The Basketball Diaries Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. Why does Lefty leave his players in the Bronx?

Lefty leaves his players in the Bronx, because the boys order more burgers than they are allowed. Lefty does not have enough money to pay for them. It causes a scene, and Lefty is embarrassed.

2. Why does Pedro stay home from the basketball game?

Pedro stays home from the basketball game because he is embarrassed that his friends saw his mom on the street hustling. Herbie kept teasing him about it.

3. Why does Jim predict a gang war soon?

Jim predicts a gang war, because Pedro's big brother beats up Herbie for teasing him. Then Herbie's big brother and his boys beat up Pedro's big brother.

4. Compare Jim's basketball team to the team at Riverdale High.

Jim's team is lower class, "all poor and shaggy." They probably wear old uniforms and are not as well-groomed. The team at Riverdale has nice uniforms, they do "perfect warm-up drills." Their parents even cheer for the opposing team.

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