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February 16, 1990 - Image 54

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1990-02-16

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

SPORTS Imm."1"."'"""ml

Things only Women can do:

Beating Them

Continued from preceding page

GPowder their nose in the ladies' room

cN). Become mothers

"Welcome to the Day Dome,"
read one large hand-made
sign in the stands.
Understandably, media in-
terest in Henefeld has been
high, particularly among
Jewish publications. Israeli
correspondents based in New
York and Washington were at
the St. John's game to do
stories. Sid Frankel, a Water-
bury, Conn., butcher and bas-
ketball nut, collects every-
thing written on Henefeld
and sends it to a paper in Tel
Aviv.
Nor has the handsome, pos-
sibly future NBA player, es-
caped the notice of Jewish
mothers in eastern Connec-
ticut. Reportedly he had more
invitations to spend the hol-
idays than the local rabbi. On
one recent occasion, a mother
approached the reserved
Henefeld with her daughter
in tow. "Here, take my
daughter," she said. "And if
you don't want her, take me."

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I

Henefeld was embarrassed
by the incident, but team-
mates who witnessed the
scene loved it. "Oh, Lovey,"
they sang out, "Lovey Dovey."
Being The Day can have its
downside, too.
Henefeld, who will be 22 in
June, grew up in Ramat-
Hasharon, Israel, which is
located about 15 minutes
from Tel Aviv. His mother
died when he was 6, and he
was raised by his father, Zeev,
and his sister, Anat, who is
four years older and a student
studying language and liter-
ature at Tel Aviv University.
"Yes, it was a sad time,"
Henefeld says, "I remember
my mother, but I was very
young when she died."
Although Henefeld is re-
served and shows little out-
ward emotion on and off the
court, when he talks about
his father, and when he talks
about his country, the affec-
tion and pride he feels for
each is apparent.
"My father worked so hard
and he also raised two kids,"
he says. "I think my father is
just great."
Zeev Henefeld, who is an
engineer and runs a small
metal factory, is 6-foot-3,
which is tall for an Israeli,
and according to Nadav
played a little basketball in
his youth. He has yet to see
his son play in America.
"He's working, but I really
hope he can come over and
see me play here," Nadav
says. "It's getting near the
end of the season. We talk
about him coming all the

Jim Shea covers the
University of Connecticut
Huskies for the Hartford
Courant.

time. I really want him to
come."
Nadav began playing bas-
ketball at age 9. He was taller
than most of his friends and
picked up the game quickly.
There was no rusting hoop in
the Henefeld driveway, his
skills being honed at the local
athletic club. The organized
games at the club, as opposed
to playground ball, helped
mold the sound fundamental
style that is evident in his
play today.
After graduating from high
school, Henefeld was inducted
into the army to begin serv-
ing his mandatory three
years of active duty. Everyone
in Israel, men and women,

"His game is
unspectacular, but
he does things
that other people
don't do.
Rebounding, he's a
clinic." — Jim
Calhoun

must serve in the military
and then remain on reserve
status until age 55.
"In the United States, if a
kid is a good athlete in high
school, he's thinking about
what college he wants to go
to," says Hoffman, who was
born in Brooklyn but lived in
Israel for a year. "If he's a
basketball player he's looking
at the Big East, or if he's a
football player maybe it's the
Big 10. In Israel, that same
18-year-old athlete is looking
to get into one of the elite
military units.
"That is what you are
judged on in Israel. When you
go for a job, people aren't in-
terested in what college you
went to — unless there are
educational requirements —
they want to know what unit
you were in. If, for example,
you were a commando, you
can do no wrong."
Although much has been
made of Henefeld's military
experience, some portraying
him as the second coming of
Moshe Dayan, in truth, Hene-
feld patrolled a desk. Prob-
ably the closest thing he had
to a rank was small forward.
"I went through basic train-
ing, but my job in the army
was not that of a regular
soldier," Henefeld says. "I was
allowed to play basketball, go
to practice every day, travel
abroad with the national
team. There is more than one
way to represent Israel. The
government and the army
understand this and a certain
number of athletes are
allowed to play."
Henefeld says there is no

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