Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Recent Articles

Dwight Howard goes to Houston

 

 

Los Angeles will never be the same. First, 20 years ago they lose the NFL Raiders and Rams franchises. Imagine that — no NFL teams in Los Angeles. And now this! After one season in Los Angeles playing for three head coaches, Howard, the most dominant center in the league, walked away from, yes, the Lakers. Continue Reading →

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Mercury rookie Griner gets help from legends

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

While other reporters asked basketball-related questions during her first Twin Cities visit since 2011, the MSR instead asked 6’-8” Phoenix Mercury rookie center Brittney Griner about her musical tastes. During an earlier media conference call, Griner disclosed that she usually listens to Jimi Hendrix’s “Purple Haze” during her pre-game routine. “That’s my favorite song, so that’s what I listen to a lot before games,” she disclosed. “Normally, I start off [with] some Jimi Hendrix, then maybe Trace Adkins, and then I’ll switch over to rap. It just depends on what I’m in the mood for.”

Hendrix’s hit obviously was around nearly three decades before her birth in 1990, so the MSR asked Griner who hipped her to the legendary guitarist. Continue Reading →

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Does it really matter? — Athletes’ sexual orientation none of our business

 

 

Two weeks ago we learned that the WNBA’s top overall pick is gay. Last week we learned that a longtime NBA veteran center is gay. Neither news item bothered me at all. However, what does bother me is what convinced Britney Griner to tell a reporter that she’s out of the closet and why it matters. Ditto for what convinced Jason Collins to exclusively speak about his sexuality to Sports Illustrated. Continue Reading →

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The Heat is on — 66-16-REPEAT?

 

 

LeBron James will be the NBA’s Most Valuable Player — that is no secret. It might be unanimous! James averaged 27.0 points, eight rebounds and seven assists per game. And his team, the Miami Heat, are the defending NBA Champions. And with the NBA playoffs underway as of April 20, the Heat are heavy favorites to reach the Finals for the third straight year. Continue Reading →

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Final 4 memories

 

 

 

As this year’s NCAA tournaments crown new men’s and women’s national champions, this reporter took a stroll down my own memory lanes. I didn’t begin watching college hoops until the mid-to-late 1960s – I sneaked downstairs and watched the UCLA-Houston game played in the Astrodome on television – it was past my bedtime.  As a result, I watched Lew Alcindor (UCLA 1967-69) but not Bobby Joe Hill of Texas Western (1966), the first national champion with five Black starters. The UCLA great — now known as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, guards Earvin Johnson (Michigan State 1978-79) and Mateen Cleaves (Michigan State 1998-2000); and forwards Keith Wilkes (UCLA 1972-74) and David Thompson (North Carolina State 1974) are my personal five-player, all-time great tournament team. Georgetown (1983-84) always will be my all-time championship team simply because the Hoyas were the first men’s national champs coached by a Black man.  The UCLA squads (1966-69; 1971-73), N.C. State (1973-74), Indiana (1975-76), Michigan State (1978-79) and UNLV (1989-91) ranks just right behind them. If I had to choose the most memorable historic moment, although I didn’t witness it, it would naturally be Texas Western’s 1966 title win. Continue Reading →

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Black athlete manifesto: Can today’s players take a stand for Black consciousness?

 

 

Are today’s Black athletes that oblivious to their history? Many either don’t know or don’t want to know when Black athletes were consistent targets for the then-and-still-majority-White media. Times, they say, are different now — Black athletes don’t have to go through what Jim Brown, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Muhammad Ali did, along with their contemporaries as well as those who opened the doors for them. It’s sad that today’s Black athletes don’t know, or don’t want to know, just how much the Browns, Abdul-Jabbars and Alis took their social consciousness seriously, even at the expense of their illustrious careers. That these men and others like them cared more about representing their heritage, their Blackness, than endorsement deals. Continue Reading →

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