Tall Tales

By Terry Pluto


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    Simply put, this book is a MUST for anyone who enjoys reading basketball books or who wants to learn about the history of the NBA.  This book covers basketball from 1946-70.  It is told by the people who made the game:  People like Oscar Robertson, Earl Strom, Wilt Chamberlain, Bob Cousy, Hot Rod Hundley, Red Auerbach, Alex Hannum, Johnny Kerr, Jerry Lucas, Frank McGuire, Rod Thorn, and many others:  coaches, players, writers, front office people, etc.

      The book goes back to how and why the NBA was started, the small towns that hosted teams, the crossing of the color barrier, some of the forgotten stars of the 50s (Petitt, Schayes, Yardley), The Celtic Cynasty, the Celtic rivals, the Lakers, Wilt, the refs, the pathetic Knicks, The 1967 Sixers, Russell vs. Chamberlain, Oscar and Jerry, and much more.

      The stories are insightful, humorous, and entertaining.  They tell of the hard times the players faced under the tough conditions as well as the camaraderie they had.  This isn't a bunch of old guys talking about the "good old days."  This is the foundation from which without, we would have never seen Larry, Magic, Doctor, and Michael.

       This book was so enjoyable, I couldn't hardly put it down.  I was in college when I read it, and back then, I read a book about every 2.5 weeks.  I read this book, which is bigger than the average basketball book, in 4 days.

Insight:  4
History:  1946-69
Readability:  10

Tall Tales.  Terry Pluto.  Fireside Books.  1992. 

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