Home Athletes Basketballers Bill Russell Net Worth, Early and Personal Life and Career

Bill Russell Net Worth, Early and Personal Life and Career

Bill Russell Net Worth, Early and Personal Life and Career
Bill Russell Net Worth

Read on and find out Bill Russell net worth, if Bill Russell net worth is exactly what you’re searching for!

William Felton Russell professionally known as Bill Russell was an American professional basketball player born on February 12th, 1934, in West Monroe, Louisiana, US, and died on July 31st, 2022 at the age of 88.

This net worth article presents you not just Bill Russell net worth but also his early and personal life, and career with his achievements being included in a more summarized but detailed form for you to know him better.

Popular Name: Bill Russell
Real Name: William Felton Russell
Birth Date: February 12th, 1934(died: July 31st,2022)
Birth Place: West Monroe, Louisiana, US
Age: 88 years old (At the time of his death in 2022)
Gender: Male
Nationality/Citizenship: American
Height: 6 ft
Weight: 98 kg
Sexuality: Straight
Marital Status: Married
Spouse(s): Rose Swisher (1956 – 1973), Dorothy Anstett (1980-1996), Marilyn Nault (1996-2009), Jeannine Russell( His wife till his death)
Children: Anayra, Trishaan Russell
Profession: Retired Professional Basketball Player
Years active: 1956 -1969
Net Worth: $10 million
Last Updated: 2022

Bill Russell Biography

William Felton Russell professionally known as Bill Russell was an American professional basketball player born on February 12th, 1934, in West Monroe, Louisiana, US, and died on July 31st, 2022 at the age of 88.

In his career time, Russell played as a centerman for the Boston Celtics of the National Basketball Association (NBA) between 1956 and 1969, and was NBA Most Valuable Player (MVP) 5 times and also NBA All-Star 12 times.

Bill Russell’s father was Charles Russell who worked in a paper factory as a janitor and his mother was Katie Russell. Bill Russell’s family relocated to Oakland, California when he was eight years old.

Bill Russell’s older brother was the famous playwright Charlie L. Russell. While he was alive, he stood 6 feet high and weighed 98 kilograms.

Russell attended McClymonds High School, and thereafter he attended the University of San Francisco.

Concerning his family life, Bill Russell married Rose Swisher his lover right from college in 1956, and in 1973, they divorced.

The couple bore three children including Karen Russell, a television pundit and lawyer, William Jr., and Jacob.

After Russell and Karen had divorced, He got married to 1968’s Miss USA, Dorothy Anstett and in 1980 they divorced. Russell married Marilyn Nault, his third wife in 1996 till Marilyn died in January 2009.

Till the time of his death, Bill Russell was married to Jeannine Russell, and lived in Mercer Island, Washington, for close to five decades.

On July 31st, 2022, Bill Russell died in his home at Mercer Island, Washington.”

Bill Russell Net Worth and Source of Income

Bill Russell throughout his active basketball playing was one of the first big earners in NBA basketball.

It is clear enough that Bill Russell net worth majorly came from basketball playing. For instance, in 1956 Russell signed a rookie contract worth $24,000 which equals to $239,207 in 2022.

At a point in his career, Bill Russell had reportedly been receiving $100,001 as a salary.

At the time of his death, Bill Russell net worth was estimated at ten million US Dollars ( $10,000,000).

Bill Russell Career

Career Beginnings

Bill Russell struggled to develop his skills as a basketball player during his early years.

Despite being a good runner and jumper with large hands, Bill Russell did not understand the game and was cut from the team at Herbert Hoover Junior High School.

Career At College

Bill Russell was neglected by college recruiters and didn’t receive any offer till Hal DeJulio from the University of San Francisco (USF) saw him play in a high school game.

By the time Hal DeJulio offered Bill Russell a scholarship, Russell happily accepted, and at USF, Russell was the new starting center for coach Phil Woolpert of the San Francisco Dons.

Bill Russell in his USF years took advantage of his relative lack of skills to develop a unique defensive style.

Instead of totally guarding the opposing center, Bill Russell employed his quickness and speed to play help defense against opposing forwards and to aggressively challenge shots.

While at USF, Bill Russell and Jones helped in starting a play that was later known as the alley-oop.

Russell during his college career was the NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player in 1955, he averaged 20.7 points each game and 20.3 rebounds each game.

Aside from basketball, Bill Russell represented USF in track and field events and was a standout in the high jump.

According to Track & Field News, Bill Russell was ranked the seventh-best high jumper in the world in 1956 his graduation year, even without competing in the Olympic high jump.

Bill Russell that same year won high jump titles at the Central California Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) meet, the Pacific AAU meet, and as well the West Coast Relays (WCR).

Bill Russell just like fellow world-class high-jumpers of that period did not use the Fosbury Flop high-jump technique which all high jump world records after 1978 have been set.

Bill Russell also competed in the 440 yards (402.3 m) race, which he completed in just 49.6 seconds. Bill Russell was thereafter invited by The Harlem Globetrotters to join their exhibition basketball squad.

Bill Russell being sensitive to any racial prejudice, was scared due to the fact that owner Abe Saperstein would only discuss the matter with Woolpert.

While Saperstein and Woolpert discussed in a meeting, Harry Hanna, Globetrotters’ assistant coach attempted to entertain Bill Russell with jokes, but Russell was angry and declined the offer.

Russell saw that if Saperstein was too smart to speak with him, then he was too smart to play for Saperstein, so he qualified for the 1956 NBA draft.

Career At Professional Level

NBA draft (1956 )

In the draft, Boston Celtics coach Red Auerbach had targeted Bill Russell, especially for his defensive toughness and rebounding prowess being all the Celtics needed.

The St. Louis Hawks were the owners of the second pick, and they drafted Bill Russell but were however looking forward to Celtics center Ed Macauley, a six-time NBA All-Star with roots in St. Louis.

Bill Russell before his NBA rookie year was the captain of the 1956 U.S. men’s Olympic basketball team.

The Team competed at the 1956 Summer Olympics held in November and again in December in Melbourne, Australia, in the Southern Hemisphere.

Bill Russell under head coach Gerald Tucker helped the U.S. national basketball team to win the gold medal in Melbourne. The team defeated the Soviet Union national basketball team 89–55 in the final game with an 8–0 undefeated run.

The United  States took control of the tournament and won by an average of 53.5 points in each game. Bill Russell led the team in as they scored, and averaged 14.1 points each game for the competition.

Russell’s former USF and future Celtics teammate K. C. Jones joined him on the Olympic squad and contributed 10.9 points each game, which included a Russell–Jones combined 29 points in the finals.

Rookie Champion and Early Years (1956 to 1958)

As a result of being committed to the Olympics, Bill Russell was unable to join the Celtics for the 1956 to 1957 NBA season till December.

Bill Russell played 48 games, he averaged 14.7 points each game and a league-high 19.6 rebounds each game.

Bill Russell had his first Celtics game come in December 1956, he played against the St. Louis Hawks, led by star forward Bob Pettit, who went on to hold several all-time scoring records.

The Celtics ended the 1956 to 1957 regular season with a 44–28 record, the team’s second-best record right from when they started playing in the 1946 to 1947 BAA season.

The Celtics won the Nationals in three games and secured the franchise’s first NBA Finals appearance in the 1957 NBA Finals, and there, they met the St. Louis Hawks, led by Pettit and Ed Macauley.

At the beginning of the 1957 to 1958 NBA season, the Celtics won 14 straight games and succeeded continually to succeed, and Bill Russell averaged 16.6 points each game and a league-record average of 22.7 rebounds each game.

Bill Russell was voted as the NBA Most Valuable Player but was however named to the All-NBA Second Team only.

1958 to 1966

In the 1958 to 1959 NBA season, Bill Russell averaged 16.7 points each game and 23.0 rebounds each game, and the Celtics broke a league record by winning 52 games.

Bill Russell had performed strongly so he led the Celtics through the 1959 NBA playoffs, as they got back to the NBA Finals. The Celtics recaptured the NBA title, sweeping the Minneapolis Lakers 4–0 in the 1959 NBA Finals.

Bill Russell’s Celtics hosted Chamberlain’s Warriors and pundits called the matchup between the best offensive and defensive centers “The Big Collision” and “Battle of the Titans” in November 1959.

In February 1960, Bill Russell recorded 23 points, 51 rebounds, and 5 assists in a 124–100 win against the Syracuse Nationals.

In the 1960 NBA playoffs, Bill Russell‘s Celtics met Chamberlain’s Warriors in the Eastern Division Finals, Chamberlain has 81 points in the series against Bill Russell but walked off with a 4–2 series win.

Bill Russell scored 21 points and grabbed an NBA Finals-record 40 rebounds, and an assist, in a Game 2 loss, he had 22 points and 35 rebounds, with 4 assists, in the deciding Game 7, a 122–103 win for Boston.

In the 1960 to 1961 NBA season, Bill Russell averaged 16.9 points and 23.9 rebounds each game, he led his team to a regular season mark of 57–22.

In the 1961 to 1962 NBA season, Bill Russell scored a career-high 18.9 points each game, alongside 23.6 rebounds each game.

Bill Russell emerged as the first black head coach in NBA history. In the 1967 to 1968 NBA season, Bill Russell at the age of 34, averaged 12.5 points per game and 18.6 rebounds per game.


Bill Russell even after he had died is regarded among the most successful and decorated athletes in the history of North American sports, having won several awards in addition to his other achievements is enough evidence to prove that.

Concerning his net worth at the time of his death, Bill Russell net worth would have certainly increased if he were still alive to date, since he may likely have ventured into other businesses.


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