Category Archives: basketball
Twice a year, a card show is hosted in the Moeller High School gymnasium. Moeller is the alma mater of two Baseball Hall of Famers, Barry Larkin and Ken Griffey Jr. I attended this show for the first time in November, 2008, and got my first Dave Parker autograph. I’m not sure why it took me a decade to go back, but last weekend my youngest son and I hit the show. No autographs this time around, just cards on the cheap, such as these Reds legends for a quarter each…
I also got a quartet of Gypsies for a quarter each as well…
If I had more wall space, I would love to add some Heroes of Yesterday artwork by Steve Douglas to my collection. But I’m not going to buy something and let it collect dust in my closet, when it could be enjoyed by someone else hanging on their wall. But Mr. Douglas was giving out business cards which featured artwork as well, and I took one featuring Chris Sabo…
If you have a mancave and want to add a little originality to the walls, check out Heroes of Yesterday for some pretty cool pieces.
And Magic Johnson for a quarter…
And the entire 1989 Pro Set Football Final Update series…21 cards…for a quarter…
I really miss Pro Set. I miss the fun NFL. I hope the XFL lives up to the hype and restores my interest in football.
I’m not going to wait another ten years to go back to the Moeller Show, but I don’t think I’ll wait until the last day to go, either. A lot of dealers had already packed up and left, and I’m sure those who remained were picked through pretty thoroughly before I got there. It was still fun, though, and I was happy with the cards I added to my collection.
(d. January 3, 2017)
Bob Lemke was an icon in the baseball card industry, serving as a writer, editor, and publisher for Baseball Cards Magazine for many years. He has been blogging since 2009, and his custom cards have been an inspiration to other bloggers. Not content with shoddy work, he would tinker with a custom card—both front and back—until he was satisfied with it before publishing. He will be sorely missed by the baseball card collecting community.
Greg of Night Owl Cards wrote a very nice post about Mr. Lemke and his work in the industry.
If you are not familiar with Mr. Lemke’s blog, visit boblemke.blogspot.com and be prepared to learn a lot.
The Thomas More Saints women’s basketball team has been undefeated for two seasons, repeating as NCAA Division III Champions! TWJ contributor Patrick is an alumnus of Thomas More College, and delivered with a great original “fun card” to commemorate the girls’ wire-to-wire season.
(April 25, 1932 – December 27, 2015)
The “Clown Prince” of the Harlem Globetrotters, Meadlowlark Lemon passed away on December 27. TWJ contributor Patrick created a couple of “fun cards” to commemorate the hoops legend’s life. The Fleer card includes his uniform number and life span in the PSA information, which I thought was an especially nice touch.
(March 23, 1955 – September 13, 2015)
Hall of Fame basketball player Moses Malone passed away this morning at the age of 60 from a heart attack. Malone was a 12-time All-Star and 3-time Most Valuable Player. He was enshrined into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2001.
An inspirational young woman, Lauren Hill has passed away. Learn more about Lauren here.
by Michael Baumann
Sports Publishing, 2014
Every city that fields professional sports teams takes pride in the greatest players on those teams. Some cities, such as Philadelphia, are fortunate enough to have professional teams in multiple sports. Michael Baumann makes it his task to identify the “most amazing athletes to play in the city of Brotherly Love” in Philadelphia Phenoms. Whether wearing the uniform of the Phillies, Eagles, 76ers, or Flyers, there is no shortage of athletic prowess in Philadelphia.
There are some very obvious selections: Mike Schmidt, Julius Erving, Reggie White, and Wilt Chamberlain are all present. Older stars that may be overlooked by younger fans, such as Robin Roberts, Richie Ashburn, and Chuck Bednarik are also discussed. The most interesting chapter, however, focuses on the Phillies’ current second baseman, Chase Utley.
Baumann makes a compelling argument for including Utley rather than his contemporaries Jimmy Rollins or Ryan Howard. According to Baumann, Utley is among the ten best athletes in Philadelphia history, one of the ten best second basemen ever in all of baseball, and the second-best Philadelphia position player behind Schmidt. Part of the author’s argument stems from the fact that Utley does everything well, but does not particularly stand out in any one area. However, from 2005-2009, Utley has the second-best WAR in the National League (five points behind Albert Pujols), and is a full 12.3 points ahead of third-place David Wright. Baumann writes that “it’s utterly bizarre for a player like Utley, someone who played for good teams in a big media market, got his jersey dirty, played hard, and posted spectacular seasons to be underrated, but here we are.” It will be interesting to see how Hall of Fame voters deal with Chase Utley’s career when it comes time to decide whether he belongs in Cooperstown.
Philadelphia Phenoms is, first and foremost, a book for fans of the teams and players in that city. However, general sports fans will also find some interesting anecdotes and conversation starters in Baumann’s writing.
(June 26, 1962 – February 18, 2015)
A second-round draft pick in 1984 for the Portland Trail Blazers, Jerome Kersey passed away Wednesday at the age of 52.
Facing Michael Jordan: Players Recall the Greatest Basketball Player Who Ever Lived
edited by Sean Deveney with Kent McDill
Sports Publishing, 2014
Former Knicks and Rockets coach Jeff Van Gundy said, “[I]f you don’t take a peek back every once in a while, you can start to forget just how great he was.” Only twelve years after his retirement, it is difficult to believe anyone has forgotten Michael Jordan‘s legendary work on the hardwood. But just in case anyone has doubts, fans can be reminded by reading Sean Deveney and Kent McDill’s Facing Michael Jordan: Players Recall the Greatest Basketball Player Who Ever Lived.
First-hand accounts from Hall of Famers Charles Barkley, Magic Johnson, and Dominique Wilkins show the respect that even the greats had for the greatest. But Deveney and McDill did not simply talk to the household names for this volume. They also included memories from David Henderson, whose experience with Jordan happened in college, and Iowa coach George Raveling, who was introduced to MJ at the 1984 USA Basketball tryouts. Several modern players were also interviewed for the book, including Dwyane Wade and Jabari Parker, who talked about the legacy Jordan left for younger generations.
The only shortcoming here is the omission of Jordan’s short-lived and less-than-stellar professional baseball career. More than fifty NBA players and coaches shared their memories and experiences with the greatest basketball player of all-time. Facing Michael Jordan is a wonderful tribute to the man who inspired many to spend a little more time working on their dunking skills and tongue-wagging.