Boerwinkle in 1969
August 23, 1945|
March 26, 2013 (aged 67)|
|Listed height||7 ft 0 in (2.13 m)|
|Listed weight||265 lb (120 kg)|
Millersburg Military Institute|
|NBA draft||1968 / Round: 1 / Pick: 4th overall|
|Selected by the Chicago Bulls|
|Points||4,596 (7.2 ppg)|
|Rebounds||5,745 (9.0 rpg)|
|Assists||2,007 (3.2 apg)|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
Tom Boerwinkle was born in Independence, Ohio, one of three children of John and Katherine Boerwinkle. John Boerwinkle, an engineer for an oil refinery, was a native of Cleveland and the son of Dutch immigrants who had come to the United States in 1890.
In his junior and senior season, he averaged a double-double each season—10.2 points and 12.2 rebounds his junior season and 11.3 points and 15.2 rebounds his senior season.
Boerwinkle was drafted as the fourth pick of the 1968 NBA Draft and played with the Bulls until 1978. Although largely unappreciated during his playing days, Boerwinkle was a very efficient player, using his brawny seven-foot frame to grab rebounds and set picks while teammates like Jerry Sloan, Chet Walker and Bob Love did most of the scoring.
In addition, he contributed with his passing skills, averaging 3.2 assists per game during his career. On January 8, 1970, Boerwinkle set a Bulls record by grabbing 37 rebounds against the Phoenix Suns. He retired with career totals of 4,596 points, 5,745 rebounds, and 2,007 assists. Boerwinkle also had five triple doubles in his career.
Upon his death, longtime Bulls teammate Bob Love said, "He was a great teammate with a heart of gold. And I always tell people: Half of my baskets came from him. He's one of the best-passing big men of all-time." Hall of Fame center and Bulls teammate Artis Gilmore said, "He understood his role extremely well," Hall of Fame center Artis Gilmore said," He had a very big body and he absorbed a lot of space. With those behind-the-back and over-the-head passes, he was very good. He understood the game and he played intelligent basketball."
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