With the broken index finger of his shooting hand taped to his middle one, Walter Davis wrapped his arm around a sobbing Mike O'Koren. UNC had just lost the 1977 national championship to Marquette.
The image of Walter consoling O’Koren stands out to Mitch Kupchak to this day.
"He’s caring for his teammate," Kupchak, a former teammate and close friend of Walter, said. "It's a big loss and, probably, you should have your head in your own lap, but he’s got his arm around O'Koren."
That’s just who "Sweet D" was.
Walter, a UNC basketball legend and the uncle of current North Carolina coach Hubert Davis, died at the age of 69 on Thursday due to natural causes. Walter was an Olympic gold medalist and six-time NBA All-Star. But, above all else, he is remembered by his family, friends and former teammates for his kind demeanor.
"[Walter] would give you the coat off his back," former UNC teammate Phil Ford said. "It didn’t matter who you were, your status or anything. He was just a great person that cared about everybody. There wasn't a single ounce of jealousy or hatred in his body."
Before Monday’s game against Radford, the crowd in the Dean E. Smith Center paused for a moment of silence to honor Walter. During warmups, the Tar Heels wore long sleeve shirts with "Davis" and Walter's number, 24, on the back.
Hubert said that upon seeing the tribute it was hard not to get emotional.
"I told the team that the reason I'm here is because of Uncle Walt," Hubert said. "I don't get a scholarship, I don't get a chance to go here without Uncle Walt being here. Because of that, everything significant in my life has happened here because of Uncle Walt."