Jimmy Walker Was The First Overall Pick in 1967 NBA Draft

Published on April 16th, 2024 1:41 pm EST
Written By: Dave Manuel

Jimmy Walker Detroit Pistons number 24 jersey. Jimmy Walker can lay claim to a title that will almost certainly never be duplicated again.

Jimmy Walker can say that he is the only player to ever be drafted FIRST overall in one league's draft (NBA) and LAST overall in another league's draft (NFL) in the SAME year.


Jimmy Walker was the clear first overall pick in the 1967 NBA Draft - in fact, he was also taken first ovearll in the ABA Draft as well.

Walker, who was taken first overall by the Detroit Pistons, was a force of nature during his three seasons at Providence, as the shooting guard averaged over 25 points per game to go along with 6.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists.

Walker led the nation in scoring in his senior year, averaging over 30 points per game.

Walker was the clear choice to be taken first overall in the NBA Draft, but he would get another surprise - a team in a completely different sport wanted him as well.


In the 17th round of the 1967 NFL/AFL Draft, the New Orleans Saints drafted the same Jimmy Walker.

Walker, who was taken with the 445th overall pick, was now the property of the New Orleans Saints if he decided to play football instead of basketball.

Walker was drafted as a wide receiver.

Back in those days, the NFL drafts were extremely long and nearly 500 players were taken, so teams could afford to get a bit "creative" in the later rounds of the draft.

Walker was clearly a fantastic athlete, so the Saints were hoping that they might be able to lure hiim to the NFL.


Walker decided to go to the NBA, where he had a solid decade-long career.

Walker's best year came during the 1971-72 season, when he averaged over 21 points per game.

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