This Day In Sports History; February 16
Wilt Chamberlain reaches 30,000 points, Jerome Bettis is born, and Gary Carter passes away.
February 16th isn’t really considered a “big” day in sports history because there was no big championship game or a historic trade but, there were three fairly significant events.
On the 16th in 1972, NBA legend Wilt Chamberlain became the first player to ever reach 30,000 points scored when he did so as a Laker in a 110-109 loss to the Phoenix Suns. Chamberlain sits at seventh in all time points scored with 31,419. He’s ranked 141 points behind Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki and just above Shaquille O’Neal.
That exact same day, on February 16, 1972 while Wilt was getting buckets, a legend was born. Jerome “The Bus” Bettis was born on this date in Detroit, Michigan. One of my dads favorite players because he was a powerhouse at Notre Dame for the Irish. Bettis would go onto be drafted 10th overall in 1993 by the Rams and was traded to Pittsburgh in 1995.
Bettis is an NFL Hall of Famer, a six time Pro Bowler, a Super Bowl champ, two time first team All Pro, the 1993 Rookie of the Year, and the 1996 Comeback Player of the Year. He will always be remembered as a powerful running back that was damn near impossible to bring down.
Fast forward to February 16, 2012, sad news strikes the world of baseball. Legendary Mets and Expos catcher, Gary Carter, who was also my dads favorite MLB player, passed away at 57 years old.
Carters career was nothing short of phenomenal. He’s an eleven time All Star, three time Golden Glove winner, five time Silver Slugger winner, and won his only World Series in 1986 as a member of the Mets. Carters number 8 was also retired by the Expos and he resides in the Mets Hall of Fame.
The “Kid” was enshrined in Cooperstown, New York in the Pro Baseball Hall of Fame as an Expo in 2003.
Like I mentioned before, there may not have been an unreal game winning shot or a huge championship game but, February 16th was pivotal in records being broken and remembering great players careers.