NBA

Report: Ex-NBA player Schintzius dies

Dwayne Schintzius
Dwayne Schintzius, shown in 1991, was a first-round pick by the Spurs in the 1990 draft.
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Dwayne Schintzius, a former first-round pick who spent nine seasons in the NBA, died Sunday afternoon from respiratory failure at the age of 43, The Tampa (Fla.) Tribune reported.

TRAGIC SPORTS DEATHS

Remembering the many athletes sports lost way too soon.

A 7-foot-2 center, Schintzius led the University of Florida to its first three NCAA tournament appearances. He remains the only SEC player with more than 1,000 points, 800 rebounds, 250 assists and 250 blocked shots.

Schintzius was diagnosed with Myelomonocytic Leukemia in 2009 and was declared cancer-free after receiving a successful bone marrow transplant from his younger brother Travis in early 2010.

But further issues required Schintzius to undergo a second bone marrow transplant and he endured months of complications from the procedure leading up to his death.

"He's at peace now," Travis said. "He's not suffering anymore. Now he's probably cracking jokes and making people laugh in heaven."

Schintzius was selected 24th overall by the San Antonio Spurs in the 1990 NBA Draft. He went on to have stints with the Kings, Nets, Pacers, Clippers and Celtics, but his career was ravaged by injuries.

He was well known for his mullet hairdo and also for his performance as a Russian basketball player in the 1996 comedy "Eddie," starring Whoopi Goldberg.

Twice divorced with no children, Schintzius is survived by his brother, Travis, and parents, Ken and Linda.

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