Pulse: 60-Second Critic: Biography: The Mogul: Eddie Gottlieb, Philadelphia Sports Legend and Pro Basketball Pioneer

The Mogul: Eddie Gottlieb, Philadelphia Sports Legend and Pro Basketball Pioneer
By Rich Westcott
(Temple University Press; $35)

Even the most casual Philly sports fan knows the name Eddie Gottlieb. The owner of the Warriors — Philly’s first pro basketball team — didn’t just bring the NBA to Philadelphia; he brought Philly to the NBA, via Overbrook star Wilt Chamberlain, who signed with the Warriors in 1959. In this biography, Westcott shares the lesser-known story behind one of the city’s serious sports influentials, tracing Gottlieb’s ascent from his early days with a South Philly Jewish basketball team to his time as a promoter in Negro League baseball to his 1972 induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame. And while those casual sports fans may not have the patience for Westcott’s painstaking detail, the book does offer intriguing historical insights on one man’s contribution to Philly’s legendary obsession with sports. Grade: B