Basketball Diaries Essay

Basketball Diaries Essay-77
The cross-up was so brutal, it tripped up Sefolosha, and he fell to the ground.The highlight reels all said Le Bron “broke Sefolosha’s ankles” with that nasty crossover move.

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Shanahan knows what all white coaches know—there is value in a brown body, the way it endures, endures, takes, takes, and takes what it is given.

* I’ve existed in a separate space of gender, not masculine or feminine, not even queer.

When I went to bed that night, I believed what I had told Terrence.

But something woke me at 2 am, maybe a headache from all the wine I drank, maybe jetlag, maybe one of those dreams where I get a call to play and know I’m not in shape but I get out there anyway, because they need me, because I need the game, because my body is not the same body now as it was when I was playing but for a moment it seems like it could be. In the reflection of the mirror on the dresser, I glowed in the tip-off light of Game 3 on my computer screen.

* I met Grace Thorpe at a nuclear waste dump protest in my desert (reservations are attractive places for white people to hide poisonous things). * In the dreams, I always say yes to Coach Larry, and the dreams usually end the way my real-life basketball career ended—tearing my left anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), medial collateral ligament (MCL), and my meniscus. In the movie , Quincy, played by Omar Epps, tears his ACL too.

My Elders told Grace I was going to play basketball in college, and she began telling me stories about her father, Jim Thorpe. He was a Sac and Fox native and attended Carlisle Industrial Indian School like some of my relatives had. Epps looks like Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin who was born in Hampton, Virginia, which is close to Old Dominion University, where I played.

I was athlete, 1-2-3 guard, wing, scorer, defender, back of the 1-3-1, ball handler on the break, cutter in the triangle, expected to be strong, to take up space, to lean forward. * Taking and holding space was natural to me—boxing out, setting screens, showing big on the baseline, knocking down cutters, flashing the lane, finishing a layup through a foul.

I suppose I learned spacing the way most brown and red people do, by being defensive. When we played Smear-the-Queer, the cousins and friends we played with intentionally threw the football to my little brother John or me.

She and I didn’t get along—she thought I was wild and I was—but I respected her and loved the game and played through many injuries for her.

* During my NCAA career, inner-city student-athletes were discouraged from going home over holiday and semester breaks, to keep us out of trouble.


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