Originally written April 02, 2013 on Metta Chronicles:
On this day in 1969, the Milwaukee Bucks signed Lew Alcindor (Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) to his first NBA contract. He would play for Milwaukee until 1975, then join the L.A. Lakers until his retirement in 1989. While Kareem’s career as a Laker is well-documented, his accomplishments as a Buck often go understated. With that said, here are some things you need to know about the Buck that was Lew Alcindor. Lew Alcindor was both the first overall pick in the 1969 NBA Draft by the Milwaukee Bucks, and the top overall pick in the 1969 American Basketball Association (ABA) draft by the New Jersey Nets. Oh, and he also turned down a $1 million offer from the Harlem Globetrotters. Yup, he was THAT good. Alcindor chose to go with the Bucks and the NBA over the Nets and the ABA, a decision that changed the course of both leagues forever [Bill Simmons explains the incredible story here]. He won the 1970 NBA Rookie of the Year award with per game averages of 28.8 points and 14.5 rebounds. The Bucks improved to 56-26 that season after going 27-55 the previous one. [Check out this old blog post to see some of the best rookie seasons in NBA history.] Oscar Robertson joined the Bucks before the 1970-71 season, helping Alcindor lead Milwaukee to a regular season record of 66-16. They even strung together a win streak of 20 games at one point that season, a record for the NBA at the time. Alcindor averaged 31.7 points and 16.0 rebounds per game as he won the regular season MVP award. He later won the Finals MVP that season after the Bucks swept the Baltimore Bullets in the 1971 NBA Finals. Not sure what the rush was, but the day after winning the 1971 Finals, Alcindor legally changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. In Arabic, ‘Kareem’ means generous, servant of ‘Abdul’ the mighty one ‘Jabbar’. How or why did Kareem start wearing those goggles?! During a preseason game in 1974, Abdul-Jabbar broke his hand after punching the basket support after a hard foul. During the play, he scratched his eye and would wear protective goggles for the rest of his career. The injured hand sidelined him for the first 16 games of that season. [Didn't everyone get mad at Amare for something similar? See .. **** happens during the heat of the moment. Relax, critics.]  
PLAYERS: Bill Simmons
TEAMS: Milwaukee Bucks
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

What to watch in the NL Wild Card game

Sammy Watkins calls out EJ Manuel

Larry Donnell benches himself in fantasy, loses because of it

Josh Gordon says NFL’s drug policy is harrassment

Steve Smith: Ron Rivera hid in his office after cutting me

Rondo hoping for an opening night return from broken hand

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jon Gruden on Raiders job: 'I'm not thinking about coaching'

Tom Brady defends not congratulating Garoppolo on TD

Ohio State student who ran on field loses full scholarship

Report: Carson Palmer's nerve injury 'still lingering'

Adam Dunn to retire after 14-year MLB career

Ryan Lochte: Phelps made dumb decision, will learn from it

NL Wild Card Game Live Blog

WATCH: Mayweather shocked someone doesn’t know who he is

Who is the new face of MLB?

NHL 15 predicts the LA Kings win the Cup again

J.J. Watt buys his mom a new car for her birthday

Ranking the NFL coaches already sitting on the hot seat

WATCH: Smith tells Panthers to go home and mow his lawn

The best games on the NFL slate in Week 5

Aaron Rodgers says smoking gesture a tribute to Jay Cutler

What will the A’s look like in 2015?

Major League Baseball's 2014 All-Disappointment Team

Jeter introduces 'The Players Tribune,' 'The Voice of the Game'

Bucks News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

What to watch in the NL Wild Card game

Sammy Watkins calls out EJ Manuel

Donnell benches himself in fantasy and loses

Gordon: Drug policy is harrassment

Who is the new face of baseball?

Steve Smith blasts Panthers coach, GM

What will the A’s look like in 2015?

All-Disappointment Team in MLB

Ryan Lochte: Phelps made dumb decision

WATCH: Brett Favre in new commercial

Brady snubs rookie after TD pass

FCC: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.