Family Tragedy: Legendary Basketball Player's Son Dies at 42


Josh Maravich, son of legendary NBA guard “Pistol” Pete Maravich, died Friday at the age of 42.

Louisiana State University, the alma mater for both Maravich men, confirmed the death of Josh in a Saturday post.

According to the release, Josh Maravich died in the family’s Covington, Louisiana, home.

A cause of death was not given, however.

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Maravich played for LSU from 2001 to 2005, where he was largely deployed as a spot role player and scout team player.

According to LSU, Josh Maravich played a total of 13 games across his tenure at the school (Maravich sat out his entire freshman year as a redshirt, something players sometimes do to preserve eligibility).

While Maravich may not have played a ton at LSU, he always felt that playing for his father’s alma mater was in the cards for him.

Did you ever get to see “Pistol” Pete in person?

(It’s worth noting that Josh Maravich was a walk-on, so there really wasn’t anything resembling nepotism with him making the team.)

“I wanted to come here for my dad to make him proud,” Josh told The Daily Reveille, LSU’s school paper, in 2005. “I knew I wasn’t going to be a star player, but for me, being a walk-on was what I always wanted to do.”

Speaking of Josh’s father, the term “legend” is bandied about way too frequently in 2024, especially when it comes to sports.

However, when it comes to beloved NBA savant “Pistol” Pete Maravich, it’s difficult to imagine a more apt descriptor than “legend.”

In many ways, “Pistol” Pete is a literal legend, in the sense that his prime years happened well before the advent of social media and wall-to-wall coverage.

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Most modern basketball fans can only appreciate the style and genius of “Pistol” via sometimes-grainy YouTube clips and hearsay.

But even beyond the fact that “Pistol” Pete footage might appear below current pro-sports production standards, Maravich’s on-court prowess would’ve earned him “legend” status regardless.

As the NCAA notes, Pete Maravich never averaged less than 43 points per game while at LSU. That’s an NCAA record 3,667 total points scored for Maravich — who did that without a shot clock or a three-point line.

But perhaps the most somber part of “Pistol” Pete’s legend — and one that eerily connects back to Josh’s untimely and early passing — is the elder Maravich’s infamous declaration about not wanting to die of a heart attack at the age of 40.

As the Los Angeles Times chronicled all the way back in 1988, Maravich once said, in a 1974 interview, that “I don’t want to play 10 years in the NBA and die of a heart attack at age 40.”

Pete Maravich died of a heart attack on Jan. 5, 1988, at the age of 40.

Josh Maravich is survived by his mother and her husband, as well as his older brother, Jaeson.

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Bryan Chai has written news and sports for The Western Journal for more than five years and has produced more than 1,300 stories. He specializes in the NBA and NFL as well as politics.
Bryan Chai has written news and sports for The Western Journal for more than five years and has produced more than 1,300 stories. He specializes in the NBA and NFL as well as politics. He graduated with a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona. He is an avid fan of sports, video games, politics and debate.
Class of 2010 University of Arizona. BEAR DOWN.
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
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Topics of Expertise
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