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Olympic medal record
Men's Basketball
Gold 1964 Tokyo United States

Walter Raphael Hazzard Jr. (born April 15, 1942 in Wilmington, Delaware) is a former college, Olympic, and professional basketball player and college basketball coach, now retired. During his professional basketball career, Hazzard converted to Islam and changed his name to Mahdi Abdul-Rahman. While coaching at UCLA, he went by his former name, Walt Hazzard. He is the father of the Hip-Hop Super Producer DJ Khalil. On March 22, 1996, Hazzard was hospitalized following a stroke.[1]


College player

After attending Overbrook High School in Philadelphia, Hazzard went to UCLA, where he became an important player on the varsity basketball team. In Hazzard's first season on the varsity squad, the UCLA Bruins made their first Final Four appearance in the 1962 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament. They lost to the eventual champion, the Cincinnati Bearcats in the semi-finals.

UCLA's undefeated season, 1963-64, was in no small part due to Hazzard, his backcourt partner Gail Goodrich, and the team's coach John Wooden. The team won the NCAA Championship, and Hazzard was selected by the Associated Press as the tournament's Most Valuable Player. Hazzard was chosen as an All-American and also selected as College Player of the Year by the United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA). His number 42 jersey was retired by UCLA in 1996 in Pauley Pavilion, but Hazzard has given permission to stand-out recruit Kevin Love to wear the number.

Hazzard earned a spot on the 1964 Olympic basketball team for the U.S., which won the gold medal.

Professional player

Hazzard later played in the NBA, first with the Los Angeles Lakers from 1964-1967, then the Seattle SuperSonics, the Atlanta Hawks, the Buffalo Braves, and briefly for the Golden State Warriors. He returned to the SuperSonics for the 1973-74 season, after which he retired from professional basketball.

While playing for the SuperSonics in their inaugural 1967-68 season, Hazzard scored a career high 24.0 points per game, averaged 6.2 assists per game, and was selected to play in the 1968 NBA All-Star Game. Seattle traded him to the Hawks during the off-season for Lenny Wilkens.[2] Hazzard's career high average in assists came during the 1969-70 season, when he averaged 6.8 assist per game while playing for the Hawks.

College coach

In 1984 , he returned to UCLA as its men's basketball coach. That same year, he was inducted (as Walt Hazzard) into the UCLA's Athletic Hall of Fame[3]. He coached for four seasons, winning 77 out of 125 games. The 1984-1985 UCLA Bruin basketball team won the NIT championship. The 1986-1987 UCLA Bruin basketball team won both the Pac-10 regular season championship as well as the inaugural Pacific-10 Conference Men's Basketball Tournament.

Head coaching record

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
UCLA (1984–1988)
1984-85 UCLA 21-12 12-6 3 NIT Champion
1985-86 UCLA 15-14 9-9 4 NIT First Round
1986-87 UCLA 25-7 14-4 1 NCAA Round of 32
1987-88 UCLA 16-14 12-6 2
UCLA: 77-47 47-25
Total: 77-47

      National Champion         Conference Regular Season Champion         Conference Tournament Champion
      Conference Regular Season & Conference Tournament Champion       Conference Division Champion

See also

Preceded by
Art Heyman
NCAA Basketball Tournament
Most Outstanding Player

Succeeded by
Bill Bradley
Preceded by
Larry Farmer
UCLA Head Men's Basketball Coach
Succeeded by
Jim Harrick


  1. ^ Ex-Bruins coach Hazzard is stable following stroke. Los Angeles Daily News, March 23, 1996.
  2. ^ Andrieson, David (October 13, 2007), "Sonics ushered Seattle into the big time 40 years ago Saturday", The Seattle Post-Intelligencer,  
  3. ^ UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame

External links



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