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Category Archives: ’72-’73 Topps

John Roche – 1972-’73 Topps #201

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JohnRoche_a John Michael Roche (born September 26, 1949 in New York City) is a retired American professional basketball player in both the ABA and the NBA from 1971 to 1982.
Roche attended high school at La Salle Academy and college at the University of South Carolina and was a three-time All-American and two-time MVP of the Atlantic Coast Conference and played for Frank McGuire at South Carolina. He was selected by the Phoenix Suns in the first round (14th pick) of the 1971 NBA Draft and also selected by the Kentucky Colonels in the 1971 ABA Draft. Roche signed with the New York NetsJohnRoche_b of the ABA, who had obtained the rights to him from the Colonels. He was selected to the 1972 ABA All-Rookie team, and played with the Nets during his first three seasons. During the 1973–74 season, he was traded back to Colonels for Mike Gale and Wendell Ladner. Roche is one of three players in NBA history to hit 7 three-point field goals in a quarter. Roche earned a law degree from the University of Denver College of Law, while playing for the Denver Nuggets. As of 2012, Roche was an attorney at the Denver office of the law firm Taylor  Anderson.

Milt Pappas – 1973 Topps #70

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MiltPappas_73topps#70_a Milton Steven “Milt” Pappas (born Miltiades Stergios Papastergios on May 11, 1939 in Detroit, Michigan) is a former professional baseball pitcher. A 17-year veteran, Pappas, nicknamed “Gimpy,” pitched for the Baltimore Orioles, Cincinnati Reds, Atlanta Braves and Chicago Cubs. Pappas pitched in 520 games, starting 465, with 209 wins, 164 losses, 43 shutouts, 1728 strikeouts and a 3.40 ERA in 3186.0 innings pitched.
In 1970, the Braves pulled Pappas from their rotation after only three starts, after he compiled a 6.06 ERA and allowed six home runs. On June 23, they sold him to the Chicago Cubs, where he got another chance to prove he was still a major league starter. Pappas posted a 7–2 record with a 2.36 ERA at home and a 10–8 record with a 2.68 ERA overall. In 1971, Pappas went 17–14 with a 3.51 ERA. On September 24 of that year, against the Philadelphia Phillies at Wrigley Field, Pappas struck out three batters (Greg Luzinski and Don Money) on nine pitches in the fourth inning of a 6–1 loss, becoming the 10th National League pitcher and the 16th pitcher in Major League history to accomplish the nine-strike/three-strikeout half-inning. Five days later, Pappas was again part of baseball history, he was responsible for Ron Hunt’s 50th hit by pitch of the season, which broke the single-season record of 49 set by Hughie Jennings in 1896. Pappas complained to home plate umpire Ken Burkhart that the pitch had been over the plate, and that Hunt had made no effort to get out of the way. Pappas’s manager on the Cubs, Leo Durocher, had unkind words for Pappas in his memoir Nice Guys Finish Last.
On September 11, 1982, MiltPappas_73topps#70_bPappas’ wife, Carole, disappeared after leaving the couple’s home in the Farnham subdivision in the Chicago suburb of Wheaton. For five years, no sign was found of her car, clothing, or body. In 1987, almost five years to the day Mrs. Pappas disappeared, workers draining a shallow pond only four blocks from the Pappas home discovered the car Mrs. Pappas had been driving, a white and burgundy 1980 Buick, as well as her body. A DuPage County coroner’s jury ruled the cause of death as drowning. Police theorized she mistook a driveway near the pond for a road leading to her subdivision, vaulting 25–30 feet from the bank into the pond. Carole Pappas, a recovering alcoholic, may have been drinking. However, blood alcohol content could not be confirmed.

Johnny Neuman – 1972-’73 Topps #243


JohnnyNeumann_a Carl John Neumann (born September 11, 1951 in Memphis, Tennessee) is an American former professional basketball player and coach. At 6’6″ and 200 pounds, he played the guard and forward positions. Neumann’s professional career started strong, with averages of 18.3 points per game and 19.6 points per game in his first two full seasons with Memphis. He was named to the ABA All-Rookie Team in 1972. Neumann fell out of favor with the team’s coach and management, who thought he was not passing the ball enough, and he was traded by the Memphis Tams to the Utah Stars in January 1974. Neumann’s first year in Utah the Stars won the ABA Western Division and defeated the San Diego Conquistadors in the Western Division Semifinals and the Indiana Pacers in the Western Division Finals to make it to the ABA Championship series, losing the 1974 ABA Finals to the New York Nets. Neumann struggled to regain his scoring average after being traded to Utah. He averaged just 10.1 points in 44 games with the Stars.
With the ABA-NBA merger in June 1976 Neumann ended up with the Buffalo Braves. From 1976 to 1978, Neumann played 83 games in the NBA as a member of the Braves, Los Angeles Lakers, and once again with the Pacers. In 1977-78 with the Pacers he averaged just 4.2 points per game. After leaving the NBA Neumann took his game to Europe, where he competed in Italy for Gabetti Cantu’ and Germany. Neumann became an assistant coach while playing in Germany.  Since the early 1980s, Neumann has coached in Belgium, Greece, Cyprus, Israel, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, JohnnyNeumann_bLebanon, China, and Japan, as well as in the American minor-league Continental Basketball Association with the Maine Lumberjacks. Neumann also coached the Louisville Shooters of the Global Basketball Association in 1991 and 1992. While in Cyprus, he discovered Darrell Armstrong, a little-known American guard from Fayetteville State University who later found success in the NBA. On June 23, 2010, Neumann was appointed as the new coach of the Romania national team.
The Memphis Tams nickname was an acronym for Tennessee – Arkansas – Mississippi, and the logo was a tam o’shanter-style hat in white, green and gold, which were also the new team colors, shared with the Athletics and Golden Seals.

Joe Caldwell – 1972 – ’73 Topps #255

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JoeCaldwell_a Joe Louis Caldwell (born November 1, 1941 in Texas City, Texas) a retired American professional basketball player. He spent 6 seasons in the NBA and 5 seasons in the ABA, and he was one of the few players to be an All-Star in both leagues. He was also a member of the United States Olympic basketball team that won the gold at the 1964 Summer Olympics. Nicknamed “Pogo Joe” or “Jumping Joe” for his leaping abilities, Caldwell was a 6’5″ guard and forward from Arizona State University. Drafted by the Detroit Pistons in 1964, he spent the majority of his NBA career with the St. Louis/Atlanta Hawks franchise. After averaging 21.1 points per game during the 1969-70 NBA season, Caldwell jumped to the rival ABA, playing for the Carolina Cougars from 1970 to 1974. JoeCaldwell_bCaldwell was also a great defender, and basketball legend Julius Erving said that Caldwell guarded him better than any player in the ABA. During the 1974-75 season, St. Louis management blamed Caldwell for influencing team star Marvin Barnes to briefly leave the team. Caldwell denied doing this but he was suspended for “activities detrimental to the best interests of professional basketball.” Caldwell never played another pro basketball game and has filed various lawsuits because he believes that he was wrongly blacklisted by the ABA and later the NBA. He scored 12,619 combined NBA/ABA career points. On November 20, 2010, ASU retired his collegiate number 32 before a game against the UAB Blazers.

Jim Cleamons – 1972-’73 Topps #29


James Mitchell “Jim” Cleamons (born September 13, 1949 in Lincolnton, North Carolina) is a retired American professional basketball player and current coach. He played collegiately at The Ohio State University, and was selected by the Los Angeles Lakers with the 13th pick of the 1971 NBA Draft. He had a nine-year NBA career for four different teams. In 1976, Cleamons was selected to the NBA All-Defense 2nd team. In addition to his playing career, Cleamons was the head coach of the Dallas Mavericks for slightly over one year, from 1996 to 1997. He was then the head coach of the Chicago Condors, and he has served as an assistant coach for the Chicago Bulls, Los Angeles Lakers, and New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets. He was hired as an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Lakers on July 19, 2006. For a few games during his tenure with the Lakers, he has served as acting head coach while Phil Jackson was absent. In 2011, Cleamons became a coach in the Chinese Basketball Association.

Dick Van Arsdale – 1972-’73 Topps #25


Richard Albert (Dick) Van Arsdale (born February 22, 1943 in Indianapolis, Indiana) a former professional basketball player and coach, and a current NBA executive. The 6’5″ guard played at Indiana University. Van Arsdale was selected by the New York Knickerbockers in the 2nd round of the 1965 NBA Draft. He was named to the NBA All-Rookie Team in 1966, along with his brother Tom Van Arsdale. Van Arsdale played in the NBA for 12 seasons. Three with the Knickerbockers and the remainder with the Phoenix Suns. Van Arsdale, a three-time All-Star, was one of the best free throw shooters in the NBA. He retired from play in 1977. Van Arsdale is remembered in Phoenix basketball lore as the “original Sun”. He later became the team’s general manager, and is currently the team’s senior vice president of player personnel. In 1987, he briefly served as the team’s head coach, following the departure of John MacLeod.

Dick Cunningham – 1972-’73 Topps #134

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Dick Cunningham (born July 11, 1946 in Canton, Ohio) is a retired American professional basketball player. A 6’10″ center, Cunningham led NCAA Division I in rebounding as a junior at Murray State University with a school-record 21.8 rebounds per game in the 1966-67 season. He was selected to the All-Ohio Valley Conference basketball team in 1967 and 1968. In three seasons with the Murray State varsity, Cunningham scored 981 points and grabbed 1,292 rebounds in 71 games. His 479 rebounds in 1966-67 and his career rebounding average of 18.2 rebounds per game still stand as Murray State records. He was inducted into the Murray State Athletics Hall of Fame in 1986. Cunningham was the 21st overall selection in the 1968 National Basketball Association draft by the Phoenix Suns and also was picked by the New York Nets in the American Basketball Association draft. Traded by the Suns to the Milwaukee Bucks before the 1968-69 season, Cunningham played seven seasons in the NBA as a member of the Bucks and Houston Rockets. He averaged 2.8 points per game and 3.7 rebounds per game in his career and won an NBA championship with Milwaukee in 1971

Clem Haskins – 1972-’73 Topps #59

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ImageClem Smith Haskins (born August 11, 1943) is a retired American professional basketball player and college basketball coach. He and star player Dwight Smith became the first black athletes to integrate the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers basketball program in the fall of 1963. This put Western Kentucky at the forefront to integrate college basketball in the South. He served 13 years as head coach of the University of Minnesota’s men’s basketball team, but was forced to resign due to one of the worst academic fraud scandals in the history of NCAA sports. He was effectively blackballed from coaching college basketball for seven years, one of the most severe penalties handed down by the NCAA to an individual.
After a successful college career, Haskins was selected by the Chicago Bulls in the first round of the 1967 NBA Draft and by the Kentucky Colonels in the American Basketball Association draft. Haskins went on to play nine years in the NBA with three teams (the Bulls, the Phoenix Suns, and the Washington Bullets). He retired in 1976 due to knee injuries, having tallied 6,743 career points.
After his NBA career, Haskins returned to Western Kentucky University, first as an assistant coach and then as head coach. In 1986, Haskins was hired by the University of Minnesota to rebuild the school’s men’s basketball program. ImageHe led the Gophers to a school-record 31 wins and the Final Four in 1997, winning the Clair Bee Coach of the Year Award in the same year. He also led Minnesota to National Invitation Tournament titles in 1993 and 1998. Haskins was known for sitting on a four-legged stool at Minnesota home games. Williams Arena has a raised floor which was hard on Haskins’ knees, and ordinarily the team sits off the floor. He joined Lenny Wilkens’ staff to coach “Dream Team III” to the gold medal in Basketball at the 1996 Summer Olympics
Clem is no longer coaching basketball. He has a 750-acre ranch near Campbellsville, Kentucky where he raises cattle. He also does color commentary for Western Kentucky basketball home games.

Charlie Davis – 1972-’73 Topps #8

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ImageCharlie Davis (born September 7, 1949 in New York City) is best known for being an outstanding college basketball player for Wake Forest University (WFU). He was the second African American player in Wake Forest’s history. Davis was the 1971 Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Men’s Basketball Player of the Year, and the first black player to win the award. Davis garnered first-team All-ACC honors for three years in a row, and was an eighth-round NBA draft pick (120th overall) by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 1971Image

Bud Stallworth – 1972-’73 Topps #58

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ImageIsaac “Bud” Stallworth (born January 18, 1950 in Hartselle, Alabama) is a retired American basketball player. He was a 6’5″ and 190 lb shooting guard and played college basketball at the University of Kansas where he was named 1972 All-Big Eight Player of the Year. He had a professional career in the NBA from 1972–1977. Stallworth was selected 7th overall by the Seattle SuperSonics in the 1972 NBA Draft, and by the Denver Rockets in the 1972 ABA Draft. After two seasons with the Sonics, he was made available in the 1974 expansion draft to be selected by the New Orleans Jazz, where he played for three seasons. ImageHis playing career was cut short due to a back injury sustained in an automobile accident in 1977. In 1978, Stallworth graduated from University of Kansas with a bachelor of social work degree. In 1972 while at KU, Stallworth scored 50 points in a win against Missouri.

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