Members of the Harlem Globetrotters performed at the United Supermarkets Arena on Monday as one of many stops in their world tour.
They began the even with a meet and greet called the magic pass, where kids could meet a Globetrotter, learn tricks and hang out with the players, according to the Globetrotters website.
DJ Gregory Thomas said he was familiar with Texas Tech University before coming to the United Supermarkets Arena.
“It’s great to be back in Texas; it’s actually where I’m from,” Thomas said. “Texas Tech is where my fraternity was founded.”
The event featured a competitive tic-tac-toe race where contestants had to make layups in order to fill up the board. Then, of course, the Globetrotters mascot, Globie, performed a dance solo before the competitions continued with a dunk contest. Finally, different sets of contestants competed in layup and beach ball free-throw competition for various prizes.
The Globetrotters entered the arena with a flair for the dramatic, taking the time to introduce each player by their nickname and giving them the time for a brief dance move highlighting the personality behind each of the players.
The Globetrotters followed their introductions with a showcase of their “magic circle,” highlighting the various tricks they were able to execute.
The game kicked off with several hijinks such as appealing to a small child over a foul, a player getting hit so hard he lost his pants, and bringing kids onto the court for a quick tutorial on how to spin a basketball.
The first quarter ended with a slam dunk resulting in a score of 28 for the Globetrotters and 24 for the Generals.
The second quarter started with a brief dance solo featuring an inflated Globie and most of the Globetrotters. After a few more minutes of jokes and tricks, Nathaniel “Big Easy” Lofton, a Globetrotter player, took one of the families in the audience and went through their music history.
The halftime bell rang after a few minutes, ending the half with a score of 45 for the Globetrotters and 32 for the Generals.
The halftime show included a performance from the Wild Cadettes from New Mexico and a group photo with both the Globetrotters and the Cadettes.
The third quarter had similar skits, one highlighting a Globetrotter who could spin four basketballs at the same time. The third period ended in similar fashion with the Globetrotters taking 75 points and the Generals taking 45.
The fourth quarter had the most trickery of all as both the Globetrotters and the Generals “rewound” the clock and score to change the results right before the game ended. Luckily for the Globetrotters, Big Easy came back in to save the game 60 to 56.
Jasmin Esterada, an attendee at the event, said she has watched the Globetrotters perform in the past.
“This is our second time coming; we came last year as well,” Esterada said. “We almost got every signature, we just missed one.”
The Globetrotters aren’t all about show though; they also give back to the communities they perform for. One of the main ways they do that is by contributing to charities involving children who have mental illnesses, Big Easy said.
“One in five kids suffer from a mental health disorder, but only 50 percent are talking about it,” Big Easy said. “We are hoping to change that.”