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AN EAR TO THE GROUND
Jack McCallum
November 03, 1986
Notes from a reporter who spent the off-season swinging on the NBA grapevine
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November 03, 1986

An Ear To The Ground

Notes from a reporter who spent the off-season swinging on the NBA grapevine

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WE UNDERSTAND EMMANUEL LEWIS IS AVAILABLE
Mike Fratello, who is listed in the NBA Register as 5'7" but is rumored to be a shade shorter than Spud Webb, who is either 5'7", 5'6" or 5'5�" depending on whom you believe, hired 5'9" Brian Hill as a third assistant for the Atlanta Hawks this past summer. Another Fratello assistant is 5'10" Brendan Suhr. Spoiling Fratello's bid for an alltime, all-diminutive staff is 6'10" Willis Reed.

FOR THE LOVE OF BOX SCORES, SOMEBODY PLEASE SIGN HIM
Ronald Joseph Oscar Camille Crevier played a total of four minutes last year for Golden State and Detroit.

THE POWER OF POSITIVE THINKING
Over the summer, Seattle forward Tom Chambers assessed his team's prospects thusly: "Everybody in the league is improved, but we didn't make any improvements. We needed to bring in a couple of players. I'm normally an optimistic person, but I really question what we're going to be able to do. The forecast is real bleak."

IT'S ACADEMIC
At times this season, the Washington Bullets will sport a frontline of Moses Malone, Manute Bol and rookie John Williams, who combined for only three college seasons, two of them by Williams at LSU. Bol played one year at the University of Bridgeport, and Malone went to the ABA right out of high school.

DON'T BE CONFUSED—NUMBER 4 WILL STILL BE THE MAN TAKING ALL THE SHOTS
Ex-Piston Kelly Tripucka ruffled a few feathers in Utah when, after arriving in a trade for Adrian Dantley, he took Dantley's old number, 4. In Detroit, meanwhile, Dantley was unable to wrest number 4 away from second-year guard Joe Dumars and was unwilling to ask bruiser Rick Mahorn to surrender 44, Dantley's college number at Notre Dame. So Dantley will wear 45 in Detroit.

FORE!
Detroit Pistons center Bill Laimbeer qualified for a national long-driving contest this summer with a 313-yarder. But it was the Phoenix Suns who were teed off when Laimbeer decked center Alvan Adams during a preseason game. "We're going to get him if it takes three games, four games or four months," said Phoenix assistant coach Al Bianchi.

CHIVALRY, THY NAME IS EDDIE
While playing against Nancy Lieberman in the Utah Pro-Am Summer League, Eddie Hughes, a CBA guard hungry for an NBA job, told Lieberman, "Do that again, and I'll slug you."

HE CAN CATCH THE TOUGH PASS OVER THE MIDDLE, TOO
During the annual Hollywood Stars exhibition baseball game at Dodger Stadium on Aug. 23, the Lakers' 39-year-old Kareem Abdul-Jabbar belted a triple that reached the leftfield wall.

FUN COUPLES SPOTTED LAST YEAR AROUND THE NBA

Maury Wills and Vince Coleman—Madison Square Garden.
Whoopi Goldberg and John Travolta—the Forum.
Gregory Hines and Billy Crystal—Chicago Stadium.
Timothy Hutton and Debra Winger (who subsequently became Mrs. Timothy Hutton)—the Omni.
Busty Heart—Boston Garden.

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