“Ohhhh Jesus I love you!”
“I love you!”
“Jesus, I need some money…”
No matter where he went on Coney Island, they came around. People always wanted something. Even in his moment to relax, trophy and check in hand, the sweat running off his fingers and dampening the paper, they mixed in with the crowd. Everywhere he looked, he could point them out: always reaching out trying to touch him… always with a fake look of despair on their faces. Read More »
(4) Jesus Shuttlesworth, He Got Game vs. (15) Billy Hoyle, White Men Can’t Jump
“Is your son Jesus Shuttlesworth?”
“Is your son considered the No. 1 college prospect in these United States of America?”
He couldn’t read the man’s face. It was too dark for that, the moon blocked out by buildings. 3:31 a.m. A mild night, with a slight breeze hitting his back, and yet he felt nothing mild about this pitch. He wasn’t sure why this man had cornered him, didn’t know at all what he wanted and yet here they were talking. Read More »
(6) Butch McRae, Blue Chips vs. (15) Billy Hoyle, White Men Can’t Jump
“Dirty looks. That’s all I get,” Billy Hoyle messed with his hat. “Dirty. Dirty. All over.” The crowd was gathered around and were passing him stares that could cut right through his sternum. Hoyle moved his head from side to side, searching for one friendly face. Anyone. All he got back was the same thing: squinting eyes, closed lips and jagged brows. Read More »
(1) Neon Bodeaux, Blue Chips vs. (4) Jesus Shuttlesworth, He Got Game
“You lucky my jumper’s kinda busted right now…”
This isn’t really a dream. It could be, but it’s more like a reflection. A reflection that’s real. If he wanted to, he could reach out and touch it, caress it or slide it through his fingers.
“You look like a cock-a-roach…” Read More »
(10) Kyle Lee Watson, Above The Rim vs. (15) Billy Hoyle, White Men Can’t Jump
Everything had been fine until this guy showed up. Kyle Lee Watson thought he might with this tournament being back home and all. Georgetown had been great to him his freshman year, whether he played great or not, but still there were people back home who wanted to see him fail. They wanted to see him lose. Haters gonna hate. Always. Read More »
(3) Lewis Scott, Celtic Pride vs. (6) Butch McRae, Blue Chips
Butch McRae had felt like this since the day it all started. By the day it all started, he meant the afternoon after practice at Western when he came storming into Pete Bell’s office.
“What is it Butch?” Bell had asked him, only caring to a certain point as he fidgeted around the room, drawing on the whiteboard or grabbing a soda. Read More »
(4) Jesus Shuttlesworth, He Got Game vs. (12) Scott Howard, Teen Wolf
The Wolf crosses over and jumps almost in the same instant, 360-ing through the air and then dunking even before Jesus can get his hand up. No one expected this. It’s 5-1, the Wolf, and Jesus is either scared, nervous, surprised or just plain disgusted with all of the greasy hair. The Wolf hasn’t shaved for a month they say, and he hasn’t bathed in twice that long. You can smell him from half court, drenched in sweat, slippery as a wet cat. Read More »
(1) Neon Bodeaux, Blue Chips vs. (8) Thomas Shepherd, Above The Rim
It’s pitch dark. Echoing voices are bouncing off buildings. Laughter. A couple of varsity lettermen with their jackets on are playing like they always played. One-on-one.
“Get off me! GET OFF OF ME!”
How did they end up here? He doesn’t know. Something in his mind is telling him he can’t remember. Or maybe that’s because he doesn’t want to remember. He doesn’t even know what he’s doing, can’t control it. But there’s his old yellow and orange jacket, the one he threw into the river after it was all over, so he can tell this was sometime in high school. Read More »
(2) Moses Guthrie, The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh vs. (15) Billy Hoyle, White Men Can’t Jump
For some reason, the scent of salt is identifiable even though we aren’t near the ocean. The court is full with everyone crowded around one basket.
“Ah, f— you, your mother’s an astronaut,” Moses Guthrie spits out. Yes, Moses said that, the man too cool for his own good, the player who’s never once lost his head in an ABA game. Is it happening here? Is he getting played by a 5-9 dude with a goofy smile, some grey baggy socks, a parental advisory shirt and one of the dirtiest hats on you’ve ever seen? Read More »
(7) Quincy McCall, Love & Basketball vs. (10) Kyle Lee Watson, Above The Rim
They’ll never take me alive
Shimmy shaking left to right, one player nearly smashes his face onto the gravel as a knee gives out. The other is alone at the rim, moving past him. All it takes is one dribble and the guard, rocking a shaved line down the middle of his head, lobs it to himself and finishes with a jam. Read More »