(Born November 6, 1947) -- Most people associated Steve Kuberski with the Boston Celtics, and deservedly so. He’ll always be known as the last Celtic to wear #33 before Larry Bird came along. But Kuberski has a Buffalo connection, since he played briefly with the Braves.
The forward grew up in Moline, Illinois, where he was a high school standout. That earned him a trip to the University of Illinois. However, he was caught up in a scandal there. Kuberski received $35 a month from a slush fund at the school. He opted to leave Illinois, and eventually landed at Bradley.
Kuberski was drafted in the fourth round by the Celtics in 1969. Boston was the defending champion that season, but the loss of Bill Russell and Sam Jones made it a transition year. Kuberski was a backup forward for the Celtics for several years. He was part of a championship team in 1976.
Kuberski was lost in the expansion draft in 1974, and was traded to the Bucks for the 1974-75 season. He was waived in the fall of 1975, and the Braves took a look at him. Alas, he only scored 17 points in 10 games and was cut.
Kuberski was picked up by the Celtics, briefly, and then retired. He stayed in Boston, where he owns a company that manufactures, among other items, school lockers.
--- Budd Bailey