The tragic death of former New York Knicks forward Anthony Mason has the entire NBA world mourning his life as a player and person.
Former New York Knicks player Anthony Mason was more than just a basketball player.
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He played during a Knicks era which personified exactly who the Knicks were in those days under the legend known as Pat Riley. They were tough, brash, unapologetic and completely in your face.
Mason was at the forefront of this attitude. He also helped rid the Knicks of Charles Smith, which fans are so very thankful for.
As the NBA world mourns the passing of Mason at the way too young age of 48, Commissioner Adam Silver released a statement.
Silver couldn’t be more spot on. Current Knicks boss Phil Jackson, the same man who was public enemy number-two behind Michael Jordan during Mason’s time in New York, also weighed in.
Mason personified the playground saying of “shoot a jumper, get an elbow in the chest. Drive baseline, get your head knocked off.”
No rivalry during his time revealed that sentiment more than his team facing the Chicago Bulls.
The man wasn’t even that tall. He played both forward positions, but mainly fit in as a small forward with Charles Oakley and Patrick Ewing. Actually, he like to proclaim himself a “Point Forward” as he frequently decided to show off his wicked ball handling skills.
Mason could dribble, pass, move fantastic for a big man and even knock down the open 20-footer.
For all his offensive and physical prowess, Mason was one of the anchors for New York in making them one of the best defensive teams of the decade, and if not for Jordan would have won an NBA Championship.
Check out these Mason highlights from Game 2 of the NBA Finals as he locked up Hall of Fame center Hakeem Olajuwon.
It’s something that all New Yorkers who currently watch the dreadful Knicks cannot take. They know the secret to success is defense and having guys with that “it” factor who’ll work hard, lay it all on the line and “out-heart” the competition.
Anthony Mason was the exact player for which championship teams were made of, and a better human being off the court.
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