Bob Lanier has been regarded as one of the best and most dominant centers of the 1970s and 1980s. He began his career in the National Basketball Association with the Detroit Pistons before later joining the Milwaukee Bucks.

As noted by ESPN, Lanier became well-known for his large shoe size, even by NBA standards, along with an intensely physical style of play. He also later went on to have a brief coaching career in the league.

Passed away on May 10, 2022

Bob Lanier has died, reports CNN. An exact cause of death was not given, but he'd had what was described as a "brief illness." He was apparently surrounded by family members at the time.

Lanier was a native of Buffalo, where he graduated from Bennett High School. There, he initially did not make the basketball team after he first tried out. But later a new coach, who was also Lanier's biology teacher, convinced him to try again. This time, he would make the cut.

Lanier went on to be considered one of the top high school players in the State of New York. He also helped make Bennett the top team in Buffalo. More than 100 schools would make efforts to recruit Bob Lanier. His decision would be to attend and play for Saint Bonaventure University.

As an NCAA player, Lanier was named an All-American on three occasions. In 1970, he helped to lead his team to be one of the best in the country.

Afterward, the was the number one overall selection at that year's NBA Draft, taken by the Pistons. The New York Nets of the American Basketball Association also chose Lanier with the top pick. But he elected to play in the NBA.

Lanier spent nearly a decade's worth of his career as a member of the Pistons. He was selected to seven All-Star Games during that same period of time.

For the franchise as a whole, however, the results tended to be much more disappointing.

The Pistons would fail to qualify for the postseason during the majority of Lanier's tenure with the team. In 1980, he was traded to the Milwaukee Bucks. In return, the Pistons received Kent Benson and a first-round pick in the 1980 Draft.

With that pick, the Pistons drafted Larry Drew from the University of Missouri. Ironically, three decades later, Drew would become head coach of the Bucks.

Lanier indicated he was pleased to be traded and felt welcome in Milwaukee. The Bucks were the class of the division in each season Lanier played with the team. In 1982, he made another All-Star team.

Was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame

Almost immediately after retiring, the Bucks retired Lanier's jersey number, 16. About nine years later, the Pistons, with whom he'd also worn 16, followed suit. His NCAA number, 31, has also been retired by his alma mater.

In 1992, Bob Lanier was elected as a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

Widely considered to be the highest honor in the sport of basketball. In 2006, he was also chosen as a member of the College Basketball Hall of Fame.

During the 1990s, Lanier was hired as an assistant coach with the Golden State Warriors. In 1995, he became the team's interim head coach. He would not return for the next season. Rick Adelman would take over as the new head coach.