Archive for July, 2009

Gunnin’ for that #1 Spot

So I was messing around on Hulu tonight and for whatever reason I clicked on the Documentary section. I stumbled upon what is quite possibly my new favorite basketball movie.

Gunnin’ for the #1 Spot is a basketball documentary that was filmed in 2006.  Camera crews follow around 8 players that range from freshmen to seniors in high school during the first weekend in September.  Michael Beasley, Brandon Jennings, Lance Stephenson, Donte Green, Kevin Love, Kyle Singler, Jerryd Bayless, and Tyreke Evans were all selected to play in the first ever Boost Mobile Elite 24 classic in Rucker park.

The film does a short background story about each of  the 8 players above, provides commentary by different ratings/rankings  gurus and AAU coaches, and follows the 24 players that played in the showcase during their weekend in the Big Apple.

I’m telling you, if you like basketball at all, you’re going to like this documentary. At the very least you’ll enjoy the stories and the classic pics from Beasley’s childhood.

I was actually supposed to be in the documentary.  My family planned a trip to New York so I could look at some schools in the northeast.  I committed to Furman in July and it turned into a family vacation.   I had read about the Elite 24 game in Slam magazine and my dad and I were planning on going. I wanted to see Chris Allen (in this pic he’s actually wearing his Elite 24 hoody), Scenario Hillman and my boy (wink, wink) J.J. Hickson represent for Georgia.  It doesn’t look like Chris Allen used my #20 to its full potential. He missed two dunks in the documentary.

Spoiler alert: They started the game 2 hours early because there was a possibility of rain.  They just finished handing JJ his Co-MVP trophy when we walked up a few minutes before the scheduled start time of 7.  It was pretty disappointing. If they had started it on time I would have definitely been in the movie. It would have been impossible to miss my Dad and I in the crowd at Rucker park.

I might be slightly biased since I’m the same age as a bunch of the guys in the film and I’ve been around them and played with/against some of them. I think what is cool about the documentary is that it takes you back to before they were college and NBA superstars.

Imagine that lame ESPN documentary about Sebastian Telfair. Now imagine it with actual superstars and imagine it being 50 times better than it was and you have Gunnin’ for that #1 Spot:

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  • Shame on you LeBron

    I gave “The King” a pass when he bailed on postgame handshakes and even when he skipped the post game press conference because I can relate to the disappointment that comes with losing (13-47 career record at Furman).  But I cannot begin to tell you how disappointing it was for me to read this story.

    If somehow you haven’t heard about the latest LeBron story aka “LebronGate”,  you can read about it here.

    To me this highlights one of the biggest problems in basketball today.  NBA basketball is obsessed with showmanship and dunking is everything.  I’m guessing you’ve heard this one before but last time I checked, a dunk is only worth 2 points.

    By covering up this dunk, Nike and LeBron James are sending out a terrible message to the next generation of basketball players.  These players are already being corrupted by AAU but thats another story entirely.  Now you have arguably the best (second best?) basketball player on the planet ordering the destruction of tapes of him playing help defense and getting dunked on.

    LeBron can’t be that insecure right? Oh wait…Check out his summer attire.

    The thing is, I’ve played with teammates that would literally run away from a possible dunker.  I don’t know if anything makes me more mad on the basketball court.  If you do what you are supposed to and play help defense, you are going to get dunked on. It is a fact.  Grow up and get over it.  I’m personally in between the camp that thinks you should try to body slam somebody before they put you on a poster and the camp that avoids a poster by running out of bounds.  I’ve probably been dunked on 5 times.  I’m not saying that you should be proud of getting dunked on.  You just have to tip your hat to the guy that dunked on you and worry about the next play.

    If you aren’t willing to play help defense and risk getting dunked on, I don’t want you on my team.

    The only way LeBron can save face in this situation is if the turn the tapes into one of their Witness commercials and somehow communicate the fact that it is OK to play help defense and get dunked on.

    And oh yeah, WHY IN THE WORLD did the guy videoing stay after he caught the dunk on tape. Was he expecting to film something bigger than LeBron getting dunked on by a college kid?????

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  • Summer continues

    I’ve been saying it for years: “I want my brother to be better than me”.

    Its easy to say that when you are 4 or 5 inches taller than your brother and he is in middle school and you are playing in college.  Then all of a sudden he is starting in the state championship game as a freshman.  Then someone takes a picture at your sister’s graduation and he looks 4 inches taller than you. Then you find out that somehow even though you are the same height, he has a bigger wingspan by 3 or 4 inches. Then he introduces you to Coach Mike Kryzewski.

    Then you start taking things really seriously.

    The other day, I rode up to Duke with my dad and Evan.  It was an unreal experience.  We got to meet with Coach K and then Coach Wojo and Coach Collins gave us a great tour of the campus and the facilities.  Evan was able to play with the team in their practice facility and meet the guys.  I went on Heatin’ Up again to compare Duke’s facilities with UGA’s.  Basically what I said was that the facilities are almost identical.  Some people will think that Duke must not be on top of their game if they are being compared to Georgia.  That’s not the case.  Its just that Georgia is taking the steps necessary to become a program to be reckoned with.  I can’t stress enough how excited I am to be a part of Georgia basketball.

    Other than the trip to Duke, I’ve been working out in the weight room and in the gym doing ballhandling, shooting, and agility drills.  I’ve also been playing ESPN’s streak for the cash. If you haven’t heard of it, I want to warn you that you might get completely hooked. Its simple -  ESPN puts up around 10 games a day and you can pick 1 game at a time.  You try to build the longest streak possible.  If you have one of the top 7 longest streaks at the end of the year you get to go to ESPN for a chance to win $1,000,000.  I can play because it is free, but if I somehow won I would not be able to collect my cash due to the NCAA.  Basically no chance of that happnening anyway.  If you want to join my group and give it a shot, click here.

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