The Old Man and the Mule

Here is a good story from Second Wind: Memoirs of an Opinonated Man by Bill Russell with the historian Taylor Branch (1979, Random House; currently out-of-print). It’s about Russell’s grandfather and his mule, Kate. Russell’s family was from Monroe, La., and he lived...

Manchild in the Promised Land

By Pete Dexter Inside Sports, April 1980 Early February. Frank Dawkins is sitting in a second-floor office made of cement and insulated against the noise downstairs in the plant. Exactly what is manufactured in the plant is hard to say, but it has something to do with...

The Magic Act

By Charles Pierce GQ, February 1993 At the corner of Washington and Ionia streets, in the city of Lansing, Michigan, there was a grand old movie house called the Gladmer Theater. Growing up on Middle Street, in a small auto-boom frame house, temple of the tiny dreams,...

No Rebound

By Stephen Rodrick The New York Times Magazine, June 1, 2003 Dennis Rodman, one of the greatest basketball players of all time, lounges in a chair on the patio of his oceanfront home in Newport Beach, Calif. After multiple hues and shades, Rodman’s hair is back to its...

Saint in the City

By Bruce Buschel Philly Sport, January, 1989 Waiting for the opening tip-off, in that eternal moment before life begins, he stands motionless, his body achingly still, permitting only his eyes to move, hazel eyes darting about the arena, welcoming and fearing familiar...

What Kobe Bryant Was Capable Of

By Elizabeth Kaye The Los Angeles Times Magazine, October 31, 2004 The year before Kobe’s troubles began, I had told him I thought he would love ballet because it’s as outrageously athletic and graceful and dynamic as he aspires to be. He went to see The Nutcracker...

Escape From New York

By Mark Kriegel Esquire, December 1995 It is early morning in Miami, still dark, black water lapping at the dock overlooking Biscayne Bay. But here in this cold, cranky bloodshot hour that so injures a sportswriter’s metabolism, Pat Riley is undaunted, optimistic....

Magic

By Joseph Dalton Inside Sports, May 1980 Los Angeles is in the middle of a heat wave; the Santa Anas are blowing in off the desert and the air is hot and dry even here in the Forum, where tonight the Lakers are up against the run-and-gun San Antonio Spurs....

Reasonable Doubt

By Scott Raab GQ, March 1994 Robeson County Sheriff Hubert Stone knows who killed James Jordan; he knows how, where and why. Sheriff Stone says James Jordan grew tired in the middle of one hot July night and, two hours from home, pulled the $46,000 red Lexus Michael...

The Stacks Chat: Peter Richmond

By Alex Belth Bronx Banter, December 26, 2013 Our pal Peter Richmond’s new book is out: Phil Jackson: Lord of the Rings. I recently had the chance to catch up with him and chat about Phil Jackson and the craft of writing a biography. Dig in to this holiday Banter...