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Red and Me: My Coach, My Lifelong Friend

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Overview

Red Auerbach was one of the greatest basketball coaches in sports history. Bill Russell was the star center and five-time MVP for Auerbach's Celtics, and together they won eleven championships in thirteen years. But Auerbach and Russell were far more than just coach and player. A short, brash Jew from Brooklyn and a tall, intense African-American from Louisiana and Oakland, the men formed a friendship that evolved into a rare, telling example of deep male camaraderie even as ...

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Red and Me: My Coach, My Lifelong Friend

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Overview

Red Auerbach was one of the greatest basketball coaches in sports history. Bill Russell was the star center and five-time MVP for Auerbach's Celtics, and together they won eleven championships in thirteen years. But Auerbach and Russell were far more than just coach and player. A short, brash Jew from Brooklyn and a tall, intense African-American from Louisiana and Oakland, the men formed a friendship that evolved into a rare, telling example of deep male camaraderie even as their feelings remained largely unspoken.

Red and Me is an extraordinary book: an homage to a peerless coach, which shows how he produced results unlike any other, and an inspiring story of mutual success, in which each man gave his all and gained back even more. Above all, it may be the most honest and heartfelt depiction of male friendship ever captured in print.

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Editorial Reviews

Bill Bradley
Bill Russell is a private, complex man, but on the subject of his love of Red Auerbach and his Celtic teammates, he's loud and clear. He might object to my use of the word "love," but deny it though you will, Mr. Russell, that's what sits at the heart of this beautiful book.
—The New York Times
The Barnes & Noble Review
Male relationships can be hard to decipher sometimes, particularly older fellas from a bygone era. In the late '50s and throughout the '60s, Bill Russell led the Celtics to 11 titles in his 13 seasons with the team and broke racial barriers by being part of the first African-American starting five in NBA history as well as the first African-American coach in the league. But it's to his relationship with the Celtics' previous coach, the legendary Red Auerbach, that Russell devotes his third book, Red and Me. It's the story of a small, crusty, unafraid, ribald Jewish guy from Brooklyn somehow connecting with a proud, testy, unapologetic, close-to-the-vest black guy raised in segregated Louisiana and the projects of Oakland. How did they do it? The unspoken code of respect: "Although Red and I never talked about that, we had both experienced it the same way," Russell writes about one experience the pair shared, but this kind of commentary is ubiquitous. They didn't need to say everything -- or sometimes anything -- to each other to know they had each other's back. "That's what friends do for each other," Russell writes elsewhere. "No need to carry it farther than that: That's the way it's supposed to be done." One of the most fascinating aspects of the book is how the pair deal with anti-Semitism and racial hatred, both in Boston and during road trips through the Deep South, where Russell once led his fellow African-American teammates back to the airport when a restaurant wouldn't serve them. Auerbach, of course, had his friend's back at the time. Not that they had to talk about it. --Mark J. Miller
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061792069
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/4/2010
  • Pages: 185
  • Sales rank: 371,475
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Five-time NBA MVP and twelve-time All-Star, Bill Russell was the centerpiece of the Celtics dynasty that won eleven NBA championships. As a major league coach, Russell won two additional championships—the first African-American to do so. He is considered the father of the modern pro game and one of the most significant Americans of the twentieth century in sports. His three previous books include the national bestseller Russell Rules.

Alan Steinberg is the author of numerous books, including the New York Times bestseller Behind the Mask and Black Profiles in Courage with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

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Table of Contents

Prologue xi

Chapter 1 Common Ground 1

Chapter 2 From Place A to Place B 19

Chapter 3 A Pretty Good Sign 35

Chapter 4 My Father's Son 65

Chapter 5 What's Best for the Team 89

Chapter 6 We All Just Lived It 111

Chapter 7 Boy, What Fun 127

Chapter 8 Godspeed 143

Chapter 9 This Is My Friend 163

Epilogue 175

Acknowledgments 185

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2014

    Intresting

    Sweet

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted June 3, 2011

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    Posted April 21, 2012

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