Philadelphia 76er great and Hall of Famer Moses Malone has died at the age of 60.

Moses Malone (Brian Bahr / Getty Images)

The center who led the Sixers to the 1983 NBA championship passed away early Sunday. The team confirmed his death which was first reported by ESPN in a statement. "It is with a deep sense of sadness that the Sixers family mourns the sudden loss of Moses Malone. It is difficult to express what his contributions to this organization - both as a friend and player - have meant to us, the city of Philadelphia and his faithful fans," reads the statement.

In a separate statement, the Houston Rockets called Malone a "true gentleman and one of the great Rockets."

The team nor ESPN offered a cause of death.Malone was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2001 and attended the induction ceremonies for the year's class in Springfield, Massachusetts this weekend



Malone, nicknamed "The Chairman of the Boards," had a career that included time with the Houston Rockets, Washington Bullets, Atlanta Hawks and San Antonio Spurs where he ended his career in 1995. He was named to the NBA Hall of Fame in 2001 and named one of the NBA's 50 greatest players. Malone's 20 year career began with the Spirit of St. Louis of the ABA in 1974 right out of high school.


STATEMENT FROM THE PHILADELPHIA 76ers

"It is with a deep sense of sadness that the Sixers family mourns the sudden loss of Moses Malone. It is difficult to express what his contributions to this organization - both as a friend and player - have meant to us, the city of Philadelphia and his faithful fans. Moses holds a special place in our hearts and will forever be remembered as a genuine icon and pillar of the most storied era in the history of Philadelphia 76ers basketball. No one person has ever conveyed more with so few words - including three of the most iconic in this city's history. His generosity, towering personality and incomparable sense of humor will truly be missed. We will keep his family in our thoughts and prayers and as we are once again reminded of the preciousness of life."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.