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Lakers Moments: Adrian Dantley rises as a star in L.A. [Updated]

April 26, 2011 |  3:35 pm

Fg9sh4gy Move over: Lakers forward Adrian Dantley attempts to grab a rebound in a game against the San Antonio Spurs in 1978.

Considered one of the best small forwards in NBA history, Dantley played parts of two seasons in Los Angeles, treating fans to the skills that would eventually make him a six-time All-Star and a basketball Hall of Fame inductee.

He was traded by Indiana along with Dave Robisch to the Lakers in January 1977 and made an immediate impact, averaging 19.4 points per game to finish second in team scoring behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. He was limited to 60 games because of injury during the 1978-79 season, allowing rising star Jamaal Wilkes to see more playing time and showcase his talents.

There was no need for two starting small forwards on the same team and, following a disappointing season, Dantley was traded to Utah before the start of the team’s championship 1979-80 season.

[UPDATED, 5:20 p.m.: An earlier version of this post stated Dantley was traded to Denver. He was traded to Utah.]

Read more about Adrian Dantley and his time in Los Angeles in All Things Lakers, the L.A. Times' interactive database of all things purple and gold.

Join the Lakers at L.A. Times Facebook page.

-- Austin Knoblauch

Photo: Los Angeles Times

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