Jim Durham has passed away at the age of 65.

Durham was the lead play-by-play commentator for the NBA on ESPN Radio since its inception in 1996.

In 2011 Durham was honored by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame with the Curt Gowdy Media Award, presented annually to members of the print and electronic media whose longtime efforts have made a significant contribution to the game of basketball.

“Jim was a respected play-by-play specialist who combined a tremendous gift for storytelling with a Hall of Fame voice,” said Mo Davenport, ESPN Senior Vice President and General Manager, ESPN Radio. “He’s been a dedicated friend and a trusted teammate to so many at ESPN for two decades and he will be greatly missed. Our thoughts are with his wife Helen and the entire Durham family.”

Durham’s final assignment for ESPN was last Tuesday’s season-opener between Boston and Miami. He worked the game with long-time partner, Dr. Jack Ramsay, who discussed his good friend’s Hall of Fame induction in this story.

“Jim was an extraordinary professional,” said John Martin, ESPN Executive Producer, radio remotes, who frequently worked on-site with Durham. “His talent for calling NBA on radio in vivid, descriptive terms was unmatched. When JD was so deservedly recognized with the Gowdy Award, he had the Hall of Fame career to go along with his long established position as a Hall of Fame person. He was a sensational individual.”