Lloyd (Sonny) Dove, a star basketball player for St. John's during the mid-1960s who played professionally with the Detroit Pistons and New York Nets, died yesterday in New York of injuries sustained when the taxi he was driving skidded off a partially opened drawbridge and plunged 25 feet into a canal.

A police spokesman, Sgt. Ray O'Donnell, said Dove was driving west toward the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel in South Brooklyn about 9:45 p.m. Sunday when his cab skidded off the bridge and plunged into the Gowanus Canal. The other half of the drawbridge was raised.

Dove, a 6-foot-8 forward, played for St. John's from 1964 until 1967 and was named to UPI's second-team all-America team his senior year. He ranks second on the Redmen's all-time rebounding list and sixth on the scoring list.

He spent five years in professional basketball--two years with Detroit of the NBA and three with the Nets of the old ABA. He had a career scoring average of 11.1 points per game and had his best season with New York in 1969-70 when he averaged 14.4 points per game.