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Wes Unseld, Hall of Famer and NBA champion in DC, dies at 74

Unseld and Wilt Chamberlain are the only two players to win NBA Rookie of the Year and MVP honors in the same season.
Credit: AP Photo/Joe Giza
Washington Bullets' Wes Unseld tucks the ball away from Houston Rockets' Rick Barry after grabbing an offensive rebound during first quarter action in their game in Landover, Md., Dec. 22, 1979.

WASHINGTON — Basketball Hall of Famer Wes Unseld, who led Washington to its only NBA championship, has died at age 74.

He died Tuesday after a series of health issues, most recently pneumonia, according to his family.

Unseld was a 6-foot-7, 245-pound center who dominated as a rebounder and led Washington’s team - then known as the Bullets - to the 1978 NBA championship, earning Finals MVP honors.

He played all 13 of his seasons with the franchise, then became its coach and general manager. Unseld and Wilt Chamberlain are the only two players to win NBA Rookie of the Year and MVP honors in the same season. Unseld did it in 1969.

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