William Felton “Bill” Russell was a professional basketball player who played for the Boston Celtics for 13 years and is regarded as one of the best players in National Basketball Association (NBA) history.
He was renowned for his man-to-man defense and shot-blocking, which helped his side win numerous games in prestigious competitions. The gifted athlete grew raised in a community known for its pervasive bigotry.
He found a way to overcome this pessimism through basketball, and he matured to demonstrate his resolve. He was also well-known for his talent at inspiring and motivating his team members to raise their game and give it their all.
He was one of only two players who were equally adept at getting rebounds; he also had 12 seasons in a row with 1,000 or more rebounds. He was one of only two players to ever grab more than 50 rebounds in a single game.
The fact that Russell was the first African-American player to attain such distinction in NBA history, as well as the first African-American to hold the position of NBA coach, made his superstardom unique in addition to his incredible accomplishments.
This page discusses the early life, career, and net worth of Bill Russell. So do read it till the end.
Bill Russell Net Worth: How Much Does He Make Per Year?
By the time Russell passed away in 2022, his estimated net worth was $10 million. The sportsman gained most of his wealth from his involvement in sports, rising to become one of the highest-paid basketball players at the time.
Wilt Chamberlain’s $100K pay was reportedly surpassed by Russell’s reported $100,001 compensation. Although it is debatable whether Russell’s coach compensation was in addition to his player salary, when he later became a coach, he earned an additional $25,000.
|Full Name||William Felton Russell|
|Net Worth||$10 Million|
|Date of Birth||Feb 12, 1934 – Jul 31, 2022|
|Age||88 years old|
|Place of Birth||West Monroe, Louisiana, United States|
|Height||6 Feet 9 Inches|
|Profession||Basketball player, Coach, Actor|
Bill Russell Early Life of Adversity
On February 12, 2022, in West Monroe, Louisiana, Bill Russell was born to Charles and Katie Russell. He grew up in a racially divided neighborhood where his family frequently saw widespread acts of prejudice. He grew raised in abject poverty and had a challenging childhood.
He was only 12 years old when his mother passed away. He attended McClymonds High School, where he first took up the sport. The young player was encouraged to improve his abilities and become a competent player by his instructor, George Powles.
The University of San Francisco extended a scholarship offer to him (USF). He was thrilled to obtain this scholarship since it gave him the chance to break out from his life of prejudice and destitution.
Coach Phil Woolpert, who was at the USF at the time, encouraged him to establish his defensive style, and he flourished there. He developed into the center of a USF team that developed into a formidable collegiate basketball club.
Bill Russell Career: A Champion From the Start
He was chosen by the Boston Celtics in the first round of the 1956 NBA Draft due to his strength in defense and ability to grab rebounds. He was appointed captain of the American basketball team that competed in the 1956 Summer Olympics before the start of his rookie season. He aided in the team’s gold medal victory.
In the 1956–1957 season, Bill Russell debuted for the Celtics in December. He played 48 games, scoring 14.7 points and grabbing 19.6 rebounds on average. Even though the Celtics were already a high-scoring team, Russell’s addition strengthened them even more.
He finished with 16 points, 31 rebounds, 7 blocks, and Syracuse Nationals in his debut NBA playoff game in 1957. The Celtics defeated the Nationals 108-89 and swept them in three games. The Celtics won 14 straight games to start the 1957–58 season.
He received the award for that season’s Most Valuable Player in the NBA. His club had a 49-game winning streak and easily earned the top seed in the 1958 NBA Playoffs. In the 1958–59 season, he continued his incredible play, averaging 16.7 points and 23.0 rebounds per game. 52 victories for the Celtics set a league-high.
In November 1959, the Celtics faced up against the Philadelphia Warriors. Wilt Chamberlain of the Warriors and Russell were both outstanding centers, therefore the game was mostly seen as a contest between them. By a score of 115–106, the Celtics prevailed.
Bill Russell led his squad to a 57-22 record in the 1960–61 season with an average of 16.9 points and 23.9 rebounds per game. The Celtics became the first team to win 60 games in a season the following year, and he was once more selected as the NBA’s Most Valuable Player.
During the 1963–1964 season, he averaged 24.7 rebounds and 15.0 points per game. He continued to perform well during the 1964–1965 season, helping the Celtics win a league-high 62 games. Red Auerbach, a Celtics coach, left his position before the 1966–1967 campaign.
Russell accepted the player-coach position that was given to him, making him the first African-American NBA coach. By the 1967–68 season, he was steadily aging and his numbers were starting to fall. He nonetheless averaged 12.5 points and 18.6 rebounds per game. At the age of 35, his playing days were over.
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Bill Russell Love Life
In 1956, Bill Russell wed Rose Swisher, his college love. They got divorced in 1973 and had three kids. In 1977, he wed Dorothy Anstett, a white former Miss USA. They divorced in 1980, ending their brief union. Marilyn Nault was the subject of his third marriage, which lasted until her passing in 2009.
In his honor, the NBA Finals MVP Award was changed to the Bill Russell NBA Finals MVP Award in 2009. On July 31, 2022, Bill Russell passed away at his home in Mercer Island, Washington. When he passed away, he was still wed to Jeannine Russell.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Bill Russell famous for?
Bill Russell, a 12-time All-Star and five-time NBA MVP, served as the backbone of the Boston Celtics' dynasty in the 1960s. Bill Russell had a remarkable career rebounding average of 22.5 in 963 games, which helped the Celtics win 11 titles.
How many rings does Bill Russell have as a player?
Russell won 11 NBA championships in 13 seasons (1957, 1959–66, and 1968–69). If he hadn't been disabled early in the 1958 NBA finals by an ankle ailment, he might have had 12 points just for good measure. a week ago
What illness did Bill Russell have?
Russell underwent major heart surgery to replace a heart valve in 2012 at the age of 78.
How much does Bill Russell make a year?
Russell was, nonetheless, among the NBA's highest-paid players by 1950s standards. At the end of his career, he reportedly earned $100,001 annually, which is nearly equivalent to $600,000 today after accounting for inflation. As a player coach, he reportedly received an additional $25,000.
Why Bill Russell is the greatest of all time?
A place of honor Bill Russell, a big player with the Boston Celtics, has been dubbed the greatest athlete of all time. He is the greatest winner of all time, at least in terms of titles. He has too many honors to list, but they include 11 NBA titles, 13 All-Star selections, five Most Valuable Player awards, and many more.
Why Bill Russell is the best defender of all time?
He virtually created the fundamentals of the blocked shot and turned it into an art form since he had impeccable timing, didn't foul the shooter, and maintained his team in control by tipping the ball to a teammate or himself after he blocked the shot.