It was a chilly December evening and the Los Angeles Coliseum was buzzing as the Lakers hosted the Houston Rockets. As two players, Houston's Rudy Tomjanovich and LA's Kermit Washington were warming up, they were unaware their lives were about to be destroyed. The game began and as Tomjanovich trailed a play up the court, a small skirmish broke out between Washington and another Rocket player. Dropping the ball, Tomjanovich approached the tussling men hoping to break up the fight and resume the game. But instead, his face met the powerful fist of Kermit Washington. The punch, so brutal on impact, left most of the bones in Tomjanovich's face broken and spinal fluid leaking from cracked vertebrae. Although he nearly died, Tomjanovich recovered from his injuries. But his game was never the same. After a two month suspension, Washington retook the court but had lost his touch. His snap reaction had irrevocably killed two careers, and the way the NBA played basketball forever.
An interesting book, however if you read the reviews at any of the on-line bookstores, you'll hear the same complaint: this book dramatically needs editing. It is understandable that the author will view the incident from multiple angles, but the simple repetition of the same quotes, and near exact passages of text render this a frustrating listen. With better organization, this book could have been 1/2 the length and twice as good.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Good book. This event happened when I was a kid. Great to know more about it. I only wish for 2 things : 1) An update on both players lives today. 2) Better editing. On several occasions I was listening to the exact same lines I had heard in other chapters. If you know anything of the incident or are a basketball fan, certainly worth a listen.