In a fun little bit of trivia that capped off the most heartwarming team-up since Iron Man and Captain America, Lebron James reveled a bit in finally getting to play with, instead of against, longtime rival Steph Curry. But aside from the post-All-Star honeymoon feelings, what’s most interesting about this tweet is the last hashtag: Just Some Kids Born In Akron (somewhere this is already an obscure Trivial Pursuit fact).
Finally got to share the floor with @StephenCurry30! Well overdue and I loved every single second!! #GreatestShooterOfAllTime #ChangedHowTheGameIsPlayedByHimselfAlone #RespectBeyondWords #JustSomeKidsBornInAKRON🤴🏾
Turns out, Akron, Ohio is more of a basketball hotbed than it seems on the surface. Aside from younger NBA studs like Larry Nance, Jr. and JaKarr Sampson, turns out that the city gave birth to a couple of legends in Gus Johnson and Nate Thurmond along with LeBron.
Sound unfamiliar? Don’t blame yourself: even most Bullets fans won’t remember the Baltimore days long before Wes Unseld brought a football mentality to the league. The same goes for the Warriors with Nate “The Great” Thurmond. Both players came up when Bill Russell’s Celtics and Wilt’s 76ers were running the table on everyone else, so they ended up largely forgotten, especially in Gus’ case, since he was exiled to the ABA towards the end of his career. But you will still find his jersey up in the rafters and his name enshrined in Springfield, a testament to several All-Star and All-NBA berths. As for Thurmond, if you want to see David Robinson and Karl Malone before David Robinson and Karl Malone, he was basically a living specimen of the two.
The man was shredded beyond belief. And while not much of a shooter, he made statements in his own way, as the first NBA player to ever record a quadruple-double, and was even named to the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History for the League’s 50th Anniversary in 1996. He even returned to Cleveland later in his career before it became cool (*cough cough* Lebron).
Imagine a team Led by Steph and Lebron, with Nate the Great and Gus Johnson in the mix, maybe throw Nance, Jr. in there for some extra bounce. It would certainly be a scary sight that would terrorize their opponents.
It may not be the most well-known city in America, but Akron, Ohio is the home to numerous hooping legends. Sure, LeBron James was the first one to really put the city on the map, but others before him like Nate Thurmond and Gus Johnson paved the way.