A sixth man is a player who sits on the bench at the beginning of a game, but still has a great influence on the game. He is often the first player to come on into the game and is therefore the sixth man (besides the five starters) to enter the field for the team. This player usually plays as long as starters in the team and achieves similar statistics. Most of the time, this player can play several positions, which means that he can be substituted in more often (in several positions). Detlef Schrempf, for example, the first European sixth man in the NBA , was able to play in the small forward and power forward positions. The presence of a good sixth man often indicates a very good team, as the sixth man would actually be talented enough to start.
Red Auerbach , who won nine NBA championships as coach with the Boston Celtics in the 1960s, is considered the inventor of the sixth man concept . Because he had the choice between the defensive Jim Loscutoff and the attacking Frank Vernon Ramsey on small forward , he solved the problem by starting Loscutoff and usually ending the game with Ramsey. Loscutoff was able to play the opposing forward mellow, so that Ramsey scored easy points in the final phase. Other Sixth Men of the Celtics were Sam Jones , John Havlicek , Don Nelson and Kevin McHale . Well-known Sixth Men of the 1970s were Billy Cunningham (Philadelphia 76ers) and Jerry Lucas (New York Knicks), and in the 1980s Bobby Jones (Philadelphia 76ers) and Vinnie Johnson (Detroit Pistons) posed danger from the bank. Well-known Sixth Men of the 1990s were Detlef Schrempf and Toni Kukoč , in the 2000s it was u. a. Jason Terry of the Dallas Mavericks or Bobby Jackson of the Sacramento Kings , and in the 2010s worries a. a. the high-class reservists Jamal Crawford of the Atlanta Hawks or Manu Ginóbili of the San Antonio Spurs for points
Usually strong offensive Sixth Man are used to get additional points from the bank. Exceptions to the rule are older Big Men who can no longer play the full game at full power, but compensate for this by working close to the basket with high intensity for a limited time ( Bill Walton for the Boston Celtics, Alonzo Mourning for the Miami Heat, Dikembe Mutombo with the Houston Rockets).
The NBA Sixth Man of the Year Award is an award from the NBA for the “most valuable sixth man”.
- Basketball U on the Sixth Man , nba.com, October 8, 2003
- Auerbach's Celtics played as a team , espn.com.
- Frank Ramsey, Celtics Sixth Man , espn.com.