Alton Byrd

Joseph Alton Byrd ( born November 3, 1957 in San Francisco ) is an American- British former basketball player and sports manager. Byrd was after his studies in his home country professional player in the United Kingdom, where he won numerous championships and individual awards. After his marriage in 1983 with an Englishwoman Byrd acquired British citizenship in 1984 and was finally in the English national team selection for international matches. In his club stations itself Byrd was also integrate into the management of clubs and worked after his active playing career in the management of the NFL Europe clubs London Monarchs before to 2001, he worked from 1999 at the Maloof Sports Entertainment Group, while also management tasks for the NBA Sacramento Kings Club perceived. Then Byrd worked among other things as a freelance business consultant.


Byrd went in 1975 from his California home to study at Columbia University in New York City, where he played for the college team Lions in the Ivy League NCAA. Although in his own words, he had an outstanding high school basketball player deals on athletic scholarships from 60 U.S. universities, he deliberately chose a scholarship to a prestigious University of the Ivy League to get a solid academic education. However, the basketball teams in the Ivy League in general and the Lions in particular does not belong to the leading basketball teams in the NCAA, so it Byrd with the Lions also failed to qualify in the next four years for a national NCAA finals. Byrd is however still performed with 526 assists in the team 's internal time list Columbia Lions as best assist provider and in 2008 was in the " Athletics Hall of Fame" ( German Hall of Fame Sports) the university added. In addition, he received the completion of his NCAA career the " Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award" for the best college basketball player with a height of less than six feet ( the equivalent of almost 1.83 m).

After his college career, Byrd was still only in the tenth round in the Entry Draft of the highest endowed professional league NBA selected in 1979 by the Boston Celtics. The Celtics had a year earlier, the prestigious college player and later NBA champion and Olympic champion Larry Bird already selected in the first round, so that marketing strategists should have already thought about a marketing of " Big Bird and Little Byrd ". But Byrd was injured in the preseason and was ultimately not included in the season the Celtics squad. An alumnus of Columbia University, David Dubov, it finally came in to the market research firm in London, where Byrd was to play in the support of Dubow basketball team Crystal Palace is next to a training in the company. This team was already one of the leading teams of England and won with Byrd two more championships in the " National Basketball League " in 1980 and 1982 as well as the cup competition " National Cup " 1980 and 1981. In Europe Champions Cup 1979/80 was achieved in the group stage four victories including against the German representatives TuS 04 Leverkusen and just had to give twice the multiple winners of this competition, Real Madrid, beaten, could move into the final round. This was the best yield for the club in this round of the competition, after it was only three years earlier conceded three wins and otherwise only defeats in the group stage of this competition.

1982 Byrd went to Edinburgh in Scotland, where he was hired as player-manager and "General Manager" of the sponsored by David E. Murray club MIM Livingston. The team that had previously also been one of the leading teams of Scotland, reinforced its dominance with Byrd on and won five times from 1983 to 1987 the Scottish Championships and four consecutive British Championships in compare with the best English teams. In national champion European Cup in 1983/84 we failed comparatively short of reaching the group phase, as one of the finalists FC Barcelona defeated by addition of round-trip game with seven points difference. Byrd was in his own words in addition to the interest of the NBA Indiana Pacers Club numerous offers to play in the then most financially powerful and sporty successful European League in Italy. But Byrd was incorporated in 1987 to Manchester, where he played in the British Basketball League (BBL ) newly founded, which also Byrds former club MIM Livingston was taken as the only Scottish team. In England back Byrd played for the run by owners of the football club Manchester United team of the same name. In the premiere season of BBL was reached in fourth semi-final of the play-offs, in which one of the main round and First former English champions FC Portsmouth lost the " battle of the football club", while Livingston won the final against Portsmouth. However, the BBL soon fell into a fiasco after the same four teams logged off for the following season, including finalist Portsmouth. Byrd's own team United was sold, and now stood as Eagles. Byrd himself focused on the recorded activity as a trader.

1989 Byrd went to London and became active again as a player when he joined the Kingston Kings. These were from Glasgow, where they had played under the auspices of David Murray as Rangers returned to Kingston upon Thames within the London city limits. Murray, who is now focused as president of the football club Glasgow Rangers on the football, had withdrawn in addition to the Rangers also MIM Livingston from the BBL, which is now played in its third season, only eight teams after it had still been 15 teams to the premiere. The Kings were now the dominant team in the league and won under coach Kevin Cadle in the following three seasons up to the National Cup 1991 all tracks in the BBL, which won slowly back to the ground. Byrd won twice in 1991 and 1992 the award for " Most Valuable Player " ( MVP ) of the BBL, what was it already in the English and Scottish league succeeded several times in the 1980s. In national champion European Cup in 1990/91 we provided a big surprise when you have a 16 -point lead from the first leg against the Russian champions CSKA Moscow defended in the second round in the second leg and moved into the final group stage of the best eight teams in the one in 14 games finished in seventh place after four victories. Subsequently Byrd, who had acquired after marriage to an Englishwoman in 1983 and British citizenship, called also in the national team, but who could not qualify for finals and not even for the 1992 Olympics.

1992 had the Kings in a new hall to Guildford move and lost the England international Alan Cunningham and Colin Irish to the league rivals Worthing Bears. This was the dominance of the team that played now as Guildford Kings, broken in the BBL and you could only defend the title in the National Cup in 1993. The Bears, however, won after the first space in the main round and the play-off semi-final with a point of difference against the Kings and then picked up the title in the play-off final. In the following season 1993/ 94, the Kings lost both the semifinals of the National Cup and in the play-off final of the Championship against the Bears and remained first Titellos to the active time of Byrd. Coach Cadle moved to league rivals London Towers, while Byrd as player-coach and general manager of the basketball team his former club Crystal Palace in London took over, in which he had begun his career in England. Crystal Palace had resigned after two seasons at the beginning of the BBL from the league and played in the Division One of the NBL, in which one, however in 1995 and 1996 according to the first place in the regular season and the play-offs of the NBL could win. For the season 1996/97 Crystal Palace came under the leadership of Byrd back in the BBL. This was achieved, however, only five victories in 36 games and Byrd ended in January 1997, 39 years his active career and retired from the club whose professional basketball team then with the local competitors and play-off winners London Towers of coach Cadle was merged.

After leaving Crystal Palace was Byrd Executive Director of the NFL Europe clubs London Monarchs and a representative of the NFL Europe in England. He tried to revive the franchise new, but removals in other stadiums and a name change to England Monarchs remained without lasting success, so these were transferred as " Berlin Thunder" to Germany. Byrd then returns to his home back to California and got a job in the " Maloof Sports and Entertainment Group ", which acts as the owner of the NBA Sacramento Kings Club. So Byrd was named after his failed attempt as a player, 20 years later still a part of the NBA. After two years, in 2001 he was working freelance and founded the consulting firm in Sacramento "Clear Focus Marketing" and the "Basketball Performance Institute ," dedicated to the training and guidance of basketball players.

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