90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's Life, On and Off the Court

This Program Is Rebroadcast From October 16, 2013

NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is with us on turning his own childhood struggles into stories of inspiration.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is an NBA legend, author, actor and global cultural ambassador. His new novel for young adults, "Sasquatch in the Paint," is the first in a planned series of novels. (Disney Publishing Worldwide)

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is an NBA legend, author, actor and global cultural ambassador. His new novel for young adults, “Sasquatch in the Paint,” is the first in a planned series of novels. (Disney Publishing Worldwide)

Towering basketball master of the “sky hook,” Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was an NBA superstar of the very highest order.  Top career scorer in the history of the NBA.  More MVP awards than Jordan.  “The most beautiful athlete in sports,” Magic Johnson called him.  But he was always more than his 7-foot-2-inch height and stats.  Born Lew Alcindor, he adopted Islam and the famous name that means “generous servant of the mighty one.”  Always read.  Always studied.  Including studying humankind.  Now he’s got advice to give.  Up next On Point:  superstar, thinker, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guest

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, retired NBA superstar for the Los Angeles Lakers and Milwaukee Bucks, leading scorer in history of the league, author of “Sasquatch in the Paint,” “Black Profiles in Courage: A Legacy of African-American Achievement” and a U.S. global cultural ambassador. (@kaj33)

From Tom’s Reading List

Chicago Tribune: NBA’s Best All Time? You Be The Judge — “The NBA’s all-time leading scorer is Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. He also led the league in blocked shots four times. And he matched Jordan’s total of six NBA championships with the Lakers and Bucks.Abdul-Jabbar was a six-time league MVP and 19-time All-Star. Jordan was a five-time MVP and 14-time All-Star. And we haven’t even introduced to the conversation Wilt Chamberlain, who once scored a record 100 points in a single game, won seven league scoring titles, 11 rebounding titles and even led the league in assists. ‘There are several layers of talent you have to deal with when you’re talking about the game,” Abdul-Jabbar told me last week. “Most young people today are only aware of the NBA, like, since 2005. So it’s difficult to get through to them about all of the things that happened before they were born.'”

New York Times: U.S. Drafts Abdul-Jabbar As Cultural Ambassador — “Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s life has been a case study in the art of the possible, from his humble Harlem roots to N.B.A. fame and through his life after basketball as a historian and scholar. His next endeavor will draw on all of it. Abdul-Jabbar was named a United States cultural ambassador Wednesday, with a mission of promoting education, racial tolerance and cultural understanding among young people around the world. He leaves Sunday for a six-day assignment in Brazil and will visit at least four more countries this year.”

Los Angeles Times: Talking With Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — “38,387 points? 3 NCAA titles? 6 NBA titles, matching the league MVP tallies? 50 Greatest Players status and HOF membership? Or just the classic ‘Tell your old man to drag Walton and Lanier up and down the court for 48 minutes.’ Any way you slice it, summarizing the career of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar into a neat little paragraph is no walk in the park.”

Read An Excerpt of “Sasquatch In the Paint” by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Ramond Obstfeld

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Dec 19, 2014
Alan Gross, waves as he and his wife Judy leave following his statement at his lawyer's office in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. Gross was released from Cuba after 5 years in a Cuban prison. (AP)

Cuba reset. Russia’s rubble troubles. School massacre in Pakistan. Jeb explores 2016. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Dec 19, 2014
Soledad, and from left, Nina Pastori, and Lila Downs perform on stage at the Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year Tribute honoring Joan Manuel Serrat at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino on Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014, in Las Vegas. (AP)

From crossover hits to hip-hop to soul, we look at a big year in the wide world of Latin music.

RECENT
SHOWS
Dec 18, 2014
A poster for the movie "The Interview" is carried away by a worker after being pulled from a display case at a Carmike Cinemas movie theater, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP)

A big Sony hack gets weirder and wider. And Hollywood and Homeland Security are on edge.

 
Dec 18, 2014
This handout photo from the Twitter account of Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz. shows Alan Gross arriving at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. The US and Cuba have agreed to re-establish diplomatic relations and open economic and travel ties, marking a historic shift in U.S. policy toward the communist island after a half-century of enmity dating back to the Cold War, American officials said Wednesday. (AP)

Following months of secret talks the US will restore full diplomatic relations with Cuba after more than fifty years.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: December 19, 2014
Friday, Dec 19, 2014

Rage, shortlinks and things you people seem to be into, we guess. Also, Putin.

More »
Comment
 
Cosby Accuser Beverly Johnson: ‘He's A Black Man. I Had To Separate The Trayvon Martins, The Michael Browns From What Happened To Me’
Tuesday, Dec 16, 2014

Beverly Johnson accused comedian Bill Cosby of drugging her in a high-profile Vanity Fair column. She tells us why she waited so long to share her story, and why it was even harder to share now.

More »
2 Comments
 
Our Week In The Web: December 12, 2014
Friday, Dec 12, 2014

On listener engagement, the meeting of trans-Atlantic royalty and the elusive origins of the chicken. (We promise this feed hasn’t been taken over the BBC…yet)

More »
Comment