PLAYER PROFILE

JOE LAPCHICK

STATISTICS & HISTORY

Joe Lapchick, a native of Yonkers, New York, turned pro in 1917 when he was just seventeen years old. Skinny and gangly as a teenager, the 6’5″ Lapchick had to work hard to develop his basketball skills. Over the next five years, he played on a half dozen teams in the NYC area. By 1920, Lapchick had gained enough experience to be in demand by faster pro teams in the Interstate, New York State and the Metropolitan basketball leagues. In 1923, Lapchick signed to play for the Original Celtics. Lapchick was adept at controlling the center tap, but unlike other big men of his era, he could also move well without the ball and score on shots from the floor. In addition, he was an excellent passer, a prerequisite for the Celtics’ style of play. As the youngest member of the Celtics and the most recent arrival, Lapchick had the longest and hardest period of adjustment. Even with six pro seasons behind him, the 23-year-old Lapchick was unprepared for the Celtics’ style of play with its switching defenses and precision executed offense. Lapchick turned out to be the final piece of the puzzle for a squad that would dominate basketball for most of the decade and rank as one of the greatest in the history of the game. Lapchick’s peak years coincided with the Celtics’ prime years in the twenties when they dominated the American Basketball League. After the demise of the ABL in 1931, Lapchick, despite serious knee problems, barnstormed with the Celtics through the middle of the decade. In 1936, Lapchick, based on the recommendation of former Celtics’ teammate Nat Holman, was hired as coach of St.John’s University. During the next eleven seasons, Lapchick coached the Redman to 181 victories and NIT titles in 1943 and 1944. In 1947, Lapchick left St.John’s to coach the New York Knicks of the infant Basketball Association of America. During his nine seasons as coach of the Knicks, Lapchick always produced winning teams. Three times he took the Knicks to the NBA finals, but a championship eluded him. In 1957, citing poor heath, Lapchick resigned his position with the Knicks. One month later, he returned to St. John’s for a second coaching stint that lasted through 1965. Lapchick’s overall record in twenty seasons at St.John’s was 335-129. He was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1966 .

 

JOE LAPCHICK Height: 6:05 Weight: 185 College: None
Joseph Bohomiel Lapchick Born: Apr 12, 1900 Died: Aug 10, 1970 Hometown: Yonkers, NY
Brother of Willie Lapchick REGULAR SEASON RECORD
Year Team League     GA FGM  FTM   FTA  PCT.  AST  PTS AVG
1917-20 Yonkers Hollywood Inn Indep
1918-19 Yonkers Hollywood Inn Indep
1919-20 Yonkers Hollywood Inn Indep
1920-21 Schenectady NYSL 5 2 10 14 2.8
1920-21 Holyoke IL 11 14 40 68 6.2
1921-22 SchenectadyTroy NYSL 32 12 95 119 3.7
1921-22 Brooklyn Visitation MBL 10 6 20 32 3.2
1921-22 Holyoke IL 16 13 40 66 4.1
1921-22 Mt.Vernon Armory Big Five Indep 3 6 4 16 5.3
1922-23 Troy NYSL 24 13 59 85 3.5
1922-23 Brooklyn Visitation MBL 33 34 109 177 5.4
1922-23 Holyoke IL 16 13 40 66 4.1
1923-24 Original Celtics Indep
1924-25 Original Celtics Indep
1925-26 Original Celtics Indep
1926-27 New York NLN 17 20 66 106 6.2
1926-27 Brooklyn ABL 32 35 131 201 6.3
1927-28 New York ABL 47 103 110 316 6.7
1928-29 Cleveland ABL 39 51 86 188 4.8
1929-30 Cleveland ABL 52 47 92 186 3.6
1930-31 ClevelandToledo ABL 30 22 49 93 3.1
1931-32 Original Celtics Indep
1932-33 Original Celtics Indep
1932-33 Yonkers MBL 1 0 0 0 0.0
1933-34 Original Celtics Indep
1933-34 Plymouth PSL 1 1 3 5 5.0
1934-35 Original Celtics Indep
1935-36 Original Celtics Indep
1936-37 Original Celtics Indep
Major League Totals 365 385 947 1717 4.7
PLAYOFF RECORD
Year Team League     GA FGM  FTM   FTA  PCT.  AST  PTS AVG
1921-22 Holyoke IL 3 2 8 12 4.0
1926-27 Brooklyn ABL 3 3 12 18 6.0
1927-28 New York ABL 6 7 24 38 6.3
1928-29 Cleveland ABL 4 4 8 16 4.0
1929-30 Cleveland ABL 5 4 13 21 4.2
Major League Totals 21 20 65 105 5.0
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