Chris Paul, a native of Clemmons (and a star at West Forsyth High School and Wake Forest University), was going to play as a ringer on a men's league team at Forsyth Country Day School.
The Journal photographer got there early and took a shot of Paul in bearded "disguise." I could tell who he was, and I suspect anyone else could, too.
During the game, Paul dominated against college and pro players, including lots of local guys who were then playing professionally overseas. The 6-foot Paul had about 34 points and 15 rebounds, and he did at least one backwards dunk against taller players.
But the most impressive thing to me was the passing. I couldn't keep assists, but Paul constantly found teammates for layups or open shots. At one point, he passed under a defender's armpit for a layup.
Afterward, a bunch of people went up to say hi. I waited politely. When I approached him, he waited on me, not trying to get away. He knew me from the many games I'd covered at Joel Coliseum, I guess.
I got a great interview, and he went up into the stands to greet his fans. I haven't seen him since (except on TV), but he was a great guy that night.
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More blog entries by Tom Gillispie
• Advice for be and would-be novelists
Anecdotes by Tom Gillispie
From The Dog Blog
From The Auto Racing Journal
(a book of great stories about the Intimidator)
(the book of great NASCAR stories)