The Philadelphia 76ers drafted Lewis eighteenth in the first round of the 1973 NBA draft out of California State University, Los Angeles. During training camp he was reported to have had a nasty contract dispute and was told to mature for another year.
Lewis walked out of his rookie year after a contact negotiation disagreement with the 76ers. His second professional year he tried to play for the ABA's Utah Stars but the 76ers threatened a lawsuit that kept him from playing. The following year Lewis said he left because the 76ers "tore up my original agreement and said, 'Now you have to make the team.' There were 12 guys on the team with guaranteed contracts. I said, 'Wait a minute.' "
Lewis died of complications following an attempted amputation of an infected leg.
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