Transition Game: How Hoosiers Went Hip-hop

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G.P. Putnam's Sons, 2005 - Sports & Recreation - 242 pages
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The many facets of basketball in contemporary America-as seen through the game in Indiana, a cradle of the sport-from an award-winning Sports Illustrated writer.

Jon Wertheim hadn't kept up with his high school team until a recent game brought back a tide of memories: the angry sound of the buzzer, the same chiropractor's-dream bleachers, and the sight of Coach McKinney-one of the most accomplished and lauded in the state. But there were differences, too: it was Jay-Z not Mellencamp that blared during warm-ups; the height of the players made them leviathans for a high school game; and flair, flavor, and pure athleticism seemed to be more appreciated than the fundamentals.

Clearly, the forces that have transformed Indiana and America-technology, multiculturalism, commercialization, in a world that is growing smaller and more complex-have a parallel impact on basketball. "Indiana," as a local barber says, "is going hip-hop." How are these elements-the new players of foreign heritage; the emphasis on style at the expense of shooting; the growth of the women's game; the influence of big money everywhere-changing the sport?

Wertheim looks for answers by pointing a wide-angle lens at the many sides of the sport-the high school game, the NBA, and everything in between-to find the state of basketball in the state of basketball. Like H. G. Bissinger's Friday Night Lights, Darcy Frey's The Last Shot, and John Feinstein's books, Transition Game is a story of heart, hustle, and an enduring game.

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Transition game: how Hoosiers went hip-hop

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

It seems you can't turn on the television these days without catching a story about the sad, contemptible state of the National Basketball Association. Millionaire point guards are villanized for ... Read full review

Review: Transition Game: How Hoosiers Went Hip-Hoop

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It dated itself quickly but otherwise a very good book. Read full review



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About the author (2005)

L. Jon Wertheim is a senior writer for Sports Illustrated and the author of Venus Envy.

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