Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Howard Komives

The Trade that made the Knicks champions.

Howard Komives, a sharpshooting guard who played for 10 seasons in the National Basketball Association but who was perhaps best remembered for the trade that sent him to the Detroit Pistons from the Knicks for the future Hall of Famer Dave DeBusschere, died Sunday in Toledo, Ohio. He was 67.

I remember Komives. Yes, Butch Komives. I remember the trade, very well.

The Knicks traded Komives and center Walt Bellamy to the Pistons on Dec. 19, 1968, for DeBusschere, an outstanding defender and rebounder at forward as well as a formidable scorer. The deal enabled the Knicks to move Willis Reed to center, his natural position, and they went on to win N.B.A. championships in 1970 and 1973.

What a great team that was.

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