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Through The Looking Glass: Bullets' Johnson grabs a board

Gus Johnson

Was there a more exciting player for the Baltimore Bullets than high-flying Gus Johnson? A 6-foot-6 power forward with a kangaroo leap, "Honeycomb" played nine years in Baltimore (1963-72), averaging 17 points and 13 rebounds. His patented dunk shot shattered several backboards at the Civic Center. A five-time NBA All-Star, he is seen here in 1964, outmuscling Philadelphia’s Ben Warley (left) and Chet Walker for a rebound. In 1987, Johnson died of brain cancer at age 48.


gus was about 6-5 broke a backboard in milwaukee one night with about 3 min to go in the game and the bullets down by about 40 pts. there was an hour delay. he was extemely strong, played with a great flair and his matchups with dave debusshere of the knicks was great. he had a deep voice, had a gold star on one of his front teeth. from akron ohio out of the university of idaho.

If Gus could have stayed healthy he would have made the Hall of Fame easy. He was my favorite Bullet of all time.

Gus Johnson had that star power you just couldn't wait to get to the arena for. (Not just on his front tooth either!) Fade away, jump shoot, drive to the basket, rebound & play defense & jump from the foul line to dunk! He was a showman in a showy game. He used to double us up with laughter & cheers when he stood baseline post windmilling a palmed ball, waiting for an aggressive without-the-ball drive. Earl would shake his defender at the foul line & break....Gus would bounce the ball through his own legs bypassing the on-his-back defender with a no-look pass to Monroe for an easy blow-the-crowd away layup. We went crazy! We loved him.

"Honeycomb stuffs it through!" broadcasted by Jim Karvellas was quite a thrill to hear.

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