Sweetwater (2023)

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Sweetwater (2023)

Post by bunniefuu »

...takes its way

and goes the length
of the floor and...

Pan Am Terminal O' Hare Airport.

You got it.

- Could you turn that up?
- Alright.

Michael Jordan, 42 points,

13 off 26,
from the field,

with nine assist.

Bulls defeat the Pistons,
108, 101 to...

Well, they're gonna do it
this year.

That Michael Jordan can
do things

I've never seen any other
player do in my life

I mean, ever.

Yeah, he's a-- a great player,

but plenty of fellas came
before Mike that could do things

you've never seen
in your life.

- Like who?
- I'm talking 'bout...

Connie Hawkins,

Elgin Baylor,
Julius Erving,

Dr. J in the Hawk.

Yeah, I hear you.

That style of play
goes way back.

Like David Thompson,
Oscar Robinson way back,

or we like,
talking where the hell back?

You know your basketball.

Sports writing is the life
for me.

- Alright.
- What about you?

What's your excuse?

I know my game.

Listen, pal,
we got a bit of a drive here,

so, why don't you tell me
more about your game?

A lot of people don't know,
how it went down.

The highly anticipated rematch between the Globetrotters

and the NBA champ
Minneapolis Lakers,

is turning out to be
the game of the century, Marty.

That's right, Howard.
And even though the Lakers

had a commanding lead in the
first half,

the trotters have come back

in these exciting final minutes.

Much of the damage has come
from one player in particular,

and that's Sweetwater Clifton,

who has had a spectacular game
tonight,

battling against
the Laker giant, George Mikan.

Come on. Straight coming!

Sweets! Sweets!

Yeah, do that!
Sweets, good job!

I got mine right here.

Oh, that's a foul!

Ahan, aha!

George Mikan gets blocked!

I've never seen that before!

I don't think anybody
has seen that before, Howard.

Attack!

And it's a tie game, folks!

Sweets! Boom chick-a-boom!

Now!

- You got to move.
- Pass the ball, will you?

- Move right, move right.
- Pass the ball, will you?

Here come the Trotters.

I got my man right here.

Okay, okay.

What in the world is going on
at mid court?

Marcus Haynes is doing things with that basketball

no one has done before!

Here you go! Here you go!

Yeah!

You got it right there.

Come on, Mike, get in!

You're a tree!
Get in his way!

Oh nice, nice, nice...

Irish, did you see that?

Have you ever seen anything
like that before?

No, you haven't, because
it hasn't happened prior!

My boys are the best,
you know that, right?

Yeah, everybody knows it, Abe,
especially you.

- I got my man right here.
- Come on, Joe.

- Yes, I got him.
- You got him?

- Hey, hey, hey! Yeah!
- We've got to...

Oh, steal...

Look at the size
of Sweetwater's hands,

he makes the ball look like
a grapefruit.

- Uh huh.
- He could play defense.

By the way,
we all know that blocks

and rebounds win games. Right?

Yeah. Well, it's--

It's like a circus, though.
It's Ringling brothers.

Yeah, well, everyone's here to see that.

I think there's a lot more
to this cager

than just blocks
and rebounds.

Alright. Hey, hey, hey!

And the Globetrotters defeat the NBA champion,

Minneapolis Lakers.

Final score 49-45.

Who are the champs? We're the champs!

Who won this?
We're the champs!

We're the champs!
We're the champs!

We're the champs!
We're the champs!

Way to go, guys!

Man, what a way to bring it
to 'em!

Now everybody knows

who's the best
in the world?

You're gonna have to phone
the missus, tell her

you scored double digits
tonight.

Looks like you had some fun
out there tonight.

Always do.

No, you made it look easy.

Joe Lapchick.

Nat Clifton.

Some call me "Sweetwater".

Hey, let's go, guys. Abe's waiting.

And we don't wanna hear
his big mouth.

I coach a team called
"The New York Knickerbockers".

d*ck McGuire is on your team?

Yes, he is.

He can sh**t that ball.

Yes, he can.

Ain't no negros play
in your league.

That ain't no secret.

It's not gonna be like that
forever.

I think that you can help
make the change.

No, no, no.
No, no, I mean that.

You can be the first.

Great game tonight.

I'll catch you later,
Sweetwater.

Thanks, yeah.

See you around, Mr. Lapchick.

Please call me "Joe".

Ow!

Let's see. Go to mom.

- But Dad...
- Go to Mom!

Ow!

A little bit of sugar

makes the water taste
so much sweeter.

Come here.

Come here.

From this day on,

your name is not
Clifton Nathaniel.

No more.

It's Nathaniel Clifton,
you understand?

Yes, Momma.

Okay. Now, Nat Clifton.

It's time to go.

But Momma...

Now you listen to your momma
now.

Go on, and get on that horse
and buggy.

Hey, your Daddy taking you
into the big city.

Where you can have
a better life.

He gonna take good care
of you.

Yeah?

But Momma,
I don't wanna leave.

Mm-mm, mm-mm.

Take these hands,
God gifted you with.

You put them to good use.

I always knew,

you was born
with a higher purpose.

You just got to believe.

Yeah?

I love you, baby.

I love you, Mom.

Come.

Okay, now go.

Go.

Hey, good game, Sweets!

Good game, Sweets!

Hey Sweets...

Did you see Mikan's face when you blocked his shot?

Fellows, we might be sleeping
here tonight,

but first,
it's pay time.

Excellent job.

Thank you so very much
for what you do.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Thank you.

Looking great out there,
honestly and truly.

-Thanks, Abe.
- Thank you.

- There's Pops.
-Thanks, Abe.

And last,
but certainly not least,

thank you.

Ahan.

What?

Oh, don't give me that look,
Sweetwater.

You got something to say,
just say it to my face.

I can take it,
spit it out.

We beat them Lakers.

The NBA champs.

Yeah, we certainly did.

It wasn't easy, honey.

No. No, it wasn't.

They're the... best.

So, we didn't expect it
to be easy.

And if I guess it
ain't my business

how much they get paid?

It's none of your beeswax.

You're not hearing what
I'm saying, Abe.

I would say everyone is hearing
what you're saying loud

and clear.

And on behalf of Sweetwater,

I would like to further thank
each

and everyone of you out
of my own.

Take from tonight,
'cause you earned it.

Sorry.

- Alright.
- Don't miss it.

Extra cabbage.

Fellows I got big plans
more importantly,

tonight's win allows us
to now travel the world

with your talent.

South America, Europe,
all the way to China.

Places you've only dreamt about.

Internationally known
Globetrotters.

Bigger than Jesse Owens.

- Right?
-Hmmm.

-That's right.
-Joe Lewis.

They're just gonna be talking
about you now.

And I got new plays,
new routines you're gonna love.

And one day,

one day,
we're gonna be an NBA team.

Get some rest.

We're going to change the
world, Abe.

Yeah, that's right.

Thanks, brother.

This is your opportunity to level the playing field.

Give these boys a chance
and let's get them on the court!

This is not a n*gro league!

- And never will be! Come on!
-I second the

- gentleman's opinion.
- What are you talking about?!

- Whoa, whoa, easy.
- Yes, thank you.

Easy!

What's with all the yelling?

Now, I think we should proceed
with a...

with an atmosphere
of respect, okay.

And decorum.

And as
for Mr. Walter Brown's inquiry

regarding drafting n*gro
players for the Celtics,

the bylaws are clear.

You are not limited
to whites only.

It says players.

Players.

So, anyone of you wants
to draft a n*gro player,

go be my guest.

The Celtics are very interested
in drafting a n*gro player.

- And...
- Out!

Alright.

I'd like to speak out
on behalf of my team

and our interest in this league

when I say it's unnecessary
to have all this razzle dazzle,

hot dog,
and bull crap on our courts.

And that's what
the n*gro players will do.

Can I-- can I just say something
for a change here, okay?

Just listen to me.

I think I can personally
guarantee

that no one in this room
loves basketball more than I do.

Oh, come on, stop!

Yes, that's right!
And this stuff you call,

"razzle dazzle",

well, I find it exciting,

and quite honestly,
entertaining.

Like...
like a dance!

- Oh, like a dance?
- Yes, like a dance.

Oh, it's-- it's a dance.

- Yes, a dance!
- Okay. Thank you very much.

They're supposed to put points
on the board,

and paying customers
in the seat.

Because, basketball after all
is a business.

Or haven't you heard?

Let's take a vote.

Hm? A gentlemen's agreement
if you will.

I move that the NBA is
for white players only.

Ahh... I uh...

I want to be on record
to saying,

that it's a mistake
to go on record with that.

I reiterate.

I move that the NBA

is for white players only.

I second!

Thank you.

Okay, there's a motion
on the table.

It says uh,

the NBA wants to remain
an all white league.

All those in favor,
please say aye.

- Aye!
- Aye.

Those opposed?

Nay.

You guys have it.

Did you stand--
did you stand up?

I tried. Of course, I did.

-Did you?
- What do you think?

- Of course, I did.
- Who-- who made the decision?

- Podoloff?
- Him, board of governors,

- team owner--
- Oh!

It was kind of unanimous,
actually.

The-- the NBA champs

got their asses kicked
by an all-n*gro team. Okay!

Well, if memory serves me well,
it was a pretty close game.

Okay.

If the Trotters had a franchise
in this league,

there isn't a team
in the NBA

that could beat them.

I know.

It's not my decision, okay?

It is what it is, Joe.

It doesn't have to be that way.

But what do you wanna do?

I'm starting to think
this is where I resign.

Oh, that's smart.

That's really smart.

Now that we have
the ingredients

for a championship team,
you wanna quit?

Huh?

These kids are counting on you
to take them to the finals.

You wanna let them down?

Go ahead, tell 'em. Go ahead.

Alright, alright.

- Yeah.
- Okay.

Alright,
let's work our rebounds.

Let's go, guys!

Line it up.

Babe!

Goose!

There it is.

Yeah! I got him! I got him!

Oh yeah, I got him, I got him.

I got him! I got him!

I got him! I got him!

No, that's 2-2 on the whole.

Whoa! What? Wait! What?

Yeah, that's called "a foul".

You called it on me?

Yes, sir. You're 2-2.

Alright, I'm sorry, Ref.

- Alright. Give me the ball--
- Here you go, bud.

Thank you, sir.

What the hell kind of call
is that?

- You don't want it that way?
- That's fine. It's fine.

White ball.

Alright. Come on, now.

Hey, hey! Alright, alright.

Hey, hey, hey.

Keep going, keep going.

Hey!

Got my hat on.

That damn clutch, again?

No, that's the sound
of an empty t*nk.

Forgot to fill up
in the city.

So, I did my part tonight.

So, who got bag duty,
'cause it ain't me.

-Not me.
- Not it. Not it.

-It ain't me.
- I think it's the person

with the least amounts of points
tonight.

Yeah, so...

- Who is that?
-Ohhh...

Ohhh!

Alright, man. Alright, I'll-- I'll get the bags.

That's right. Nice move.

Step away, boy.

You need to move away
from my lily-white pumps,

n*gg*r.

We mean no harm, sir.

All we need is some gas,
so, we can get on our way.

You're a brave one talking back.

You see this g*n?

It's loaded.

I know how to use it.

Let me tell you somethin'.

I've used it before.

Like I said,
we need some gas.

The t*nk is dry as dust.

Mm-hmm. And if I let you
pump some gas,

how you gonna pay for it,
boy?

Your money ain't no good here.

Well, now who doesn't love
American cold hard cash, sir?

Abe Saperstein at your service.

Allow me to introduce

the gentleman that you're
somewhat pointing that,

powerful looking w*apon
at...

This is basketball legend!

Nat Sweetwater Clifton.

One of the stars
of the Globetrotters,

the world renowned
Globetrotters.

We just uh, need a couple of
gallons of your gas, sir.

We'll be on our way.
In fact, I see

the prices have doubled,
which we're happy to pay.

Youse that n*gro basketball
team?

You are a clever one, sir.

Yes, we'se are
except myself, of course.

I coach the team.

Right uh...

To Jen, my girlfriend,
on this side.

Sure. Let me just see if there's
a pen on the bus, sir.

Oh, well I've got this,
I do signs with.

- There we are.
- Here you go.

That'll work.

Yes, indeed.

Be happy to do that.

That's uh...

That's gonna have some value
on the open market right away,

but if you hold on to it,

like a piano or real estate,
or a painting,

that will go up in value
over time.

Yes, indeed.

Y'all play a game today?

We did! Yes, yes, a great game!

And even better crowd!

Weren't they something,
Sweetwater?

Yup, some of the better
basketball fans we've seen.

Good local folk you have here,
sir.

Yeah, but terrific local team, too,

if you had the pleasure of
seeing them play--

I'll tell you what?
It'll be an honor of mine to

provide you
with the finest seats

in the house for yourself.

The missus and the kids,
next time

the Globetrotters pass through
your

warm and inviting county.

Who won that game today?

Well, who do you think
won the game?

Thank you for the autograph.

That went well.

Just get back in the bus.

Uh, I'm sorry, we have
absolutely no rooms available.

You have no rooms?

This is our busiest
time of year.

Yeah, I can see that.

A lot of keys there behind you.

You sure you don't wanna take
one more look

to see if there are any rooms?

Ah, it'd be a waste of time,
sir.

I'll tell you what, you should
check out The Dunbar.

They're right across town.

I'm sure they'd be willing
to accommodate you.

Across town, huh?

Yeah.

What about him?
Is he at the Dunbar, too?

Oh no. He's here, sir.

- What?
- Yeah, Mr. Bananas,

he's-- he's staying with us.

Yeah, he's just working
at the theatre

- right across the street.
- Is that right?

- Yeah.
- And he's got his own room here?

Well, he...

Him and his trainer.

Sure. Somebody's got to order
the room service, right?

Let me see if I understand this.

Mr. Bananas,
this chimp is so talented,

he's named
after the food he eats,

whereas my fellas,

who are the most talented
basketball players in the world,

they've got no room here.

Look uh, I don't make the
rules,

okay?

Times like this...

Hmmm.
...wish the hell I did.

Yeah, you don't make the rules.

You just follow 'em,
like at Nuremberg.

Does that ring a bell?

Let's go, fellas.

Wish you luck.

That was very yummy, mom.

I'm so glad you liked it,
sweetie.

Dad, may I be excused?

It's okay.

Have never seen you
so distraught.

It's the wall.

What wall?

Ugh.

That Sweetwater Clifton
represents everything

that I have been fighting for,
you know that.

The guy is the future
of basketball,

and there is this wall,
that the league built,

and he won't be able
to break through it.

Alright?

By the time he does,
we'll be grandparents.

Look at me.

You are Joe Lapchick.

Yeah.

You don't have to break
through a wall.

You just go get Sweetwater,

and you climb over that wall
with him.

I don't remember ordering
room service.

I didn't mean to wake you.

No, no, that's okay.

I don't ever really sleep.

Ah, well,
at least your team is awake.

Right?

We should take this up
to the Catskills.

Saperstein and Lapchick,
some Lapshtick, right?

- That's good.
- You know?

To what do I owe the pleasure?

Listen, I know you're not
fully conscious,

but I would just love
to pitch you something.

If you got a minute.

Ah, bring the Globetrotters
back to the garden.

I don't think so.

Huh.
They'll sell it out again.

No, we sold out,

because it was the NBA champion
Lakers playing the Trotters,

for an unofficial
world championship.

It was a bragging rights, Joe.

The fans did not come out
to see the Lakers.

They paid their money
to see the Trotters,

'cause
that's great entertainment.

Other than
the Ringling brothers,

we don't sell tickets,
you know that.

Trotters sell out everywhere
they go.

Yeah, in the boondocks, Joe.

Tiny gyms.

This is no comparison
to the garden.

- This is Ned.
-Hi Ned, it's Mickey.

Oh hey, Mickey,
what's going on?

What if the Trotters played
an All-Star college team?

That will put the butts
in the seats.

Hold on, Mickey.

I don't wanna talk
to that Saperstein guy.

Already taken care of.

Thanks, boss.

Go ahead, Mickey.

That's it, fellas.
Steal the rhythm.

Boom chick-a-boom
chick-a-boom.

Yes!

-Oh yeah!
-Alright! Hit it.

Show some magic.

- Go ahead, Michael
-Go ahead, man!

Now that's entertainment.

Basketball as its finest.

And skills.

Skills.

Ringling brothers.

Yeah, it comes in handy though.

Believe me, and by the way,
people love it.

All that
and they can actually play.

It's just a lot of fancy stuff.

Yeah, but it sells, you know it does.

No, no, no, no, no, no.

Don't just finger roll it in,

around the back
or something,

and then stuff it.

Razzle dazzle!

Remember that!

That's what the fans pay for.

Don't start playing white on,
you're gonna put them to sleep.

Five-minute break,
and I mean, five!

Hey, you pay no mind to Sap.

You go over there
and handle your business.

You're gonna see,
he's a great kid.

Just try not to scare him.

I want you to meet Ned Irish.

He owns the Knickerbockers,
and the Garden.

No fooling, huh?

Nice to meet you, Mr. Irish.

Great to meet you too, Nat.

Hey, let me see those hands.

Oh, wow.

Well, welcome back
to the Garden.

Uh, yes sir, thank you.

No, what's with this sir stuff?
Call me "Ned".

Sorry.

Just a habit left over
from my days in the army.

You fought in the w*r?

Yes sir, Joe.

- Here, have a seat.
-Have a seat.

Saperstein's a little tough
on you, huh?

He knows what he wants.

Yeah.

He wants a show,
that's what he wants.

Abe's got to win all the time.

That's what we get paid to do.

However, much that is.

And I'm telling you,
it ain't much.

So uh, you win all the time and you get paid for it?

Sounds like a champagne problem to me.

It ain't like that, Mr. Irish.

You see, Abe sets up these
games with white players

for us to win.

What gets me is why set it up,

when we're better
than all these white teams,

that can beat 'em anyways.

It's not like he's asking you

to take a dive
in the 12th round.

You see, Mr. Irish,

we do things
with this basketball,

don't even exist in your dreams.

And I get people paying
for that.

But I ain't interested
in being part of no circus.

Okay, nap time's over.

We got a big game tonight.

A bunch of college idiots

who can't wait
to get their butts kicked.

Let's go. Sweets!

Yeah!

Sweetwater!

Okay, Caleb and Andrew,

I want you guys out there
double-teaming Sweetwater.

But every time we step
on this court,

- it means something.
- Right.

So, let's make these
last seconds count.

- Mm-hmm.
- Hey.

I got something up my sleeve.

Wa-- wait!
Wait, wait, wait, wait!

Wait.

Hehe. Thank you!

It worked, man.

Alright, man,
I'll tell you

after a win like that,
I'm going out tonight.

Looking like Superman
with them shoulder pads on.

Where we going tonight?

If you want to meet the fellows,
you just need to tell me.

Later.

Okay fellas, grab your stuff.
Let's get on the bus.

- Here we go!
-Irish.

Thank you, thank you, thank
you, thank you.

Good to see you there, Mr. Irish.

Great game, great game.

You make sure there's money out there...

It really is your lucky day.

How lucky am I?

About 2 grand lucky.

You're not so bad after all,
Irish.

Wish I could say the same
about you, Abe.

What about the other team?

Took care of them
from my end.

Like we agreed.

- 100 shekels each?
-100 a man.

- Paid in full.
- Alright, I gotta skedaddle.

We got another show
upstate in the boonies.

Looks like you're working
too hard.

Oh, if I had your money,
I'd give mine away.

Huh.

Special place, isn't it?

Oh yeah.

She is beautiful.

Yeah.

I won a couple of championships
here with St John's.

- Oh, I know.
- Yeah.

Yeah.

Let's see what you're made of.

Try to get one past me.

You'll need to take that coat
off though.

- You wanna play me?
- Yes, sir.

Oh, come on. You serious?

Yeah,
I couldn't be more serious.

Alright.

Come on,
I know what you're thinking.

I know what you're thinking.

That you're taller,
and stronger,

and a better athlete.

Better looking.

Longer arm reach,
bigger hands.

But you...

You cannot get one pass me.

Alright.

- Hold on, Joe. Hold on.
- Oh, I think you're--

- wait a minute.
- Now hold on, Joe.

- That was a foul, Joe.
- No, no, no, no, no. No, no, no,

- you're thinking it was?
- It's-- it's a foul, Joe.

No, no, it was--
There was not a foul.

- You did forget something.
- Okay. Okay.

Okay.

- Oh, now the coat comes off.
- Alright.

Give me the ball.

Okay.

Too much Godzilla,
come on, Joe.

- Oh!
- Come on, Joe.

No, no, no.

That uh...

It happens every once
in a while.

- Come on, Coach.
- You know what?

I wasn't warmed up kid.

I warm up,
that doesn't happen.

Okay. You're gonna walk away?

- That's it.
-It's okay.

You're scared, I get it.

Oh, no, I think, you just need a
little more practice.

Joe, Joe, Joe.

Old clutch finally gave out.

I'll get a mechanic
by the morning.

But we ain't going anywhere
tonight.

Night.

What took you so long, Sweets?

A lot of miles you
and me, huh?

I'm going for a walk...

I mean, I can't really
complain, can I?

Where the hell are you going?

Oh, mind your business, Abe.

Kitchen's closed.

You need to leave.

I said, you need to leave.

It's okay.

He's with me.

Okay, come on.

Good evening, sir. What can I get for you?

Yeah, uh, another Bourbon
for me

and uh,
make it a double for my friend.

A glass of water
and two scoops of sugar, please.

♪ With all your faults
I love you still ♪

♪ It had to be you

♪ Wonderful you

♪ Had to be you...

She ain't bad.

The way she bend them notes,
catches you off guard,

you know.

Like sh**ting the ball
when you ain't thinking.

Hm. And how you play.

Yeah, man, yeah.

Like jazz.

Feeling.

I'll have to pay more attention
next time.

You know, uh,
Lapchick's preaches

that you're the future
of basketball.

Oh, right now, my future is
on a broken down bus

in a alley.

You know, we could change that.

I know if you pay me right,

maybe we could win
a championship.

I'd pay anything
to see the look

on Abe's face, if you left.

Nothing more tempting
than freedom.

Well, let's see now.

How's that?

Thanks for the soda pop.

It's the least I could do.

Enjoy your sweet water,
Sweetwater.

♪ The man I love

♪ The man I love

Ah, sorry to bother you miss,

I really enjoyed your singing
just now.

Especially that last Blues.

Thanks.

Hey.

Jeanne Staples.

Nat Clifton.

Some call me "Sweetwater".

You've got a nice soulful voice.

I could listen to you
singing them Blues all night.

Oh, I love the Blues,
you know.

Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith,
Billie Holliday,

that's real.

Say, there's a cool after hours
joint up in Harlem.

Doesn't really get cooking
till late.

Ah...

I don't know if that might be,
you know...

No such thing as too late.

Okay.

♪ They say you say
your party is jump ♪

♪ Having a good time

♪ You know it's going good
in my mind ♪

♪ You mind
if I get comfortable ♪

♪ Oh, and kick off these shoes,
yeah ♪

♪ Why you fix me a drink?

Is that T-Bone?

♪ Won't you play me some
of them down-home blues? ♪

Hold on, hold on, hold on,
hold on, guys.

I seen somebody just walk
in here

and light up the whole room.

A good friend,
goes by the name of Sweetwater.

♪ Ho, I can see your party's
jumping ♪

♪ And everybody's
having a good time ♪

♪ You know what's going
through my mind ♪

♪ Why don't you make yourself
comfortable, baby? ♪

♪ And kick off these shoes

♪ Why you're pouring me
a drink? ♪

♪ Won't you play me some
of them down-home blues? ♪

♪ Hey, yeah...

♪ Down-home blues

♪ Down-home blues

♪ Down-home blues

♪ Down-home blues

♪ Down-home blues

♪ Down-home blues

♪ Down-home blues, yeah

♪ Down-home blues

Alright, ladies and gentlemen,

y'all give it up
for this lovely young lady,

singing the blues
for you tonight,

Miss Jeanne Staples.

You guys are jumping hot
tonight.

Oh well, thank you,
but look who's talking?

Yeah, Jeanne gigs over
at the 50 Second Club.

- Is that right?
- Mm-hmm.

Alright, well next time,
we're in town,

we got to have you
come sing with us again.

Oh, I'd like that very much.

Thank you, sir.

It's just T-Bone.

Alright.

I can't with how many times I've had to fix this damn thing.

You know-- hey Sweets,
we're almost done here.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Oh, I'm gonna go wash up.

Alright, hurry up.

We gotta get upstate.

How much is this gonna be?

$5? $10? You know what?

Don't answer that.
It's a trick question.

Alright, half court offence.

Here we go, boys. Here we go.

Here we go, okay.

McGuire, what are you doing?

Okay, keep it moving.

Extra pass. Extra pass.

What are you--
Hold on a second.

If we keep coming
without the ball,

let's go again, alright.
Give and go.

As soon as you give it,
just make that cut.

Make-- Don't ever stop.

-Okay.
-This doesn't stop.

Let's go, let's go.

Movement.

Make that cut. There we go.

Okay. Perfect.

Alright?

That's how it's done.

There's more options
from the post.

- Who's that?
- Oh, look at that.

Good to see you, Joe.

You too, Sweetwater.

Give me the ball.

Alright, fellas, same play.

Set it up.

Max, Vandeweghe,
criss cross right there.

McGuire, cut now!

Hey. Yeah!

Nice layout!

Nice shot.

Not bad for a bunch
of white guys.

Now, that's a well-coached team.

Hmm.

That's a well. Thanks for this one, fellas.

- Absolutely.
- See you around, Joe.

Hey Joe, can I have a word, please?

Alright, guys, come on.

Give me a second, guys.

Um, what do you think you're doing?

What are you talking about?

You do realize letting him play
is a violation of league policy?

No. League policy says that you
can't

draft a player of color.

It doesn't say that you
can't practice.

Oh, come on, Joe.

No one moves like Sweetwater.

No one, no one posts up
like him.

No one can pass.

Maybe Cousy, but he's not 6'8".

Sweetwater is an older player.

And more importantly,
you're forgetting that he's a...

A n*gro?

We could win a title
with that n*gro.

He'd make a great Knickerbocker.

That's just my two cents.

Thank you.

Alright, guys.

Let's hit the shower.

Good work today.

Let's go, fellows.

Look, I know that the league

and the owners are gonna fight
you on this to no end--

- Huh.
- But I want this.

I want it bad, Ned. Alright?

You saw it was sellout crowd,
right?

The fans are gonna
eat it up.

Yeah, well, have you ever
thought of the fact

that maybe Sweetwater's best
years might be behind him?

Oh, come on, that's--

You know that's not true.

We all know that's not true.

Look, Sweetwater knows this game
better than anyone,

young or old.

You know how long,

and how hard I have fought
to break down barriers?

I will fight for this.

I wanna fight with you.

It's not an easy mountain
to climb, Joe.

Yeah, we'll climb it together.

Could get ugly.

I was born ugly.

- Thanks very much.
-You're welcome.

- Take care of yourself.
-Thank you.

Hey, Saperstein.

Great game yesterday.

About that,

listen I'm glad I saw you.

I wanted to thank you
for the accommodations

your urine-soaked alleyway
has been very nice to me.

You're welcome, anytime.

So uh,
I think this belongs to you.

What?
We settled up last night.

New day new deal.

Yeah, but what is it?

It's about 5,000 in cash.

What?

Why?

Why?

Well, it's not a raise.

I want
to buy Sweetwater's contract.

I like you, Irish.

You're funny.

Did you talk to Sweets
about this?

- Not really, no.
- No, didn't think so.

I should keep this cash
to pay for the insult.

- It's not happening.
- Why?

I thought you'd be interested
in getting rid of a headache.

Yeah, it's quite the headache
I get

from counting all the money
he makes me.

Forget it.

Let me ask you something.
You don't really think

Sweetwater's gonna play
in the NBA?

Lapchick, I understand,
he wants to move the

color line and I respect that,

but what is your angle?

I don't know.

Fill the Garden, win a couple of
championships, maybe.

- For the glory?
- For the glory.

- Why not?
- Okay.

I just don't see you
spending a dime

on a n*gro player,

when you know the league
will never let him play.

'Cause of the rules.

I like breaking the rules.

You did pretty good
with no Jew,

especially one
with five negros,

will ever play in the Garden.

- Did I say that?
- That's a quote.

- Oh.
- This is not happening

- in your lifetime.
- Okay.

I mean, I can't change your
mind at all.

I mean, think about it,

you get to sleep
in a real bed,

with real sheets,
not on the floor of a bus.

Come on!

- Sheets?
- Sheets.

What kind of sheets?

Egyptian cotton,
you're gonna love it.

You son of a bitch.

- Get out of here.
- Ah, you're a f--

You're the funny one,
Saperstein.

You know I like you,
you know that?

Why don't you call me, when you
get back from the boondocks?

- Okay?
- It's not enough.

Okay.

Okay. You guys are looking good
with the matching uniforms,

and fancy shoes.

Alright.

Here we are, Ref.

Alright. Count it, boys.

Should be 75 shekels a piece
in there for you.

I counted it myself,
now,

let's go over the game plan,
shall we?

You play along with the
shenanigans on the court.

The Trotters win, and everything
works out for everybody.

Easy, right?
Any questions?

No? Great!

- Alright!
- Mr. Saperstein?

- Yeah!
- I just want to say

this is so generous.

Right, right, yeah, yeah.

Let's not count it out here.

It's Saperstein, yeah.

Okay.

Sweet!

What are you doing, pal?

Come on, we got a game
in five minutes.

You ready?

What's the matter?

Oh, buddy, come on,
we're gonna have some fun.

Boom chick-a-boom.
Here we go.

Alright, alright,
you got him.

Here we go.

Yeah!

Alright, alright.

Hey!!

Okay, okay, I got it, I got it.
Hey!

Between your legs!

Over your head, ah!

Watch it, watch it, watch it,
watch it!

Yeah!

Just wait a minute.

Who believes in magic?

I do! I do! Me!

What is this?
What's happening?

Hey Sap!

Just sit back
and enjoy the magic.

Right.

Oh, I think I see somebody.

Excuse me.

- Come.
-Oh, now, wait second.

Just go with it.

Come on,
now, you show me the magic.

All you gotta do is believe.

Do I gotta pay the kid now?

Didn't that feel good?

That felt great.

Alright, let's wrap it up.

Hold on, fellas!

What's the score?

Hey man, it's a little bit to a lot.

Well, let's make it a little
bit more funny.

What you talking about, Sweet?

Follow me.

You're scoring on the other
team's basket.

I'm gonna count on it.

I'm gonna count--
That's for you guys.

Yes.
They just made you get this.

These are all counting.

Keep it going, keep it going, keep it going.

Okay, that's 60!

That's enough.

Now hold on now. Goose!

It's tied up.

Whoa!

And we only have three seconds
left.

Everybody!

3, 2, 1.

You better make that.

And a regulation,

that shot counts,
Harlem wins by 2.

Yeah, thanks.

Wow.

Oh, absolutely.

Sweetwater, what the hell
was that about?

Well, that's entertainment.

That's what you pay me to do.

No, I pay you to stick
to my game plan.

We won.

Just like you planned.

Scoring baskets
for the other team

was never part of my plan.

It never will be.

Okay, Abe.

But I heard you say something
about some shenanigans.

Yeah.

On the bus now!

Let's go! Let's go!

- Thanks, everybody.
- Yeah. We gotta go.

Bus leaves in five minutes with
or without you,

and I mean five.
Let's go, let's go.

- Thanks, folks.
- What's your name?

Hey, that bit with the kid,
now that is entertainment.

Special, Sweets.

Keep doing your thing.

Hmm.

- Thank you, Pop.
- Yeah.

Thank you, ma'am.

I love the hat.

- What a finish.
-Yes.

You signed them autographs,
Goose?

Thanks, man.

Pretty good game.

Yeah, thank you.

Great game indeed.

- Fantastic.
- Thanks Abe.

Great job. Fantastic.

Fans loved that.

-Wonderful.
-It's great.

Yeah, I see that right.

Say Marcus,
how much you got?

- Hm?
- 50.

Goose, you?

50.

Pop?

Oh, I see what's going on.

Come on now, how much you got?

That'll be 50.

50!

Yeah, me too.

Tell the boys how much you pay
the other team, Abe.

Hm.

Is there a problem?

We whipped their butts!

And they get paid more
than we do.

Now that sound right.

Does it, fellas?

No, no.

Them white boys get paid more
to lose,

than we get paid to win.

I mean I don't know,
maybe I should switch teams.

- No.
-Come on.

Make a little extra cabbage
next time.

Big question is,

how much are you making, Abe?

Oh, you were but a babe,
when I created this team.

Hell, when I turned
the Savoy Big Five

into the Harlem Globetrotters,
you were just starting to walk.

I created this team.

I named this team.

I sowed the costumes
you're wearing.

Most importantly,
I'm your boss.

I'm the reason this team exists!

I'm the reason
it's such a success.

Why do I do this everyday?

For you!

I do whatever it takes
to get your next meet.

To get you the recognition
for what you do better

than any other human being
on this planet,

which is play basketball.

There's nobody better.

So just,
stick to playing basketball.

That's what you do.

This ain't about basketball,
Abe.

We're just part of your circus,
man.

I mean you say,

nobody does it better than us.

We beat the world champs, man.

We feel we can beat any team
anywhere,

fair and square.

Listen, Abe,
all we's saying is,

you can pay the other team.

but don't you pay 'em to lose?

That take away all the fun
out of whipping their butts!

- That's right.
- Yes! Right, yeah.

Okay.

Fine.

You need me to remind you

what I thought everyone
in this bus,

thoroughly understood.

As a n*gro, you will not play
professional basketball,

unless you play for me.

This is my team.
I don't care who you are.

Nobody, especially you,
is gonna tell me how to run it!

I got big plans for you, fellas.

A barn?

Wow.

What now?

It's nice to see you too, Abe.

Come on,
someone wants to say hi to you.

Well, I can't imagine

what brought you two city folks
all the way out here

to the boondocks.

Abe.

You're wasting your time
and mine.

You know, it beats the hell out
of me,

what got into you,

putting together a group
of n*gro basketball players.

From Timbuktu Illinois,
you got the whole world,

thinking you guys are
from Harlem.

And now you're the best team
on the planet.

Greatest thing that ever
happened to basketball.

I recognize the brilliance
in you, Abe.

We're here to finish what
you started.

A n*gro basketball player
will walk on to an NBA court,

so help me God.

What do you think about that,
Irish?

You think that's gonna happen?

Don't be a sap, Saperstein.

How much does it ring?

Huh.

I'm starting to like this guy
more than I thought I would.

In this envelope,
is my final offer.

10,000 sheckles
as you call it.

Now, that's more money
than anyone will pay

for a n*gro player.

And I'm certain,

that you'll make sure,
Sweets gets some of it.

Don't even think about it,
that's my car.

You're never getting my car,
Abe.

What do they call that?

What?

When someone comes into an
unexpected good fortune.

Luck of the Irish?

That's it!

Irish, today's your lucky day.

I'm gonna take your $10,000.

You're gonna take Sweetwater
back with you

in that beautiful jalopy.

But when you get there,

you're gonna find
another 2500 in cash,

that you'll give to Sweetwater,

so he can get on his feet,
while he waits

for his big Knickerbocker
salary to kick in.

That's my final offer.

Okay.

You're all out of excuses, Abe.

How about that?

How about that?

What do you know?

Hey Irish,
I got this idea,

if a player can sink at basket

for much, much further
than normal,

much further out than normal,

he should get more
than two points.

I call it a "three-pointer".
What do you think?

Phew.

Jazz up the game a little?

I don't know,
it sounds pretty crazy, Abe,

but I don't know if the league
will ever go for it.

Run it by Podoloff.

You run it by Podoloff.
What am I, your errand boy?

Oh, for he--
I'm gonna remember that.

This guy.

Hey, Irish.

- Yeah?
- Promise me

you'll fight for Sweetwater

to get enough playing time,

so the NBA can see
what he can actually do.

Yeah, sure.

- We got Sweetwater.
- Yeah, thank you.

Hey, hey, listen up.

Made a decision.

Sweetwater,

that was your last game
wearing a Trotter uniform.

Oh, come on, Abe.

Come on,
he's just messing around.

Hey, I was just having some fun
out there.

You know, I didn't mean
no harm by that.

Yeah, your nonsense
on the court

had nothing to do
with my decision.

You're done here.

Ned Irish just bought
your contract from me.

So, your next game will be
in a Knick jersey.

- Huh.
-The famed New York

Knickerbockers, has just hired
Sweetwater Clifton

with a starting salary
of $2,500,

and I am the Jewish Abe Lincoln.

You are free to play
in the NBA.

Hey, come on,

I'm representing all of us,
huh.

Got some.

Take me with you.

Love you, brother.

Welcome to the Knickerbockers,
Sweetwater.

Thank you, Mr. Irish.

You ready to change the game?

Oh, I was born ready.

I believe it.

- Come on, let's go.
- Alright.

Welcome.

Thank you, coach.

No, no.

Sweetwater, in the front.

It's okay.

Oh, okay.

But Irish, you know you can't play him.

Huh. The hell I can't,
and you can bet I will.

I like to think of him
as the uh,

as the Jackie Robinson
of the NBA.

Irish, when you put
a colored player on the court,

a white player
is sitting on the bench.

Which America are you living
in, joker?

'Cause your head is
so far up your ass,

you forgot what
the land of the free,

and the home of the brave,
stands for.

Mm-hmm.

Okay, uh, excuse us
for one second, please?

Come here, come here.

You gotta help me out.

I got a board here,
who thinks,

that you're violating
the decree.

I'm talking about the future
of the game here, Mo.

Now, we can either stand
in the way of progress,

or we can be a part of it.

You proceed with
a separate agenda like this,

you're gonna start a w*r.

And I'll fight it with you.

- Okay, as I was saying-
- Okay, ah, excuse me.

Ah, what-- what my colleague
over here is trying to say

is that he thinks,
that Sweetwater's style of play

is going to be uh,
disrespectful to his fans.

- Exactly.
- Wrong again,

my distinguished colleagues.

Sweetwater's style
is pure showmanship.

And the fans love it.

That's why he's a big draw!

That's right.
This league, our league,

is not gonna survive.

Not with this vanilla style
of play.

We need some of that,
what'd you call it?

"Razzle dazzle"?

Razzle dazzle, indeed.

- Wh-- what's he doing here?
- Just hear him out.

Thanks, boss, I appreciate it.

Hey, Joe.

Gentlemen, I will be very brief.

Sweetwater Clifton's style
of play,

is creative.

It's innovative.

And it brings
about a much needed change

to this game.

I know change is hard
for you gentlemen,

but this is the game,
that is--

that is being played
on the streets.

It's being played
in colleges.

The street game
in college plays,

it's not the pro ranks,
Lapchick.

It's the future...

- Oh...
-...Of the NBA.

Look, we already took a vote,
Ned.

Yeah well, the fans didn't vote
that way.

Let me ask you a question.

Who sells more tickets
than any other basketball team?

Go ahead, take a guess,
go ahead.

We all know it's the Trotters,
Irish.

That's right.
And since it's been decided

by the board of governors,

to not let the Trotters
have a franchise in this league,

I say,

we all draft great n*gro players
and put 'em on our teams.

How about one each, huh?

We each pick one player.

I mean, how hard is that?

It's what the fans want.

That's New York fans.

You don't know my fans.

What we're trying to get
through to you,

it's that times change.

You know,
it wasn't too long ago,

that a Jew wasn't permitted
to set foot on a hardwood,

never mind own a team.

Now, I have three Jewish
players on my roster.

So, what I'm trying to say
to you is, schmuck!

Don't be a schmuck!

Look, no matter how you feel
about this,

- it's good for business.
- Now, you're talking.

Irish, let's say that I

go along
with your letting negros

into the league program,
what does that make me?

Does that make me your friend?

You know what this is?

Huh?

You see that?

That, is my gate take
for the Knickerbocker season.

The whole season, $1,

That'll buy you a hot dog
and an orange drink.

on me.

Be my guest.

Irish, why are you fighting
so hard for this n*gro player?

Because he fought for us.

Sergeant Sweetwater Clifton

is a veteran
of the United States Army.

Sounds pretty distinguished
to me.

So uh,

shall we continue
with the draft?

Okay, uh, next up
is the Celtics' Walter Brown.

The Boston Celtics pick
Chuck Cooper from Duquesne.

We all know we allow
colored players into the draft,

but by gentlemen's agreement,
we don't actually select them.

He's eligible for the draft,
isn't he?

Yeah.

Well, then, I don't care
if he's striped,

plaid, polka dot,

the Boston Celtics
pick Chuck Cooper from Duquesne.

Okay, next up.

Washington Capitals.

Mr. McKinney.

The Washington Capital
select Earl Lloyd,

West Virginia State.

Okay, look,
I'm not telling you again,

you cannot draft negros!

Have you seen this guy play?

Have you seen any of these guys
play?

We have rules, Podoloff.

Maybe I want a n*gro
on my team, huh?

You're too late.

You should've made a motion
before.

-What happened today...
-Alright.

Hey, hey, hey.

Over here, Earl.

Mr. Cooper! Mr. Cooper!

-One right here.
-Mr. Clifton!

Philadelphia Post, Mr. Lloyd,
we'll start with you.

How does it feel to be
competing to become

the first color player?

To play in the NBA?

Oh man, um...

I'm just a small town kid, man,
um, you know.

I'll be lying to you, man,
if I--

if I didn't tell you that it
is, it's quite frightening.

Right. Thank you.

Mr. Cooper?

Same question.

I can say,

I probably feel
how Jackie Robinson

felt a couple of years ago.

Um, for me,
this is a dream come true.

I grew up playing basketball.

and now I get to play
at the highest level.

And to get paid to do
what I love.

It's-- it's crazy.

Mr. Clifton,

before signing with the Knicks,

you were a basketball star
in your right.

And some say,

the best basketball player
in the world.

And now, you're in the NBA.

What's going through your mind?

I don't think it's about
who's the best.

Yeah, see.

Ever since I was a young boy,
I always felt like I'm adapting.

My whole life's been like that.

That's something we get
from our parents to survive.

I believe that the three of us,

Chuck Cooper, Earl Lloyd,
and myself

can walk away from the past.

Right place, right time.

And now is the time,

we can all make
a change together.

♪ Blue sky smiling at me

♪ Nothing but blue skies

Oh say, man, ♪

you have any
leftover late night

corned beef back there?

♪ Oh, bluebirds singing this song ♪

♪ Nothing but bluebirds
all day long. ♪

♪ Now, listen, honey

♪ While I sing,
how can you tell me ♪

♪ That you'll know your way...

Nate Sweetwater Clifton?

I thought I recognized you.

Oh, uh, it's Nat.

Oh, that's right.

Did I hear you're gonna
be starting

for the Knicks this season?

Yes, sir.

Wow, that's uh, that's great.

What are we drinking here?
It's on me.

Waiter!

Oh, nothing for me.

Thanks.

Got a early practice tomorrow.

Come on, I just got here.
Maybe I can sit down

and talk to you
about something,

like uh, a business proposition.

What kind
of business proposition?

♪ How can you leave me?

Oh, I'ma stay here
and finish my meal.

But thanks anyways, fellas.

I insist.

Not tonight.

♪ And left me crying

It was nice chatting with you.

Enjoy that meal.

♪ There's no denying.

♪ You'll feel blue,
you'll feel sad ♪

♪ you'll miss the dearest pal
you've ever had ♪

♪ There...

Hey Nate, where you going?

You know what I just heard,

I just heard that
your little basketball practice

was canceled.

Is that right?

Hey, hey, hey, hey!

Stop! Hey!

What kind of animals are you?

You best not show up today
or tomorrow.

There'll be more of this.

Hey, you alright?

Come on, come on.

♪ There's a somebody
I'm longing to see ♪

♪ I hope that he,
turns out to be ♪

♪ Someone who'll love

♪ over me

I'll be damned,

the way you bend them notes.

You sure you ain't got
no n*gro blood in you, honey?

- Oh.
- Here you go.

- Thank you.
- See you again.

It's like neither of us belong.

Me, playing
in a white man's game.

You, singing them blues.

T-Bone came by the club earlier.

Wants me to officially
go on the road with him.

Hmm.

I leave tomorrow morning.

Haha.

You are a happening.

And that happening,
is thanks to you.

Oh.

It's happening 'cause you
are one talented soul.

Black folk gonna love you.

White folk gonna love you.

Oh, and they already do.

I'm forever grateful.

Hm.

- I'm sorry.
- Hey, Irish?

- Yeah.
- I got a message.

You want to stay healthy?

Don't play the n*gro.

Damn, son of a bitch!

- Mr. Irish.
- Get him, Tom!

Get him!

Hey, stop!

-Okay.
-Thank you.

Okay, here you go.

Thank you, buddy.

I will go get that.

Alright.

Hello. Lapchick residence.

Who was it, sweetie?

I don't know.

They mumbled and hung up.

It's probably a wrong number.

Yeah.

Dad?

Yes.

My friends at school
say we're n*gg*r lovers.

Is that true?

Son, that is a word
of disrespect.

And we don't ever use that word
in this household, ever.

You understand?

Never again, never again.

I understand, dad.

Nice shot.

Nice shot.

Wait till you see this kid.

Come on. Put it up, put it up.

Watch this guy.

Hey, hey, newest New York Knick.

Don't know how you missed
that free though.

You're an All-Star, right?

Having an off night,
you know how that goes?

Oh... Me, I can't afford
to have an off night.

And I especially can't afford
to miss any free throws.

They're free.

I like this guy, he's fun.

Alright, come on now.

Let me show y'all something.

Over there, McGuire.

Max, Vandeweghe.

Vince.

You keep it.

I'll take that, Mr. Clifton.

Alright.

Alright, pass to Vandeweghe,
criss cross in front of me.

Oh, no. Hold on.

Stop, stop. Go back.

Go back to him.

You see this ball?

This ball has life.

You can't just treat it
any kind of way.

You got to cherish it.

Give it your best.

Put some love in it.

And watch what
it give you back.

So, don't just pass the ball
any kind of way,

put some love in it.

You got to cherish it.

Right.

Just like that, snap it!

No. On target.

Have a goal.

Accomplish it.

Right, put some love on it.

The man is taking control.

Yeah.
á*

Free for Vandeweghe.

Oh!

Don't worry about it,
you'll get the hang of it.

What are you guys
talking about it?

His pass is way more
faster than you.

Alright, gentlemen.

Enough clowning around.

Max, let's run up some plays.

A little half court offense.

Let's go, gentlemen.

Okay.

Keep it, keep it moving.

Find the extra pass.

Get that momentum.

Get that-- okay.

Alright.

I'm telling you, Mo,
this story is big.

All the radio
and the news...

Oh come on, come on.

Everybody likes good press.

The attention's good
for everyone.

Not everyone.

Ah, that's nothing.

All these guys,
they're gonna fall into line,

once they see the fans
in the seats.

Just to admit to me,

this is causing some
serious problems.

You met the man.

Now that I know which one he is.

No,
but you've never met him, right?

No, I haven't met him,
but he's in the middle practice.

Well, let's go say hi to him.

Come on, let's go say hi.

Well, he's busy.

I don't wanna break
his concentration--

Mo, Mo, he's not gonna
bite you, okay.

Hey Sweets,

I want you to meet
the President of the League.

This is Maurice Podoloff.

Mo, meet
Nat Sweetwater Clifton.

Mr. Podoloff,
a pleasure, sir.

Ah.

Sergeant, it is my honor.

Oh, listen, it's...
It's nice to be here.

Actually, before I forget,
this is yours.

A check,
to a colored man?

That'll bounce higher
than a basketball.

- Right.
- Ah.

If we could figure out
a cash situation.

Thank you, Sergeant,

for bringing it
to our attention.

And I want to tell you
how happy we are

that it's you, who's breaking
the color line in the NBA.

Earl Lloyd scores a basket, and makes history.

And he becomes
the first n*gro player

to play in the NBA.

Someone's here early.

Oh, going to get some sh*ts up,
you know,

get stretched out and all.

How about little one-on-one
rematch?

I don't think you want that,

- coach.
- I was trying

- to k*ll your confidence.
- Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey.

Have you guys seen
today's paper?

Huh? Here, read, read.

What the hell's going on?

Earl Lloyd played for the
Capitals last night

in Rochester. In Rochester,
for crying out loud!

"Earl Lloyd...

...his first game in the NBA.
His appearance also marked

- the first time..."
- Yeah.

"...a n*gro man played
in the new NBA league,

overshadowing tonight's game
in the New York..."

I don't under...

The season starts tonight.

Yeah, supposed to, should have.

Didn't!

Listen, that's good
for Earl Lloyd.

I think I know who's
responsible for this.

Hey Mo, what's this uh,

October 31st game
in Rochester crap, huh?

It's not even
a regular season game.

According to the official
NBA schedule,

the season starts tonight.

November 1st,
in the Garden!

Yeah, not this year, Ned.

"Oh, don't worry, Ned.

I got your back.
I'll fight your w*r for you."

Yeah, sure. Yeah, sure!

Hey! Hey!

Just for the record,

the president has every right
to change the schedule

at his discretion.

It's in the bylaws.
Look it up.

Why'd you do it, Mo?

Why? Why?

There was a prediction
of a severe weather storm

in Rochester tonight!

So, I changed the schedule.

Oh, what a load of bull.

Yesterday, was great
for the league.

No! It was fantastic for the
league!

But that was supposed
to be Sweetwater's moment!

Tonight! In my Garden!

In New York!
Everybody knew that!

You knew that!

You took it away
from the game!

From the fans!

But more importantly,
you took it away

from Sweetwater.

Too much power for one n*gro.

Too big a moment
for the bozos, right?

Hey. There's nothing I can do
about predicting the weather.

Oh, don't give me that crap, Mo!

New York City is center stage!

The impact here would have been
heard everywhere.

Just level with me.
Give me a reason.

You just heard it,
you just said it,

you just heard it.

Change is happening.

But I don't know that my city
can take it, do you?

Are you sure?

I don't care about uh...

confusion in Rochester.

Who cares?

But Madison Square Garden,
in the middle of Manhattan?

You want blood on the floor?

You want rioting
on Madison Square Garden?

Huh, I don't-- I don't want
that.

I don't want that.

Is that a good enough reason
for you?

So, Earl Lloyd, Rochester,

he-- he gets to make history,
and we got what?

Nothing.
Sweetwater gets nothing.

Because of what? Some-- some
freaking scheduling glitch.

Some, some freaking
history making.

History-making scheduling
glitch.

You gonna play
Sweetwater tonight?

What if I do?

Dangerous, could be trouble.

I certainly hope so.

Save me a seat.

I wouldn't miss it
for the world.

And tonight marks

Nat Sweetwater Clifton's
first game

as an NBA player.

That remains to be seen,

if Clifton can really complete
in the NBA.

Set the tone early.

Fundamental basketball.

Leave your heart
on that court.

Sweet, you're starting.

Hey, that's Sweetwater!

And this is the moment

we've all been waiting for.

History in the making.

Folks, I wish you could see
what I'm seeing right now.

The emotion on Sweetwater's face

and the crowd here looking
at Clifton,

there is history in the air
here at the Garden.

That's a travel.

Indianapolis ball.

Good call, good call.

Rebound, rebound.

Rebound. Rebound.

There we go. Break it.

On the break.

Beautiful.

Yeah!

No! No basket!

That's a travel.

Blue ball.

What are you talking about,
Donnie?

What are you calling here?

Good call, Donnie.

Come on.

That's a foul,
number eight New York.

Olympian ball.

Olympians with the ball.

It's up, it's good.

A good start
for the Olympians.

What a great move.

Open there.

Get it to Sweets.

Out of bounds, on the Knicks,

and Sweetwater continues
to struggle

in these opening minutes
of the game, folks.

Oh yeah! That's it.

That's what we're looking for.

Come on, guys.

We gotta put past. There you go.

McGuire passes to Gallatin,

hook shot,
and it's no good.

-It's okay, kid.
-Oh!

Sweetwater goes down hard.

Oh my goodness,
I hope he's not injured.

That's a foul.

Get the pass. There you go.

There you go,
keep it moving.

Get back on team.
Get back on team.

Come on, Sweets.

And the Olympians score,

as they continue
to build on their league.

There we go, there we go.

And here's Sweetwater, with a little razzle dazzle.

A beautiful move
to the basket, and it's good!

Let's go. Giddy up, giddy up.

Yeah!

Hold on.

What was that, Howard?

I think that was a new kind
of shot.

Looked like a donut being
dunked in a cup of coffee.

Let's call it a "dunk".

What's going on?

Was that...

I got it, I got it.

Alright, that's gonna be
a technical foul.

No basket, no basket. Indianapolis ball.

Technical foul?

-Yeah.
- No, no basket?

Did you miss me doing this?
This is no basket.

I don't understand,
but what is the actual call?

They did not do a basketball move.

This is just because,
you didn't--

you've never seen it before,
doesn't make it illegal.

We got a technical foul.

In number eight
of the New York Knicks.

- Tell me what the call is.
- Get off the court!

Get behind the line!

You're-- you're out of line,
Donnie!

Here we go. Technical foul!

All the coach in the Knicks
have it.

That's a ridiculous call!

- You don't know...
- I did not want to do this, Joe.

I did not wanna do it.

I didn't wanna do it!

Did not want to do it.

Let's go.

We're gonna...

You have to stop
with the hotdogging.

You think there's
an outside chance

it was a bad call, Joe?

Have a seat.
Simmons in for Sweetwater.

- Coach--
- Don't--

don't even give them
a reason.

Don't give 'em a reason.

Have a seat. Thank you.

Simmons, get in there
for Sweetwater.

Let's go. Back out there.

-Alright, let's go.
-Keep it up,

don't stop moving.

Well, it looks like
Sweetwater's gonna be benched.

It's clear to
the fans here anyway,

that his flashy game,

is throwin' a curve ball
into the NBA.

Here we go.

McGuire passes to Gallatin.

Hook shot.

It's good!

Back on D. There we go.

Here come the Olympians.

And they score again.

Keep it moving. Get that rebound.

Vandeweghe misses the shot.

Back on team!

That my friends, marks the end
of the first half.

Look, okay, let's not beat ourselves up.

Alright? Let-- hey!

Let's not get down!
Let's not get down!

Take a breath, everybody.

Fundamentals.

That's what wins games.

That's what wins
championships.

Alright, take a beat. Be smart.

Find the open man.

Take that extra pass,
that's alright,

and find our rhythm
offensively.

That's it.
Don't get in our own way.

- Alright.
- Show me some fundamentals

out there!
Let's go guys!

Let's go, Sweets. I know we can do this!

- We can do this!
- Let's go, Sweets. Come on.

This is the half that matters.

Come on,
it's a whole new ball game.

Let's go.

I get one more technical foul,
and I'm out, right?

Yeah, you're out.

That's why you're not gonna
get a technical foul.

You're gonna get 30 points.

Let's go.

See, when you first come to me,
you were talking about change.

I still believe in that.

Change I'm talking about,
though is changing the game.

You see, this ain't about the
color of my skin no more.

It's about what I do.

And how I do it.

It's about being true
to the game of basketball.

And right now,

you've seen it
with your own eyes.

My game don't belong here.

My game belong on the streets.

Not in the NBA.

Figures.

Oh, wonder if I can convince
Abe to give me my 12,500 back?

Oh, cut the gas!

12,5?

For my ass?

Damn!

It's uh, it's not about
the money, Sweets.

Never was.

- I'll see you on the court.
- Yeah.

And if you're feeling up
to breaking the scoring record,

we're down by 17.

Yeah!

Go!

Let's go!

Nat Clifton,
in my office.

Right.

I gotta tell you,
that that was

one of the most incredible
performances

on the basketball court
that I've ever seen.

As much as I loved it,

don't you ever do that again!

Huh?

They don't like your style.

Your hotdogging bigger style.

Even though it's full of grace,
they don't like it.

They want you
to maybe grab a rebound,

block a shot or two.

Yes, win the game.

But just not like
how you did it today.

And then
when they get off your back,

and let you stand up straight,

the world would then be able
to see what you do.

We're five minutes into the second half of play, folks,

and there's still no sign
of Sweetwater Clifton.

That's beautiful.

Excellent!

And the Olympians score again!

Vandeweghe sh**t and scores!

Sweetwater has finally rejoined his team

on the bench.

Sweets, let's go.

Come on, here we go!

And Sweetwater Clifton

is coming back
into the game, folks.

Ball! Ball!

Yeah, get it, go.

Ah.

How do you like them apples?

That's why I like it.

Get inside, get inside and rebound.

Let's go!

Clifton blocks the shot!

No!

Foul on number eight
on the Knicks!

What are you talking about?
That was the best

freakin' block ever.

Right here.

Inches away.

- Watch out.
- Alright. It's alright.

- Alright.
- Sweetwater Clifton

has just been handed

his fourth foul of the game.

One more,
and it's bye bye, Sweetwater.

And now Coach Lapchick
has to make the inevitable move

and pull Sweetwater out
of the game.

It's back to the bench for Sweetwater.

Get that extra pass.

Don't back down.

Get that rebound. Get a rebound.

Another miss.

Get back on D, everyone.

Get back on D.

What are you doing?
Get back on D.

The Knicks, unable to score, as the Olympians

- extend their league.
-Alright, that's it.

We're getting a time-out.

Time-out.

Time-out. New York.

There's a time-out
on the floor.

Don't ever give up on a play!

I don't know what you're doing.

Now-- Wh-- what happened
to our defense, okay?

We're gonna run some pick
and rolls from McGuire.

- Coach--
- Don't stop... what?

We're a much better team
with Sweets in there.

Listen, coach,
you put me on that floor,

all focus goes on me.

We can use that
to our advantage, alright?

- Let us take this game over!
- Alright.

You heard the man, let's go.

Come on, guys.
Let's go, let's go.

Hey! Vandeweghe!

Vandeweghe passes to Sweetwater.

McGuire...

- Whooo!
-And score.

Nice, nice.

Get that rebound!

Oh!

Here, Vandeweghe!

Clear it out! Give it down to Sweets.

To Sweets, to Sweets. Let's go.

- There you go.
-Sweetwater

grabs the rebound,

and makes his way down
the court.

Stay out of the paint.

Get that rebound. Yeah.

McGuire!

McGuire, back to me.

Vandeweghe!

Hey Sweets, give it here!

Into the mouth, there we go.

Alright, it's okay.

Yeah, it's as if the basketball gods

have flipped the switch, Marty.

And Howard, the Olympians have
no idea how to deal with this.

Neither do the Refs!

Hey Mo, what do you think?

What do I think?
I think there's not

an empty seat
in the whole damn hall.

That's right.

We sold more tickets
than Ringling brothers.

Stay with it. Focus up.

Aah!

Sweetwater goes down.

Look at that.

What'd you say to me? Huh?

Foul, foul.

We've got a full-scale fight right on the floor.

It's okay, it's okay.

Just scared of you.
It's okay, it's okay.

- That boy...
- He's just scared of you.

It's alright, it's okay.

That ain't basketball!

- You don't know basketball!
- Joe, Joe.

Hey, hey, hey, it's nothing.
I got this.

This is a crucial moment
in the ball game.

If it goes the other way,
Clifton is out.

Alright, we got a personal foul.

A number 11 on the Knicks.

The foul was on Gallatin.

Two shot Blue.

It's gonna be number 11.

It's not gonna go
on Sweetwater Clifton.

He will stay in the ball game.

The Knicks just dodged
a huge b*llet right there.

Let's go, let's go.

Now we got two sh*ts.

Oh, don't you miss.

It's free.

Oh.

I just need one more.

And the Knicks have the ball.

Hey, Vandeweghe!

Vandeweghe into Sweetwater.

He's looking around.

He's gonna take the ball
himself.

The basket's good.

I got a foul on 15 Blue.

You got one shot.

Out of this world, what a game.

This one's for the books,
Howard.

Seconds to play,

and we've got ourselves
a barn burner, Marty.

Here's the free throw.

Yes!

Switch, switch, switch.

The Olympians attempting a hotdog.

And Sweetwater steals the ball.

Time-out. Time-out. Time-out.

Come on, come on.

There's a time-out on the floor.

What are the Knicks gonna
do now?

We're talking about just
a few seconds left.

Strategy is everything
right now.

Here's what I want you to do.

I want you to give it
to the truth,

at the top of the key.

Alright?

And then you're gonna clear
out of the way.

Give it to him.
Come on, let's go.

Alright, we got 10 seconds.

Let's do it!

10 seconds!

Let's go, Knicks. Let's go.

And the Knicks have the ball.

Sweetwater at the top
of the key.

Nine seconds left.

9, 8, 7, 6,

5, 4, 3,

2, 1.

The Knicks have won the game.

72-71, the final score.

What a finish, folks!

Sweetwater! Sweetwater!

Sweetwater! Sweetwater!

Sweetwater! Sweetwater!

Sweetwater! Sweetwater!

Sweetwater! Sweetwater!

Great game, Sweetwater.

Thank you.

Goodnight.

Goodnight.

I can't believe this.

I'm sitting here riding
in a cab

with the Nat Sweetwater Clifton.

People don't know, man.

They don't know that when
they're watching an NBA game,

they're watching you
play your game,

they're watching Sweetwater.

You lit that torch.

No, uh, it ain't like that.

I uh...

I'm a small part of it all.

Just a messenger.

You definitely delivered.

Big time.

Thank you.

I rather enjoyed the ride.

Me too.
01:48:44,039
People don't know, man.

They don't know that when
they're watching an NBA game,

they're watching you
play your game,

they're watching Sweetwater.

You lit that torch.

No, uh, it ain't like that.

I uh...

I'm a small part of it all.

Just a messenger.

You definitely delivered.

Big time.

Thank you.

I rather enjoyed the ride.

Me too.
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