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This Author: Joe Richman
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The Starting Five by Joe Richman

The Starting Five

by Joe Richman


Title Details

Audio Original
Running Time
10 Min.


"[Growing up in Brooklyn in the 1930s and 1940s] I never saw a dirt field. Everything was cement. And the only thing we could do - we had two choices: either go in the schoolyard and play ball or hang around on the corner and get in trouble. So, we played basketball all our lives." (Nat Militzok, former New York Knick) Back in 1946, when the National Basketball League was known as the Basketball Association of America, all the players were white, many of them from poor, immigrant neighborhoods; the color barrier was not broken in the NBA until the 1950-51 season. Producer Joe Richman talked to some of the men who were there at the beginning. This is their story, as originally heard on National Public Radio®'s All Things Considered®.

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