NBA Hall of Fame player Elgin Baylor was an innovator in his sport, a civil rights trailblazer, and a true superstar. He influenced future NBA All Stars such as Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant, and is considered by many to be one of the most important players in NBA history. A prolific scorer who baffled opponents with his twists and turns and inventive moves, Baylor was a force both on and off the court for the Minneapolis and Los Angeles Lakers. In Elgin Baylor: The Man Who Changed Basketball, Bijan C. Bayne tells the story of how a kid from the streets of segregated Washington, DC, who didn't attend college until he was over twenty, revolutionized basketball and stood up for his rights. In a time when few nationally prominent black athletes spoke out about racial inequality in the United States, Baylor refused to tolerate discrimination. On the court, with his balletic moves and urban style of play, Elgin Baylor lifted the game of basketball off the floor and into the air.
Elgin Baylor: The Man Who Changed Basketball includes personal reflections from Baylor's old schoolyard companions, former teammates, players he coached in the NBA, and noted sports journalists, bringing to life his childhood, college career, and professional life with intimate detail. Basketball fans, historians, and those interested in the impact of sports on the Civil Rights Movement will all find this first-ever biography of Elgin Baylor both fascinating and inspirational.
Bijan C. Bayne is an award-winning Washington-based freelance writer who has written for Pro Basketball News, the Washington Post, The Boston Herald, Essence, and Washingtonian. He is a member of United States Basketball Writers Association, a founding member of the Internet Baseball Writers Association of America, and an executive board member and media relations director for the Association for Professional Basketball Research. Bayne is the author of Sky Kings: Black Pioneers of Professional Basketball, which was named to the Suggested Reading List of the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2004, and Martha's Vineyard Basketball: How a Resort League Defied Notions of Race and Class (Rowman & Littlefield, 2015).
Acknowledgments Foreword Introduction Chapter 1 From Streetball to Spingarn Chapter 2 Superstar or Secret Schoolboy? Chapter 3 "I Was Scared to Death, It Was My First Flight." Chapter 4 How The West Was Won Chapter 5 I Am Not an Animal...Put in a Cage Chapter 6 New Frontiers: The NBA's First Modern Player Chapter 7 The First Superstar Chapter 8 A Leader of Men Chapter 9 "The More I Was Determined To Prove The Doctors Wrong" Chapter 10 Wilt: The Unlucky Number 13 Chapter 11 Jazz Duet Chapter 12 Clipper Command Chapter 13 Rabbit Redux Bibliography Index About the Author