SLAM Dunk: Remembering the beginning of one of basketball's iconic publications

Lou Capozzola/NBA

Before the basketball internet took shape, there was SLAM magazine. Bold, unapologetic and willing to tell stories that weren't being told, SLAM was a cultural force that shaped basketball coverage for the next generation.

SB Nation Reebok Retro Week

This is the only Drive & Kick that should have Outkast playing low in the background. SLAM stalwart Russ Bengtson joins the podcast to relive the glory days of the publication.

Among the topics discussed:

  • "You guys have to be insane. You started a basketball magazine after Michael Jordan retired."
  • Why Stephon Marbury was the ultimate Slam player.
  • The Allen Iverson cover and other iconic moments.
  • The time Russ spent the day at Kevin Garnett's house and had to wake him up the next morning for an interview.
  • Working with Scoop Jackson and what the imitators failed to pick up about his style.
  • The. Ricky Davis. Story.
  • The generational shift from MJ to Kobe to LeBron.
  • The infamous Rasheed Wallace post-game interview when Sheed would only answer questions from Lang Whitaker.
  • "You got stuff like The Starters on NBATV. That's like if you took the conversations in the Slam office and put it on TV."
  • Russ talks about the state of the media game and SLAM legacy. "It was the forefather of a lot of this stuff. It was the idea of watching games with your friends."   

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