Today’s #TBT sports blogs looks back on a tremendously undersized point guard who enjoyed a brilliant NBA career.
Celebrating his 50th birthday this week, this tiny playmaker made a huge difference every time he set foot on the basketball court.
Standing just 5’3” tall, Tyrone Muggsy Bogues had to be tough, too, to excel in a sport dominated by much larger athletes.
That’s why the pint sized point guard also makes my list at #8 in my sports comic book Favorite Undersized Athletes.
Bogues was a great ball handler, a terrific passer and a fantastic defender. His aggressive, mugging style of defense led to this tiny player’s tough guy nickname, Muggsy.
Plus, Bogue’s speed and quickness while defending opposing guards resulted in steals or in a complete disruption of the other teams’ plays.
Muggsy starred on the Dunbar High School basketball team in Baltimore, MD in the early 1980s. He teamed with fellow future NBA players Reggie Lewis, Reggie Williams and David Wingate to lead the Poets to back-to-back unbeaten seasons. Dunbar was voted the nation’s best high school squad in both the 1981-82 and 1982-83 seasons.
Recruited by Wake Forest University, Bogues enjoyed a fantastic ACC career at the North Carolina school. During his senior season, Muggsy averaged an impressive 14.8 points, 9.5 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 3.1 steals per game. When he graduated from Wake Forest, he held seven school basketball records.
His terrific senior season resulted in Bogues receiving the 1987 Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award as the best NCAA college basketball player in the nation shorter than six feet tall.
Bogues’ success with the Wake Forest Demon Deacons did not stop in the college ranks. He became the first round pick of the then Washington Bullets and went on to play 14 seasons in the NBA. He was the NBA’s shortest player ever.
The tiny and clever Muggsy just didn’t make a lot of steals and dish out a bunch of assists as a player. Bogues was a fan favorite. His ever-present smile and very tough, energetic style of play captured the hearts of NBA followers.
The guard also is remembered as one of Wake Forest’s best players ever. The school even retired the undersized Bogues’ extra small number 14 jersey in 1987 because of Muggsy’s super-sized reputation and contributions to the university.
MIKE – thee ultimate talking head on sports!