Meadowlark Lemon makes a key "SHOT" with new book

Fri Dec 10, 2010 7:57pm EST
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By David Schwartz

SCOTTSDALE, Arizona (Reuters) - Harlem Globetrotters great Meadowlark Lemon remembers the day he first saw the team that would become his life's story as if it were yesterday.

In the darkened Ritz Theater in Wilmington, N.C., he sat mesmerized as newsreel footage showed the famous tricksters of basketball going through their paces to the delight of fans.

"I saw them when I was 11 years-old and that became my life's work," Lemon told Reuters, following a workout on a basketball court near his adopted home in Scottsdale, Ariz. "I had the desire, a vision to make it my life's work and that's what I did."

Now, the 78-year-old is out with a new book that tells of his growing up in a poor neighborhood in the segregated south to become the celebrated "Clown Prince of Basketball," known to generations of fans in the U.S. and around the world.

The book, "Trust Your Next SHOT: A Guide to a Life of Joy," is both a memoir and a book in which he shares his philosophies on a successful life, filled with a heaping dose of stories from a Hall of Fame basketball career that spans more than 16,000 games and continues to this day.

The Globetrotters were formed in the 1920s, initially as a serious team. Years later they transformed into an exhibition squad that mixed skill, entertainment and comedy on the court.

Lemon joined the team in 1955 and would become one of the its star players -- and tricksters -- as it traveled around the world as ambassadors for basketball.

In the book, Lemon traces his move from the court to the pulpit, preaching his own brand of self-help wisdom.   Continued...