John Williamson (basketball, born 1951)
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|Born||November 10, 1951|
New Haven, Connecticut
|Died||November 30, 1996 (aged 45)|
New Haven, Connecticut
|Listed height||6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)|
|Listed weight||185 lb (84 kg)|
|High school||Wilbur Cross|
(New Haven, Connecticut)
|College||New Mexico State (1971–1973)|
|NBA draft||1973 / Round: 6 / Pick: 96th overall|
|Selected by the Atlanta Hawks|
|1973–1977||New York Nets|
|1978–1980||New Jersey Nets|
|1982||Las Vegas Silvers|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career ABA and NBA statistics|
|Points||9,017 (17.5 ppg)|
|Rebounds||1,274 (2.5 rpg)|
|Assists||1,441 (2.8 apg)|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
Williamson played high school basketball at Wilbur Cross High School in New Haven, Connecticut and played college basketball at New Mexico State University. He was a 6'2" guard. He was nicknamed "Super John" for his highly efficient jump shooting.
While at Wilbur Cross High School, Williamson played on the Connecticut state champion teams of 1966–67, 1967–68 and was runner up to crosstown rival Hillhouse in 1968–69, losing 76-71 in the final. For his senior (1969–70) year, Williamson led the nation in scoring with a gaudy 38.7 points per game average. His team was upset in a semi-final match against Bridgeport Central, with an ending score of 105-103. Cross previously won over Central in the 1968 title game in a 123-82 game.
Williamsons's teammates, Alex Scott (scored 24 points), and Clint Davis (scored 40 points), led the way in the romp for Cross's third consecutive title. Williamson chipped in 17, which was his average that year. He went on to team up with Scott and Davis at New Mexico State University where he averaged 27 points per game his sophomore and junior years. In the final regular season game of 69-70 Cross played St. Anthony's Catholic of Washington, D.C.. They were the no. 1 team in the DC metro area and one of the top five in the country. Coached by Georgetown's John Thompson, Cross was a huge underdog. All-America player Williamson scored 36 points and fellow all-stater Danny Hardy had 22 to pace the Governors to a 74-66 win. In that game, John Thompson took his team off the floor and to the locker room with about two and a half minutes remaining in protest over officiating, and not return. During this season, Williamson had a string of nine straight games in which he scored 40 or more points.
As a rookie, Williamson landed a roster spot with the New York Nets of the ABA as a free agent for the 1973–74 season. Before signing with the ABA Nets, he had been eligible for the NBA draft that year, being selected by the Atlanta Hawks in the 6th round with the 96th pick, but didn't make the cut for their roster. Despite being a rookie, Williamson quickly entered the New York starting lineup along with superstar Julius Erving and rising star rookie Larry Kenon (who would get traded a couple years later). After Williamson became a starter, the team's fortunes quickly turned for the better and the team ended up winning the ABA Championship that season. Williamson was named to the 1974 ABA All-Rookie team.
Continuing with the Nets, Williamson, in Game 6 of the 1976 ABA Finals, scored 28 points with 16 of them coming in the fourth quarter; both him and Julius Erving offensively carried the team, combining for 59 points (31 of them from Erving) leading the Nets to come back from 22 points behind to win the game, the series and the ABA championship.
In the 1976–77 season, Williamson was traded to the Indiana Pacers midseason; in the middle of the next season he was traded back to the Nets. In the 1979–80 season he was traded from the Nets to the Washington Bullets which would be the last team he played for before the end of his NBA career until the 1980–81 season. By this time Williamson had completely declined as a player despite being only 29 years old and wouldn't return to the NBA after that season due to contract disagreements in free agency and not maintaining a healthy weight to play.
After professional basketball, Williamson would end up working in a juvenile detention center back in his hometown New Haven, Connecticut.
In his ABA/NBA career Williamson scored 9,017 points. He averaged between 11.5 and 29.5 points in every ABA/NBA season except for his last.
Williamson's jersey number (23) was retired by the New York/New Jersey Nets franchise on December 7, 1990; Williamson is one of four players who were with the Nets during their ABA days with a retired number; the other three include Wendell Ladner, Bill Melchionni, and Julius Erving.
ABA and NBA career statisticsEdit
|GP||Games played||GS||Games started||MPG||Minutes per game|
|FG%||Field goal percentage||3P%||3-point field goal percentage||FT%||Free throw percentage|
|RPG||Rebounds per game||APG||Assists per game||SPG||Steals per game|
|BPG||Blocks per game||PPG||Points per game||Bold||Career high|
|†||Denotes seasons in which Williamson's team won an ABA championship|
|Bold||Denotes career highs|
|1973–74†||New York (ABA)||77||–||29.4||.491||.182||.789||2.8||3.2||1.1||0.4||14.5|
|1974–75||New York (ABA)||75||–||25.0||.482||.231||.837||2.0||2.6||0.8||0.3||11.5|
|1975–76†||New York (ABA)||76||–||29.7||.450||.190||.806||2.5||2.5||1.0||0.4||16.2|
|1974†||New York (ABA)||14||–||30.4||.450||.000||.815||3.3||2.9||0.7||0.4||11.9|
|1975||New York (ABA)||5||–||23.6||.605||.000||.615||2.0||2.0||0.2||0.6||12.0|
|1976†||New York (ABA)||10||–||36.0||.497||.333||.696||2.4||2.6||1.0||0.3||22.2|
- Mallozzi, Vincent M. (December 2, 1996). "John Williamson, 44, Nets Star in the 1970's". The New York Times. Archived from the original on May 28, 2015.
- Press, Associated (29 March 1987). "Now, Life Is Hardly Super for Williamson" – via LA Times.
- Rubin, Roger; Lennon, David (31 October 2006). "The Great New York Sports Debate: Two New York Sportswriters Go Head-to-Head on the 50 Most Heated Questions". Penguin – via Google Books.
- Rogers, Thomas. "SPORTS WORLD SPECIALS; Follow-Ups".
- "Pistons vs. Nets - Game Recap - November 7, 2008 - ESPN". ESPN.com.
- "Nets: Retired numbers". NBA. Archived from the original on 2010-08-26. Retrieved 2005-12-06.
- "The Legacy Of New Haven's `Super John'".
- Career statistics and player information from Basketball-Reference.com