By Jeffrey Lane

The genuine tale of basketball lives as a lot off the court docket as at the hardwood; it truly is approximately politics and race and cultural clashes as heated as a final-four buzzer-beater. This tale unfolds in all its gritty and colourful aspect in below the forums. From the delivery of the Larry poultry legend to the ascendancy of a hip-hop-infused NBA to the backlash opposed to bling and the modern American online game, Jeffrey Lane strains the emergence of a brand new tradition of basketball, entire with competing values, attitudes, aesthetics, and racial and financial tensions. The revolution Lane describes resonates within the means Latrell Sprewell’s attack on his trainer eternally changed NBA strength family members; in mythical trainer Bob Knight’s entanglement in highschool basketball historical past; within the dramatic shift in angle towards eu gamers; within the impression of the deaths of 2 rappers on rookie Allen Iverson’s profession; and in conflicting cultural types rooted in beliefs of black masculinity and white nostalgia. In those moments Lane’s e-book files a profound swap in basketball and in American tradition over the past thirty years. (20061004)

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Extra resources for Under the Boards: The Cultural Revolution in Basketball

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The rank and file, as indicated above, received nothing. Like unpaid interns working in desirable law firms or publishing houses, the rank and file saw their position as an opportunity — the proverbial foot in the door — that would, they hoped, lead to a promotion to foot soldier. While the rank and file aspired to be just foot soldiers, the foot soldiers aspired to become officers, the officers dreamed of becoming gang leaders, and the gang leader — the only one in the local syndicate who could actually afford to live large — hoped to one day get grandfathered in as a director and collect from all of the franchises.

Anyone who is potentially hazardous to a player’s pursuit of wealth constitutes a threat or possible roadblock — family members out for the player’s riches; friends who have become hangers-on; and ex-girlfriends, groupies, or women in general. Today, National Football League (nfl) and nba rookie camps feature lectures on the risks of lending money to friends, maintaining an entourage, or bedding a groupie. Professional athletes tell all sorts of horrifying tales of backstabbing uncles, family members who had once vanished but reemerge with treacherous intentions, and seductresses who poke holes in condoms or freeze used ones (exactly the portrait of women painted in mainstream rap).

Knight’s underworld standing in California extended so far above ground that it enabled him to play puppet master with both the Bloods, a Los Angeles street gang, and the Los Angeles Police Department (lapd) and evidently get away with two murders. indd 35 35 1/12/07 4:59:13 PM piring gangstas, black and white alike. The deaths were a reminder of hip-hop’s foundations in the street; at any point hip-hop could transcend its subsistence as art. 2Pac and Biggie may have understood the street, but they were artists, gangsta-rappers at moments in their careers, but never real gangstas.

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