El Paso Times
Back to the Special Events Center.
Although his playing time was sparse and his time in the spotlight even thinner, McCall was the crowd favorite. He was back on the floor he played on as a high school star at El Paso High. Back on the floor that he starred on as a UTEP Miner.
"As far as playing, I never thought I would be back on this floor," McCall said."It's a lot different."
Announced to the crowd as one of the highest jumpers in basketball and a standout of the Western Athletic Conference, McCall received a minute-long standing ovation. He returned the favor to the crowd of about 6,000 people by applauding the fans.
His job is slam dunking and McCall missed his first jam in the pregame warmup
But his second ripped through the net and brought the crowd to its feet.
His third was reminiscent of the WAC Conference Championship game two years ago in the Special Events Center. A Globetrotter teammate bounced the ball off the floor and McCall went up for it and stuffed it. Two years ago, former Miner Henry Hall did the bouncing and McCall the stuffing against Hawaii.
McCall did not play in the first quarter of the game against the Washington Generals.
But in the second quarter he saw some playing time and wasted little time getting in his first dunk. McCall played some more in the third quarter, adding two free throws, and two more spectacular dunks, "That's mainly my job, dunking," he said.
He finished with eight points. He also drew one foul that drew the ire of the fans who booed the referees.
While McCall's job was to thrill the crowd with backboard-shaking slam dunks, it was Sweet" Lou Dunbar's job to thrill the crowd with his fun-loving sense of humor.
The Globetrotters did their routine gags - the water bucket with confetti, throwing water on the referee, the lopsided and flat basketballs, the dancing with fans, the joking with the children. All put smiles on the face of the young and the old.
Known as the "Clown Prince of Basketball," Dunbar has been entertaining Globetrotters crowds for more than 20 years.
He has the crowd in the palm of his hand from the opening introductions.
But McCall, just a rookie to the squad, did not have much spotlight time because he has not been accustomed to the routines. He also has no gags of his own.
But it may not be long.
"When I'm in my hotel room, I work on my tricks," he said.
Oh by the way, the Globetrotters improved their all-time record to 17,853-330 with an 68-59 victor over the Washington Generals, a traveling team that provides competition for the Globetrotters.