Skip to main content

The story of a partially blind and deaf NBA player

Fred-Scolari

They say your free throw percentage is the best predictor of your shooting potential and going by that standard, 'Fat Freddie' Scolari was a sharpshooter. His career average was around 80% despite Scolari having one of the most interesting shooting motions in NBA history - he released the ball from his hip.

Allegedly, Scolari's weird shooting form came from a shoulder injury in high school, as he wanted to change his shooting release and just kept it later on. So why didn't you ever hear about the original Markelle Fultz? The reason you don't know about him is probably the fact Scolari played in the 50s.

Born in 1922, Freddie had a lot of obstacles on his basketball path. He was partially blind in one eye, deaf in one ear, and was overweight (hence the nickname 'Fat Freddie'), and he still played in the BAA and the NBA. Standing at 5'10", Scolari played at the point guard position, and he started to play basketball at Galileo High School. After graduating from high school, he attended the University of San Francisco.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

Scolari's first professional basketball team was the Washington Capitals (1946-47 to 1950-51), coached by the legendary Red Auerbach. He also played for the Syracuse Nationals (1950-51), Baltimore Bullets (1951-52 to 1952-53), Fort Wayne Pistons (1952-53 to 1953-54), and Boston Celtics (1954-55). 

Fat Freddie led the BAA in free-throw percentage for the 1946/47 BAA season with 81,1%. He was also a well-known defender and was voted to the All-BAA Second Team in 1947 and 1948. Scolari was an All-Star in 1952 and 1953. For his career, Freddie averaged 11.3 points, 2.7 rebounds, and 2.6 assists. 

Scolari decided to stop playing in 1955 after he went into selling insurance. Then he became the director of the Salesian Boys and Girls Club.
Scolari died in 2002, aged 80, from injuries he suffered after falling in his home in Danville. He became a member of the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame.

Bol Bol

Paolo Banchero compares Bol Bol to highly-touted prospect Victor Wembanyama - “Bol’s a freak of nature”

Banchero tried to avoid comparing Bol to Victor Wembanyama, but outlined the similarities between the star prospect and the new member of Orlando's frontcourt

Toronto Raptors

Fred VanVleet believes the Toronto Raptors would have three-peated had Kawhi Leonard stayed with the team

VanVleet said that had Leonard stuck with Toronto, the Raptors could have three-peated by winning the 2020 and 2021 NBA Finals

Washington Wizards point guard Gilbert Arenas playing against the New York Knicks

"Everybody wants to play in the Garden, besides the Knicks" — Gilbert Arenas goes in on New York Knicks fans

Gilbert Arenas breaks down why superstars don't want to play for the New York Knicks

Los Angeles Lakers guard Patrick Beverley

"Patrick Beverley in the playoffs is an issue" — Iman Shumpert speaks on Patrick Beverley's value to the Los Angeles Lakers

Not everyone can see it right now, but Shumpert understands the importance of Pat Bev to the Lakers.

kobe-bryant-shaquille-o'neal-min

"It was an unmitigated slaughter calling out Shaq on everything" — Kobe Bryant savagely criticized Shaquille O'Neal in an unreleased statement

Sports Illustrated's Howard Beck talked about at the unpublished Kobe interview where he apparently ripped Shaq like never before.

Chicago Bulls guard Michael Jordan

"He’ll give you the shirt off his back" — Juwan Howard's Michael Jordan story reveals the other side of Black Jesus

Juwan Howard expected to get trash-talked to death upon seeing Michael Jordan in Los Angeles.

Boston Celtics legend Kevin Mchale, Marcus Smart, Blake Griffin, Grant Williams, Malcom Brogdon

“The team honestly is stronger than any one coach” — Kevin McHale explains why Ime Udoka's scandal did not crumble the Boston Celtics

Celtics legend Kevin McHale admitted that he thought Udoka's suspension would significantly affect the Boston Celtics