Customer Review

129 of 145 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read, absurd amount of information, October 27, 2009
This review is from: The Book of Basketball: The NBA According to The Sports Guy (Hardcover)
I need to preface this by saying that I've been reading Bill Simmons for over 8 years now, before the fame, before the podcasts and almost frightening fan following.I've seen him mature from the old Boston Sports Guy to this all-media presence now, and in the process, his writing has greatly improved. The culmination of such an improvement is this wonderful book, "The Book of Basketball".

I managed to get an early copy of this book, and spent the next 48 hours plowing through it as fast as I could. It's very clear that Simmons put everything he had into the book. There aren't a lot of loose words around. Even the genitalia jokes are well-constructed. Yes, it's pretty good.

The basis of this book is determining who mattered in the NBA. Which teams, players, coaches, etc. played the biggest role in getting us to where we are today, in shaping our perception of what it takes to win in the NBA, and how we remember different players and events. It's very interesting to see him go back into the 60s and 70s and try to write about Walton, Russell, and Chamberlain and how they were perceived then, and try to get to see what forces created and changed that perception. This is ultimately what the book is all about. It reads almost like a history of the NBA, in a very easy-to-read style.

My personal favorites are his ABA pieces. Not nearly enough has been written about this crazy league, and Simmons did a very good job looking at just how things broke down, at what could have been, and how the ABA led to many fundamental changes in the NBA itself.

Finally, this is definitely a book for the NBA junkie. It's comic style and easy-to-read writing style does make it accessible to those with only mild-to-intermediate interest in the NBA, but at its core, it's for the junkies who want to fill up with as much NBA knowledge as possible. It's a great book, and for its price (as of October 27, 2009), a great deal.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 29, 2009 7:50:53 PM PDT
Sean Stormes says:
Have you not read Loose Balls by Terry Pluto? Easily the most definitive book ever written on the ABA, and one of the most entertaining pieces of literature I've ever read.

Posted on Oct 31, 2009 2:07:56 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Nov 2, 2009 7:32:46 AM PST]

Posted on Nov 2, 2009 3:30:03 PM PST
Bruce Baskin says:
I second Sean's motion on "Loose Balls." Not just the best history ever of the ABA (in the words of the people who were there), but in my opinion the best basketball book EVER. Pluto wrote a similar book on the early NBA called "Tall Tales"...a good book with some great stories, but "Loose Balls" is better.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 27, 2014 7:36:19 AM PDT
Jeremy P says:
I don't like Bill Simmons. ESPN got him in the spotlight and his back and forth commentary with Jalen Rose in front of the camera is nothing epic or informative for a viewer of basketball. He needs to exit the stage and stick to writing.
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