10:11 PM ET

Former Los Angeles Lakers, Indiana Pacers and Kansas City Kings coach Jack McKinney, whose career was almost derailed by a devastating bicycle injury, has died, St. Joseph’s University confirmed.

He was 83.

McKinney was a protege of Hall of Fame coach Dr. Jack Ramsay and succeeded Ramsay as basketball coach at St. Joseph’s, his alma mater, from 1966 to 1974 before leaving to become an assistant coach in the NBA.

McKinney was named to his first NBA head-coaching job with the Lakers in 1979. He was the Lakers coach for 14 games, but suffered serious head injuries in a bicycle accident and was replaced by Paul Westhead, who went on to take the team — with a rookie named Magic Johnson — to the NBA title.

McKinney continued to suffer from memory loss and other neurological issues throughout his life.

He was fired by the Lakers after the 1979-80 season and was named coach of the Pacers shortly after. He won Coach of the Year honors after leading the Pacers to a 44-38 record and the playoffs that season. But he was fired by the Pacers after the 1983-84 season, having compiled a 125-203 record.


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