PLAYER PROFILE

WILLIE SMITH

STATISTICS & HISTORY

 

Willie Smith was called the toughest player he ever faced by John Wooden. While he was never a very good shooter, Smith excelled as one of the top defenders and rebounders in professional basketball of the 1930’s and early 1940’s. Smith was discovered playing for Cleveland’s Slaughter Brothers team by New York Renaissance owner Bob Douglas. He joined the Rens in 1932 as they embarked on a four-season run of 473 wins and only 49 losses. The team won 88 straight games during this period. Smith rotated in the pivot with Tarzan Cooper. With his strength, quickness and great balance, Smith could dominate a game defensively. Smith was a key figure in the Rens’ capturing the first national pro tournament in Chicago in 1939. He stayed with the Rens through the 1942-43 season before he returned to his hometown in the 1943-44 season to play with the Cleveland entry in National Basketball League. In 1947, Smith was lured out of retirement at the age of 37 to play one last season with the Rens who had joined the NBL representing Dayton, Ohio

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WILLIE SMITH Height: 6:05 Weight: 235 College: None
William T. Smith Born: Apr 22, 1911 Died:  Mar 14, 1992 Hometown: Cleveland, O.
Wee Willie Smith REGULAR SEASON RECORD
Year Team League     GA FGM  FTM   FTA  PCT.  AST  PTS   AVG
1931-32 Cleveland Slaughter Brothers Indep
1932-33 New York Rens Indep
1933-34 New York Rens Indep
1934-35 New York Rens Indep
1935-36 New York Rens Indep
1936-37 New York Rens Indep
1937-38 New York Rens Indep
1938-39 New York Rens Indep
1939-40 New York Rens Indep
1940-41 New York Rens Indep
1941-42 New York Rens Indep
1941-42 Baltimore Nets Indep
1942-43 New York Rens Indep
1943-44 Cleveland NBL 4 9 6 16 .375 24 6.0
1943-44 New York Rens Indep
1944-45 New York Rens Indep
1945-46 Cleveland Fifas Indep
1945-46 Cleveland Allmen Transfers Indep
1945-46 Cleveland Buckeyes Indep
1946-47 Cleveland Fifas Indep
1946-47 Chicago Monarchs Indep
1947-48 Voluntarily Retired
1948-49 Dayton NBL 32 45 37 49 .755 127 4.0
Major League Totals 36 54 43 65 .662 151 4.2
POST SEASON PLAYOFFS
Year Team League     GA FGM  FTM   FTA  PCT.  AST  PTS   AVG
1938-39 New York Rens WBT 3 7 4 6 .667 18 6.0
1939-40 New York Rens WBT 2 6 3 5 .600 15 7.5
1940-41 New York Rens WBT 4 9 2 4 .500 20 5.0
1941-42 New York Rens WBT 2 1 5 6 .833 7 3.5
1943-44 Cleveland NBL 2 5 7 17 8.5
1943-44 New York Rens WBT 4 4 2 3 .667 10 2.5
1944-45 New York Rens WBT 4 13 4 7 .571 30 7.5
1945-46 Cleveland Allmen Transfers WBT 1 2 1 3 .333 5 5.0
Major League Totals 22 47 28 34 122 5.5
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