One of the most well-respected and historic teams in all of collegiate basketball, the Syracuse Orange, have produced some sensational talents throughout the long and storied programme. The Orange currently hold an active NCAA record 47 consecutive winning seasons and it doesn’t look like being broken any time soon.
Led by veteran coach Jim Boeheim, now in his 42nd season as head coach, plenty of talent has pulled on the famous Syracuse colors and gone on to the NBA.
From Dave Bing to Rony Seikaly, we’ve looked at some of the finest NBA players to have played for the Orange…
There is only one place to start and that’s with the man that delivered Syracuse their first-ever national championship and is enjoying a superb NBA career.
No Orange player has ever boasted the scoring prowess and tools Anthony does, but that also came with a weight of expectation during his time in Syracuse.
Now 21st in the NBA’s all-time scoring leaderboard, surrounded by legends and Hall of Famers. Since entering the league in 2003 as a 19-year-old, Anthony has never averaged fewer than 20 points come the end of the campaign. He also boasts ten All-Star appearances and, at the age of 33 last year, still managed to record 22.4 points a game on a struggling New York Knicks side.
Though his lack of an NBA title will continue to nag at the star and many fans. The furthest Melo has ever gone in the playoffs is to the Western Conference finals and has unfortunately been unable to serve as a cornerstone for a title-chasing team. However, could this change with Paul George and Russell Westbrook by his side at the Oklahoma City Thunder? They are a terrific +2500.00 if you use a free bet at bookmaker comparison site Oddschecker.
He led the NBA in scoring during the 2012-13 term, averaging a career-high 28.7 points, ahead of superstars such as Kevin Durant, Lebron James and James Harden. Not only this, but the former Syracuse forward has ranked amongst the top three on five different occasions. Melo’s ability to consistently score is a marvel of the modern game and will undoubtedly lead him to the Hall of Fame when he hangs up his kicks.
Currently, the only Syracuse graduate to have been inducted into the Hall of Fame, Bing went on to serve as the mayor of Detroit after retiring from action on the court.
Bing is the only former Orange player to be named in an All-NBA First Team, not once, but twice during his career. Over his 12 successful seasons as an NBA professional, he led the league in total scoring during the 1967-68 campaign and finished the season with an average of 24.
Bing played 12 seasons in the NBA, leading the league in points scored in 1967-68 and finishing second in points per game with an average of 24. The only player to average more was famous triple-double expert Oscar Robertson. The rest of the top five included greats Elgin Baylor, Wilt Chamberlain and Earl Monroe.
Bing did more than score, however, finishing amongst the top 10 in assists six times over his industrious career. He was also a Rookie of the Year and an All-Star Game MVP, making the All-Star Team on seven occasions.
Despite playing just six of his 11 seasons with the Miami Heat, Seikaly ranks third all-time in the Floridian franchise’s all-time rebound getting leaderboard. In fact, only team legends Udonis Haslam and Alonzo Mourning rank higher in Heat history.
Though often overlooked by many Seikaly actually averaged a double-double five times over the course of his professional tenure and finished with career averages of 14.7 points and 9.5 rebounds. In his best year with Miami, he notched 17.1 points and 11.8 rebounds per game.
Seikaly finished among the NBA’s top 10 in rebounding on three separate occasions and was named the league’s Most Improved Player in 1989-90.
Gabor had a very short stay in the NBA, but clearly stands out from many due to the sheer amount he managed to pack in. He is one of just two former Syracuse University players to lift an NBA title (1955), and one of just four to make an All-Star Team.
Gabor made the playoffs five times in his six-year career with the Syracuse Nationals. He is also one of three Syracuse players ever to have competed in an NBA Final series.