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Five Fun Facts About Notre Dame Fighting Irish Players in Pro Basketball

Filed under: 5 Fun Facts — by Mark on July 26, 2016

Notre Dame is one of the most famous and popular colleges in America. It’s known widely for its success on the football field but has put out some great basketball players too. Here is a look at five fun facts about Notre Dame and the NBA Draft.

Who Was the First Notre Dame Player to Make a Three Point Shot?

The first Notre Dame player to go on and make a three pointer in pro basketball was Collis Jones who was picked in the first round in the NBA by the Bucks and in the first round in the ABA by the Dallas Chaparrals. He played his entire career in the ABA.

Notre Dame Players and Their Turnovers

The first five Notre Dame basketball players to go on and turn the ball over 1,000 or more times in the NBA were Orlando Woolridge, Kelly Tripucka, Bill Laimbeer, Bill Hanzlik, and LaPhonso Ellis. Ellis barely made the group, finishing his career with a total of 1,001 turnovers.

The Top Notre Dame Rebounder in the NBA

The Notre Dame basketball player to have more career rebounds than anyother is Bill Laimbeer with 10,400. Prior to Laimbeer, the top spot on that list was held by Notre Dame player Tom Hawkins who played in the 1960s and finished with a total of 4,607.

The Top Assist Makers in the NBA from Notre Dame

The first five Notre Dame players to finish their NBA careers with over 2,000 assists were Adrian Dantley, Kelly Tripucka, Bill Hanzlik, John Paxson, and Bill Laimbeer.

A Notre Dame Drought in the 1960s

Notre Dame saw at least one player get drafted by the NBA in every decade from the 1950s to the 2010s, except for the 1960s. Tom Hawkins was taken by the Minneapolis Lakers in 1959 out of Notre Dame and another Fighting Irish player wouldn’t be drafted until Collis Jones in 1971.

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