There are, in all of basketball, only two players who can play their worst of games—play like any other jump shooter from Oshkosh for 47 minutes, 57 seconds—yet leave 15,000 people awestruck with one incredible moment. There are only two: Julius Erving and David Thompson.
This is what eats at Maravich’s brain. “Pistol” basketball is different, he calls it “futuristic.”
There is a sparkle in his eye that is the tipoff that the Hawks may have provided Maravich with a cause. And that’s the last thing you’d want to do for a man with this kind of talent.
After 10 years as a hard-driving guard and frenetic defensive player for the Boston Celtics, the San Diego Rockets, the Portland Trail Blazers, the Golden State Warriors, the New Orleans Jazz, and finally the New York Knicks, the 32-year-old Jim Barnett is through as a professional basketball player.
Defense is fun and easy for me. It’s a real trip to take on the league’s big scorers
Now Maravich arrives at the moment Bird ascends. A star is born; a star descends.