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June 17, 2009

First African-American NBA player shares experiences

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. --Basketball Hall of Fame member Earl Lloyd, who became the first African-American to play in the NBA on October 31, 1950, visited Tennessee Tech Wednesday to share stories with the Golden Eagle men’s basketball team and special guests of head coach Mike Sutton.

Lloyd revisited his experience as a young player making a basketball career in a racially divided era, and talked about the evolution of the game in the time since. Lloyd played for the Washington Capitols from 1950-‘51, before joining the Syracuse Nationals from 1952-’58, where he won the 1955 NBA championship. He finished his career playing with the Detroit Pistons from 1958-’60.

Lloyd was one of three African-Americans to enter the league in 1950, but made his debut one day before Chuck Cooper and four days before Nat Clifton. In 2003 Lloyd was inducted to the Basketball Hall of Fame.