Slam dunk: Harlem Globetrotters bounce into Huntington CenterWritten by Vicki L. Kroll | | firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s that time of year when the big man in red — make that the big men in red, white and blue — come to town.
The team is led by a flying moose. Alex “Moose” Weekes is in his second season with the Harlem Globetrotters. He doesn’t remember who gave him that nickname.
“It’s not because I look like a moose; I definitely don’t. I don’t smell like one either,” Weekes joked during a call from a media tour in Grand Forks, N.D.
“When I play with my hair out, they say that when I’m in the air, my hair looks like moose antlers, and they kept on saying, ‘Moose, Moose!’ The more I contested it, the more it stuck, so I’m Moose.
“And Moose is on the loose, and you can be sure to see the Moose getting loose when we come to Toledo.”
The Harlem Globetrotters will take on the Washington Generals at 2 p.m. Dec. 29 at the Huntington Center. Tickets range from $19 to $95. The team will also appear at Bowling Green State University’s Stroh Center at 7 p.m. Dec. 30.
Fans can call some of the shots by going to harlemglobetrotters.com to vote for what rules the rivals will play by during the game.
There’s hot-hand jersey where each team passes a shirt around and the player wearing it scores double points on baskets. Make or miss means just that: If a player misses, he or she takes a seat. And the trick-shot challenge can net five points for the team that sinks it — or five points to the opponent if missed.
“Our most popular thus far has been the trick shot,” Weekes said. “And unlike last year where we had the four-point shot as a rule, the four-point shot will be active throughout the entire game, so that’s a cool new rule making for more excitement, more high-scoring games.”
The 6-foot-8 forward knows all about high scoring.
“If [my teammates] throw [the ball] over the backboard, I might just have to go get it; you never know how high I’m going to jump. It’s just something that you’ve got to see in action,” Weekes said.
“That’s why I like the hot-hand jersey because for the length that I have to go through to dunk some of these basketballs, I think they should definitely be worth four points.”
Moose’s trick shot?
“My trick shot is so challenging that I seldom perform it,” he said and laughed. “I spin the ball off my finger and hit it off my elbow up to the backboard and then into the goal.”
Known for aerial artistry, the 29-year-old Middle Tennessee State University graduate is happy he scored a spot on the fabled team.
“For 88 years consecutively, we’ve been a team and touring the world, spreading goodwill; we’re known as goodwill ambassadors,” he said. “To put smiles on people’s faces using basketball as a vehicle to embrace these cultural, economic, social barriers, it’s really an honor and a privilege to be part of something with such a rich tradition as a Harlem Globetrotter.”