Globetrotters promise hoops of fun

ENTERTAINER: Herbert LangHERBERT “Flight Time” Lang has promised a mixed bag of new tricks and old-school favourites when he and the Harlem Globetrotters touch down at Newcastle Entertainment Centre tonight.
Nanjing Night Net

The world-famous Globetrotters are midway through their first Australian tour since 2004 but this is Flight Time’s first visit Down Under, despite being in his 15th year with the team.

Flight Time and his teammates were enjoying some down time on a day off in Sydney yesterday after wowing crowds in Brisbane, Gold Coast, Townsville and Cairns last week. They will head to Melbourne, Canberra, Adelaide and Hobart after playing in Newcastle tonight.

“We haven’t been here since 2004 and for myself, I’ve been with the team now for 15 years and I missed the last two times that they came here so for me, this is my first time, and it’s been pretty much everything that they’ve advertised,” Flight Time told the Newcastle Herald.

“I can’t believe it’s been so long since we’ve been here. The tour’s been going great, attendances have been great, so hopefully it won’t be that long again before we get a chance to come back.

“It seems like you’ve missed us, according to the way people have been turning out so far. It’s always nice to know that you’re liked, and to be a part of a team that’s been around for so long.

“Coming to places like Australia, places around the world that you wouldn’t get to come to with a normal job, for me it’s a blessing, and I enjoy every minute of it.”

A fan, and star, of reality television, the 37-year-old guard from Brinkley, Arkansas, has appeared on The Amazing Race, Hell’s Kitchen and The Bachelorette, but basketball is his passion and he has never tired of entertaining fans with his sublime skills.

“We get a chance to go out on the court and entertain every night. Once we start the crowd participation, it’s a different show every night because you never know how people are going to respond,” he said.

“With social media the way it is, we can go on Twitter and Instagram and see what people think about us, and for the most part, we always get positive feedback. It’s always nice to hear how good you are.”

The International Elite All-Stars have replaced long-time whipping boys the Washington Generals as the Globetrotters’ opponents on this tour.

“We’ve been breaking ankles, and almost breaking backboards as well,” he said.

“This is our 87th year of touring the world, and the thing about the Globetrotters is, everybody has a Globetrotters story. We do a lot of crowd participation and bringing people out on to the court.

“You might see some water thrown on somebody, kids out there spinning basketballs, a lot of dancing, high-flying slam dunks, and great family fun. We’re all about making memories that will last a life-time.

“We’re a great family show. I always tell people that even if you don’t like basketball, you can still come to a Harlem Globetrotters game and have a great time.”

Globetrotters stars “Cheese” Chisholm, “Moose” Weekes and 224cm Jermaine “Stretch” Middleton, the third-tallest player in team history, will be at Newcastle Basketball Stadium at Broadmeadow at 4pm today to showcase their skills to junior basketballers preparing for the Seaside Classic at Port Macquarie this weekend.

A limited number of tickets remain for the show tonight, starting at 7pm, and they are available through Ticketek on a two-for-one basis.

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