How Tall is Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Lew Alcindor was born to Cora Lillian and Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, Sr; at birth, he weighed 12 pounds, 11 ounces and was 22 ½ inches long. At the age of 9, Alcindor stood 5-feet-8. By the eighth grade, Alcindor stood 6-feet-8 and was dunking. Alcindor attended Power Memorial Academy, an all-boys Catholic high school in Manhattan. He scored a New York City high school record 2,067 points and 2,002 rebounds, leading his school to three straight New York City Catholic championships. Power Memorial Academy won 71-straight games with Alcindor before losing to DeMatha High School (Md.) 46-43 on January 30, 1965. Alcindor's 1963-64 team was named "The #1 High School Team of The Century," by National Sports Writers in May 2000.
Lew Alcindor was heavily recruited out of high school and landed at UCLA under the tutelage of head coach John Wooden. Alcindor's impact sent shockwaves across the NCAA before he even stepped foot on a college basketball court. The NCAA banned dunking upon Alcindor's entry into the NCAA. Nicknamed the "Lew Alcindor Rule," the dunk was banned until 1976. Since the NCAA didn't allow freshmen to play varsity basketball, Abdul-Jabbar played three seasons with the Bruins. Alcindor's freshman squad defeated the Varsity Bruins 75-60 in the first game at Pauley Pavilion. In his first varsity collegiate game, Alcindor set a UCLA record with 56 points. As a sophomore, Alcindor averaged 29.0 points and 15.5 rebounds per game. UCLA won three-straight NCAA titles with Alcindor. During his three seasons with the Bruins, Alcindor went 88-2.
As a junior, Alcindor and UCLA squared off against the Houston Cougars and Elvin Hayes at the Houston Astrodome. It was the first NCAA regular-season game aired nationwide in prime time and was labeled the "Game of the Century." UCLA and Houston were number one and two in the polls, respectively. Eight days prior, Alcindor had suffered a scratched left eyeball, and it showed. Alcindor arguably had his worst outing as a Bruin, shooting under 50 percent from the field (4-for-18) for the only time in his college career. The Cougars defeated the Bruins 71-69, snapping UCLA's 47-game winning streak. UCLA got their revenge just two months later in the 1968 NCAA Tournament, knocking out Houston 101-69 in the semifinals.
Alcindor's other loss in his college career was against cross-town rival, the University of Southern California, during the 1968-69 season. Without a shot clock, the Trojans slowed the tempo of the game, upsetting UCLA 46-44. It snapped a 41-game winning streak and 51-game winning streak at Pauley Pavilion.
The United Press International, The Sporting News, the Associated Press and the U.S. Basketball Writers Association selected Alcindor as Player of the Year in 1967 and 1969.
Milwaukee Bucks (1969-1975)
Lew Alcindor was the top overall pick in the 1969 NBA Draft by the Milwaukee Bucks. The Bucks won a coin flip against the Phoenix Suns for the first selection in the draft. Alcindor was also the top pick in the 1969 American Basketball Association draft by the New Jersey Nets, and he turned down a $1 million offer from the Harlem Globetrotters. Alcindor decided to go with the Bucks and the NBA over the Nets and the ABA. Alcindor won the 1970 NBA Rookie of the Year award, averaging 28.8 points and 14.5 rebounds per game in his first season in the NBA. The Bucks, who went 27-55 the prior season, improved to 56-26 and Milwaukee finished second in the Eastern Division. The Bucks defeated the Philadelphia 76ers in the Division Semifinals before losing in five games to the New York Knicks in the Division Finals.
The Bucks added Oscar Robertson prior to the 1970-71 season and Milwaukee went 66-16, recording a then-record 20 straight wins. Alcindor averaged 31.7 points and 16.0 rebounds per game en route to the NBA's Most Valuable Player award. After breezing past San Francisco and Los Angeles in the Conference semifinals and finals, the Bucks swept the Baltimore Bullets in the 1971 NBA Finals. Alcindor was named Finals MVP.
The day after the Bucks won the NBA Championship, Alcindor legally changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. In Arabic, it means generous (Kareem) servant of (Abdul) the mighty one (Jabbar).
Abdul-Jabbar averaged a career-high 34.8 points and 16.6 rebounds per game in just his third season in the NBA, winning back-to-back regular season MVP awards. Milwaukee went 63-19 in the regular season, losing in the Conference Finals to the Los Angeles Lakers in six games.
Abdul-Jabbar won his third Most Valuable Player Award in five seasons in 1974, averaging 27.0 points, 14.5 rebounds and 3.5 blocks per game. The Bucks went 59-23 and finished first in the Midwest Division. Milwaukee advanced to the NBA Finals and lost in seven games to the Boston Celtics.
During the 1974 preseason, Abdul-Jabbar broke his hand after punching the basket support stanchion following a hard foul. On the play, Abdul-Jabbar scratched his eye and he would wear protective goggles for the rest of his playing career. The broken hand sidelined Abdul-Jabbar for the first 16 games of the 1974-75 season. With Robertson retired, the Bucks went 38-44 and missed the playoffs for the first time since Abdul-Jabbar was drafted.
Abdul-Jabbar was reportedly unhappy with the lack of people in Milwaukee who shared his cultural beliefs, and requested a trade to either New York or Los Angeles. Bucks general manager Wayne Embry granted Abdul-Jabbar's request and traded him to the Lakers for Junior Bridgeman, Dave Meyers, Elmore Smith, and Brian Winters.
Los Angeles Lakers (1975-1989)
With the Lakers, Abdul-Jabbar picked up where he left off in Milwaukee. He earned his fourth Most Valuable Player Award in seven seasons but the Lakers missed the NBA playoffs with a 40-42 regular season record. The Lakers finished with the NBA's best record the following season, going 53-29 before suffering a sweep in the Western Conference Finals to the Portland Trail Blazers. Abdul-Jabbar won his fifth Most Valuable Player Award, averaging 26.2 points and 13.3 rebounds per game.
Abdul-Jabbar broke his hand again in the 1977-78 season opener, this time after punching Bucks center Kent Benson. The NBA fined Abdul-Jabbar $5,000 and he missed 20 games due to the injury.
Abdul-Jabbar continued to put up impressive numbers the next two seasons, but the Lakers didn't have much success in the NBA Playoffs. The Seattle SuperSonics eliminated the Lakers in the 1978 and 1979 playoffs.
In the 1979 NBA Draft, the Lakers selected Earvin "Magic" Johnson with the top overall pick. With Abdul-Jabbar and Johnson, the Lakers went 60-22 in the 1979-80 regular season. Abdul-Jabbar won a record sixth Most Valuable Player Award, averaging 24.8 points, 10.8 rebounds and 3.4 blocks per game. The Lakers advanced to the NBA Finals against the Philadelphia 76ers. Abdul-Jabbar suffered a sprained ankle in Game 5 of the NBA Finals, sidelining him for Game 6. With Abdul-Jabbar out, the rookie Johnson played center and went on to score 42 points, grab 15 rebounds and dish out eight assists. The Lakers won 123-107, giving Abdul-Jabbar his first of five championships with the Lakers.
After a first round loss to the Houston Rockets in the 1981 NBA Playoffs, the Lakers and Abdul-Jabbar returned to the NBA Finals in 1982 against the 76ers. Los Angeles defeated Philadelphia in six games to capture the NBA title.
On April 5, 1984 against the Utah Jazz, Abdul-Jabbar passed Wilt Chamberlain to become the NBA's all-time leading scorer. His trademark sky-hook gave Abdul-Jabbar 31,420 career points.
Between 1979-90 and 1988-89, the Lakers reached the NBA Finals eight times. Los Angeles won five NBA Championships in that span, defeating Boston and Philadelphia twice and Detroit once.
Abdul-Jabbar had a memorable performance in the 1985 NBA Finals against the Celtics. The Lakers were defeated 148-114 in Game 1 of the Finals, which was labeled "the Memorial Day Massacre." Abdul-Jabbar had just 12 points and three rebounds, fueling critics to say the 38-year-old center was washed up. Abdul-Jabbar bounced back in Game 2, recording 30 points, 17 rebounds, eight assists and three blocked shots in a 109-102 win. The Lakers won the series in five games. In the four victories, Abdul-Jabbar averaged 30.2 points, 11.3 rebounds, 6.5 assists and 2.0 blocks.
Abdul-Jabbar averaged at least 20.0 points per game for 17 consecutive seasons until the age of 39. With Abdul-Jabbar's career winding down, his scoring and rebounding decreased. In his final season in the NBA at the age of 41, Abdul-Jabbar averaged 10.1 points and 4.5 rebounds per game in just under 23 minutes a night. The Lakers made the NBA Finals in 1989, but with injuries to Johnson and Byron Scott, Detroit swept Los Angeles. In Abdul-Jabbar's final game, he scored seven points and grabbed three rebounds.
Abdul-Jabbar retired in 1989 after 20 seasons in the NBA. He left the game as the all-time leading scorer with 38,387 points. Abdul-Jabbar was selected to a record 19 NBA All-Star games, a 15-time member of the All-NBA First or Second Teams, a six-time regular season MVP and two-time NBA Finals MVP. In 1995, Abdul-Jabbar was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Abdul-Jabbar also became the first basketball player ever to receive the National Sports Award by former President Bill Clinton. The Lakers retired Abdul-Jabbar's jersey on March 20, 1989.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar took up acting during his career with the Lakers. He made his film debut in the 1978 Bruce Lee film Game of Death. Abdul-Jabbar's character was the final foe Lee's character fought in the film. His most memorable acting role was in the 1980 film Airplane!, playing co-pilot Roger Murdock. Abdul-Jabbar's acting credits also include Fletch, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, 21 Jump Street, Diff'rent Strokes and Amen.
In 1998 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar volunteered as a coach at Alchesay High School on the Apache Indian Reservation in Whiteriver, Arizona. He received $1 dollar for his five-months as head coach.
In 2000, Abdul-Jabbar served as an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Clippers, serving as a mentor to center Michael Olowokandi. Abdul-Jabbar landed a head coaching position with the Oklahoma Storm of the United States Basketball League. He led the Storm to the USBL championship in his first season. After he was passed up for the head coaching position at Columbia University, the New York Knicks hired Abdul-Jabbar as an assistant coach/scout in 2004.
Abdul-Jabbar has served as a special assistant coach with the Lakers since 2005. He works with the team at all home practices and helps tutor the Lakers big men, including center Andrew Bynum.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has several books to his credit, most recently, "On The Shoulders of Giants: My Journey Through the Harlem Renaissance". Prior to "On The Shoulders of Giants", Abdul-Jabbar, along with Anthony Walton, co-wrote "Brothers In Arms: The Epic Story of the 761st Tank Battalion, WWII's Forgotten Heroes". Abdul-Jabbar is also the author of "Giant Steps" (1987), "Kareem", (1990) "Selected from Giant Steps" (1999), and "A Season on the Reservation: My Sojourn with the White Mountain Apaches" (2000).
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was born Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, Jr. on April 16, 1947 in Manhattan, New York. He has three sons, Kareem Jr., Amir, and Adam, and two daughters, Sultana and Habiba. Kareem Jr. played college basketball at Western Kentucky University. Abdul-Jabbar was previously married to Habiba Abdul-Jabbar.
In November 2009, Abdul-Jabbar revealed he had been diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia, a rare form of the disease. Abdul-Jabbar said his doctors told him the disease was managable and it was likely he would lead a full life. In Feb. 2011, Abdul-Jabbar announced that his cancer was at an absolute minimum.
The screen might add 10 pounds, but does it also add a few inches of height? Check out these famous people and see if they measure up to how tall you imagined them to be, beginning with retired basketball star, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (his former team?), who used his height as a weapon (watch a clip) as the villain in this action movie.
How tall is he?Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - height:
7 feet 2 inches (2.18 meters)