Tragic day for the basketball community … beloved Harlem Globetrotters legend Fred “Curly” Neal has passed away. He was 77 years old.
Curly became one of the most recognizable players for the Globies during his 22-year stint with the team … playing in more than 6,000 games.
Neal’s #22 jersey was retired in 2008 … one of just 5 players to receive the honor.
Curly was also featured in several of the Globetrotters’ TV specials … including “The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan’s Island” and “The Harlem Globetrotters Popcorn Special” … as well as “Scooby Doo.”
Curly was the team’s elite ball handler for the Globetrotters after a successful career at Johnson C. Smith University … where he averaged 23 points a game.
Fellow Globetrotters legend Curley “Boo” Johnson mourned theloss of his friend on Twitter, saying “Last night the World lost a true ambassador of the game of basketball and outside of Muhammad Ali one of the most recognizable faces on the Planet!”
“Rest In Peace my Brother…. “