Spencer HaywoodHt. 6-8
College - Detroit
ABA Team: Denver (1969-70)
All-American at University of Detroit; 1968 Olympic Gold Medal Winner; 1st College Player to Test ABA Hardship Draft Rule in 1969; Led ABA in Scoring and Rebounding as a rookie in 1969-70; ABA Rookie of the Year in 1969-70; 1969-70 ABA League MVP; MVP of 1969-70 ABA All-Star Game; 2nd Rookie (behind Wilt Chamberlain) to score 2,500 points in first pro season; ABA Record Holder for most field goals (986) and rebounds (1637) in a season; ABA Record Holder for Highest Rebound per Game Average (19.5 in 1969-70); Member of 1969-70 ABA All-Pro Team
From Jim O'Brien's 1971-72 Complete Handbook of Pro Basketball:
Spencer Haywood's 1969-70 season with the ABA Denver Rockets was one of the most amazing individual years in professional basketball history.
He led the ABA in scoring with 30 points per game (beating out Hall of Famer Rick Barry who averaged 27.7 for the Washington Caps). He also led the ABA in rebounding with 19.5 rebounds per game (beating out Mel Daniels who averaged 17.6 for the Pacers).
At the 1970 ABA All-Star Game held in Indianapolis and televised to a nationwide audience by CBS, Haywood was voted the game's MVP. ABA Commissioner Jack Dolph presented him with a huge MVP trophy (above middle), a 1970 Dodge Challenger ("mini" version above right), and an RCA G-2000 color television.
At the end of the season, Haywood was voted the ABA Rookie of the Year, and the ABA's overall Most Valuable Player. He was also named to the first team All-ABA Team. The only title Haywood did not win in his year with the Rockets was the ABA Championship, as Denver bowed out in the 2nd round of the playoffs to the "Cinderella" L.A. Stars.