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Long Shot
The Triumphs and Struggles of an NBA Freedom Fighter
Black-balled NBA champion explores the challenges and rewards of using a celebrity platform to stand up against racism and exploitation.
From Michael Jordan to George Bush Sr., Craig Hodges has never been shy about speaking truth to power—and it cost him dearly. In the prime of his career Hodges was blackballed from the NBA for using his platform as professional athlete to stand up against racism and economic exploitation. In this well-told, passionate, and historically literate memoir, Hodges shares the stories—to include his encounters with Nelson Mandela, Coretta Scott King, Jim Brown, R Kelly, Michael Jordan and more—of his life-long crusade to improve the conditions for African Americans.
Reviews
  • “Long Shot tracks Hodges’s political awakening, from black-studies courses in college to his early run-ins with Donald Sterling, the notoriously racist owner of the San Diego (and later Los Angeles) Clippers. The trajectory is clear, and, despite the occasionally engrossing glimpse into the typical N.B.A. player’s home life—Hodges’s tumult involved R. Kelly—almost every detail is shared as context for his more radical turn in the late eighties and nineties.”New Yorker

    "Hodges has told his compelling life story with fiery passion, looping around a cast of characters stretching from Jordan, Magic Johnson and Phil Jackson back to Muhammad Ali, Arthur Ashe and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, before returning to the present." Guardian

    “In the book, Hodges talks about conversations he had with teammates Jordan and Pippen about their lack of knowledge regarding Black history. ‘I don't bring this up to shame Scottie, Michael, and the other players who aren't educated in our history,’ Hodges writes. ‘I bring it up because we can't solve a problem if we don't recognize the sickness.’” Rolling Stone

    “Craig has written a very in depth portrait of his struggles and triumphs in the NBA and beyond.”
    —Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

    "The people's champion."
    —Chuck D

    "A skillfully told, affecting memoir of sports and social activism."
    Kirkus

    "With its sharp observations about Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, and the state of race relations in the NBA, Long Shot is likely to cause a stir."
    Chicago Reader

    “Craig Hodges is someone I looked up to as a child & now as an adult…I read Long Shot in like two hours, I couldn’t stop turning pages. There are so many hooks in it."
    —Jesse Williams

    "Long Shot is a beautifully written, brutally honest book. If you loved the Michael Jordan-era Chicago Bulls, if you love black history, or if you are fascinated by the politics of sports, I highly recommend this book. Simply put: Craig Hodges’ life is incredible and Long Shot is invaluable."
    AETHLON: The Journal of Sport Literature

    "It is time to remove Craig Hodges from exile status and place him where he has always belonged: on the short-list of the activist athletes who stood tall, paid the price and now live their life perhaps scarred, but without regrets. Read this book so a new generation of NBA players and fans will know his true story. Read this book so to say not in a whisper but with a confident shout, 'You DO want to be like Craig Hodges.'
    —Dave Zirin, from the Introduction

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  • Long Shot

    Two-time NBA champion Craig Hodges has never been shy about speaking truth to power.
  • Worth Fighting For

    Former US Army Ranger walks across America for a fallen comrade and finds his voice as a war resister.