Kareem Abdul-Jabbar pays respect to fellow UCLA legend Bill Walton upon the latter's untimely passing

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar pays tribute to the late Bill Walton
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar pays tribute to the late Bill Walton

LA Lakers legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar paid his respects to the late Bill Walton on X (formerly Twitter). The NBA community is mourning the passing of Walton, who died at the age of 71 after a prolonged battle with cancer. Abdul-Jabbar remembers the legend and wrote a tear-jerking message for his longtime rival.

Despite being fellow alumni of UCLA, Walton and Abdul-Jabbar shared memories on the court as competitors. Abdul-Jabbar, who specialized in using the Skyhook, was building his legacy with the Milwaukee Bucks when Walton arrived in the league and quickly announced his presence.

Walton dominated during his first four years with the Portland Trail Blazers, winning the NBA title in his third season and the MVP award in his fourth. At that time, Abdul-Jabbar was already winning with the Milwaukee Bucks as he had won his first title and his fourth MVP award.

They faced off against each other on the court, giving their all every time. Now that Walton has passed away, the former LA Lakers star will always cherish their friendship.

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"Today I had to say goodbye to a great friend that I will always miss," Abdul-Jabbar wrote on X.
"My very close friend, fellow Bruin and NBA rival Bill Walton died today," Abdul-Jabbar posted. "And the world feels so much heavier now. On the court, Bill was a fierce player, but off the court he wasn't happy unless he did everything he could to make everyone around him happy. He was the best of us."

Although marred with injuries, Walton was able to stay in the NBA for ten seasons and win two titles. His accomplishments made him a Hall of Fame talent. The big man stayed in touch with the sport he loved and became a commentator in 1990.

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Comparing the careers of Bill Walton and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Both big men were active in the mid-1970s until the 1980s, showing their brilliance on the court. Walton dealt with tons of injuries during his career, but he had an amazing start to his career. He quickly became a champion, All-Star and MVP within his first four years in the league. But those four years were the prime years of his career, afterward, he started dealing with injuries.

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Walton wremained a role player in the league and won his second and final championship with the Boston Celtics.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, on the other hand, had a long career filled with accomplishments. He won six MVP awards, six NBA champions and had 19 All-Star selections. He was also a Finals MVP twice in his career.

While the two had different careers, they were both impactful and are worthy of being in the Hall of Fame.

Also read: "Shiny new hip & lot of shiny thoughts" - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar gives update on his health 2 days after hip injury

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