Where basketball meets the Holocaust: Dan Grunfeld on his family’s unique history

Dan Grunfeld (right), author of a new book (left) about his family's legacy with basketball and the Holocaust. (Supplied photos)

Former pro basketball player Dan Grunfeld spent years confirming this one basic fact: that his father, Ernie Grunfeld, an acclaimed NBA player-turned-executive, is the only son of Holocaust survivors to play in any of the Big Four pro leagues.

As far as he can tell, it’s true. And that unique situation, in which generational trauma mixed with generational athleticism, fuelled his book, By the Grace of the Game: The Holocaust, a Basketball Legacy, and an Unprecedented American Dream, coming out later this month.

Grunfeld joins The CJN’s sports podcast, Menschwarmers, to discuss these topics and more.

Check out By the Grace of the Game on westsidebooks.com and follow Grunfeld on Twitter @dan_grunfeld.


Menschwarmers is hosted by James Hirsh and Gabe Pulver, and produced and edited by Michael Fraiman. Our intro music is by Coby Lipovitch, and our outro music is “Organ Grinder Swing” by chēēZ π. This show is a member of The CJN Podcast Network—find more great Jewish podcasts at thecjn.ca. Follow the Menschwarmers on Twitter @menschwarmers, and The CJN Podcast Network on Twitter @cjnpodcasts.