Blaxploitation And Sports

 

Some of the greatest moments in sports history happened during the 1970‘s, like the New York Knickerbockers winning the NBA championship. Hopefully they will make it to another championship before I collect Social Security…LMOL!!!

Some of the coolest cats were playin’ the game back in the day. Walt “Clyde” Frazier, Wilt Chamberlain and Dr. J exuded Blaxploitation.

Julius Erving sported one of the best Fros in the league and found some success with his film “The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh”.

Clyde dressed like he was Superfly and Wilt was on his way to mackin’ 20,000 women.

There were many other great NBA players that adorned the league and other sports as well during this time.

Arthur Ashe was one bad ass on the court. With his grace, style and power, he let his opponents know who was in command.

We can’t not continue unless we mention Baseball’s Hank Aaron and Vida Blue, along with many other brothers who played the sport hard during the 1970’s and didn’t have to take PED’s (performance enhancing drugs) to compete.

Soccer’s Pele was a man who defied all odds in a sport at a time in which there were few Black players.

Now let’s talk about, that other great American sport, Football. There were a number of Black players who ran off the field to the nearest Hollywood studio for a shot at stardom, such as: Rosie Grier, “Mean” Joe Green, Gene Washington, Mercury Morris, Lem Barney, Willie Lanier and Carl Eller, Jim Brown, Fred Williamson and Bernie Casey to name a few.

Greene, Washington, Morris, Barney, Lanier and Eller had some success in “The Black Six”.

Rosie Grier starred in the “The Thing with Two Heads”. But it was Brown, Williamson and Casey that tried to take Hollywood by storm. Between them they appeared in 50 or more films. Fred Williamson not only starred in his films but he later went on to write, produce and direct them.

With so many Black athletes successfully crossing over into film during the 1970‘s you’d think Hollywood would have produced more Black sports films.

The Museum of UnCut Funk pays homage to all the 1970’s athletes who wanted to be Hollywood superstars.

 

“aka Cassius Clay” (1970)

  • Starring: Muhammad Ali
  • Tagline: See the punches that won the championship and the ideals that lost it!
  • Plot: This documentary combines black-and-white with color photography to tell the story of heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali, formerly known as Cassius Clay before his religious conversion to Islam.

 

The Great White Hope (1970)

  • Starring: James Earl Jones
  • Tagline: He could beat any white man in the world. He just couldn’t beat all of them.
  • Plot: A Black champion boxer and his white female companion struggle to survive while the white boxing establishment looks for ways to knock him down.

 

The Bingo Long Traveling All Stars & Motor Kings (1976)

  • Starring: Billy Dee Williams, James Earl Jones and Richard Pryor
  • Tagline: They put the ball in baseball.
  • Plot: In hopes of competing in the Negro National League, an Black baseball star puts together his own highly theatrical team.

 

The Greatest (1977)

  • Starring: Muhammad Ali
  • Tagline: The story of a legend that took the world by storm.
  • Plot: The Greatest covers Ali’s life from his “Cassius Clay” days to the celebrated Ali vs George Foreman bout. Along the way, the film focuses on Ali’s conversion to Islam and his potentially career breaking decision not to serve in the Army.

 

The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh (1979)

  • Starring: Julius “Dr. J Erving
  • Tagline: As jocks they were jokes…
  • Plot: The Pittsburgh Pythons are the worst team in the NBA. Most of the players think the reason why they are in the cellar is because of Moses Guthrie, who they feel is monopolizing the spotlight. So when they walk out, the towel boy, Tyronne decides to consult with an astrologist, Mona. They in turn decide to hold open tryouts and they only select players who are born under the same zodiac sign as Guthrie, Pisces.

Featured Movie Poster Art is part of The Museum of UnCut Funk Collection.

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