patrick ewing

Originally published in SLAM 152

Dennis Rodman stood under his basket, looking for someone to inbound to. What the hell, he thought, no one can come back and get this thing? Well, there’s only three seconds left in the half, he irrationalized, maybe they don’t think there’s time to get a shot off.

Are you sure that’s it, Dennis? Another internal voice speaking to him. Maybe they just don’t like you. Maybe they don’t want to come near you. Maybe they believe all that nasty stuff David Robinson says about you.

Why would David say anything bad?!? The rational voice this time, incredulous. David’s the nicest guy in the universe, he wouldn’t say anything like that.

Pass the ball!!! Dennis didn’t recognize the voice at first, maybe because it wasn’t coming from inside his head. Rather, the whole Bulls bench screaming in unison: “Pass the ball!!!” Shaken from his reverie, Rodman hurls a three-quarter court bounce pass at a startled Jud Buechler that only makes it two-thirds of the way there. And suddenly there is a rampaging Patrick Ewing taking but two dribbles, and then—and then—blissful silence.

Russ Bengtson