Saturday, March 31, 2012

Stephon Marbury: Reinvention to Redemption, wins title with the Beijing Ducks

stephon marbury, beijing ducks
In 2010 Stephon Marbury made his way into China after 13 years in the NBA. Considering the unflattering record of former NBA talent dieting on humble pie in lesser global leagues, noone expected much of Marbury's stint in China.
Marbury is breathing fire in China (May 24, 2010)
In only two months in China, the former NBA bad boy Stephon Marbury has shed his self-centred, spoiled image and wowed fans with his dazzling play. The question now is: will he stay for a new season? The former New York Knicks point guard, now of the Shanxi Brave Dragons, is the biggest foreign star ever to play in the Chinese Basketball Association and one of several American players enlivening the 15-year-old league.
The rehabilitation of Marbury's image began when he started endorsing an economical range of Basketball sneakers as an antidote to the overpricing and overhyping going on in the market
Marbury Courts Hoops Fans in China
Mr. Marbury has drawn large crowds at games and at one two-hour autograph signing, Mr. Marbury sold more than $30,000 in shoes.

Mr. Marbury, known as "Ma Bu Li" to Chinese fans, has "created a different business model and is setting the tone for the future,"
Marbury's redemption was made complete after 3 years in the Chinese league as he led his Beijing Ducks to the title scoring 41 points in the clinching game.
Video: Stephon Marbury wins the (Chinese Basketball Association) championship
When former NBA All-Star Stephon Marbury accepted a contract to play in the Chinese Basketball Association in 2009, he was a few weeks removed from an odd and at-times frightening online meltdown, and a half-decade removed from basketball relevance. Based on the scope of his career arc at the time, it was just assumed that Marbury would grow sick of the expectations, and flame out overseas as he had during his fitful runs in Minnesota, New Jersey, Phoenix and New York.
VIDEO: Beijing Ducks and Stephon Marbury become Champions

Friday, March 30, 2012

Slam Magazine: Jeremy Lin. Ricky Rubio and Kevin Love.

slam magazine, jeremy lin, new york knicksslam magazine, kevin love, ricky rubio, minnesota timberwolves
I called a Lin/Rubio cover a while ago. I imagined it would be a photoshoot of the two together and how they were taking the League by storm.

Slam Magazine as always leading the basketball zeitgeist had it one better. By giving "Love" to the success of the Timberwolves core and giving attention to the biggest breakout in the league who has seemingly been unloved. While Linsanity has steadied as the Knicks adopt a new system and the Rubio show goes on ice for the Year, Kevin Love is still ruling the world. Imagine that.
SLAM 157: On Sale Now!
You could make a case—and I guess I’m about to—that these two covers are the most randomly paired covers in SLAM cover history.

That’s mostly my fault.

This all started a year or so ago, back when Kevin Love was in the midst of that epic run of 53 straight double doubles. I’ve known Kevin since his Basketball Diary days, and we’ve stayed in touch since, a symbiotic relationship in which I hit up Kevin for game tickets and he bugs me about getting on the cover of SLAM. At some point late last season, in an exchange that eventually went semi-public on Twitter, I got the blessing of EIC Ben Osborne and told Kevin that, if he could somehow average 20 and 15 for the season, we’d guarantee him a cover.

Kevin apparently thought we were serious.
Update: Jeremy Lin is out till May with a torn meniscus. Two of the hottest stories of the year extinguished through injury. Dang!

- Top 5 Knick reactions to Jeremy Lin's surprise highlights
- Lin-sanity: Kenny Smith on Jeremy Lin seizing the moment
- How long is a dream? Is Jeremy Lin's rap song a one-hit wonder?
- Ricky Rubio VS Jeremy Lin in Pictures
- My European scouting report: I was wrong on Ricky Rubio
- NBA International incident: Shaq dubs Ricky Rubio the 'Italian Pete Maravich'
- Ricky Rubio with torn ACL injury: Out for rest of NBA season and Olympics 2012

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

30 Home Games mission: Southeast Division map

southeast division, nba map, universal studios, florida, wrestling
'30 Home Games' Southeast Division wishlist
My tentative to-do-list for the Southeast Division:
Alabama | Florida | Georgia | Kentucky | North Carolina | South Carolina | Virginia | Washington DC | West Virginia

NBA Tickets
Atlanta Hawks - Philips Arena
1 Philips Drive,
Atlanta, Georgia 30303

Charlotte Bobcats - Time Warner Cable Arena
333 East Trade Street,
Charlotte, NC 28202

Miami Heat - AmericanAirlines Arena
601 Biscayne Boulevard,
Miami, Florida, 33132

Orlando Magic - Amway Center
400 W. Church St,
Orlando, Florida

Washington Wizards - Verizon Center
601 F St NW,
Washington, DC 20004

Comedy
- South Beach Comedy Festival (FL)

Others
- Florida Championship Wrestling
- TNA Impact Wrestling
- Universal Theme Parks
- Funspot: Annual International Classic Video Game Tournament
- 2013 NCAA Final Four, Atlanta

NBA Postcards: Greetings from the SouthEast Division
Greetings from:
Miami, Florida | Charlotte, North Carolina | Washington D.C. | Atlanta, Georgia

-------------------------------------------------
Explore my to-do list for the States of the Eastern Conference
1) Atlantic Division
Massachusetts | New Jersey | New York | Ontario, Canada | Pennsylvania
2) Central Division
Illinois | Indiana | Michigan | Ohio | Wisconsin
3) Southeast Division
Florida | Georgia | North Carolina | Washington DC

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Faith in the underdog: Memphis Grizzlies, Iverson, Arenas and Randolph


I have a soft spot for Allen Iverson and Gilbert Arenas. For the sports I really enjoy (Basketball and Wrestling) I've always been drawn to the human face behind the persona. Iverson has gone the way of Antoine Walker in recent weeks, a superstar suffering a massive fall from grace. Similarly Gilbert Arenas' reputation took a dive with his locker room gun fracas but never hit rock bottom.

I'd planned to see Iverson play for Beşiktaş whilst over in Europe but his contract was terminated before I got the chance. Arenas' zany personality appeals to me on a personal and sports marketing perspective, there's a reason his Undrcrwn/Adidas sneakers are my holy grails.

Both player have ties with the Memphis Grizzlies, a team I'm fond of. They'd been my mascot for my underdog Fantasy Team the last 3 years. I witnessed their gutsy game 1 win over the top-seeded Spurs at 4 in the morning whilst I was in Spain. Z-Bo's coming out party was one of my highlights of last year's playoffs.

The Grizzlies recent signing of Gilbert Arenas has been compared to the failed Iverson acquisition. Personally it chimes with the Grizzlies underdog persona and I hope Gilbert rehabilitates his image the same way Z-bo and Tony Allen have with their stellar play for the team
When the Memphis Grizzlies signed Gilbert Arenas, many Allen Iverson-related jokes were cracked. But GM Chris Wallace refuses to compare this situation to the 2009 Iverson disaster in Memphis. From the Commercial Appeal: "Gilbert was never the rock star that Allen was. Gilbert is in better physical condition than Allen was. Allen hadn’t done anything all summer" Wallace said...
Continuing with the underdog narrative, Interscope MC Don Trip recently released the single 'Allen Iverson' off his new mixtape, Guerrilla.
Read his interview with Complex explaining the song's genesis

Interview: Don Trip Talks "Allen Iverson" & His "Guerrilla" Mixtape
"When I first met Cool & Dre, they asked me who I looked up to growing up. I told them I looked up to Mike Tyson, Allen Iverson, and Tupac. I felt like I knew them or that I had grown up with them, and they raised me...

"I always felt that the way we use our celebrities is a little shady. We love them when they're hot, but when they start to fall down, we realize that they’re human and walk away from them."I always felt that the way we use our celebrities is a little shady. We love them when they’re hot, but when they start to fall down, we realize that they're human and walk away from them. I wanted to show how similar our situations are, and that I'm going through the same things."
VIDEO: Don Trip - "Allen Iverson" (prod. Cool & Dre)

- Listen to the Jeremy Lin rap song
- Listen to the Allen Iverson rap song

Friday, March 23, 2012

I want to "Go with Oh" to Paris!

<< crossposted on the 'Loz in Translation' travel blog

I had the pleasure of being in Europe for over a year in 2011. I visited a dozen countries but surprisingly never stepped foot in France. I wanted to.
  • I baracked for Les Bleus, the French Basketball side during EuroBasket and planned to see their star players representing local clubs during the NBA lockout. No luck.
  • I'd planned to do a walking tour retracing the trail of one of my favorite movies. Nope.
  • My parents were incredulous that I was going to miss the City of Light "Just go even for a few days!". Sorry mum.
In all honesty, I was saving it for last and as my time and money expired I knew if I was to go it had to be done right. I wanted a month-long experience like the previous Countries, considering my situation I decided I would save it for another time. 'Go with Oh' could give me that chance.

VIDEO: Quai 54 2011 - The Recap

1. Quai 54 (Continuing my mission)
This is the Pièce de résistance for any Basketball enthusiast in France. Quai54 is the International Streetball Championship held in Paris, the tournament enjoyed its grandest year in 2011 having the iconic Eiffel Tower as its backdrop. The event was brought to my attention by a Czech streetballer I befriended in my Kaunas hostel during EuroBasket last year. I walked around the city with said running mate as he achieved his travel ritual of digging for local hiphop. We later found a court where we balled with a Spanish exchange student.

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123 klan, graf, french
2. French Hip Hop (Enjoying the Arts)
When I think of France, romance and high fashion aren't the first things that come to mind. For some reason I picture gritty streets and colorful Graffiti, think of the segue used in Pixar's 'Ratatouille'. As a graphic design student I was enamored by French street art through '123Klan'. I had been looking forward to seeing some live French HipHop and was collecting plenty of acts to look out for as I met people around Europe. Names like Sexion D'Assaut, Oxmo Puccino and Booba.

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yamakasi, parkour, luc besson, french,3. Parkour (Getting Active)
France is the home of Parkour. I've been to several classes in Sydney along beautiful Pyrmont Point Park. On my first day attempting it, I reconnected with a mate from Design school. Though its been roughly 18 months since I've been to classes, it heartens me to know my friend has remained committed to the sport as I've never had the discipline to stick with something. One of my instructors made the pilgrimage to France and I can only assume my mate might one day do the same.

I did have brushes with Parkour whilst traveling Europe. The CouchSurfer who hosted me in Tallinn was in the early stages of starting Parkour lessons. I was impressed by the fact he had never done Parkour but hoped to bluff his way into leading sessions. I stumbled onto classes at Olympiapark München on the way to BMW museum. Despite the language barrier it was a well attended and fun workout. It was on this day I would have my first basketball experience in Europe, paving the way for my 30 Home Games project.

-----------------------------------------------------


4. Reconnecting with Running Mates du jour (Mon ami)
Traveling around Europe for the year, you'll inevitably have French running mates. Below are a few I'd love to reconnect with.
Fab was a charming French photographer I spent several days with in Istanbul. I followed him as he did a story on Turkish Oil wrestling, we met cool kids together at Jazz Cafes and Art Openings.
Syra was a journalist for a French Basketball Magazine (Reverse) I met in my Vilnius Hostel. She began as a dedicated blogger covering female ballers working her way up to globetrotting for the game. I appreciated her dedication and hope to one day forge a similar path. I showed her to the local courts so we could compare notes and shoot around.
When I visit France I'd like to hit up the Arts district and cool spots with Fab and hopefully Syra could show me the inner workings of her Magazine.
-----------------------------------------------------

VIDEO: Before Sunset Trailer

5. Before Sunset (Life as a movie)
Though I've been a little cute with my Paris to-do list so far. I'm not going to shy away from what Paris is best known for - Romance. I had this on my initial to-do list for my EuroTrip but obviously never had the chance to action it. Before Sunset is the sequel to my all-time favorite movie 'Before Sunrise', charming films directed by my artist rolemodel Richard Linklater. I hope to one day do a walking tour following the footsteps of Jesse and Celine past the iconic sights as well as the parks and cafes. A beautiful encounter with my own Celine would be nice too.


Find some France related posts here:
- Enes Kanter: Turkey, Wrestling and Basketball
- Balancing Basketball and Travel in Lithuania - Part I
- Balancing Basketball and Travel in Lithuania - Part II
- Jacques Henri Lartigue: Why I'm getting a camera

Hooray for competition giveaways!
Go with Oh is giving away 4 fabulous prizes. Head on over to their Facebook page and enter for a chance to win an iPad 2, Panasonic Lumix camera, 500 euros worth of accommodations or great Samsonite luggage - www.GowithOh.com

go with oh, competition

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Likely ROY Kyrie Irving has decided he won't be representing Australia at the Olympics

kyrie irving, coach k, duke, australia
Kyrie Irving can represent Australia or USA
Rookie of the Year favorite Kyrie Irving was born in Melbourne, Australia and has been vocal about one day representing the Australian National team.

Kyrie Irving ‘seriously considering’ playing for Australian national team
Irving was born in Melbourne, Australia, in 1992 while his father Drederick was playing pro ball over there. Therefore, he has dual citizenship. Irving said he lived in Australia until he was 2 years old – not long enough to develop an accent but long enough to become a fan of “The Crocodile Hunter.” As for the possibility of Irving one day suiting up for the Aussies at the Olympics, he says it’s a very real option.

“That’s something I’m seriously considering. Whether it’s suiting up for the U.S.A. or Australia, either opportunity would be great for me. ... That’s definitely a strong consideration for me. For one, I want to be considered an international player. I feel like that would be fun for me. And also, I haven’t been back there. And I think that would give me a chance to get back and feel stuff out if I do decide to play for them. I’ll make the best decision for me.”
Kyrie recently announced his decision to hold out for the chance to represent Team USA
Kyrie Irving Won’t Play for Australia in 2012 London Olympics
According to Irving, he heard news that his collegiate coach Mike Krzyzewski will still be handling Team USA for the next four years until the 2016 Olympics and he is hoping that his former coach will give him the chance to suit up for USA in the future."It was the right decision," said Irving on his decision not to forego his eligibility to play for USA in the future. "I found out Coach K would be coaching in 2016. It made my decision so much easier to play for my coach again. That was the deciding factor."

New 30 Home Games Wallpaper - NBA ball logos

nba map, logos, basketballnba map, logos, basketball
Really enjoying this wallpaper, the NBA circle logos look charming as a set. For those playing at home, the teams are alphabetically arranged in the first and geographically placed in the second.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Pete Holmes and The Sklar Brothers: Performing, possibly failing - That's living the dream

"If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough"
- Unknown
Lebron preparing for Game 1, Hawks at Cleveland 2009
Yesterday I had an interview to return to my old job. Despite the fact I was returning to familiar territory with familiar faces, I found myself having butterflies in my stomach. I don't recall having been this tense my entire year abroad.

After playing basketball socially all over Europe my hope was to continue playing at home which I rarely did prior to my trip. As I drove to my first game with ex-workmates, I felt a nervousness I never felt when I was playing with complete strangers on the other side of the world. I guess the familiar isn't quite in my comfort zone, a fascination with anonymity perhaps?

In preparation for the Ribeira jump with the Brazilian Safados
Everyone has a different definition for what they feel is "going out on a limb". I know for me that's when I feel most alive, when its time to perform. Comedians the Sklar Brother in conversation with Pete Holmes talk about the thrill of being on stage and the optics of living the dream:

VIDEO: You made it Weird with Pete Holmes - The Sklar Brothers on living the dream
You made it Weird #31 - Sklar Brothers
SKLAR BROTHER: (78m 40s) When you think about what performing is, whatever the scenario even if you're in front of the most friendly crowd ever. Performing is you taking yourself out of your comfort zone... especially if you're trying new material and literally saying "I could fail right now".

You're doing what 99% of people never do once in their day ever. Or in there life in a year. You are saying on a nightly basis, we're gonna put ourselves up and put ideas out there to be shit on in front of our very eyes

PETE HOLMES: Live.
SKLARS: In front of you.
HOLMES: I wanna see how this happens.

SKLARS: Respond.
So you're taking yourself and literally living life to its fullest... We had to remind ourselves of that because its that scary.

HOLMES: Isn't that brilliant because living life to its fullest doesn't feel like you think it will and it takes so long to get comfortable with it. At first the greatest thing I've ever done used to make me vomit '8 Mile' style. I had to tell myself "I'm living the dream"
- Pete Holmes and Matt Besser: Travel coincidences and Counting the serendipities
- Duncan Trussell and Pete Holmes: Traveling, living the dream and remembering it
- Pete Holmes and Kyle Kinane: Being excited everyday
- Pete Holmes and The Sklar Brothers: Performing, possibly failing - That's living the dream
- A question answered with a quote: Comedy Podcasts

<< crossposted on the 'Loz in Translation' blog

Thursday, March 15, 2012

30HG Destination Spotlight: Troublemaker Studios (Austin, Texas)

kobe, robert rodriguez, black mamba, troublemaker studios, austin texas
Robert Rodriguez is my Punk Rock rolemodel. It all began after watching 'Once Upon a time in Mexico' in the cinemas, taking its hold after seeing the DVD Special features where Robert invites us into his process and Home Studio in Austin, Texas.

VIDEO: Inside Troublemaker Studios Parte 1

The further you scratch into Robert's history the further his legend grows. He famously became best friends with Quentin Tarantino after nerding out together at the Toronto Film Festival as they promoted their debut features. Rodriquez boldy quit the DGA (Directors Guild of America) so that he and legendary Comic Artist Frank Miller could share the director's credit for 'Sin City'. If you'd like an insight into how Robert got his foot into Hollywood as well as his philosophy on creativity, I highly recommend his book
- Rebel without a Crew: Or How a 23-Year-Old Filmmaker With $7,000 Became a Hollywood Player

Robert Rodriguez worked with Nike in 2011 to promote the Kobe VI. It was a project shot in typical Rodriguez fashion, very big for very cheap. Kobe and Robert enlisted their famous friends and previous work partners Kanye West, Danny Trejo and Bruce Willis for the project. The LA Times has a revealing piece documenting the process and how the two came together - Kobe Bryant, Robert Rodriguez talk about Black Mamba Nike ads, six-minute film (with video)

The final commercial incorporates a tongue-in-cheek brainstorming session that fleshes out the would-be movie:

VIDEO: Kobe Bryant is, "The Black Mamba"
Directed by Robert Rodriguez

Robert Rodriguez alongside filmaker Richard Linklater and the SXSW Festival has put Austin on the map for me. Its definitely one of my must-see destinations. Only in Texas baby!
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troublemaker studios, austin texas Troublemaker Studios appears on my Southwest Division wishlist of the 30 Home Games mission.

Explore my to-do lists for the other Western Conference States
1) Northwest Division
Colorado | Minnesota | Oklahoma | Oregon | Utah
2) Pacific Division
Arizona | California

Sunday, March 11, 2012

30HG Scans: Reebok Pulp Magazine '98

Reebok: Pulp Magazine Basketball '98 Premier Issue

30HG Scans will be an ongoing set featuring basketball magazines and collateral from my collection. I've traditionally bought Magazines from Airport newsagencies as they double as time killers and Country mementos. More often than not they're in languages I don't understand. Check back for future scans.

reebok, pulp, contentReebok Pulp Magazine '98 Contents page

reebok, pulp, shawn kempShawn Kemp wears The Shroud

reebok, pulp, nick van exelNick Van Exel wears The Lightning

reebok, pulp, allen iversonAllen Iverson wears The Answer

reebok, pulp, chauncey billupsChauncey Billups wears The Lightning

30HG features: American sports illustrations

Being on a mission to visit the 30 NBA home cities, I'm naturally drawn to ESPN's 'Your Destination' campaign. It has plenty of amusing elements and appeals to my NBA nerdiness and fascination of the American Road. Below are some of the illustrated collateral and the talented artists behind them.

Visit ESPN: Your NBA Destination web page

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durant, espn, nba destinationnba destination, shaqnba destination, carmelo anthony
TIMOTHY SHAMEY. I am an Illustrator and designer living and working in New York City. My professional career began in 1995 with my first piece for MAD Magazine. I continued as an independent illustrator until 1999 when I joined SME Branding as a Senior Designer.
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sports illustrated, nba destinationespn, nba destination, map
JOHN HENDRIX loves to draw. In fact, he would rather be drawing than writing this bio. John’s work has appeared in numerous publications, such as Sports Illustrated, Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone, The New Yorker, Esquire, The New York Times, and Time Magazine among many others.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Ricky Rubio with torn ACL injury: Out for rest of NBA season and Olympics 2012


On twitter I was giddy for the Spanish encounter between Pau Gasol and Ricky Rubio. Their fortunes seemed to be going in opposite directions going into the game, Pau in constant trade rumours whilst Rubio's upstart Wolves were surprisingly above .500, managing a playoff spot at 8.

Sports as in life is fickle. The Wolves played the game without Kevin Love who was out with back spasms. The Wolves were competitive up until the closing seconds when disaster struck:
Ricky Rubio has torn ACL
MINNEAPOLIS -- Ricky Rubio's sensational rookie season has come to a devastatingly abrupt end. The Minnesota Timberwolves point guard will miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL in his left knee, the team announced on Saturday. "Thank you everybody for ur support.I promise I will be back soon and stronger. There is only one way to take: move forward and stay positive," Rubio tweeted Saturday. Now the upstart Wolves will have to keep chasing a playoff berth without one of the players who was most responsible for the franchise's resurgence.
...
The news also means that Rubio will miss the upcoming Olympics, where he was expected to be a vital part of Spain's bid for the gold medal.
I personally believe Rubio's role in the Spanish Olympic bid is overrated considering the National team would still favor Calderon and Llull over the youngster. That said I expect hoopheads, Fans of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Spain, League pass owners, NBA and Olympic TV execs are going to have a hole in their heart for the rest of the season.

Pau was philosophical in his sentiment towards his Spanish teammate
"Anything he needs, I'm there for him. I was truly sorry. It's a tough one to swallow and it makes me laugh about my situation. You know? About my trade and no trade and how that makes me feel. When you (tear) an ACL, that's when you really feel bad and that's a lot worse than being mentioned in trades and potentially play somewhere else. No. Health is always the main thing and that's why everything is so relative in life."
Get well and Godspeed Ricky.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Will Ferrell with amusing Intros for Chicago Bulls at New Orleans

VIDEO: Will Ferrell 80's night Lineup Introductions
Chicago Bulls VS New Orleans Hornets

On the February 8 Bulls VS Hornets game held in New Orleans, Comedian Will Ferrell announced the starting lineups adding his own brand of absurdity to the proceedings. I had the pleasure of seeing the mentioned Europeans play for their respective national teams at EuroBasket.
WILL FERRELL: ... At forward, number 9. He collects rare birds and has a pet dolphin Satchii - Luol Deng.
At Center, number 13. He's a Scorpio and a horrible dancer - Joakim Noah.
...
At Guard 6' 5" from Italy, ironically he hates Italian food - Marco Belinelli.
At Forward 6' 10" from Mexico. He doesn't speak a lick of English but we still have him - Gustavo Ayon.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Portland, Berlin and Basketball - "Put a bird on it" TrailBlazers jersey


I came up with this idea almost a year ago but never had the chance to design it until now, its an appropriation of the Portland Trailblazers logo. Portland and Berlin are perceived by many as capitals of cool though I totally acknowledge how tenuous the link is.

Then I read this. Still doesn't change anything but its awesome nonetheless:
LaMarcus Aldridge’s Customized “Put A Bird On It” Jersey
Aldridge is having an amazing year for the Trail Blazers as he became a first-time All-Star. Portland fans have really begun to embrace him as their franchise player. Aldridge has become so enmeshed in the local Portland culture that he appeared on the popular IFC Portland based sketch show, “Portlandia”, a couple weeks ago.

If you haven’t watched “Portlandia”, you are missing out – it’s a must watch. The show stars former “Saturday Night Live” cast member Fred Armisen and singer/actor Carrie Brownsten; through the show’s sketches the duo pokes fun of Portland’s image and culture for being an enclave for hipsters, hardcore organic foodies and liberalism.


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VIDEO: Portlandia - Put a Bird On It!

Monday, March 5, 2012

National Basketball League Road Map

nbl, sydney, melbourne, map
'30 Home Games' NBL map of Australia
Adelaide 36ers - Adelaide Arena
Crittenden Rd
Findon SA 5023

Cairns Taipans - Cairns Convention Centre
Cnr Wharf & Sheridan Street
QLD 4870

Gold Coast Blaze - Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre
Gold Coast Highway
Broadbeach QLD 4218

Melbourne Tigers - "The Cage", State Netball Hockey Centre
10 Brens Drive,
Parkville, VIC 3052

New Zealand Breakers - North Shore Events Centre
North Shore, Auckland

Perth Wildcats - Challenge Stadium
Stephenson Avenue,
Mt Claremont, WA 6010

Sydney Kings - Sydney Entertainment Center
35 Harbour St, Darling Harbour
NSW 2000

Townsville Crocodiles - "The Swamp", Townsville entertainment and Convention Centre
Entertainment Road,
Townsville QLD 4810


Wollongong Hawks - "The Sandpit", WIN Entertainment Centre
Cnr of Crown & Harbour Streets,
Wollongong, NSW 2520

-----------------------------------------------

The NBL season is heating up as it nears the playoffs. After having a Basketball experience in a dozen countries around Europe and witnessing a handful of leagues from Germany, Estonia, Latvia, Turkey and the EuroBasket in Lithuania. I will continue this energy home with our local competition, the National Basketball League. I've already been inviting myself to more pickup games and aim to visit parts of the Country I've never experienced (Cairns, Townsville), hoping to make meaningful connections like those I made abroad.

Whilst I had set myself a firm goal of having a basketball experience in each place, my European adventures were footloose and organic. My enthusiasm for basketball introduced me to people and situations I hadn't expected.
- Got free tickets to the EuroBasket semis by befriending a Dutch guy on the bus. Reconnecting with him in the capital, he had befriended CouchSurfers who had tickets on offer
- Befriended Lithuanian locals after seeking advice on the game that evening, I went parasailing with them and hung at their lavish home,
- Lived with Germans from the Sports College of Köln after connecting before a pickup game at their Campus court
- Had a place to stay in Estonia, when a fellow Couchsurfer recognised me at a basketball game in Tartu

I'm slightly worried that overplanning will spoil some of the magic but its all part of the fun. I've found people to be very helpful all around the world, Its just a matter of finding compatibility and exchanging positive energy. I'm optimistic.

Friday, March 2, 2012

The London School of Basketball and #MakeItCount by Nike: 3on3 by the London Eye

I had many positive basketball related experiences in London. Most notable amongst them was befriending the coach of Great Britain's Mens team at EuroBasket in Lithuania - Best of luck for London 2012 Bob :)

As the London Olympics approaches, sporting brands are ramping up their presence in the iconic city. Below are some pictures courtesy of the London School of Basketball in support of Nike's #MakeItCount campaign. The London School of Basketball was the Community program that assisted in hosting Lebron James in late 2011 for his whirlwind stop at the English Capital.

basketball, luol deng, london, nike, hoopsbasketball, luol deng, london, nike, hoopsbasketball, luol deng, london, nike, hoopsbasketball, luol deng, london, nike, hoops
basketball, luol deng, london, nike, hoopsbasketball, luol deng, london, nike, hoopsView the entire gallery from LSB's Facebook page here
- Nike Basketball Luol Deng All-Star Game Screening
- Nike Make It Count 3on3 London Eye
- LSB: Community Basketball for London
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Find my other London experiences here:
- London House of Hoops Manifesto: Because in this city...
- Social Sunday Sports, Basketball in London
- Lebron James in London (November 2011)
- My own #MakeItCount London photoshoot

Thursday, March 1, 2012

30 Home Games mission: Northwest Division map

northwest division, nba map, pacific northwest
'30 Home Games' Northwest Division wishlist
My tentative to-do-list for the Northwest Division:
Alaska | Colorado | Dakota | Idaho | Kansas | Minnesota | Montana| Nebraska | North Dakota | Oklahoma | Oregon | South Dakota | Utah | Washington | Wyoming

NBA Tickets
Denver Nuggets - Pepsi Center
1000, Chopper Circle,
Denver, Colorado 80204

Minnesota Timberwolves - Target Center
600 First Avenue North,
Minneapolis, MN 55403

Oklahoma City Thunder - Ford Center
100 W Reno Ave,
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73102

Portland Trailblazers - Rose Garden Arena
1 Center Court,
Portland, Oregon 97227

Utah Jazz - EnergySolutions Arena
301 W South Temple,
Salt Lake City, Utah 84101

Comedy
- Sasquatch! Music Festival (WA)
- Bumbershoot: Seattle's Music & Arts Festival (WA)
- Bridgetown Comedy Festival (OR)
- Acme Comedy Co. (MN)

Other
- Nike Kitchen (OR)
- Wieden + Kennedy (OR)
- Sundance Film Festival (UT)

Destination Spotlights: 
- Wieden + Kennedy, Nike Kitchen (Portland, Oregon)

NBA Postcards: Greetings from Northwest Division
Greetings from:
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma | Portland, Oregon | Minnesota, Minneapolis | Denver, Colorado | Salt Lake City, Utah
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nba, western conference, pacific, northwestern, southwesternExplore my to-do list for the States of the Western Conference
1) Northwest Division
Colorado | Minnesota | Oklahoma | Oregon | Utah
2) Pacific Division
Arizona | California
3) Southwest Division
Louisiana | Tennessee | Texas