'Fast Eddie' Johnson, the Hawks Star Dies at 65

Author: Sonali


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‘Fast Eddie’ Johnson, the Hawks Star Dies at 65. The Former Atlanta Hawks star was serving a life sentence and was in prison since he was banned for a lifetime by the NBA for his cocaine use. The basketball star died on October 26 in Leesburg, Florida. 

Johnson’s NBA career

Johnson who was banned from his cocaine use, in a small span of time had gained the nickname “Fast Eddie”. In the 1977 draft, Fast Eddie was selected by the Hawks in its third round. He worked for Hawks for eight seasons where he also earned two All-Star nods. Johnson also spent small stints with the Seattle Supersonics and Cleveland Cavaliers. 

Throughout his career, he averaged 5.1 assists and 15.1 points. Further, in the 1980-81 season, the Hawks star hit 19.1 points per game, his career highest. 

Banned from the League

In 1987, Johnson was banned by the league for life for his cocaine uses. Before that his cocaine addiction had brought him suspension several times, which finally led to a lifetime ban. This does not stop for Johnson, in 2008, he was found guilty of sexually assaulting an 8-year-old-girl. Thereafter, he has pronounced a life sentence in Florida. 

While he died on October 26, Johnson was serving the sentence at the Santa Rosa Correctional Institution in Milton, Florida. Johnson died of an undisclosed illness the information of which is not available in the public domain. 

Johnson’s Explosive First Step

The two time All-Star for the Atlanta Hawks career was shortened due to his arrest and life sentence. He was a third-round pick from Auburn in the 1977 NBA draft by the Hawks. Immediately after, Johnson became a star and became a contributor. That explosive first step led him to earn the name "Fast Eddie'' without taking much time. In the ten NBA seasons, Johnson averaged 15.1 points. 

In 1986 Johnson was traded to Cleveland by the Hawks for Johnny Davis. Further in 1987, he signed for Seattle -- it was when he was banned for life from the NBA.


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