Dave Bing: A Life of Challenge

Dave Bing: A Life of Challenge

by Drew Sharp


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What kind of person loses sight in one eye and then through dedicated practice and honed skills becomes one of the top 50 NBA players of all time? What kind of person, with limited business experience, builds a start-up company into a thriving corporation and is recognized as one of the world’s most successful black executives? What kind of person, while running a $350 million business, takes the time to reach out to black youths lacking father figures and provides counsel and support? And what kind of person, instead of enjoying a well-deserved luxurious retirement, chooses to become mayor of a large city that many long ago had written off as dead? Dave Bing, that’s who.

In Dave Bing, Detroit Free Press sports columnist Drew Sharp chronicles the compelling story of a figure whose sheer will to succeed, refusal to make excuses for setbacks, and efforts to contribute to society set him apart as an anomaly—a man of virtues so rarely found in recent history. His path from Washington D.C. to Syracuse to Detroit is sometimes tumultuous, blazed by hard work, perseverance, and savvy. Much more than the stereotypical tale of celebrity ex-jock who does good, this is a story about a black male who, even as a youngster, determined to conquer whatever challenges came his way.

And now, as mayor of Detroit, Bing encounters perhaps his greatest test of all. Faced with entrenched and power-hungry political foes, a series of failed and corrupt predecessors, a work force ill prepared for today’s job market, a staggering city debt, and recent health problems, Bing would appear to have little chance of surviving his office. Both the naysayers and optimists would do well to read the book.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781450423526
Publisher: Human Kinetics, Inc.
Publication date: 11/05/2012
Pages: 315
Sales rank: 1,229,090
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.60(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Drew Sharp joined the Detroit Free Press in 1983 and served as the paper’s beat writer during the Pistons’ first two NBA championship seasons in 1989 and 1990. He also covered Michigan State University sports for eight years before becoming a columnist in 1999. Sharp is the only columnist in Detroit to have grown up in the city, giving him a unique first-person point of reference to the significant sports and political events in the city over the past five decades.

A versatile columnist who has developed a national reputation for delivering critical analysis, Sharp has an extensive body of work that reveals a mixture of compelling commentary and character profiles. He once wrote a regular column for USA Today and has appeared frequently as an ESPN contributor on shows such as SportsCenter, Outside the Lines, and Pardon the Interruption. He has also appeared on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 The Anomaly

Chapter 2 The Start in D.C.

Chapter 3 The College Choice

Chapter 4 The Syracuse Experience

Chapter 5 The Possible Destination

Chapter 6 The Draft

Chapter 7 The Riots

Chapter 8 The Rookie Year

Chapter 9 The Mentor

Chapter 10 The City’s Disorders

Chapter 11 The Trade

Chapter 12 The Return

Chapter 13 The (Almost) Deal

Chapter 14 The Boardroom

Chapter 15 The Next Mayor

Chapter 16 The Political Mess

Chapter 17 The Speech

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“An unflinching look at a fascinating mayor, who refused to be defined by the athletic shoes he once wore or the safe paths people expected him to take. An eye-opening read.

Mitch Albom-- best-selling author and Detroit Free Press columnist

“What Dave has achieved - a great basketball career, success in business, and a prominent political post at a challenging time - speaks to how all athletes should look at, and not limit, themselves. We should always stand for something more than what the box score says about us.”

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar-- 6-time NBA Most Valuable Player

"Dave Bing's journey from the Basketball Hall of Fame to City Hall is a compelling story with lessons for all of us. His life has spanned one of the most unique and transformative periods of American history. The details of his actions and achievements in the context of the Black experience in Detroit and the United States will inspire and inform readers from all walks of life."

Kevin Johnson-- Mayor of Sacramento, NBA All-Star

“Drew Sharp, a lifelong Detroiter, has followed all of Bing’s careers up close. He has skillfully told the story of this unique and compelling American life, with new insight and depth.”

Michael Rosenberg-- Sports Illustrated

“The Dave Bing story is an extraordinary take on an extraordinary life.”

Joe Dumars-- Hall of Fame NBA star, business entrepreneur and president of the Detroit Pistons

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Dave Bing: A Life of Challenge 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
sportsjunkie More than 1 year ago
I positively loved this bio of NBA great Dave Bing. Mitch Albom calls it "an eye-opening read" and I agree. The book covers everything you could ever want to know about Bing from his playing days at Syracuse and with the Pistons to his founding Bing Steel and taking on the challenge of running the city of Detroit as its mayor. Detroit Free Press columnist Drew Sharp casts Bing's life in sharp detail with this riveting read. Bing was a supremely talented NBA player who helped usher in the era of the shooting guard as scoring threat. But he was also a maverick who repeatedly sought excellence when confronted with challenge. He serves as an inspirational role model for those seeking success both on and off the court. Recommended! "Dave is the perfect example of professionalism, class, dignity, and humanity. He cares. He gets involved with the world." - Oscar Robertson
helmuth3 More than 1 year ago
The original appeal of this book was Bing's position as Mayor of one of the most dysfunctional and financially challenged cities in the US, Detroit, and the question of why an ex-NBA star and successful businessman would take on such a huge, and probably thankless task. While I'm still not sure yet that I can truly understand Bing's decision to take on Detroit's problems, reading his bio gives me a healthy appreciatation for Bing's drive, determination and capabilities. At about 300 pages the book is a fast, accessible read. It lightly covers Dave Bing's early life, and provides more extensive coverage of his years in basketball (Syacuse, Pistons, Bullets, Celtics), business, and his move into Detroit politics (ouch). One of the appealing aspects of the Bing storey is the other folks that appear in his life and therefore the book. Bing was a friend of Bill Bradley (US Senator), was a college roommate of current Syacuse coach Jim Boeheim (once took him home to DC for the summer), counted Lion's greats Lem Barney and Mel Farr in his circle of friends...you get the idea. If you are interested in Detroit, basketball, or people that have successfully faced challenging circumstances, this is a fine pick.
CatheMarie More than 1 year ago
Dave Bing has truly lived a life of challenge. He was born and raised in Washington, D.C. by his parents Hasker and Juanita Bing. His parents were strong, hard working people who instilled a strong work ethic in their second born child and oldest son. Dave is also hard working and a life long learner. This biography by Drew Sharp tells the story of Dave Bing's life and also tells about the people and places that influenced Mayor Bing during a pivotal time in our nation's history. Dave Bing has had a career in the NBA, as a business owner and currently the Mayor of Detroit. While we learn quite a bit about his parents, coaches, "Boardroom" members, little is told about his two wives and three daughters. Dave Bing is an admirable man who has worked hard his whole life and given of himself to his teammates, employees and the people of Detroit. At a time in life when other men retire, Mayor Bing wanted to do what he could to help the City of Detroit. This monumental task has taken a toll on his physical and mental health. At the time of this review, Detroit is rated the 3rd worst place to live in the United States. Time will tell how the story ends for Mayor Bing and Detroit.