Basketball was front and center at Par’s post-preem bash for “Coach Carter” Thursday at the Highlands, where there was a full court plus dozens of balls throughout serving areas. Though no pickup games broke out, the event elicited plenty of sports talk.
“I played basketball obsessively until I was 30,” noted Samuel L. Jackson, who portrayed the titular Ken Carter. “But I’m still a big coach from the couch, so I was truly in my element doing this part. We had the players going hard all the time.”
Jackson conceded he didn’t take part in any games with the players other than turning in respectable performances in the shooting game horse, adding, “I’m a golfer now.”
Surveying the court, Par’s Sherry Lansing allowed she used to beat her brother in backyard games of horse, adding, “I was pretty competitive back then, plus I was tall.”
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The preem benefited the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Foundation, drawing Aaron, fellow baseball Hall of Famers Ernie Banks and Dave Winfield, basketballers Rick Fox and Lisa Leslie along with Par’s Donald De Line, Rob Friedman, MTV Films topper Van Toffler and Spike Lee.