(NationRise.com) – The Detroit Pistons announced that former NBA superstar Earl Cureton died on February 4 at the age of 66. Cureton played 12 seasons in basketball’s greatest league and won two championships. Various basketball journalists and experts pointed out that he delivered some of the most memorable performances in those championships.
In 1979, the Philadelphia 76ers selected him in the second round of the NBA Draft, following a standout collegiate career with Detroit Mercy and Robert Morris. Cureton was one of the main stars of the 76ers that won the NBA championship in the 1982-1983 season. His second one took place in 1994 with the Houston Rockets. Between those two championships, he played for the Pistons right after leaving the 76ers in 1983, until 1986.
In a statement, the Pistons chairman Tom Gores said that the team and organization were “deeply saddened” by Cureton’s death. He described Cureton not only as a friend, former player, and community ambassador for the Pistons but also as a person who meant “so much” to the team.
The chairman added that in addition to being a “tough” competitor and a great player, Cureton was also a “kind-hearted” man. Gores added that Cureton represented the franchise with passion and enjoyed every effort to improve the lives of every Detroiter. He closed the statement by noting that the Pistons extended its “heartfelt condolences” to his family and friends. No cause of death was given.
In addition to the Pistons, 76ers, and Rockets, Cureton played for the Toronto Raptors, the Charlotte Hornets, the Los Angeles Clippers, and the Chicago Bulls. He was also one of the first NBA legends who played in other nations across the world, including Argentina, Mexico, Venezuela, France, and Italy.
In a statement, NBA Hall of Famer Isiah Thoms said that the whole basketball community felt devastated by Cureton’s death. He added that the former power forward was a “great human being” who always tried to “make a difference” for Detroit.
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