24. Phil Jordan, the Knicks starting center, didn’t play that game. He was in the hotel, sick. Backup center Darrall Imhoff later learned that Jordan was hungover.
25. Imhoff, who had led Cal to the 1959 NCAA title, and fellow backup Cleveland Buckner drew the defensive assignment on Chamberlain.
26. According to Imhoff, the rims in the Hershey Sports Arena that day were unusually loose, allowing balls that would normally bounce out of the hoop to fall through. Gary M. Pomerantz, author of Wilt, 1962, believes that Imhoff’s loose-rim theory has merit:
I spoke with people in Hershey and was told by them that when the circus came to town and played there, they pushed these baskets to the side of the arena. And kids would sneak in during the off hours. They would bring a basketball, and they would borrow the clown’s springboard. And they would do these running jumps, bounce off the springboard and fly through the air like little Wilt Chamberlain. And they would dunk the ball. But as they were coming down, they would grab the rim and hold onto them, then fall catlike to the ground. So they were working those rims.
27. Wilt scored 23 points in the first quarter.
28. He scored 18 in the second quarter, for a total of 41 at halftime.
29. He scored 28 in the third quarter, for a total of 69.
30. With 10:25 remaining in the fourth, Wilt scored his 73rd point, tying his record for most points in regulation.
31. Two minutes later, the Dipper hit 79, breaking his mark for most points in a game.
32. By this point, the 4,124 fans in attendance (or, at least, those who were still around for the fourth quarter) were chanting, “Give it to Wilt! Give it to Wilt!”
33. The Warriors granted the crowd’s wish. During the fourth quarter, the team got the ball to Chamberlain as often as possible and stopped running plays for anyone else.
34. After Wilt had surpassed both of his single-game scoring marks, Warriors PA man Dave Zinkoff, at the urging of publicity director Harvey Pollack, began announcing Wilt’s point total after every score.
35. By the time Wilt had reached 80 points with several minutes still on the clock, the Warriors’ entire game plan was to feed the ball to the Dipper and see how many points he could score.
36. During the fourth quarter the Knicks were holding the ball and running out the shot clock to limit the Warriors’ possessions. To lengthen the game and get Wilt more touches, the Warriors started fouling Knicks players intentionally. According to Imhoff the Warriors, who had a healthy lead, were fouling Knicks in the backcourt just to stop the clock and get the ball back.
37. The Knicks, who didn’t want to be on the wrong side of history’s first 100-point performance, responded with fouls of their own. Their fourth-quarter strategy was to foul anyone but Wilt.
38. Though the Knicks were trying to avoid sending Chamberlain to the foul line, Wilt shot 32 free-throws in that March 2, 1962 game.
39. For his career, Wilt shot a dreadful .511 from the free-throw line.
40. Wilt’s free-throw percentage for the 1961-62 season was .613, the best of his career.
41. The Dipper hit 28 of his 32 free throws (.875) in the 100-point game.
42. If you omit the March 2 game (and there’s really no reason you would), Wilt’s free-throw percentage for the 1961-62 season drops from .613 to .606 (still the best of his career).
43. Wilt scored his 96th point with 2:12 left in the game.
44. He scored his 98th point with 1:19 on the clock.
45. Chamberlain missed two shots that would have given him 100 points. Both misses led to a Warriors offensive rebound.
46. Following Wilt’s two misses, and with less than a minute to go, guard Joe Rucklick had the ball and an open jumper 12 feet from the basket. Rucklick passed up the shot and instead dished the ball to Chamberlain, who was being mobbed by Knicks. Wilt dropped the ball in the hoop and scored his 100th point with 46 seconds left in the game.
47. Rucklick, though he is ashamed to admit it now, went to the official scorekeeper after Wilt’s final shot and said, “Don’t forget to give me that assist.” The historic pass was Rucklick’s only assist that evening.
48. Warriors guard Guy Rodgers, on the other hand, had 20 assists, most of them to Chamberlain. Rodgers played all 48 minutes.
49. Chamberlain also played all 48 minutes.
50. Legend has it that, because of the celebration when Wilt hit 100, the Knicks and Warriors didn’t finish the final 46 seconds of the game. But the radio broadcast of the game proves that the teams played until the buzzer.
51. The final score was Warriors 169, Knicks 147.
52. The combined 316 points set an NBA record for most points scored by both teams in a single game.
53. Wilt attempted 63 field goals and made 36. His field goal percentage was .571.
54. Four other Warriors ended up in double figures. Starting guard Al Attles scored 17. Starting forwards Paul Arizin and Tom Meschery scored 16 apiece. Rodgers had 11.
55. Three Knicks scored more than 30 points. Starting guard Richie Guerin scored 39, and starting forward Willie Naulls scored 31.
56. Cleveland Buckner, who played 33 minutes off the bench at center and had the unenviable task of guarding the Dipper, scored 33 points on 16-for-26 shooting.
57. Wilt led all players with 25 rebounds.
58. The only other player with double-digit rebounds was Knicks reserve power forward Dave Budd. He had 10.
59. Chamberlain had only 2 personal fouls in 48 minutes.
60. Imhoff, who started a center for the Knicks, was the only player to foul out. He played only 20 minutes.
61. Here is the box score (from Basketball-Reference.com):