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Rockets History: The Punch (1977)

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by htwnbandit, Jan 25, 2014.

  1. htwnbandit

    htwnbandit Member

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    [youtube]jgqUZ1IAA_8[/youtube]

    "The Punch" is something that often times gets lost in Houston Rockets history. Basically a brawl incited at the LA Forum between Kevin Kunnert and Kermit Washington. Washington apparently turned and saw Rudy-T running up to him, and thought he was going to hit him from behind and strikes Rudy in the face, causing massive head trauma and had to miss the most of the season. Where were you when this happened if you remember, and do you think Kermit was being legit when he says it was an accident? I think it probably was. But if Rudy-T didn't get punched, I think the Rockets would've done some noise in the Playoffs that year since they had come from losing in the Conference Finals to Philadelphia, and Rudy T's playing career may have lasted longer.
     
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  2. johnnytsunami

    johnnytsunami Member

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    Personally, I think he might have had a chance at the HOF is it wasn't for that punch -- although, that could be some homer-ish thinking on my part.

    On a side note, anyone know why he's still a "scout" for the Lakers? Why haven't we brought him back in some sort of "consultant"/"scout" role?
     
  3. htwnbandit

    htwnbandit Member

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    Hall of famer? I don't know about that, though he did have some good years here. Still a shame.
     
  4. johnnytsunami

    johnnytsunami Member

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    I really do think he had a shot..

    He was a 5-time all-star. If it weren't for that punch, he'd probably be an all-star that '77 season as well. If he had a couple more 20/6+ seasons, and another all-star appearance or two, that would make him a 7-8 time all-star. Throw in his coaching career and I'm inclined to believe he'd be in the HOF today. I don't know.. maybe that's just me.
     
  5. NotChandlerParsons

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    Wait, he isn't in the HOF? Bah.
     
  6. Jturbofuel

    Jturbofuel Member

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    The punch not only wrecked Rudy's career you might say it killed that era of Rockets teams a shot at a title. They were coming off taking the Sixers to 6 hard fought games in what was really their first playoff run. That Sixers team was loaded with Julius Erving, Doug Collins, McGinnis, and Darryl Dawkins.

    The Rockets had knocked out the Bullets in 6 games in the Conference Semis and the Bullets would win the championship in 78 and lose in 7 games to the Sonics in 1979.

    The Rockets made a desperate move signing Rick Barry as a free agent and losing John Lucas as compensation in the deal and that Rockets group was never the same.
     
  7. mkahanek

    mkahanek Member

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    What if What if What if

    What if thoughts are brutal..

    What if Sampson had not fallen on his back in the Garden. As I recall the Rockets were spanking the celts. That year only the Trailblazers had won in the Boston Garden and the Rockets were on their way to handing the celts only their 2nd loss that year in the Garden. Ralph was never the same in the Boston Garden after that. Had he not fallen and the Rockets had gone on to win in the Garden then I believe the Rockets would have been a lot closer to winning the title that year. But, it was not to be.
     
  8. htwnbandit

    htwnbandit Member

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    Actually the Bullets lost in 6 games in '79 but yeah, IIRC that Game 6 at the Summit in '77 was the one where Lucas hit a layup to take the lead very late in the game but was hit with a controversial offensive foul.
     
  9. Xerobull

    Xerobull Salve Dicit Mater Tua

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    39 years ago today. This is the moment that changed the NBA forever. Before this, pro basketball games were akin to hockey, with fights all the time After this, the league started cracking down. The result? A smoother game (something pro hockey could learn from).
     

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