RIP: Manute Bol, 1962-2010

Manute Bol, one of the tallest players in the history of the NBA and Sudanese humanitarian, died today.  He was 47.

Bol died at the University of Virginia Hospital in Charlottesville, where he was being treated for severe kidney trouble and a painful skin condition, Tom Prichard, executive director of the group Sudan Sunrise, said in an e-mail.

Drafted in 1985, Manute Bol enjoyed a 10-year NBA career, playing for four different teams, including two stints with the Golden State Warriors.

“Sudan and the world have lost a hero and an example for all of us,” Prichard said. “Manute, we’ll miss you. Our prayers and best wishes go out to all his family, and all who mourn his loss.”

Bol played 10 seasons in the NBA with Washington, Golden State, Philadelphia and Miami and later worked closely as an advisory board member of Sudan Sunrise, which promotes reconciliation in Sudan. Bol averaged 2.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 3.3 blocked shots.

“Manute’s impact on this city, our franchise and the game of basketball cannot be put into words,” 76ers president and general manager Ed Stefanski said in a statement. “He … was continually giving of himself through his generosity and humanitarian efforts in order to make the world around him a much better place, for which he will always be remembered.”

Fun fact: He’s the only player in NBA history to block more shots than points scored, blocking 2,086 shots and scoring 1,599 points.

I always loved this photo of Manute Bol and Mugsy Bogues.

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