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Harlem Legends toss up hoops and hoots in charity basketball game
Event features former Globetrotters stars, local players in benefit for cancer patients
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Harlem Legends' Michael Douglas chases after Nick Ball of Wauka Meadows Farm as he dribbles downcourt during The Harlem Legends: Hoops and Health Celebrity Basketball Show against the Hall County All-Stars Saturday at Riverside Military Academy. The Harlem Legends basketball team consists of former Globetrotters, NBA players, Continental Basketball Association players and college athletes. - photo by Erin O. Smith

If you’ve never been to a Harlem Globetrotters basketball game, it’s a bit different than your typical game. At one of these games, it’s not uncommon to see a player hanging from a hoop, or sitting on the knee of an audience member.

The Hall County All-Stars played against the Harlem Legends for a special game, but still with the flair and antics of a regular Globetrotters game.

The Harlem Legends basketball team is made up of former Globetrotters, NBA players and Continental Basketball Association players and college athletes.

Their games are known for the interactiveness and their basketball tricks, including juggling and spinning a basketball on their fingers.

The game, “Hoops & Health,” benefited the QEd, an organization that helps educate and support individuals and families affected by cancer.

The Hall County All-Stars lost against the Legends, but they smiled all along the way.

Michael Douglas, one of the Legends players, picked Boston Murphy out of the crowd to help him shoot a basket.

“I was a little bit nervous,” Murphy said.

After he helped shoot the basket, he was shuffled along to the middle of the court. All the Legends crowded around him, and when they parted, Murphy was shirtless. In order to get his T-shirt and his new Harlem Legends T-shirt, Murphy had to show off his muscles and ham it up for the crowd.

Boston lives in Braselton with his family and plays basketball regularly.

Both of Sally Callahan’s parents played in the game, and she wanted to join in too.

“I really wanted to watch ... but they asked me to play,” Callahan said.

The 17-year-old used to play basketball, but mostly wanted to join in just for the fun of it. She was familiar with the ’Trotters style, and knew she wanted to be a part of it.

Some of the other Hall County All-Stars team members were: Nick Ball, Wauka Mountain Farm; Josh Barrett, Lakeview Academy; James Callahan; The Rev. Bill Coates, First Baptist Church of Gainesville; James Corbin, Riverside; Katie B. Davis, WDUN radio personality; Christopher Jue; Lee Koontz, First Presbyterian Church in Gainesville; John Lillie III; Tracy Hines; Dave McConnell, Gainesville High School teacher and football coach; Stephanie Yarem Ransom, Gainesville High School graduate and assistant athletic director at UGA; Ed Schrader, Brenau University president; Charlie Strong, financial professional at Wells Fargo; Allen Tallman, Riverside Military Academy lacrosse coach; The Rev. Terry Walton, Gainesville First United Methodist Church; and Ellis Pitts.

Some of the former Globetrotters are Douglas, Larry “Shorty” Coleman, Tyrone “Hollywood” Brown, Harold “Bobo” Hubbard, Antoine Scott, Elbert “Tree” Gordon, Reggie Dixon, Gator Rivers and Paul Gaffney.

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