Wali Jones

Walter Jones (born February 14, 1942) is a retired American professional basketball player. He was a 6'2" (1.88 m) 180 lb (82 kg) guard.

Wali Jones
Personal information
Born (1942-02-14) February 14, 1942 (age 79)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Listed height6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Listed weight180 lb (82 kg)
Career information
High schoolOverbrook
(Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)
CollegeVillanova (1961–1964)
NBA draft1964 / Round: 3 / Pick: 18th overall
Selected by the Detroit Pistons
Playing career1964–1976
PositionPoint guard / Shooting guard
Number24, 23, 12, 11, 9
Career history
1964–1965Baltimore Bullets
19651971Philadelphia 76ers
19711973Milwaukee Bucks
1974–1975Utah Stars
1975–1976Detroit Pistons
1976Philadelphia 76ers
Career highlights and awards
Career ABA and NBA statistics
Points6,672 (9.8 ppg)
Rebounds1,471 (2.2 rpg)
Assists2,099 (3.1 apg)
Stats Edit this at Wikidata at NBA.com
Stats at Basketball-Reference.com

Born in Philadelphia, Jones played at Overbrook High School, the same school that had produced Wilt Chamberlain a few years earlier. He played college ball for coach Jack Kraft at Villanova University where he would earn Philadelphia's BIG-5 Player of the Year honors 2x in a row for 1963 and 1964 and become a 3rd-Team All-American as a senior.

In his first NBA season, Jones played for the Baltimore Bullets and was named to the NBA All-Rookie Team. The next season, he was traded to the Philadelphia 76ers where he would play for the next six years.

Jones and Hal Greer were the starting guards on the title-winning 1966–67 76ers team that also featured Chamberlain, Chet Walker, Lucious Jackson, Billy Cunningham and included fellow Villanova alum - Bill Melchionni. Jones made the 76ers' starting lineup after Larry Costello tore his Achilles tendon on January 6, 1967.

During the 1968 playoffs, before the start of the Eastern Division finals series against the Boston Celtics, news broke of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. Several 76ers, including Jones and Chamberlain, were vocally opposed to playing the game; however, they were outvoted by the rest of the team.[1][2]

Later, Jones played for the Detroit Pistons and Milwaukee Bucks. In Milwaukee, Jones became involved in a contract dispute which saw him suspended, placed on waivers, and ultimately released. The Bucks alleged that Jones was involved in cocaine usage, even hiring private detectives to investigate, while Jones staunchly denied the accusations. Ultimately, Jones reached a contract settlement with the Bucks and was released.[3]

Jones then joined the Utah Stars before retiring after a final stint with the Sixers in 1976.

Jones' son Askia[4] is the third-leading scorer in Kansas State University basketball history and played briefly in the NBA himself, with the Minnesota Timberwolves.


  1. ^ Tinsley, Justin. "How Martin Luther King Jr.'s death affected the NBA". The Undefeated. Retrieved 22 January 2021.
  2. ^ Jones, Gordie. "Sixers' Finest Fives: Wali Jones, QB Of The '66-67 Title Team, Has Spent His Life Doing Good". Forbes. Retrieved 22 January 2021.
  3. ^ "The Wali Jones Case Is Closed, but Not Tightly". New York Times. 25 May 1973. Retrieved 22 January 2021.
  4. ^ 40 Nuggets for 40-Team NIT, by Mike Douchant, College Sporting News, published March 11, 2002

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