Japanese American point guard debuted with the New York Knicks in 1947.
Wat Misaka, the pioneering Japanese American athlete who became the first person of color to play in modern professional basketball, died Wednesday in Salt Lake City. He was 95.
Misaka, the son of Japanese immigrants, starred for the University of Utah on teams that won two national tournament championships. In 1947, he made professional debut with the New York Knicks — then part of the Basketball Association of America, a forerunner of the National Basketball.