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Robert "Tractor" Traylor, Greatest 300-Pound Dunker Of Our Time, Is Dead At 34

Robert "Tractor" Traylor, former high school All-American, University of Michigan star, and NBA player, was reportedly found dead in his apartment in Isla Verde, Puerto Rico today. His current team, Vaqueros de Bayamon, posted the news on their Facebook page and requested that the team's next game, against Indios de Mayaguez, be suspended in his honor. Traylor had been missing for three days and apparently died of a heart attack.

Traylor was six-foot-eight and, for most of his playing career, weighed in at more than 300 pounds. He was named MVP of the 1997 NIT and in the 1998 NBA Draft, the Mavericks selected him sixth overall before famously trading him to Milwaukee for Dirk Nowitzki and Pat Garrity on draft night. He played seven seasons in the NBA, for the Bucks, Cavs, and Hornets, and underwent corrective heart surgery for an enlarged aortic valve in November 2006. He'd played abroad in Turkey and Italy before settling in with the Vaqueros. The interview you see above was posted just a month ago.


After learning of the news, Indiana's Tom Crean tweeted that while he was at Michigan State, Traylor "might have been the most time consuming and mind challenging matchup we ever faced... he made me [a] better coach because you really had to have a plan to stop him." We believe him. There aren't many players for whom "capable of ripping down the backboard and then jogging back through the glass as it rains down around him, but also has a soft touch and a killer hook shot" is applicable on the scouting report.

Robert 'Tractor' Traylor found dead [ESPN]

Game footage via here and here.

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