From a basketball standpoint, he probably, over the years, has played the zone defense better and coached it better than anyone in basketball ever has.
Bob Knight, former head coach, Indiana, Texas Tech
–Jeff Pearlman, New York Times best-selling author of Sweetness and Boys Will Be Boys
In Dream Team, Hall of Fame basketball writer Jack McCallum, who covered the squad from the first practice to the gold-medal triumph in Barcelona and even contributed to its immortal name, delivers the full story of the Olympic men’s basketball team that captivated the world and changed the face of the game.
In the two decades that have passed, the gilded stars on the Dream Team roster are still household names in the world of basketball, including Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and Charles Barkley.
The book not only provides an inside look at the Dream Team—the battles over who should be chosen and who should be excluded, who should coach, and who was going to sacrifice the most in the pursuit of the gold medal—but also a portrait of that entire Golden Age of basketball, both triumphs and tribulations.
I’m writing this at a quite appropriate time–Friday night. I can’t see the lights from here, but they’re somewhere in the distance, shining onto the field at Bethlehem Area School District Stadium, where I began my sports writing life 45 years ago. Just about every sports journalist who works at a small newspaper experiences some version of those lights on […](READ MORE)
Eulogy on the occasion of the death of Merrell Noden DELIVERED BY RICH O’BRIEN, Senior Editor Sports Illustrated I would say ‘Thank you all for coming,’ but I know—based on how I feel and what I’ve heard from many of you, that as sad as it is, it’s actually a privilege and a kind of […](READ MORE)
From the moment Jim Boeheim and I started brainstorming and then doing the actual interviewing for BLEEDING ORANGE, the ongoing NCAA investigation of the Syracuse basketball program was the elephant in the room. “If the investigation isn’t resolved by the time we turn in the final draft,” Boeheim told the publishers who were interested […](READ MORE)
(Fourth in a series of articles about the writing of BLEEDING ORANGE, which I co-authored with Jim Boeheim.) There seemed to be an apocryphal aspect to the Syracuse story of Rony Seikaly, the sudden discovery of the raw-boned kid who was born in Beirut, the larger-than-life natural talent who had to be reined in, […](READ MORE)
(Third in a series of articles about the writing of BLEEDING ORANGE, which I co-authored with Jim Boeheim.) One of the interesting things about working with Boeheim was gauging his feelings about his former players. You have to understand that Boeheim will not torch his guys, “his guys” being anyone who ever put on […](READ MORE)
(Second in a series about the writing of BLEEDING ORANGE. Okay, this one is mostly about prostate cancer.) On a July day in 2001, I called up Jim Boeheim to inform him that I was about to play Bel-Air Country Club, ignoring the fact that rare monsoon-like conditions in southern California would eventually […](READ MORE)