From people packing playgrounds near 59th Street and Lancaster Avenue to fans flocking to NBA arenas to watch him deliver a two-handed tomahawk dunk, Lewis Lloyd will forever be a Philadelphia basketball legend.
Last week he strutted through the Gallagher Center at Philadelphia University during the Reebok Classic Breakout. He flipped his black fitted hat backward mid-stride. In bold red letters it read "Black Magic" - the nickname he earned playing ball in West Philly. It was as if nothing had changed.
But this wasn't the 1986 NBA Finals, when he and the Houston Rockets fell to the Boston Celtics. This time he was cheering another player. His son, Andre Adams, whom Lloyd hadn't seen since he was 4 years old, was playing in the scholastic showcase.
When Adams attempted a dunk over a defender, Lloyd beamed.
"He reminds me of myself," said the 54-year-old Lloyd, who played with the Warriors, Rockets, and 76ers during his seven years in the NBA.
"He shoots like me and walks like me. All he can do is build and keep working hard and hopefully we're going back to the NBA. Like I told him earlier, I'm the king and he's the prince."
The 6-foot-6 Lloyd was one of the greatest players to come out of Philadelphia in the '70s. While at Overbrook High, he had historic battles with Gene Banks of West Philly High that drew fans from across the city.
He chose Drake University in Iowa over Kansas and UNLV after spending two seasons at the New Mexico Military Institute, a junior college. He was the two-time Missouri Valley Conference player of the year and had his number retired at Drake, where he averaged 30.2 points and 15 rebounds per game his junior season.
As a pro, he scored 5,130 points and had 1,192 rebounds. He was suspended from the NBA in 1986 for testing positive for cocaine.
"You can't dwell on the bad stuff," the 6-9 Adams said of his father. "You can only focus on the good stuff. Everyone has a bad start or a rough game. Right now is just about getting started for him and me."
Lloyd, too, is looking for a fresh start.
He's shooting a documentary, capturing his life and his new efforts mentoring youths with his longtime friend and rival, Joe Garrett.
Garrett, who played at West Philly with Banks in the '70s, thinks that Lloyd's reunion with his son is revitalizing the old basketball star.
"What I see is Andre giving Lewis more life," said Garrett, now the coach of Bartram's girls' basketball team.
"He's giving Lewis that opportunity to want to live again. What I see Andre giving back to Lewis is a reason to want to walk down that straight and narrow road again. I haven't seen Lewis with a smile on his face since that young kid came to town this week."