Portland Trail Blazers Statement On Passing Of Two-Time NBA Champion And Hall Of Famer Bill Walton

PORTLAND, Ore. (May 27, 2024) – The Portland Trail Blazers organization is deeply saddened to hear
of the passing of two-time NBA champion and Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer Bill Walton, who
passed away at the age of 71. The organization issued the following statement:
“Bill Walton was a true legend an extraordinary player, talented broadcaster, and vital part of the
Blazers organization. His mastery of the game not only established him as one of the greatest centers
in history, but also led the Blazers to a championship in 1977, where he earned NBA Finals Most
Valuable Player. But Bill was so much more than basketball, he was larger than life. His upbeat and
vibrant personality will forever be remembered and cherished, and he will be deeply missed by our
organization, Rip City and all who experienced him. Our love and condolences go to Bill’s wife, Lori
and his sons, Adam, Nate, Luke and Chris.”
As a Trail Blazer, Walton was a two-time NBA All-Star (1977 and 1978) and led the Blazers to the
NBA Finals during the historic championship run in 1977. During his career, Walton earned the NBA
Most Valuable Player award in 1978, was selected All-NBA First Team that same year and All-NBA
Second Team in 1977. He was named to the All-Defensive Team in back-to-back seasons (1977 and
1978) and was awarded the NBA Finals MVP in 1977 for the Trail Blazers. Inducted as a member of
the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1993, Walton was also named to the Top 50 and
Top 75 Anniversary Teams. His number 32 jersey was retired by the Trail Blazers in 1989. As a
broadcaster, he brought the game to life with rich and lively commentary that connected fans to the
game in exciting and memorable ways. Off the court, Walton was a friend, father, husband and
community leader.
“Bill Walton was an icon,” said Jody Allen, chair of the Portland Trail Blazers. “His leadership and
tenacity on the court were key to bringing a championship to our fans and defined one of the most
magical moments in franchise history. We will always treasure what he brought to our community and
the sport of basketball. “