Julius Winfield Erving II (February 22, 1950-) is one of the greatest players with his professional roots beginning in the American Basketball Association and certainly one of the greatest to play professional ball. His acrobatic dunks and aggressive style of play earned his four Most Valuable Player Awards – three ABA titles from 1974-1976 and one NBA title in 1981. Already named “Dr. J” or the “Doctor” in his high school days, a name he would carry throughout his career, Julius played college ball at the University of Massachusetts where he became one of five players to average more than 20 points and 20 rebounds in an NCAA basketball career. He signed as a free agent with the Virginia Squires (1971-1973) before he being traded to the New York Nets (1973-1976) where he won two ABA championships (1974, 1976) and was named ABA Playoffs MVP during those championship years. Dr. J led the ABA three times in field goals and field goals attempts as well as twice in points scored. As the ABA and NBA merged in 1976-77, the Nets were forced to trade Erving to the Philadelphia 76ers (1976-1987).
As the newest member of the 76ers, Erving made them an instant contender and began a string of eleven consecutive NBA All-Star selection, having appeared in all five of his possible ABA All-Star Games, and was named NBA All-Star Game MVP in 1977 and 1983. During his 16-year career, he was elected to five All-NBA First Teams, four All-ABA First Teams, the 1972 All-Rookie First Team and the 1976 All-ABA Defensive First Team. In the early 1980s, Philadelphia began to build around the highly skilled Erving and put together a team that would capture the 1983 NBA Championship over the Los Angeles Lakers. Dr. J’s dunks were legendary and spectacular to behold, from his leaping slams from the free throw line to his fast break tomahawk dunks. No matter which city the Doctor played, outside of his home Philadelphia, fans came to see his extraordinary ability and showmanship in droves. When Dr. J announced his retirement following the 1986-87 season, fans packed stadiums and arenas around the league to catch a final glimpse of the dynamic superstar. Julius Erving was inducted in to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1993. Dr. J was named to the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History list in 1996. In retirement, Erving has embarked on numerous successful business ventures including owning a Coca-Cola bottling plant and a NASCAR team.