How good was “Easy Ed” Macauley (who you might not have seen unless you were a Celtics fan in the 1950s)?
Three of the top five guys who show up in similarity scores (in terms of career impact) are Moses Malone, Patrick Ewing and Shaquille O’Neal. (Info via Basketball-Reference.) That is some pretty impressive company.
Macauley was a forward/center and seven-time All-Star in the rough and tumble NBA of the 1950s and twice led the league in field goal percentage (and was never outside the top 10 in that category for his entire career). He won one NBA ring with the St. Louis Hawks in 1958.
For Celtics fans, he was the guy you traded for the draft rights to Bill Russell. Still he was enough of a Celitics legend that Boston has retired his number, 22.
As for his nickname “Easy Ed,” he told the AP the story of how he got it.
“It was the first time I was appointed captain (at St. Louis University),” Macauley said. “We dressed in the basement of West Pine Gym and it was my role to lead the team from the basement locker room through the door.
“But nobody followed me when I ran down the court and made a layup. Then I heard people shout, ‘Take it easy, Ed.’ I didn’t realize it, but they were playing the national anthem. That ‘Easy Ed’ nickname helped me get a lot of attention.”
Our condolences go out to Macauley’s friends and family.
Isaiah Thomas nutmegs Knicks center Marshall Plumlee (video)
Tonight the NBA All-Star Game starters will be announced. Then the coaches have a week to vote and the rest of the roster will be put together by them.
This year should see a few first-time All-Stars, guys bursting on the scene and grabbing fans attention — so we asked people on Twitter who they most wanted to see in his first All-Star Game and I break it down in this PBT Extra.
The winner? Giannis Antetokounmpo with 45 percent of the vote. Which shouldn’t be a surprise, he’s second in the fan voting for the frontcourt in the East (behind only LeBron James). Good news for those fans, the Greek Freak is almost guaranteed to be a starter, he’s getting plenty of media votes and likely a lot from the players as well.
Second place in the poll? Joel Embiid of the Sixers. I’d love to see him, but will players and media members vote in a guy on a minutes restriction? Will the coaches pick him for that same reason? He is on the bubble.