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Dream Team: How Michael, Magic, Larry, Charles, and the Greatest Team of All Time Conquered the World and Changed the Game of Basketball Foreverby Jack Mccallum
They were the Beatles of basketball, the Mercury Seven in sneakers. In Dream Team, acclaimed sports journalist Jack McCallum delivers the untold story of the greatest team ever assembled: the 1992 U.S. Olympic Men's Basketball Team that captivated the world, kindled the hoop dreams of countless children around the planet, and remade the NBA into a global sensation. As a senior staff writer for Sports Illustrated, McCallum enjoyed a courtside seat for the most exciting basketball spectacle on earth, covering the Dream Team from its inception to the gold medal ceremony in Barcelona. For the duration of the Olympics, he lived with, golfed with, and--most important--drank with some of the greatest players of the NBA's Golden Age: Magic Johnson, the ebullient showman who shrugged off his recent diagnosis of HIV to become the team's unquestioned captain and leader; Michael Jordan, the transcendent talent at the height of his powers as a player--and a marketing juggernaut; and Charles Barkley, the outspoken iconoclast whose utterances on and off the court threatened to ignite an international incident. Presiding over the entire traveling circus was the Dream Team's beloved coach, Chuck Daly, whose laissez-faire approach proved instrumental in getting the most out of such disparate personalities and superstars such as Larry Bird, Patrick Ewing, and Scottie Pippen. Drawing on fresh interviews with the players, McCallum provides the definitive account of the Dream Team phenomenon. He offers a behind-the-scenes look at the controversial selection process. He takes us inside the team's Olympic suites for late-night card games and bull sessions where the players debate both the finer points of basketball and their respective places in the NBA pantheon. And he narrates a riveting possession-by-possession account of the legendary July 1992 intrasquad scrimmage that pitted the Dream Teamers against one another in what may have been the greatest pickup game--and the greatest exhibition of trash talk--in history. In the twenty years since the Dream Team first captivated the world's attention, its mystique has only grown--and so has its influence. The NBA is now flush with international stars, many of them inspired by the exuberant spirit of '92. Dream Team vividly re-creates the moment when a once-in-a-millennium group of athletes came together, outperformed the hype, and changed the future of sports--one perfectly executed fast break at a time. The Dream Team was . . . Michael Jordan, Guard, Chicago Bulls Magic Johnson, Guard, Los Angeles Lakers Larry Bird, Forward, Boston Celtics Charles Barkley, Forward, Phoenix Suns Chris Mullin, Forward, Golden State Warriors Scottie Pippen, Forward, Chicago Bulls John Stockton, Guard, Utah Jazz Karl Malone, Forward, Utah Jazz David Robinson, Center, San Antonio Spurs Patrick Ewing, Center, New York Knicks Christian Laettner, Forward, Duke University Clyde Drexler, Guard, Portland TrailblazersFrom the Hardcover edition.
From two senior Sports Illustrated writers comes an explosive, fast-paced satire that will do for today's NBA what North Dallas Forty did for the NFL a generation ago. Just months from his Yale graduation, street-smart whiz kid Jamal Kelly leaves school to take a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to join the front office of the Los Angeles Lasers. Once on the West Coast, Jamal gets a quick introduction to a subculture awash in big egos and fast cars, as well as an introduction to the charms of the team's new hard-charging beat writer, Jilly Forrester. In the spirit of Primary Colors and The Devil Wears Prada, Foul Lines peels back the curtain on the trappings of big-time professional basketball. No other sport encapsulates so many cultural hot-button topics, and Foul Lines at once exposes and lampoons this parallel universe.
In Seven Seconds or Less, Sports Illustrated's chief NBA writer, Jack McCallum, gets in the paint with the Phoenix Suns and takes a season-long look at the NBA's most exciting and controversial team. A few weeks before the 2005-2006 NBA training camps began, Jack McCallum called the Phoenix Suns ace director of public relations to propose a story idea for Sports Illustrated. He would spend the preseason with the team as an "assistant coach" and then write a story about his experiences. He was quickly granted access, and while his role as "assistant coach" lasted only through the preseason, McCallum stayed on with the team throughout their amazing 2005-2006 season. McCallum was looking for real inside access and he certainly got it. He spent the season in the locker room and in the coaches' meetings, learning what makes this wildly popular, innovative, and international assemblage of talented players and brilliant coaches tick. For years, NBA basketball was marked by a plodding, dull-as-dishwater style of play -- that was until coach Mike D'Antoni, point guard Steve Nash, and the high-flying Phoenix Suns set the league on fire with their old-school, run-and-gun approach to offense. Along the way they won back legions of disillusioned fans and demonstrated the virtues of team play to a league preoccupied with one-on-one theatrics. In Seven Seconds or Less, McCallum describes his year trying to keep up with the fast-breaking Suns on and off the court. He takes readers inside the heads of Nash, the team's mercurial floor general; the maverick D'Antoni; and dozens of others who make up the close-knit Suns family. On the court, there's excitement as the Suns overcome a rash of injuries to once again battle for a conference title. Off the court, controversy rages as the team endures a major front-office change in midseason. Throughout it all, the team continues to bedevil opponents and challenge the status quo with their throwback style. In the spirit of Buzz Bissinger's Three Nights in August and John Feinstein's A Season on the Brink, Seven Seconds or Less is an in-depth look at one of the greatest shows in sports.
Sports Illustrated's chief NBA writer, Jack McCallum, only planned to spend the preseason with the Phoenix Suns as an "assistant coach" -- and then write a story about his experiences. Instead, he stayed on with the Suns throughout their exciting and controversial 2005-2006 season. Gaining access to everything from locker-room chats with superstar point guard Steve Nash, to coaches' meetings with maverick coach Mike D'Antoni, McCallum learned what makes this wildly popular, innovative, and international assemblage of talented players and brilliant coaches tick -- making Seven Seconds or Less an all-access look at one of the greatest shows in sports.
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