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Spurs 50 for 50, Number 41- Billy Paultz

ABA big man helps elevate the Spurs into the NBA

San Antonio Spurs: Billy Paultz Photo by NBA Photos/NBAE via Getty Images

This year the Spurs are celebrating their 50th season in San Antonio. There have been many highs and a few lows. One trademark of the San Antonio Spurs has been their culture and their consistency. The keys to those qualities lie in their players. Always noted for development as well as being ahead of the curve on scouting international players, the Spurs way has made the franchise one of the most successful of all time. As we look back on the Silver & Black, we recognize the top 50 players in Spurs history. Each day, we will move up the countdown.

41- Billy Paultz

For those only knowledgeable of modern basketball, it may sound like a made up story to say that Billy Paultz was drafted 103rd overall in the 7th round of the NBA Draft, but this was 1970 when the draft went sixteen rounds. If that’s not confusing enough, Paultz was drafted by the San Diego Rockets.

He was also drafted by the Virginia Squires in the ABA’s 1970 Draft. He chose the ABA, but was traded to the New York Nets, where he won a Championship in 1974.

In 1975, Paultz was traded to the San Antonio Spurs who then transitioned into the NBA the following season. “The Whopper” averaged 14 points per game over his six seasons with the Silver & Black. That includes a late career return in 1983 when his productivity had significantly dipped.

His time in San Antonio, Paultz was known as a strong player, but even The Whopper was open about his limitations: “I have realized that I’m not an overpowering type center. I don’t really know what my category is. I have always been the type of player that can do a little bit of everything.”

Next up: A former ACC Rookie of the year finds himself drafted by the Spurs.

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