Dominique Wilkins Near His 53rd Birthday (Photo)

Dominique Wilkins is a former superstar NBA player, who primarily played for the Atlanta Hawks. The nine-time All-Star averaged 24.8 points per game, during his career, while also leading the league in scoring for the 1985-86 season. The two-time Slam Dunk contest champion was especially known for his spectacular dunks and high wire act style of play, which earned him the famous nickname, “The Human Highlight Film.” During portions of the 1980's, the Hall of Famer's play was on par with his all-time great contemporaries of Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and Michael Jordan.

After concluding his career by bouncing back and forth between the NBA and Europe (‘95-‘99), Wilkins officially retired from basketball in 1999. Presently, the University of Georgia alum serves as both the Hawks Vice President of Basketball and the team's television color analyst.

The Paris native turns 53-years-old on January 12.

Above is an original photo of Wilkins, captured Tuesday, near the Target Center in downtown Minneapolis. This scene took place a couple hours prior to the Minnesota Timberwolves game versus the Hawks.

In addition to his ongoing role with Atlanta, Wilkins was in the news recently, as a result of the very classy note he submitted to the New York Times, in honor of his former teammate and friend Dan Roundfield, who tragically drowned in the waters off Aruba, while successfully saving his endangered wife's life.

Without question, Wilkins is the most prominent player in the history of Atlanta professional basketball.