2 March 1962
This event has been in the news recently because of Kobe Bryant's 81-point effort a while back, the second-most points ever scored in a NBA game. Wilt scored 28 points on free throws (he only missed four, and he was a notoriously bad free-throw shooter) and made 36 field goals, a truly remarkable evening. The game was played in Hershey, Pennsylvania, for some reason, and very few people saw it. The NBA was not the big-time sport it is today. The 1962 season is perhaps the greatest season in history - Wilt averaged 50 points a game, and scored over that number 45 times. When people talk about the best pure player in basketball history, Wilt has to be near the top. He doesn't get as much credit as he should because his contemporary, Bill Russell, won more championships (usually beating Wilt's teams to get to the Finals), but he and Julius Erving (and yes, I'm a Philly homer, and they both played for Philly teams) should get more credit as the greatest players in NBA history, because much like Babe Ruth in baseball, they completely changed how the game is played. Michael Jordan is obviously the best player ever, but Jordan owes a lot to Dr. J.
Anyway, Wilt's Philadelphia Warriors beat the New York Knicks that night, 169-147. That must have been a fun game to see.