Sam Jones: The Little Stool That Could, 1962

“Let’s have the fellows who want to play basketball on one side,” said Bill Russell, “and the fellows who want to fight in another place.”

Ode to a Rookie Referee in Two Takes, 1967

Moser, about to hand the ball to the Celts’ John Havlicek, looked at the agonized Holzman—the Knicks were 16 points behind—and said firmly, “That’s enough,” without exclamation point.

Red Auerbach: An Old Friend’s Telling You to Hang ‘Em Up, 1979

Heed those words, Red. Sit back, light up a cigar and relax. You don’t need the aggravation anymore.

Bill Sharman: The Shooter, 1965

What made Sharman’s shooting so remarkable was its purity. He shot with almost robot-like precision, his style so polished and precise that it seemed like an illustration for a book on how to play basketball.