The Book of Basketball: The NBA According to The Sports Guy

The Book of Basketball: The NBA According to The Sports Guy

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345520104
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/07/2010
Pages: 752
Sales rank: 50,106
Product dimensions: 7.38(w) x 11.70(h) x 1.78(d)

About the Author

Bill Simmons writes “The Sports Guy” column for ESPN.com’s Page 2 and ESPN: The Magazine. He is the author of Now I Can Die In Peace, founded the award-winning bostonsportsguy.com website, and was a writer for Jimmy Kimmel Live. He commutes between his home in Los Angeles and Fenway Park.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One


THE SECRET

I LEARNED THE secret of basketball while lounging at a topless pool in Las Vegas. As I learned the secret, someone’s bare breasts were staring at me from just eight feet away. The person explaining the secret was a Hall of Famer who once vowed to beat me up and changed his mind only because Gus Johnson vouched for me.

(Do I tell this story? Yes. I tell this story.)


Come back with me to July 2007. My buddy Hopper was pushing me to accompany him for an impromptu Vegas trip, knowing that I wouldn’t turn him down because of my Donaghy-level gambling problem. I needed permission from my pregnant wife, who was perpetually ornery from (a) carrying our second child during the hot weather months in California and (b) being knocked up because I pulled the goalie on her back in February.1 But here’s why I’m an evil genius: with the NBA Summer League happening at the same time, I somehow convinced her that ESPN The Magazine wanted a column about Friday’s quadruple-header featuring my favorite team (the Celtics), my favorite rookie (Kevin Durant), and the two Los Angeles teams (Clippers and Lakers). “I’ll be in and out in thirty-six hours,” I told her.

She signed off and directed her anger at the magazine for making me work on a weekend. (I told you, I’m shrewd.) I quickly called my editor and had the following exchange.

me: I don’t have a column idea this week. I’m panicking.

neil (my editor): Crap. I don’t know what to tell you, it’s a dead month.

(A few seconds of silence ensues.)

me: Hey, wait...isn’t the NBA Summer League in Vegas right now?

neil: Yeah, I think it is. What would you write about, though?

me: Lemme see what the schedule is for Friday. [I spend the next 20 seconds pretending to log onto NBA.com and look this up.] Oh my God—

Clippers at 3, Celtics at 5, Lakers at 6, Durant and the Sonics at 7! You have to let me go! I can get 1,250 words out of that! [Neil doesn’t respond.] Come on—Vegas? The Celtics and Durant? This column will write itself!

neil (after a long sigh): “Okay, fine, fine.”

Did I care that he sounded like I had just convinced him to donate me a kidney? Of course not! I flew down on Friday, devoured those four games and joined Hopper for drunken blackjack until the wee hours.2 The following morning, we woke up in time for a Vegas Breakfast (16-ounce coffee, bagel, large water), then headed down to the Wynn’s lavish outdoor blackjack setup, which includes:

1.Eight blackjack tables surrounding one of those square outdoor bars like the one where Brian Flanagan worked after he fled to Jamaica in Cocktail. Once you’ve gambled outdoors, your life is never quite the same. It’s like riding in a convertible for the first time.

2.Overhead mist machines blowing cool spray so nobody overheats, a crucial wrinkle during the scorching Vegas summer, when it’s frequently over 110 degrees outside and 170 degrees in every guy’s crotch.

3.A beautiful European pool tucked right behind the tables. Just so you know, “European” is a fancy way of saying, “It’s okay to go topless there.”3

If there’s a better male bonding experience, I can’t think of one. For our yearly guys’ trip one month earlier, we arrived right before the outdoor area opened (11:00 a.m.) and played through dinner. For the first three hours, none of the sunbathers was willing to pull a Jackie Robinson and break the topless barrier, so we decided the Wynn should hire six strippers to go topless every day at noon (just to break the ice) and have their DJ play techno songs with titles like “Take Your Tops Off,” “Come On, Nobody’s Looking,” “We’re All Friends Here,” “Unleash the Hounds,” and “What Do You Have to Lose? You’re Already Divorced.” By midafternoon, as soon as everyone had a few drinks in them, the ladies started flinging their tops off like Frisbees. Okay, not really. But two dozen women made the plunge over the next few hours, including one heavyset woman who nearly caused a riot by wading into the pool with her 75DDDDDDDDDDs. It was like being there when the Baby Ruth bar landed in the Bushwood pool; people were scurrying for their lives in every direction.4
So between seedy guys making runs at topless girls in the pool, horny blackjack dealers getting constantly distracted, aforementioned moments like the Baby Ruth/multi-D episode, the tropical feel of outdoors and the Mardi Gras/beads element of a Euro pool, ten weeks of entertainment and comedy were jam-packed into eight hours. Things peaked around 6:00 p.m. when an attractive blonde wearing a bikini joined our table, complained to the dealer, “I haven’t had a blackjack in three days,” then told us confidently, “If I get a blackjack, I’m going topless.” The pit boss declared that she couldn’t go topless, so they negotiated for a little bit, ultimately deciding that she could flash everyone instead. Yes, this conversation actually happened. Suddenly we were embroiled in the most exciting blackjack shoe of all time. Every time she got an ace or a 10 as her first card, the tension was more unbearable than the last five minutes of the final Sopranos episode. When she finally nailed her blackjack, our side of the blackjack section erupted like Fenway after the Roberts steal.5 She followed through with her vow, departed a few minutes later, and left us spending the rest of the night wondering how I could write about that entire sequence for ESPN The Magazine without coming off like a pig. Well, you know what? These are the things that happen in Vegas. I’m not condoning them, defending them, or judging them. Just understand that we don’t keep going because some bimbo might flash everyone at her blackjack table, we keep going for the twenty minutes afterward, when we’re rehashing the story and making every possible joke.6

Needless to say, wild horses couldn’t have dragged Hopper and me from the outdoor blackjack section during summer league. We treaded water for a few hours when I ran into an old acquaintance who handled PR from the Knicks, as well as Gus Johnson, the much-adored March Madness and Knicks announcer who loves me mainly because I love him. Gus and I successfully executed a bear hug and a five-step handshake, and just as I was ready to make Gus announce a few of my blackjack hands (“Here’s the double-down card...Ohhhhhhhh! it’s a ten!”), he implored me to come over and meet his buddy Isiah Thomas.

Gulp.

Of any sports figure that I could have possibly met at any time in my life, getting introduced to Isiah that summer would have been my number one draft pick for the Holy Shit, Is This Gonna Be Awkward draft. Isiah doubled as the beleaguered GM of the Knicks and a frequent column target, someone who once threatened “trouble” if we ever crossed paths.7 This particular moment seemed to qualify. After the PR guy and I explained to Gus why a Simmons-Isiah introduction would be a stupifyingly horrific idea, Gus confidently countered, “Hold on, I got this, I got this, I’ll fix this.” And he wandered off as our terrified PR buddy said, “I’m getting out of here—good luck!”8

I played a few hands of rattled blackjack while wondering how to defend myself if Isiah came charging at me with a piña colada. After all, I killed this guy in my column over the years. I killed him for some of the cheap shots he took as a player, for freezing out MJ in the ’85 All-Star Game, for leading the classless walkout at the tail end of the Bulls-Pistons sweep in ’91. I killed him for pushing Bird under the bus by backing up Rodman’s foolish “he’d be just another good player if he were white” comments after the ’87 playoffs, then pretending like he was kidding afterward. (He wasn’t.) I killed him for bombing as a TV announcer, for sucking as Toronto’s GM, for running the CBA into the ground, and most of all, for his incomprehensibly ineffective performance running the Knicks. As I kept lobbing (totally justified) grenades at him, Isiah went on Stephen A. Smith’s radio show and threatened “trouble” if we ever met on the street. Like this was all my fault. Somewhere along the line, Isiah probably decided that I had a personal grudge against him, which simply wasn’t true—I had written many times that he was the best pure point guard I’d ever seen, as well as the most underappreciated star of his era. I even defended his draft record and praised him for standing up for his players right before the ugly Nuggets-Knicks brawl that featured Carmelo Anthony’s infamous bitch-slap/backpedal. It’s not like I was obsessed with ripping the guy. He just happened to be an easy target, a floundering NBA GM who didn’t understand the luxury tax, cap space, or how to plan ahead. For what I did for a living, Isiah jokes were easier than making fun of Flavor Flav at a celebrity roast. The degree of difficulty was a 0.0.

With that said, I would have rather been playing blackjack and drinking vodka lemonades then figuring out how to cajole a pissed-off NBA legend. When a somber Gus finally waved me over, I was relieved to get it over with. (By the way, there should be no scenario that includes the words “Gus Johnson” and “somber.” I feel like I failed America regardless of how this turned out.) Gus threw an arm around me and said something like, “Look, I straightened everything out, he’s willing to talk to you, just understand, he’s a sensitive guy, he takes this shit personally.”9 Understood. I followed him to a section of chairs near the topless pool, where Isiah was sipping a water and wearing a white Panama hat to shield himself from the blazing sun. As we approached, Gus slapped me on the back and gestured to a female friend who quickly fled the premises, like we were Mafia heads sitting down in the back of an Italian restaurant and Gus was shedding every waiter and busboy. Get out of here. You don’t want to be here for this. Meanwhile, Isiah rose from the chair with a big smile on his face—he’d make a helluva politician—saying simply, “Hi, I’m Isiah.”10

We shook hands and sat down. I explained the purpose of my column, how I write from the fan’s perspective and play up certain gimmicks—

I like the Boston teams and dislike anyone who battles them, I pretend to be smarter than every GM, I think Christmas should be changed to Larry Bird’s birthday—which made Isiah a natural foil for me. He understood that. He thought we were both entertainers, for lack of a better word. We were both there to make basketball more fun to follow. He didn’t appreciate two things I had written: that he destroyed the CBA (which he claimed wasn’t true) and how I lumped him with other inept GMs in a widely read parody column called “The Atrocious GM Summit.”11 That led to us discussing each move and why he made them. He admitted two mistakes—the Jalen Rose trade (his fault) and the Steve Francis trade (not his fault because Larry Brown insisted on it, or so he claimed) and defended everything else. Strangely, inconceivably, each explanation made sense. For instance, he explained the recent Randolph trade by telling me (I’m paraphrasing), “Everyone’s trying to get smaller and faster. I want to go the other way. I want to get bigger. I want to pound people down low.” I found myself nodding like Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé in SNL’s “Sinatra Group” sketch. Great idea, Chairman! I love it! You’re a genius! Only later, after we parted ways and I thought about it more, did it dawn on me how doomed his strategy was—not the “getting bigger” part as much as the “getting bigger with two head-case fat asses who can’t defend anyone or protect the rim and are prohibitively expensive” part. You get bigger with McHale and Parish or Sampson and Olajuwon. You don’t get bigger with Eddy Curry and Zach Randolph.12

But that’s not why I’m telling you this story. After settling on an uneasy truce about his job performance, we started remembering those unforgettable Celtics-Pistons clashes from the eighties: how their mutual hatred was palpable, how that competitiveness has slowly eroded from the league because of rule changes, money, AAU camps and everything else. Today’s rivals hug each other after games and pull the “I love you, boy!” routine. They act like former summer camp chums who became successful CEOs, then ran into each other at Nobu for the first time in years. Great to see you! I’ll talk to you soon—let’s have lunch! When Isiah’s Pistons played Bird’s Celtics, the words “great to see you” were not on the agenda. They wanted to destroy each other. They did. There was an edge to those battles that the current ones don’t have. I missed that edge and so did Isiah. We both felt passionate about it, passionate enough that—gasp—we were legitimately enjoying the conversation.13

I was getting comfortable with him. Comfortable enough that I had to ask about The Secret.

And here’s where I won Isiah over—not just that I asked about The Secret, but that I remembered it in the first place. Detroit won the 1989 title after collapsing in consecutive springs against the ’87 Celtics and ’88 Lakers, two of the toughest exits in playoff history because of the nature of those defeats: a pair of “why did that have to happen?” moments in the Boston series (Bird’s famous steal in Game 5, then Vinnie Johnson and Adrian Dantley banging heads in Game 7), followed by another in the ’88 Finals (Isiah’s ankle sprain in Game 6). The ’89 Pistons regrouped for 62 wins and swept the Lakers for their first championship, vindicating a controversial in-season trade that shipped Dantley and a draft pick to Dallas for Mark Aguirre. That season lives on in Cameron Stauth’s superb book The Franchise, which details how GM Jack McCloskey built those particular Pistons teams. The crucial section happens during the ’89 Finals, with Isiah holding court with reporters and improbably offering up “the secret” of winning basketball. Here’s an edited-for-space version of what he tells them on pages 310 and 311. The part that matters most is in boldface.

It’s not about physical skills. Goes far beyond that. When I first came here, McCloskey took a lot of heat for drafting a small guy. But he knew that the only way our team would rise to the top would be by mental skills, not size or talent. He knew the only way we could acquire those skills was by watching the Celtics and Lakers, because those were the teams winning year in and year out. I also looked at Seattle, who won one year, and Houston, who got to the Finals one year. They both self-destructed the next year. So how come? I read Pat Riley’s book Show Time and he talks about “the disease of more.”14 A team wins it one year and the next year every player wants more minutes, more money, more shots. And it kills them. Our team has been up at the Championship level four years now. We could have easily self-destructed.

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Book of Basketball 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 187 reviews.
pfahey68 More than 1 year ago
The core of this book is a ranking of the 96 greatest players of all time. This ranking is both highly intelligent and highly idiosyncratic. I strongly disagreed with only a single ranking, which is remarkable. The reviews are peppered with Simmons' tangents on marginally related, analagous and sometimes totally unrelated topics of interest to young (at heart) sports guys. These tangents are often contained in copious footnotes that you can avoid if you don't want a full belly laugh every couple of pages. A thorough delight for the already well informed, engaged hoops fan.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My kid and me both love this book we fight to see who get to read the book first. Best book about sport
D7 More than 1 year ago
hard to read a book were the guy is so heavly biased toward celtic players, and hates most of the Laker greats because they did something different than the celtic player of that time
stetherado More than 1 year ago
Being a fan of the BS Report podcast, I purchased this book with hopes of it being an easy, entertaining read. I haven't followed the NBA very closely for quite a few years, but this book has brought me right back into the fandom of my childhood following the likes of Jordan, Ewing, Miller, and of course young Shaq. Given the relative young life of the NBA, Simmons is able to seemingly capture EVERY major event of the life of the league, from it's inception as a league of mostly chain smoking, hard drinking white guys in the 50's, to the merger with the rogue ABA in the 70's, to the Magic and Bird renaissance of the the 80's, and of course a study of the greatest player to ever play the game, Michael Jordan, who dominated the entire decade of the 90's. Simmons is unapologetically biased towards his beloved Celtics, and of course with that comes a hatred of all things Lakers, especially Wilt Chamberlain, Kobe Bryant, etc.
jnwelch on LibraryThing 10 months ago
"The only NBA player who routinely shut down {Larry} Bird was teammate Rick Robey, a backup center who doubled as Bird's drinking buddy and fellow troublemaker. When the Celtics swapped Robey for Dennis Johnson before the '84 season, Bird immediately rolled off the best five-year stretch in the history of the forward position. This wasn't a coincidence. As soon as we master time machine technology, let's travel back in time and frame Robey for murder right before the '82 season. I just want to see what happens."The Book of Basketball: The NBA According to the Sports Guy by Bill Simmons is fork in the path kind of book. If you are not a fan of men's professional basketball and the National Basketball Association, you won't be interested. If you are a fan, and since you're reading this, you probably are, then you'll want to read this book. He's funny, insightful, and the vast majority of the time, right on the money. Why did Bill Russell have so much success against Wilt Chamberlain? What is the Secret (capital S) to winning a championship? Why is Jordan the best player of all time? All the answers ring true. You can quibble with some of his conclusions - e.g. rating Isaiah Thomas above do-everything player Scottie Pippen - really?! But overall he knows his stuff like nobody else I've read, and he's a hoot at the same time.As in the Bartimaeus books, a lot of the fun is in the absurd footnotes. After describing a Clippers player acquisition during the drug-addled 70s (when the NBA almost sunk) as being for "two first round picks, four kilos of cocaine, and {Denver's} best drug connection as compensation", the footnote to it says, "Be honest: part of you wanted to believe this." After leaving Isaiah Thomas off the all-time team headed up by Michael Jordan that would fight the aliens (you have to read it), he explains why, but also footnotes another reason why Isaiah couldn't be on the team: "Considering MJ hated him enough to keep him off the Dream Team, wouldn't he have said, 'Look, I'd rather see Earth blow up over being teammates with that guy?' I feel like the answer is yes."There's 700 pages of this, so only NBA basketball wonks need apply. But if you fit that category, you'll have a blast with it.
Jim53 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
A wonderful, thorough compilation of the well researched thoughts and opinions of a serious fan. Simmons convinced me with his detailed analysis and amused me with (most of) his pop-culture references. He's got too big a crush on Michael Jordan, but otherwise his ideas are quite sound and engagingly presented.
mrtall on LibraryThing 10 months ago
If you're a basketball fan, this is without question a highly enjoyable book. No, it's not well-organized, and yes, it's crazy long. But Simmons' distinctive and entertaining voice is unleashed here, almost always to entertaining effect. The heart of the book is Simmons' exhaustive but never dull rundown of 'the pyramid', i.e. the players he believes should be represented in the Basketball Hall of Fame, ranked from bottom to top. The chapters comprising this list are in fact a book in themselves. The remaining chapters are related in tone and general NBA subject matter, but they're essentially long stand-alone essays on Simmons' long-standing NBA obsessions, e.g. the greatest teams ever, Chamberlain vs Russell, and so on.Two notes for prospective readers: Simmons includes lengthy footnotes on almost every page. I loved them; I think many writers in Simmons' vein are actually most amusing in their asides and one-offs, so I read every one. But you certainly wouldn't need to do so. Second, Simmons uses a lot of dirty words and sexual imagery in the book to describe and make analogies to hoops. It's unnecessary, especially since these are rarely his funniest bits.
HHS-Staff on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Reviewed by Mr. Overeem (Language Arts)A must for any of the remaining 19 fans of the NBA. Funny, insightful, obsessive, schticky, self-deprecating, MESSY (in that latter sense, it reminds me of ELECTRIC LADYLAND). Weird on race--the book ends with a warm and fuzzy white-guy summit, and with a final sentence that quotes 2Pac. Still...danged glad I read it, if only to see him Gladwellize the '96 Bulls.
jcovington on LibraryThing 10 months ago
I don't care one bit about the NBA. I never have and I probably never will.But Bill Simmons does. Probably more than most people alive.Add to that the fact that he is a great storyteller with a quick wit (and a real feel for footnotes) and this behemoth was probably one of my favorite reads of the year.
lscottfreeman on LibraryThing 10 months ago
I picked this book up thinking I would simply skim through it for the highlights. I had read great reviews and felt that it was worthy of a once-over. At 700 pages and having never been a Bill Simmons fan I was skeptical to how much I would enjoy it.I was pleasantly surprised.Simmons is the ultimate basketball fan and he writes, not as a sports reporter, but as someone who loves the game and has invested all of his life following it. Therefore, what emerges is not a sterile take on the game but a passionate take on the state of the game and the characters and events that have shaped it over the past 60 years. Simmons weaves in pop culture references and a deft sense of humor that keeps the book moving along.Two things that stood out for me:1)Simmons had the insight and acumen to include Sidney Moncrief among his top 75 players of all time. The fact that Moncrief, one of the best defenders and all around players of the 80s, is not in the Hall of Fame is an outright travesty. Anybody who disagrees with that obviously was not an NBA fan during that time.2) Simmons places Scottie Pippen within the right context and in the top 25 of all time. Most notably, he makes the informed argument that Pippen¿s lone prima donna moment (refusing to play when a final play was designed for Kukoc instead of him against the hated Knicks) should not negate all that he did right throughout the years. But don¿t get me started on Kukoc.The best part of this book is that Simmons made me want to be an NBA fan again.
iluvvideo on LibraryThing 10 months ago
The definitive book for NBA fans young and old! Russell or Wilt? West or Oscar? Bird or Magic? Best team of all time? The best player ever?These are just a few of the questions asked and answered in this 700+ page testimonial to professional basketball. This means from 1946 till now, the modern NBA. Each opinion while not meant to be definitive provides an exquisitely researched (and footnoted) guide to some of the biggest questions and debates of NBA fans through the years. And even more importantly than just statistical data is some esoterica. Who made their teammates better? Who owns the better basketball IQ? Who is the most effective leader?The book is divided into easy to handle chapters that make reading easy. It lends itself to being read voraciously or just skimmed (although I'd recommend the former). I didn't necessarily agree with all the author's opinions, but he gave a very reasoned and informed argument for each decision. It makes you really examine your responses similarly. Bill Simmons, the author, grew up as a fan of the Boston Celtics, but is careful not to let that color the book. He works now as the ESPN sports guy. He speaks clearly and passionately about the NBA. You can tell it was a labor of love.
jchildress435 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Aside from his obvious bias for anything concerning the Boston Celtics, Bill Simmons Book of Basketball takes an in-depth look at the greatest players, teams and arguments in the history of the game. His pyramid of the greatest players of all time is a fun concept as well as his insights of the pre-1976 NBA/ABA merger. It may be too long for the casual fan, but a must for any die hard.
5hrdrive on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Terrific, can't recommend highly enough - but definitely R-rated. Love the Pyramid scheme for the Hall of Fame, wish they'd actually do this, and for baseball and football as well. Agreed with 85-90% of his ratings, and what I didn't agree with, he pretty much won me over. He's easily as passionate about the NBA as Bill James ever was about baseball.
browner56 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Two things need to be said from the outset: (i) if you are not a serious sports fan¿and a professional basketball fan, in particular¿you probably won¿t like this book; and (ii) Bill Simmons is simply hilarious. He is also very, very knowledgeable about the subject. Having read sports journalism all my life, I know how lucky you are if the author is either one of those things; sadly, too many writers are neither.Beyond the abundant humor¿did I mention this guy is hysterical?¿the most impressive thing about this book is the amazing level of detail. Simmons is a true fan and crammed into 700 pages he addresses the kind of questions that only a fan would think to ask. What if Portland had drafted Jordan instead of Bowie? Despite the gaudy statistics, was Wilt really better than Russell? Would you rather have a couple transcendent years of Walton or a longer but more mediocre career from a journeyman center? What makes ¿Teen Wolf¿ the most iconic basketball movie ever? By far, though, his best insights involve the way he re-imagines the NBA Hall of Fame, including an annotated ranking of the players who really belong there. This is great, imaginative stuff that will challenge the way anyone who loves the game thinks about such things.The one quibble I have is the way Simmons handles the issue of race relations. Of course, it would be impossible to write a compelling history of the professional game without addressing topics such as how badly the careers of Oscar and Baylor had were hurt by the various discriminations they faced or Isiah¿s ludicrous statement that Bird would have been considered just another good player had he not been white. However, while he constantly references such controversies, Simmons never brings the same level of analytical scrutiny to bear on them as he does when evaluating the relative merits of the players themselves. His cursory arguments in this regard are a little surprising coming from someone who assumed the alter-ego of Jabaal Abdul-Simmons as a kid.Let me close by reiterating two comments that Malcolm Gladwell makes in his excellent Foreword. First, this is not a novel and you will be better off not trying to read it like one. Second, you really need to read all of the footnotes; despite there being a lot of them¿Simmons is sort of the sportswriter equivalent of David Foster Wallace¿that is where the funniest, most irreverent stuff is located. Overall, this is a thought-provoking and highly entertaining book that I certainly recommend.
fyi715 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Excellent review of pro basketball, with paricular attention paid to the period after the ABA/NBA merger. While Simmons is a bit of a Celtic homer -- shown even though he sometimes goes completely out of his way to disprove it -- he does an incredibly thorough job of defending all of his picks for greatest players and teams. The book's two great failings: A. The ranking of Kobe (however timing probably had more to do with that than anything else) and B. The lack of respect/glitter/understanding given to the Lakers. While I do not like the Lakers (at all), you would never know that they have the equal number of World Championships than the Celtics. Overall, good read.
pescatello on LibraryThing 10 months ago
If you like the NBA and know the players, this is an interesting read. If you don't - there is no way you're getting through this book
Heart2Read More than 1 year ago
Amazing book! It is a must for any basketball fan.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Managed to get to page 182. Then, I just got bored out of my skull. I'm a HUGE Golden State fan, Which of course means that I like Steph, but I was dissapointed to find out that Simmons mostly talks about old teams. It might be different after 200, but it would have been like force feeding. Anyways, if you're an old timer you might like it, but for the new basketball generation... well, it can be painful. And poor Bill Simmons... the Celtics are a dirty laughingstock. Did you see Kelly Olynyk dislocate Kevin Love's shoulder?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best basketball I have read so far.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Started watching basketball in the 80s as a child and my love has evolved ever since. Grew up as a big fan of Magic, Bird, and the entire Bad Boys! And like everyone else, became a huge Jordan fan. Reading this book gives me an entirely new perspective on my childhood favorites, which was entirely based on narratives of my father, my child-like awe towards giants with freakish athleticism, and whatever color commentator was on during games (talking about you Bill Walton). Using a combination of the narrative, statistical analysis, and pop culture metaphors, Simmons gives us something fun and refreshing. Warning: diehard, sensitive Laker-Kobe Belly Bryant fans may find this book difficult to read since it is written by a diehard Celtic fan. With a forward by the ever insightful Malcom Gladwell and nearly 1000 pages of basketball goodness, league pass viewers, stat geeks, and hardcore bball fans young and wise will not be disappointed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
They do. NBA is more fun cause they te better shots other than a ton of jayhawks who takes threes and airball them. You think NBA sucks did you like A.Wiggins cause he's from Kansas and in the NBA. I'll admit march madness is better than the regular season in NBA but now way the playoffs are fun because they play real HARD. P.S GO DUKE
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
NBA ALL DAY
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago