On this day in 1943, Basketball Hall of Famer Billy Cunningham was born. Nicknamed the Kangaroo Kid, for his legendary leaping ability, Cunningham has had a long, storied life in basketball. He spent 11 years in the league as a player and another 8 as a head coach. He was an investor and minority owner of the Miami HEAT when they were added to the league.
Cunningham averaged 21 points and 10 rebounds a game during his career. He was a 4-time NBA All Star and 1-time ABA All Star during his career. Even though he only played two years in the ABA (the league lasted nine years) he was still named to the ABA’s All Time Team during the celebration of the leagues 30th Anniversary. In 1996, we was named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History.
Cunningham’s rookie card was in the legendary 1969-70 Topps set. You can pick up the card starting in the $6-8 range for a low-end raw copy.