NBA Hall of Famer and former Celtics star Jo Jo White passed away Tuesday at the age of 71.
“My dad died from complications (pneumonia) from dementia that was brought on by the removal of a benign brain tumor in May 2010,” his daughter, Meka White, told The Undefeated.
White was a Finals MVP, seven-time All Star, and two-time NBA champion. He averaged 17.2 points, 4.9 assists and 4.0 rebounds over 12 NBA seasons. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2015.
“We are terribly saddened by the passing of the great Jo Jo White,” the Celtics said via release. “He was a champion and a gentleman; supremely talented and brilliant on the court, and endlessly gracious off of it. Jo Jo was a key member of two championship teams, an NBA Finals MVP, a gold medal-winning Olympian, and a Hall of Famer.
“His contributions to the team’s championship legacy may have only been surpassed by the deep and lasting impact that he had in the community. The thoughts and sympathies of the entire Celtics organization are with the White family.”
White was a 6-foot-3 point guard, winning NBA titles with the Celtics in 1974 and 1976. While playing for the Jayhawks, White was the team’s MVP for three consecutive seasons and a two-time All-American. He won a gold medal with the USA Olympic Basketball team at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City as well. He retired his No. 10 jersey in Boston on April 9, 1982.
This has been a big loss for everyone in the NBA world, one that will surely never be forgotten.
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