High school basketball tournaments start later this month. Championships will be won and lost. Memories to last a lifetime — good and bad memories — will be made.What Shank basketball column isn't complete without a Larry Bird sighting?
This is about a championship lost. And a bad moment for a good kid.
Let’s go back to the 1970s, and Larry Bird and his high school teammate, Beezer Carnes. Beezer’s missed free throws knocked Spring Valley out of the prestigious Indiana high school basketball tournament 42 years ago. In a conversation with Dan Patrick last year, Bird said, “The dream was to be good enough to play against the big schools. Unfortunately, I played with a kid who kept missing free throws and we didn’t get there.’’
When Patrick followed by asking, “You’re not over it, are you?,’’ Bird snapped, “Never. It was a big loss. I was at a party about two years ago and this lady in her 70s looked at my friend and said, ‘What are you doing here? After missing those free throws back in ’74, you shouldn’t even show your face.’ ’’
Which brings us to Steve Hazard, my former Groton High School teammate who made a mistake in a big game 43 years ago and was never the same after it happened.
Wednesday, February 03, 2016
Change Of Pace Offered
Maybe Shank just became aware that he can't shit on the Patriots for three more weeks until spring training starts for the Red Sox, so now we get one of the local high school basketball stories, set in a time long ago, designed to not make Shank look like an asshole.