Adam J. Criblez

Tall Tales and Short Shorts

Dr. J, Pistol Pete, and the Birth of the Modern NBA

Rowman and Littlefield 2017

New Books in American StudiesNew Books in Arts & LettersNew Books in HistoryNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in Popular CultureNew Books in SportsNew Books Network November 16, 2017 Bob D'Angelo

Today we are joined by Adam J. Criblez, author of the book Tall Tales and Short Shorts: Dr. J, Pistol Pete, and The Birth...

Today we are joined by Adam J. Criblez, author of the book Tall Tales and Short Shorts: Dr. J, Pistol Pete, and The Birth of the Modern NBA (Rowman & Littlefield, 2017). In his second book, Criblez tells the story of the most maligned decade of professional basketball the 1970s. Tall Tales and Short Shorts takes the reader from the retirement of Bill Russell in 1969, which ended the great dynasty of the Boston Celtics, to the emergence of Magic Johnson and Larry Bird in the late 1970s. During the 1970s, professional basketball dealt with expansion, the merger of the National Basketball Association and the American Basketball Association, illicit drug use, violence on the court and rising player salaries. The 1970s were a turbulent period in American history, as the Vietnam War ended ingloriously, Richard Nixon’s presidency was destroyed by the Watergate scandal, and the price of gasoline soared while public confidence waned. Basketball in the 1970s would be defined by stars such as Julius Erving, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Pete Maravich and Rick Barry; Criblez shines new light on the “Dark Ages” of the NBA, blending pro basketball with popular culture.


Bob D’Angelo is working on his masters degree in history at Southern New Hampshire University. He earned his bachelors degree in journalism from the University of Florida and spent more than three decades as a sportswriter and sports copy editor, including 28 years on the sports copy desk at The Tampa (Fla.) Tribune. He can be reached at [email protected]. For more information, visit Bob D’Angelos Books and Blogs.

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