Elmore Smith

Elmore Smith (born May 9, 1949) is a retired American professional basketball player born in Macon, Georgia. A 7'0" center from Kentucky State University, he played in the National Basketball Association from 1971 to 1979. He was a member of the Buffalo Braves, Los Angeles Lakers, Milwaukee Bucks, and Cleveland Cavaliers.

In his first season, Smith averaged 17.3 points per game and 15.2 rebounds per game and was named to the NBA All-Rookie Team. His rebounding average for that season is the eighth-highest ever recorded by an NBA rookie.

Smith is best remembered for his shot-blocking, earning him the nickname "Elmore the Rejector". He led the league in total blocked shots twice (in 1974 and 1975), and holds the NBA record for most blocked shots in a game since 1973, with 17. He achieved this mark against the Portland Trail Blazers on October 28, 1973, while playing for the Lakers. Smith's average of 4.85 blocks per game from the 1973-74 season (the first season blocked shots were officially recorded in the NBA) is the third highest ever. He was also a skilled rebounder, and he averaged a double-double (13.4 points, 10.6 rebounds) over the course of his career.

Smith was one of four players the Lakers traded to Milwaukee (along Brian Winters and draft picks Junior Bridgeman and Dave Meyers) in exchange for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar after the 1974-75 NBA season. He holds the Los Angeles Clippers' (formerly the Buffalo Braves) franchise record for rebounds per game (13.8).

By Dean Hanley

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