Posted: February 18, 2011 by Jay Rasean in Kasual
Maurice Stokes 
(June 17, 1933 – April 6, 1970)

In honor of the NBA All Star Weekend, today’s article will focus on a the pioneer African American NBA basketball player, Maurice Stokes. Stokes played for Rochester Royals from 1955 to 1958. After a stellar first season of play, Stokes was named NBA Rookie of the Year, making him the first African American to do so. Throughout the next three years, Stokes continued to play extremely well; playing in the all star game three years in row.

On March 12, 1958 during n the last game of the 1957-1958 season, Strokes sustained a major head injury while driving to the basket for a close shot. The injury lead to him having a seizure; followed by a coma, in which he awoke from fully paralyzed. His basketball career was with out a doubt over. Followed by years of illness post this devastating injury, Stokes died from a heart attack in 1970,  he was just 36 years old. Due to his sudden illness, his basketball career was cut short and he was un-able to create the legacy he was destined too. He was an outstanding basketball player who was did not rise to his full potential, but due to his major in achievements in just three short years, he is still a reason why black history should be celebrated year ’round(K*W)

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