 20.1 .318 .758 4.2 3.5 6.8
Career 317 28.7 .340 .676 5.1 2.9 10.2


1948 Baltimore 11 .312 .661 0.6 11.7
1953 Baltimore 2 40.5 .179 .583 3.5 5.5 8.5
Career 13 40.5 .290 .649 3.5 1.4 11.2


  1. ^ The Official NBA Basketball Encyclopedia. Villard Books. 1994. p. 580. ISBN 0-679-43293-0.
  2. ^ a b Goldstein, Alan (November 13, 1998), "Bullets standout Hoffman dead of tumor at 73 1947–48 Rookie of Year also starred at Purdue", The Baltimore Sun
  3. ^ "Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame: Paul Hoffman". Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame. Retrieved 2012-12-08.
  4. ^ Goldstein, Alan. NBA forgot it honored Hoffman. The Baltimore Sun. October 30, 1994. Accessed on June 7, 2017
  5. ^ Paul Hoffman Stats. Basketball Reference. Accessed on June 7, 2017.
  6. ^ a b Tanton, Bill (July 8, 1993), "Ex-Bullet Hoffman named All-Indiana, at age 68 basketball", The Baltimore Sun
  7. ^

External links[edit]