First Black Athletes to Enter Pro Leagues

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Earl Lloyd

After a collegiate career at West Virginia State, Earl Lloyd was selected in the ninth round of the 1950 NBA draft by the Washington Capitols. Lloyd broke the NBA color line on Oct. 31, 1950, against the Rochester Royals. Three other Black players (Chuck Cooper, Nathaniel Clifton, Hank DeZonie) also played during the 1950–1951 season.

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