"The Biographical History of Basketball" gives readers a much-needed antidote to basketball's historical amnesia. Author Peter C. Bjarkman presents entertaining and fact-filled career summaries of the sport's great players, its ground-breaking coaches and administrators, and its other often-forgotten and less-publicized figures, who authored developments crucial to basketball's century-long evolution. While baseball buffs can usually cite chapter and verse for the diamond sport's most memorable events and personages, basketball fans often have little collective memory of the game's past heroes and milestones, especially those of the nine decades preceding Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, and Magic Johnson. "The Biographical History of Basketball" sends readers on a nostalgic trip through the entire 100-year span of hoops history with personal portraits and little-known facts about the 500 most significant on- and off-court personalities of the game's past and present.
Detailing the feats of the men and women who are responsible for elevating basketball to its current status as the new American national pastime, Bjarkman gives readers a fascinating glimpse into the lives of some of the game's prominent players - past and present - including James Naismith, Phog Allen, and Doc Meanwell; on-court innovators Hank Luisetti, George Mikan, and Bob Cousy; legendary Hall of Famers Oscar Robertson, Wilt Chamberlain, and Red Auerbach; and modern-era idols like Jordan, Shaquille O'Neal and Grant Hill. Peter C. Bjarkman is one of the country's leading historians and author of more than 30 books on the history of basketball and baseball. A winner of the 1994 Macmillan-SABR award for best baseball research, he is a longtime resident of Lafayette, Indiana.