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Wed, 02.22.1950

Julius Erving born

Julius Erving

*Julius Erving was born on this date in 1950. He is a Black basketball player (retired) and businessman.

Erving was born in East Meadow, NY and played for Roosevelt High School and reportedly received the nickname "Doctor" or "Dr. J" from a high school friend. Erving enrolled at the University of Massachusetts in 1968. He earned his Bachelor's degree in 1986 through the University Without Walls at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. In two varsity college basketball seasons, he averaged 32.5 points and 20.2 rebounds per game, becoming one of only five players in NCAA Men's Basketball to average more than 20 points and 20 rebounds per game. Erving was also instrumental in bringing legitimacy to the now-defunct American Basketball Association.

He signed with the ABA in 1971, and played with the Virginia Squires from 1971-73 and the New York Nets from 1973-76. He then moved to the NBA, where he played with the Philadelphia 76ers until his retirement in 1987. He was named the NBA MVP in 1981, and led the 76ers to the NBA championship in 1983. When he retired, Erving ranked in the top 10 in scoring (third), most field goals made (third), most field goals attempted (fifth) and most steals (first). On the combined NBA/ABA scoring list, Erving ranked third with 30,026 points.

Final Julius Erving basketball statistics are; in ABA (1971-76)— 3-time MVP, 2-time playoff MVP, led NY Nets to 2 titles (1974,76); in NBA (1976-87)— 5-time All-NBA 1st team, MVP in 1981, led Philadelphia 76ers to title in 1983.

After his basketball career, he became a businessman, obtaining ownership of a Coca-Cola bottling plant in Philadelphia and doing work for TV as a sports analyst. In 1997, he joined the front office of the Orlando Magic. He and former NFL running back Joe Washington fielded a NASCAR Busch Grand National Series team in the late 1990s, becoming the first ever NASCAR racing team at any level owned completely by non-whites. The team had secure sponsorship from Dr Pepper for most of its existence. Erving, a racing fan himself, stated that his foray into NASCAR was an attempt to raise interest in NASCAR among African Americans.

He has also served on the Board of Directors of Converse, Darden Restaurants, Inc., Saks Incorporated and The Sports Authority.  As of 2009, Erving is the owner of The Celebrity Golf Club International outside of Atlanta. Erving is the father of professional tennis player Alexandra Stevenson.

Reference:
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