Former New York Knicks player Dean Meminger was found dead inside a Manhattan hotel room on Friday, according to a report by ESPNNewYork.com:
New York City police said staff at the Hamilton Heights Hotel found Meminger unconscious and unresponsive inside a room and emergency medical personnel pronounced him dead. Police said there were no signs of trauma and that the cause of death hadn't been determined. They said an investigation is ongoing.
Meminger's family released a statement thanking people for their support and acknowledging his many accomplishments "on and off the court," per ESPNNewYork.com:
We want to thank everyone for their prayers and condolences during this difficult time for our family. Dean 'The Dream' Meminger touched the hearts of so many on and off the basketball court. Through basketball and education, he helped countless people around the country receive scholarships, high school and college admissions, and even employment.
Knicks general manager Glen Grunwald also released a statement in the wake of Meminger's death, per The New York Post's Marc Berman:
Everyone at the New York Knicks organization is saddened to hear the news of Dean Meminger's passing. From the day he was drafted by this franchise in 1971, Dean was a friend and close family member of this team. On April 5, 2013, the 1973 World Championship team was honored at Madison Square Garden on it's 40th anniversary - there was no one prouder than Dean to be back on the court with his teammates. We send our heartfelt condolences to the entire Meminger family.
Dean "The Dream" Meminger served as a backup for the 1973 New York Knicks squad that won the NBA championship, but was a star for Marquette in college, where he helped lead the Golden Eagles to 78 total wins in three seasons on the varsity squad.
Phil Jackson took to Twitter to offer his condolences:
Sad day to think about Dean Meminger passing. Remember Dean in JoJo’s jock game 7 vs Boston in 73’? We teammates will always hear his laugh.— Phil Jackson (@PhilJackson11) August 24, 2013
After averaging more than 21 points per game as a senior with Marquette, Meminger was selected 16th overall by the Knicks in the 1971 NBA draft.
He would go on to average just over six points per game in six seasons with the Knicks.
Following his playing career, Meminger remained a part of the game, serving several stints on the sideline as a coach.
He coached Manhattanville College (NCAA Division III) briefly in 2003-04 and before that had coaching jobs with the New York Stars (Women's Basketball League), the Albany Patroons (Continental Basketball Association) and the Long Island Knights (United States Basketball League).
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