I can still remember my JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL 35 night center days when the old-timers used to scrimmage on our main court and we were RELEGATED to fans.
I recall one player, who was a guard and seemed to be the smoothest player on the court, had the best defense and he was very deadly with his jump shot, which he did not take as much as he should have.
As good as he was, he seemed to be putting out only half the effort, but he was surely the best player on the court in my eyes.
His lack of effort, I later realized, was actually a tribute to his efficiency - he did not waste energy or effort - his effort was in proportion to the task at hand..
When I asked who was that guard, no one my age seemed to know him, so I asked former BOYS HIGH AND VIRGINIA UNION LEGEND, RONNIE BRESSANT.
BRESS said, his name was Walt Davis.
Some great players would always be on the court at JHS 35 back in the day, but I can't remember anyone who impressed me more than Walt.
I was focused on he way he dribbled from midcourt to the baseline and how he was aware of his teammates' location at all times. He was the perfect example for kids to pattern their game after.
In my book, Walt Davis was without doubt, one of the best passers I have ever seen in my life.
A few months later, I was playing against Mister Davis, in a pickup game with some older, stronger player at JHS 35 night center - I was the token "young boy," filling out the squad ------>>>> That was the last time I saw Walt Davis alive.
I AGREE WITH YOU - WALT WAS ONE OF THE BEST PURE PLAYERS I EVER SAW AT ANY LEVEL - AND HE DID NOT SHOOT ENOUGH.
LIKE OSCAR ROBERTSON, WALT'S GAME WAS SCIENTIFIC - IT DID NOT DEPEND ON PHYSICAL TALENT AS MUCH AS ON DOING ---->>>> THE EXACT RIGHT THING AT THE EXACT RIGHT TIME.
HE WAS A COMPUTER AND HE DID NEVER EVER NEEDED TO LOOK AT THE BALL -- HE CONTROLLED THE BALL BETTER THAN ANYONE I EVER SAW OUTSIDE THE NBA, UNTIL I SAW CHARLEY DONOVAN HANDLE A BALL.
I HAVE TO BELIEVE THAT HIS RELATIVES, CHUCK AND WILLIE, HAD A GREAT INFLUENCE ON THE FACT THAT WALT HAD NO SELFISH EGO IN HIS GAME ------>> IT WAS NOT ABOUT HIM, IT WAS ABOUT WINNING.
I CAN'T BELIEVE MICKEY FISHER EVER COACHED ANYONE WHO COULD RUN A GAME PLAN AS WELL AS WALT - BUT THAT IS A STATEMENT I SHOULD CONFIRM WITH DR. HOWARD JONES, HE WOULD KNOW MORE THAN I ON THAT TOPIC.
I RECALL, ONE SUMMER AT THE RUCKER TOURNAMENT, IN A NYC VERSUS PHILLY HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR ALL STAR GAME -- A PHILLY FAN ASKED ME AT HALF TIME, WHO THE LEFT HANDED NYC GUARD WAS - I TOLD THE GUY I DIDN'T KNOW HIS NAME --- WHEN THE TEAMS CAME BACK OUT FOR THE SECOND HALF, THE PHILLY FAN POINTED TO THE PLAYER AND I SAID, THAT IS WALT DAVIS AND HE IS NOT LEFT HANDED --- WALT WAS AMBIDEXTROUS - THE MOST EVEN HANDED PLAYER I HAVE YET TO SEE AND I INCLUDE EVEN JORDAN AND OSCAR IN SAYING THAT.
WALT, FOR REASON I KNOW NOTHING OF, HAD DEMONS AND SHOULD BE INCLUDED IN OUR PRAYERS.
WE LIVED IN AN ERA OF GIANTS, WE HAVE BEEN BLESSED IN THAT REGARD.
IT OFTEN SEEMS LIKE, GOD TAKES THE GREAT ONES TOO SOON - WALT BEING A CASE IN POINT.