At the same time, Nissalke said, “he had dignity, a true gentleman off the court.”
Upset over Beaty’s physical play, Nissalke once told reporters, “If Zelmo did on the street what he does in a basketball game, he’d be arrested.”
But even then it never became personal.
“When I’d see him after that,” Nissalke said, "he’d just kind of laugh.”
The Stars’ success brought the Intermountain West a pride it had never known. For a city considered fly-over territory, winning an ABA championship was a major civic boost. Beaty, Boone and Willie Wise were small-market darlings in a maverick league.
In a 1996 program commemorating 100 years of sports memories in Utah, Pattison recalled Beaty telling him, “You should remember those days. They were good to us. And they can’t take them away from us.”
They can’t take the Z from Utah, either.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter: @therockmonster; Blog: Rockmonster Unplugged
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