Elgin Gay Baylor, the legendary American-born NBA player, passed away on Monday, 22 March 2021 in Los Angeles.
The news of his sad departure surfaced media platforms claiming to have died a natural death, as declared by the Lakers organization. The Lakers further told that his wife Elaine and daughter Krystal were present with him at the time of death.
The news of the demise of Elgin Baylor, 86, comes as yet another sad addition to the list of American sports figures lost in 2021. The advent of 2021 has seen a series of departures of several American sportspersons such as Henry Aron, Floyd Little, Tony Trabert, Paul Westphal, Grant Jackson, Tommy Lasorda, Don Sutton, John Chaney, and many more.
Accredited for his adept acrobatic swag on the courtyard of the sports, Elgin Baylor edged in performance as a shooter, passer, and rebounder who knew how to hook up his onlookers with an incredible exhibition of his trademark maneuvering skills of long hanging jump shots and astounding passes.
His illustrious career is reflective and replete with many earned sports laurels inclusive of titles such as Rookie of the Year – 1959 and All-Star Game MVP honors in the mid-90s, and multiple honors. He played 14 seasons and 8 NBA finals and served in multifarious capacities such as a player, a coach, an executive, and as general manager of the Los Angeles Clippers with a healthy showcase of achievements.
As one of the top-ranking players of the Lakers alongside Jerry West, he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1977, and privileged with a statue of honor in recognition of his legendary sports contribution, making him one of the luckiest top picks of the six Lakers Luminaries to have the privilege of a statue outside the Staples Center. Others holding the same honor include Magic Johnson, Abdul Jabbar, Jerry West, Chick Hearn, and Shaquille O’Neal.
Despite such a substantial and eminent career replete with talent and achievements, it is claimed that the early years of Elgin Baylor evinced that the player was under-appreciated during his 14-year service with Minneapolis and Los Angeles through the deliberate limiting of his play, yet still he managed to make rich history.
He not only served his nation with great athletic feats but is also recalled as a man of integrity whose contributions at all fronts shall reminisce for years to come.
Elaine Baylor (wife of Elgin Baylor) while addressing media uttered words of appreciation for her husband acknowledging his significant role as a friend and spouse, paying tribute to his immense courage, while also requesting for the privacy for her family to be allowed to mourn the demise of her husband.