Dream team How Michael, Magic, Larry, Charles, and the greatest team of all time conquered the world and changed the game of basketball forever

Jack McCallum, 1949-

Book - 2012

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Location Call Number   Status
2nd Floor 796.323/McCallum Checked In
New York : Ballantine Books 2012.
Item Description
Includes index.
Physical Description
xxix, 352 p., [8] p. of plates : col. ill. ; 25 cm
Main Author
Jack McCallum, 1949- (-)
Review by Booklist Review

*Starred Review* The 1992 U.S. team that won the Olympic gold medal is considered by virtually all knowledgeable observers to be the greatest basketball team ever assembled. Consider the roster: Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, and Karl Malone are all Hall-of-Famers. Virtually all their teammates are, too. McCallum, who covered the 1992 team for Sports Illustrated, revisits the dream team on the eve of of its 20-year anniversary and the 2012 Summer Olympics. Readers can go to YouTube or NBA.com if they want a visual reminder of on-court greatness, but what makes this volume a must-read for nostalgic hoopsters are the robust portraits of the outsize personalities of the participants, all of whom were remarkably open with McCallum, both then and now. Remember, these were rock stars 20 years ago, the best players on their respective teams. But for a couple months they put ego aside, didn't gripe about playing time, and hung out in a Barcelona hotel together, playing cards and talking trash. McCallum was there for much of it and expands his recollections with contemporary interviews with the participants. They add to or clarify many of the little dramas that took place, most notably the politics behind the absence of Detroit Piston guard Isiah Thomas, despite the fact that his coach, Chuck Daly, was the Olympic head coach. Great reading for NBA fans. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: As the Olympics draw closer, expect a promotional full-court press for this one, complete with multiple media appearances by the Dream Teamers.--Lukowsky, Wes Copyright 2010 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission. Review by Kirkus Book Review

The inside story of the greatest basketball team ever assembled. The 1992 United States men's basketball team not only stands as the most talented basketball team ever, but it remains something of a cultural phenomenon that helped make basketball a truly global sport and the NBA an international brand. Longtime Sports Illustrated writer McCallum, who covered the "Dream Team" at the Barcelona Olympics, recounts the process whereby NBA stars cruised to the gold medal, crushing opponents who would later pose for pictures with and ask for autographs from the American players. The author sketches a group biography in which some figures (Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and Charles Barkley) perhaps rightfully garner more attention than others and in which even the selection of the team became a source for drama. Unbeknownst to most, Jordan and Magic (recently diagnosed with HIV) jockeyed for alpha-dog status while Bird was happy to cede the spotlight, comfortable in his accomplishments and willing to use the Olympics as a career capstone before retiring. Barkley represented one of the most controversial choices for the team primarily because of his unpredictable nature, which could be endearingly frank or just plain irascible. Ultimately, though, Barkley probably took the greatest pleasure in the Barcelona experience, slipping past the team's security apparatus to enjoy the nightlife and the Olympic experience. Coach Chuck Daly held the team together in large part because he could masterfully steer the egos without seeming to do so. McCallum tells the story well, albeit occasionally too choppily, and some might find that he inserts himself into the story a bit too freely. However, he also effectively evokes the remarkable team while placing it within the larger historical context. Basketball and Olympics fans will welcome this nostalgic trip through the recent past.]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.