The celebration of Washington, DC basketball is long overdue. The DC metro area stands second to none in its contributions to the game. Countless figures who have had a significant impact on the sport over the years have roots in the region, including E.B. Henderson, the first African American certified to teach public school physical education, and Earl Lloyd, the first African American to take the court in an actual NBA game. The city’s Spingarn High School produced two players – Elgin Baylor and Dave Bing – recognized among the NBA’s 50 greatest at the League’s 50th anniversary celebration. No other high school in the country can make that claim.
These figures and many others are chronicled in this book, the first-ever comprehensive look at the great high school players, teams, and coaches in the DC metro area.
Based on more than 150 interviews, The Capital of Basketball is first and foremost a book about basketball. But in discussing the trends and evolution of the game, McNamara also uncovers the turmoil in the lives of the players and area residents as they dealt with prejudice, educational inequities, politics, and the ways the area has changed through the years.