RIP Meadowlark

  • Very fond memories of watching the Globetrotters.

    meadwolark.jpg Found this quote from Wilt:

    “Meadowlark was the most sensational, awesome, incredible basketball player I’ve ever seen,” Chamberlain said in a television interview not long before he died in 1999. “People would say it would be Dr. J or even Jordan. For me, it would be Meadowlark Lemon.”

    A gifted athlete with an entertainer’s hunger for the spotlight, Lemon, who dreamed of playing for the Globetrotters as a boy in North Carolina, joined the team in 1954, not long after leaving the Army. Within a few years, he had assumed the central role of showman, taking over from Reece Tatum, whom everyone called Goose, the Trotters’ long-reigning clown prince. Tatum was a superb ballplayer whose on-court gags — or reams, as the players called them — had established the team’s reputation for laugh-inducing wizardry at a championship level.

    By then, Lemon, who was 6 feet 3 inches and slender, was the team’s leading light, such a star that he played center while Chamberlain played guard.

    This was a time, however, when the Trotters were known not merely for their comedy routines and basketball legerdemain; they were also a formidable competitive team. Their victory over the Minneapolis Lakers in 1948 was instrumental in integrating the National Basketball Association, and a decade later their owner, Abe Saperstein, signed a 7-footer out of the University of Kansas to a one-year contract before he was eligible for the N.B.A.: Wilt Chamberlain.

  • We saw the recent trotters in person a couple of years ago and was disappointed. Ten minutes of what amounted to street ball quality basketball and then another ‘skit’ for lack of a better word. It really had me wishing for the days of Meadowlark, Curly, Wilt, and Lynette!

  • Dave Henderson also passed away from a heart attack at 57 yesterday.

  • As a child, I understood what it meant to laugh until your ribs hurt. The magic displayed through the warm up with “Sweet Georgia Brown” was simply unreal. The start of an overhead pass which would end up going backwards to another player while the passer would keep going towards the original target and shake his hand and scream, “How you doin Curly!”, It would crack up and be the loudest, painful laughter I would ever experience. Meadowlark was the Maestro of the entire proceeding while Curly smiled the entire time with his exhibition of dribbling skills while laying on the ground laughing at the Washington Generals who were trying to steal the ball. In every Globe Trotter game that I experienced, Meadowlark always made his half court hook shot.


  • wilt_lemongertrue.jpg

  • @RockChalkinTexas As a kid I remember watching the Globetrotters on tv. Meadowlark was one of my favorite.

  • I could never express gratitude equal to the joy the Trotters gave to my childhood.

    They are one of only three things that make me smile and feel good inside every time I think of them, even now approaching my mid 60s, and I dare not speak of the other two, so, in a way, the Trotters are the only thing I will take to heaven, or hell, with me and say, if I’ve gotta be here in either place for eternity, please tell me the Trotters are here, too.

    There are five players I tell anyone to watch, if they are new to the game: Marques Haynes. Curley Neal, Meadowlark Lemon, Wilt Chamberlain, and Pete Maravich.


    Because these five men reveal the joy and beauty of the Greatest Game Ever Invented more than any of the others that I have personally witnessed.

    People have never understood the Trotters.

    The Trotters were the first performance artists.

    They were to performance art what New Orleans Dixieland Jazz was to modern jazz.

    They were the well spring.

    But since most persons don’t think they understand performance art, my next default in explaining their importance is this analogy: they are to basketball what the classic silent film comedians were to movies. They were almost impossibly gigantic artist working in a medium long before genius should have been able to do what they made seem effortless to do.

    You can’t do the Harlem GlobeTrotters now any more than you can do Charlie Chapin, or Buster Keaton, now.

    Looking back we know these guys were folk artists combining towering artistic ability with a young folk art in ways that was too far beyond the rational for the intellectuals and critics of the time to grasp.

    They were so funny and cathartic one can hardly describe it to persons now, same as Chaplin and Keaton were.

    Meadowlark Lemon was the funniest.

    Persons that have never tried to make persons laugh don’t understand the magnitude of calling someone the funniest at anything.

    This guy was funny in a way other comedians were in awe of.

    Just like there was a Victor Borge of classical piano, there was a Meadowlark Lemon of classical basketball.

    He was so funny no culture could resist laughing, whether they knew what basketball was or not.

    Persons that have never tried to make persons from other cultures laugh don’t understand the magnitude of saying the guy could make everyone from Russians to Watusis laugh.

    Being truly, profoundly funny on demand in character is the toughest thing of all to do in all of the arts.

    Many performers won’t even try it.

    Many comedians, even some of the great ones, can only do it for short stretches.

    Meadowlark Lemon was hilariously funny for decades in every corner of the world.

    And he didn’t hide behind makeup.

    The guy was all funny.

    That he could also play basketball at a high level was insane.

    Goodnight my sweet Meadowlark.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    Anyone remember the original Scooby Doo cartoon? They ( The Globetrotters ) were in it once or twice. All those guys. Good stuff.

  • @nuleafjhawk AHHH! Yes, that is awesome!!

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