Globetrotters bring Shananigans to Town and Fans Rule

By on March 13, 2014

The Harlem Globetrotters bounced their way into the USF Sun Dome on Friday night to crowd of all ages.   I haven’t seen the Globetrotters since I was a young boy and I thought that they might just go through the motions and move on to the next city.  Thankfully for all in attendance, this was not the case.  From the very start of their performance, the Globetrotters brought a high level of excitement and entertainment that included interaction with the crowd throughout the night.

Charlie Belcher playing some defense (Travis Failey photo)

The Globetrotters in the past would play against the Washington Generals and beat them thoroughly game in and game out with play mimicking the standard rules of a NBA basketball game.  Albeit done with amazing basketball moves and shots. But this year would be different because prior to the event, the fans were able to vote on a few different rule options that would be implemented during the game. These rule options included:  the Trick Shot Challenge, where the opposing coach could throw a Trick Shot Challenge flag on the floor and if the shot is made it equals 5 points; the “Make or Miss Challenge,” where players would go to the bench if they missed a shot, and; the “Hot Hand Jersey Challenge,” where each team has a player on the floor wear a orange jersey and a successful basket from that player equals double the points. The basketball court also had 4-point shot circles. With the addition of these rules, the game was more competitive than in previous years, and with the Washington Generals team now retired, a group of All–Stars would be competing against the Globetrotters.  One of the players on the All-Stars was Fox 13’s feature reporter, Charlie Belcher. Charlie had a great time on the floor but struggled against the Globetrotters Captain and fan favorite, “Big Easy.”

Big Easy gets a “hand up” (Travis Failey photo)

“Big Easy” stands 6’9 tall and weighs 250 pounds (on a light day) and dwarfed Charlie but both of these gentlemen provided big laughs for the entire crowd.  This is what makes the Globetrotters so special. They not only impress with their basketball skills, but provide a night of entertainment and laughs.  Looking through the crowd and seeing the smiling faces of all the kids, it’s easy to see why the Globetrotters have been so successful for all these years. From the grandparents in attendance with their grandchildren and the parents who came with their children, there were no complaints to be had and many special memories were made.  Throughout the night, the players interacted with the fans by bringing them onto the court and the players would go into the stands and perform their skits.  The fans loved it when the ball went out of play and the referee called it out on the All-Stars. The All-Stars complained to the referee so they went to the replay. Not the television type of replay, but the players and officials ran the play in slow motion, backwards and forward. It was absolute comedic perfection.

(Travis Failey photo)

The evening was complete as all the players signed autographs and took pictures for the fans on the court and in the hallways. The Globetrotters staff and the Sun Dome staff went out of their way to offer affordable food and first class amenities while keeping the fans’ safety as their number one priority.

Even though the All-Stars lost the game to the Globetrotters like the Washington Generals did in the past, everyone was a winner at the USF Sun Dome, particularly the fans and families that were in attendance. The Globetrotters were winners for a second time this evening as they made new fans for future generations to come.

If you hear that the Globetrotters are going to come to your area, I would highly suggest taking you and yours to go see them.  You won’t be disappointed as the fun, the laughs, and the smiles will be well worth the price of admission.

Charlie may get an open look (Travis Failey photo)

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Categories: Basketball, Sports
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