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Basketball Hall of Famer Bill Walton died at the age of 71 on Tuesday after a prolonged battle with cancer. A three-time national champion at UCLA and three-time Naismith award winner as the nation's top collegiate player, he was one of the greatest college athletes in history. His 44 points in the 1973 national championship game remain a record. 

The No. 1 overall pick in 1974, Walton's NBA career didn't quite reach the heights of his college career due to injuries, but you're still talking about a guy who won the 1978 MVP and was named to both the 50th and 75th Anniversary teams. Walton won a pair of NBA championships, one with the Blazers in 1977 where he was also named Finals MVP,  and one with the Celtics in 1986 when he won Sixth Man of the Year. 

Despite such a decorated playing career, Walton will probably be most remembered, at least by younger generations, as ... how shall we say this? ... the most eccentric commentator to ever grace television screens. Dude was a flat out nut of the most soulful and joyfully stoned variety. The actual basketball he was technically there to analyze served as mere background noise for the wandering soliloquies he was always looking to unleash. 

And that's what we're here to remember and honor. If you want the basketball stuff, there's plenty of that out there. But we're going to smile with this post as we watch Bill Walton is his most memorable element: eating cupcakes with burning candles, taking his shirt off and lathering himself with dirt on live television while analogizing Boris Diaw through Beethoven's Symphony No. 3. 

Yes, as NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in his press release, Walton was "truly one of a kind." We could never show you all the examples of everything that makes Silver's words ring so true, but below is a sample of the wonderful wackiness we're all going to miss so much. 

The time he called baseball

I can't get over the brilliance of this. The offense can't touch the ball, the defense goes first, and there are no time limits. If you ever wanted to tell someone why baseball is maybe the most unique sport on earth, you couldn't say it any better than that. 

An ode to Bob Dylan

A famous Deadhead, Walton was a music lover to his core. To him, music was more than the songs, the melodies, instruments and the concerts at which he was so often the tallest tie-dyed shirt in the house. It was depths of messaging. The spiritually shared experience. The religion of it all. 

Celtics meet The Dead

Bill's first teepee

A life in meetings, mentors and moments

Rest in peace, Bill Walton. There will never be another one like you.