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YouTube Gold: Highlights Of The 1954 All-Star Game

The best were always pretty good.

George Mikan of the Minneapolis Lakers during warmup at Madi
UNITED STATES - CIRCA 2000: George Mikan of the Minneapolis Lakers during warmup at Madison Square Garden.
Photo by Evelyn Straus/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images

The NBA was founded on the anniversary of D-Day, June 6, 1946, about eight months before William and Emily Krzyzewski welcomed their second son, Michael.

The NBA was eight years old in 1954 and the All-Star game featured such talents as Bob Cousy, Bill Sharman, Easy Ed McCauley, Dolph Schayes and George Mikan.

This is a small clip from that game. In the first play, there’s a pass that you have to kind of rewind to figure out just what happened. Later you may see how fundamentally sound Mikan was. Could he play today?

Not that Mikan. Maybe if he grew up and had the same advantages today’s players he he might be able to, but not the 1954 version.

Still, he did a very graceful move under the basket and later rolls out to take a sweet hook shot.

But you also see Cousy dribbling into a double team and when the ball goes downcourt, you realize just how small and slow he is.

There's another play where a guy goes up for a layup and just misses it totally.

In just a few years, Bill Russell and Wilt Chamberlain would arrive and begin to transform the game and video like this would look quainter and quainter. But these guys did have the basics down and also set the direction for how the league would develop.