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"Air" Ball! Harlem Globetrotters "Chute" Their Way Back To Hall of Fame

Beloved mascot Globie skydives in to present the Hall with team ball from Space Shuttle Atlantis mission—the first basketball in space



THE BALL FROM OUTER SPACE: L-R) Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno, Harlem Globetrotters mascot Globie, and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Vice Presidents Paul Lambert and Scott Zuffelato pose with the Globetrotters team basketball that was aboard the NASA Space Shuttle Atlantis mission to the Hubble Telescope in June. Globie presented the ball along with a commemorative plaque from the Atlantis crew outside the Basketball Hall of Fame on August 6 after Globie parachuted from 3,000 feet onto beautiful grounds of the basketball museum to make the official presentation to the Hall of Fame, where the Globetrotters are one of only six teams ever to be inducted.August 6, 2009 (Springfield, MA) – The Harlem Globetrotters Mascot, Globie, parachuted down from an airplane 3,000 feet above the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and landed on the grounds of the shrine of basketball to present the Hall with the team’s signature red, white and blue ball that accompanied NASA’s Atlantis shuttle crew on its 11-day mission to service the Hubble Space Telescope. This marked the first time in history a team had ever sent a basketball into space.


The Harlem Globetrotters, one of only six teams ever to be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, are also the first basketball team to have sent a basketball into space; previously, NASA has taken pieces of historical and pop culture significance into space in their 50-plus-year history, but had never before taken with it the memorabilia of a basketball team. A Spalding Harlem Globetrotters ball was put on board the space shuttle Atlantis on May 11th, which marked the day of liftoff for the fifth and final mission to the Hubble Space Telescope during its 11-day mission. The basketball has been presented to the Hall of Fame for permanent display in the Harlem Globetrotters team exhibit.