If this were the NBA Hall of Fame, then George McGinnis likely wouldn’t be a member of the club. He definitely had a fine NBA career. Over his first four NBA seasons McGinnis averaged 22 points, 11.5 rebounds, 4 assists, and 2 steals a game. He was a member of the All-NBA 1st Team, made the All-Star game, and along with Julius Erving helped lead the Philadelphia 76ers to the 1977 NBA Finals.
After those first four seasons, McGinnis quickly faded. He lasted only three more seasons averaging 10.7 points, 7.5 rebounds, 3.4 assists, and 1.4 steals. Not bad numbers by any means, but it’s not blowing anyone away.
But that’s just McGinnis’ NBA career. If you take in his days in the ABA, you don’t just have a pretty good career. You achieve Hall of Fame status. As a rookie on the Indiana Pacers in 1972, McGinnis helped push the Pacers to the ABA title. The next season (1973), McGinnis was named the Finals MVP as the Pacers once again won the ABA title. By 1974 he was a member of the All-ABA 1st Team. In 1975 he was awarded the league’s regular season MVP award after averaging an absurd 30 points, 14 rebounds, 6 assists and 2.5 steals a game.
After that mammoth season, McGinnis jumped ship to the NBA where the Philadelphia 76ers were ecstatic to receive an MVP caliber player:
As his averages attest, McGinnis was one of the finest all-around players basketball has ever seen. As a power forward, he certainly lived up to the typical job description. He tussled aggressively on the boards and was one of the strongest men in basketball. McGinnis’ chiseled physique didn’t mean a lumbering giant, though. He was able to grab a board and dribble the length of the court to flush home a dunk or perform duty as point forward.
His combination of power and speed grew from the seeds planted by Maurice Stokes in the 1950s and McGinnis helped pass it on to the likes of Karl Malone and LeBron James. Taking in McGinnis’ entire pro basketball career easily propels him to the status of Hall of Famer.
And if you need to see more reasons why, just click here
Seasons Played: 1972 – 1982
2x Champion (1972-’73), Finals MVP (1973)
2x All-ABA 1st Team (1974-’75), All ABA 2nd Team (1973)
3x All-Star (1973-’75)
All-Rookie 1st Team (1972)
All-NBA 1st Team (1976)
All-NBA 2nd Team (1977)
3x All-Star (1976-’77, 1979)
ABA – 314 Games
25.2 PPG, 12.9 RPG, 3.5 APG, 2.2 SPG, 0.6 BPG, 47.0% FG, 68.2% FT
PPG Leader (1975)
6th All-Time in Steals, 21st All-Time in Points
22nd in Rebounds, 23rd in FTs Made, 24th in FGs Made
NBA - 528 Games
17.2 PPG, 9.8 RPG, 3.8 APG, 1.7 SPG, 0.4 BPG, 44.8% FG, 65.1% FT