Terrific Hoop Reading
Frommer on Sports
dunking, passing, rebounding, shot blocking - all of these are part of the
scene as another basketball season is upon on. And the publishing world
has its products in place to capitalize on the new season.
Harper Collins there is "Official NBA Trivia" by Clare Martin
($10.95, 181pp.). Warner Books is showcasing "She Got Game" by
Cynthia Cooper ($20.00, 256pp). And Total/Sports Illustrated has a
re-issue of the classic "24 Seconds to Shoot" by Leonard Koppett
NBA Trivia" is a slender volume for the serious hoop fan. Organized
by team - the questions (all multiple choice) range from what some would
call the ridiculous to the sublime. Here is an example from the Atlanta
Hawks section: Whose coaching record did Lenny Wilkens break when he won
his 939th game? A. Bill Fitch B. Red Auerbach C. Dick Motta D. Pat Riley.
answer is "B". Overall, "Official NBA Trivia" is a
good book for honing your hoops knowledge, but there is not much to read.
Cynthia Cooper's book is much more significant and important, truly a
rags-to-riches story about the girl who grew up very needy in the Watts
section of California.
Got Game" begins with "The one thing that drives me and keeps me
motivated is that I've always been the underdog. … I was a shy and
introverted little girl, not comfortable with how I looked or what I had
mother worked two jobs and raised eight children all by herself. But the
terrible bleakness of Cooper's life changed forever when she discovered
basketball at age 15.
then on, it was all uphill - a scholarship to USC, two NCAA championships,
two straight championships with the WNBA's Houston Comets and two ESPY
awards as Women's Pro Basketball Player of the Year. The sub-title of
"She Got Game" is "My Personal Odyssey." That it is -
and it is just inspirational reading.
Seconds to Shoot" by Leonard Koppett - the only writer to be named to
both the basketball and baseball halls of fame - was originally published
in 1968. It is just wonderful to have this handsome new version of a book
that contains so much basketball history about what Koppett calls
"the birth and improbable rise of the NBA."
league began life as the Basketball Association of America in 1946 with
teams in cities like Waterloo, Sheboygan and Fort Wayne. No one back then
would have believed what the future had in store. The book's title
"24 Seconds to Shoot," the brainchild of Danny Biasone of the
old Syracuse Nationals - the 24-second clock - saved the league by
speeding up what had been a dull, stalling game.
as they say - the rest is history.
Top hot stove league reading is "Home of the Game" by Thom
Loverro (Taylor, $24.95, 256pp). The book is an entertaining account of
the creation of Camden Yards.
this March "The Goose is Loose" by Goose Gossage with Russ Pate
(Ballantine Books, $25.00, 320pp). The work is billed as "a biting
look back" at the hard-throwing pitcher's memorable 22-year career.
# # #
You can reach
Harvey Frommer at:
About the Author:
Harvey Frommer is in his 38th year of writing books.
A noted oral historian and sports journalist, the author of 42 sports
books including the classics: "New York City Baseball,1947-1957" and
"Shoeless Joe and Ragtime Baseball," his acclaimed REMEMBERING YANKEE
STADIUM was published in 2008 and his REMEMBERING FENWAY PARK: AN ORAL
AND NARRATIVE HISTORY OF THE HOME OF RED SOX NATION was published to
acclaim in 2011. The prolific Frommer is at work on When It Was
Just a Game, An Oral History on Super Bowel One.
His work has appeared in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times,
Washington Post, New York Daily News, Newsday, USA Today, Men's Heath,
The Sporting News, among other publications.
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Frommer along with his wife, Myrna Katz Frommer are the authors of
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