One of the NBA's all-time great spokesmen and good guys saw his career come to an unfortunate end last night in Portland. Dikembe Mutombo's 18-year, 6-team career was perhaps best known for his finger-wagging after a blocked shot and the image of him lying on the court, ball cradled in his arms, after leading Denver to a shocking 8 vs. 1 upset of Seattle ... an upset that only has happened one other time (I forget when).
But off the court, Mutombo made his biggest mark, turning his money and popularity into action to help build hospitals, schools, and other crucial forms of assistance to his native Congo and elsewhere in Africa.
They don't come much better, and he's paved the way not only for other Africans to play in the Association, but other players from around the world as well. The NBA Cares ad may sometimes be forced, but not in the case of Deke.