It was an overtime thriller in a battle of two of the NBA’s premier big men as Bob McAdoo and the Braves hosted Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Lakers at Memorial Auditorium.
Buffalo News archives
It was Nov. 9, 1976, and McAdoo was showing the stuff that had won him the NBA MVP Award a season earlier.
Down by 20 heading into the fourth quarter, McAdoo led a comeback — including hitting a basket with two seconds left to tie the game. Randy Smith’s eight points in overtime cemented the Braves’ 121-116 victory.
Abdul-Jabbar led the game with 37 points in the losing effort; McAdoo had 34.
Buffalo fans were getting one of their last looks at McAdoo in a Buffalo uniform. Exactly one month to the day after this photo was taken, McAdoo was traded to the New York Knicks along with Tom McMillen for John Gianelli and cash.
McAdoo and Abdul-Jabbar ended up teammates on two Los Angeles Lakers championship teams where McAdoo was the sixth man on the club that also featured fellow Hall of Famers Magic Johnson and James Worthy.
After agreeing to give a lecture at Buffalo’s Forest Lawn Cemetery about some of the city’s great retailers of the past, I was deluged with people offering up their memories, and thirsty for the memories of the stores of Buffalo’s grand old stores.
It was the Bicentennial Summer of 1976– And as the nation was celebrating America’s 200th Birthday with all kinds of fife and drum music, here in Buffalo, the NBA Buffalo Braves were being musically celebrated all over the Buffalo radio dial with the McAdoo Song.
It’s a goofy song all about Braves Forward Bob McAdoo, who was 1973 NBA Rookie of the Year and 1975 NBA MVP.
The best part about the song is the singer– it was sung by Big Mac’s Teammate, Buffalo State College Grad Randy Smith.