Hawk’s complex tale leaves us wondering what might have been

New York
During Julius Erving’s first few weeks playing at Rucker Park in the summer of 1971, having signed with the ABA Virginia Squires following his junior year at the University of Massachusetts, the ‘D.J.’ on the courtside mike, Plucky Morris, alternated calling him “The Doctor’, “The Claw” (hands big enough to Palm Sunday, I authored at the time … and time and time again, and again now) and “Little Hawk.”
It wasn’t just Plucky; we were all guilty as charged of likening Erving’s splendor, extension cord appendages and 1-handed stretch-limo swoops to The Almighty Hawk, Connie Hawkins.
One sweltering afternoon, Connie, an ascendant hand-me-up from the ABL, Globetrotters, and ABA, whose surgically repaired right knee declined to work or play outdoors a day longer, appeared at 155th Street and Eighth Avenue, off the Harlem River Drive, to scope the new kid above the halo.
Full column available at: patreon.com/petervecsey
hawk

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