Maurice Lucas dies from cancer, aged 58

The former Trail Blazers legend, known as “The Enforcer”, has died after a long battle with bladder cancer. He was 58.

Maurice Lucas, who helped take the Portland Trail Blazers to their only N.B.A. championship and was an assistant coach for the Blazers since 2005, had to leave the team last year to have surgery for bladder cancer. In November he was hospitalized after suffering a setback.

“We have lost a champion of a man,” Trail Blazers coach Nate McMillan said in a statement. “Maurice was a great man and a great friend. He battled his illness like the warrior he was on the basketball court.”

Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen also praised Lucas: “Maurice was an amazing man and I count myself lucky to have known him. We all – players, coachers, the owner and the fans – were made better by having Maurice a  part of our tream, whether playing on the championship team, or most recently as an assistant coach.

“He was one of the greatest Blazers ever.”

The five-time All-Star averaged 14.4 points and 8.8 rebounds for his 12 N.B.A. seasons. In two seasons in the ABA he averaged 15.2 points and 10.8 rebounds.

Lucas is survived by his second wife, Pamela; a daughter, Kristin; and two sons, Maurice Jr. and David.

Read about other celebs who have died from cancer including Simon MacCorkindale, Patrick Swayze, Gregory Isaacs and Farrah Fawcett.

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