The poem brings back the memories of how close my team was and how we felt like a family out there on the court.
It mentions the passes he sent to Kareem, who was the post player on his team and how he had a glorious skyhook.
finals are underway in Los Angeles, and league executives—from P. folks to owners to the game’s top brass— must all be smiling at the marketing prospects of Lakers vs. Apologies to residents of Flagstaff or Kissimmee, but the pairing is a bit more enticing to the casual fan than Suns vs.
The Celtics and Lakers first met in the finals in 1959, and their six matchups in the sixties (6-0 Celtics, by the way) cemented the teams as foes, but the rivalry as it exists in the contemporary consciousness began in 1979, when Larry Bird and Magic Johnson entered the league. More seriously for Wallace, these books reveal how different great tennis players, runners, or basketball players are from the curious mortals who follow their careers.
My belief is that Troupe thinks of basketball in rhythm and he wants that to translate into his poem.
I don’t know if he has a distinct love for Magic Johnson or if he just recognizes that “Magic” is the best player you could use to relate basketball and rhythm, but it’s the greatest example I can personally think of.
My favorite move was the skyhook and I remember it just as he described Kareem “popping the cords”.
In music, chords are the base structure of any song just like post players on a basketball team are the base of the team.
Though the players don’t want to talk about it, for at least a week, and most likely for two, this series will be as much about the past—the grainy video, the deranged crowds, the short shorts—as it is about the present. doesn’t dust off the terrifying split-screen ad they featured of the pair two years ago—with both men stuffed awkwardly in basketball uniforms despite being decades removed from their final games.) A better way to reflect on the two players, and their respective teams, might be “When the Game Was Ours,” written by Bird and Johnson with the sportswriter Jackie Mac Mullan. David Foster Wallace, in his great essay “How Tracy Austin Broke My Heart,” collected in “Consider the Lobster,” provides the most astute take I’ve read on the genre, what he calls the “the sports-star-‘with’-somebody autobiography.” His essential observation is that “Great athletes usually turn out to be stunningly inarticulate about just those qualities and experiences that constitute their fascination.” In other words, these books never make for very compelling reading.
Magic, or any other iteration of this year’s conference finalists, would have been.