Tag Archives: New York Knicks

Jew of the Week: Aulcie Perry

Aulcie Perry with Israeli kids at his summer camp

Aulcie Perry (b. 1950) was born in New Jersey and went to university in Florida on a basketball scholarship. Between 1974 and 1976, Perry played for a number of professional basketball teams, and was signed by the New York Knicks at one point. After being discovered by an Israeli scout, Perry signed with Maccabi Tel Aviv and moved to the Holy Land. In his first year, he led Maccabi to its first Euro Cup championship. He would go on to play nine seasons with Maccabi, helping them win six Israeli Cups and two Euro Cups. Meanwhile, Perry fell in love with Israel and the Jewish people, and decided to formally convert. He took on the new name Elisha ben Avraham. Unfortunately, Perry got into some drug troubles and would be arrested in New York. He spent several years in prison before returning to Israel. Perry worked hard to clean up his image and become a positive role model. To this day, he sponsors a basketball camp for Israeli kids, and coaches a Maccabi Tel Aviv youth team. The rest of the time he manages a Burger Ranch (Israel’s McDonald’s). Perry is credited with sparking a basketball craze in Israel, and making the sport popular there. He also paved the way for many future basketball stars to sign with Israeli teams, including Anthony Parker and Amar’e Stoudemire in recent years. The term “Aulcie Perry” is still an Israeli slang for a very tall person.

Simchat Torah/Shemini Atzeret Begins Tonight! Chag Sameach!

Words of the Week

When G-d desired to create man, Truth said: “He should not be created, for he will be full of lies.” Kindness said: “He should be created, for he will be full of kindness.”
– Midrash Rabbah, Beresheet 8:5

Jew of the Week: Dolph Schayes

Dolph Schayes - Basketball Superstar

Dolph Schayes – Basketball Superstar

Adolph Schayes (b. 1928) was born in New York to Romanian-Jewish immigrants. Growing up playing basketball, he led his high school team to the championships, then earned an engineering degree while playing college basketball. Schayes was drafted by both the New York Knicks and Tri-City Blackhawks in 1948, though he ended up playing in Syracuse, winning the 1949 NBA Rookie of the Year. His height (6’8″) and high-arcing shot (nicknamed “Sputnik”) made him a powerful player. Most amazingly, Schayes once broke his arm, but continued to play the entire season in a cast! He learned to play with his weaker arm, making him even more deadly on the court. Year after year, Schayes dominated the league stats, set records, and led his team to be NBA Champions in 1955. In 1961 he became the first player to reach 30,000 PRA (points, rebounds and assists). He retired having been a twelve-time All-Star, with records for number of games played, both attempted and successful foul shots, and second overall in scoring. He is a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame and Jewish Sports Hall of Fame, and was ranked one of the 50 best NBA players of all time. He also won an NBA Coach of the Year award in 1966, and strangely, once served as both a coach and a player in the same season. Patriarch of a talented sports family, Dolph’s son Danny Schayes played 18 seasons in the NBA, while his granddaughters won silver medals on the U.S. Volleyball team, and his grandson is a gold medalist relay sprinter. Schayes now works as a real estate developer in the Syracuse area.

UPDATE: Sadly, Dolph Schayes passed away on December 10, 2015.


Words of the Week

…a scattered people, dispersed over the world, enslaved, persecuted, scorned by all nations, nonetheless preserving its characteristics, its laws, its customs, its patriotic love of the early social union, when all ties with it seem broken. The Jews provide us with an astonishing spectacle: the laws of Numa, Lycurgus, Solon are dead; the very much older laws of Moses are still alive. Athens, Sparta, Rome have perished and no longer have children left on earth; Zion, destroyed, has not lost its children.
– Jean-Jacques Rousseau