Tuesday, August 26, 2014

'One Day Sundays' Block Party goes National: September dates in Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane and Sydney

I had the pleasure of being at the OG 'One Day Sundays' show, since then I've had the event circled on my Calendar as I dug the combination of "Ball, Beats, Babes and Booze'. I lived a short walk away from 'Vic on the Park' at the time and had participated alongside friends at the 3on3 Streetball events they hosted.

VIDEO: One Day Tour / One Day Sundays

Fast Forward a year later, the event and the 'One Day Crew' have blown up. The 7-strong crew comprised from four of Oz Hip-Hop's finest (Spit Syndicate, Horror Show, Jackie Onassis and Joyride) have been touring their album 'Mainline' and enjoy high rotation on Triple J Radio.
The next event this Sunday to cap off August will bookend a September-long Nationwide run where the boys will tour their Weekend banger for the first time to other corners of Oz - Perth, Brisbane and Melbourne. With a triumphant return home, September 28 in Sydney where it all began.

'One Day Sundays': Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane and Sydney
'One Day Sundays', 1pm each Sunday of September 2014. OneDayers Joyride, Adit and Raph performing DJ sets alongside local spinners:
- Melbourne, Sep 7 @ 'The Howler'. 7-11 Dawson st, Brunswick
- Perth, Sep 14 @ 'Rosemount Hotel'. 459 Fitzgerald st, North Perth
- Brisbane, Sep 21 @ 'The Elephant'. 230 Wickham st, Fortitude Valley
- Sydney, Sep 28 @ 'The Vic'. 2 Addison rd, Enmore
Find all the dates for the September 'One Day' National Tour on the Triple J Gig guide

VIDEO: One Day Sundays @ The Vic

Whet your appetite on the 'One Day' YouTube Channel and we'll see you there Sunday :)
Find other posts on Streetball at 'Vic on the Park', Enmore:
- 30HomeGames will be at 'The Projects and Easts Basketball Game 3-on-3 Comp'
- Easts Basketball League presents 'Basketball Day' @ The Projects

Monday, August 25, 2014

'30 Home Games' on Instagram: Basketball Souvenirs, Streetball and Hoops around the world

Jacques Henri Lartigue: Why I'm getting a camera
I was steadfast (stubborn) in not getting a camera as I had enjoyed the manufactured dynamic when I told people I was without one. I was happy with other people's photos, it became an experiment. It allowed me to live in the moment, any photos of me were candids or documented outside myself.
Many of my basketball experiences during my travels haven't been captured in Photos. I only got my first Smartphone 3 months ago (Shoutout to SP*) and only had a camera for a quarter of my time during Europe 2011 and South America 2013.

The '30 Home Games' mission in pictures
Follow @30HomeGames on Instagram
The main goal of this blog is to have lived experiences, writing about it has been a good way to capture the memories and encouraged me to find more. Often times however it's been without Photographs. I don't have any Courtside shots of the games I watched in Caracas (FIBA Americas) or the during the NBA lockout period that made my time in Lithuania (EuroBasket 2011) so star-studded. Whilst they were fun, my interests are more in personal interactions than celebrity-spotting. I value experiences had outside the arena, often through the prism of basketball but ideally as a participant rather than a spectator.

Some moments only gain stature in my mind due to lack of documentation. I befriended an Amsterdam local at a HipHop bar because of his Amar'e Stoudemire 'Stat NY' shirt. With his recommendation, I took a 30min busride to Amsterdam-Noord for some pickup games which immediately got rained out. Play carried on, a mixed full court game in the wet gray. A moment that has stuck with me for its surrealness.

The last few months up I've set up a '30 Home Games' Instagram to house the photos I do have. Below are a few samples of the types of Photos, Graphics and Hashtags to look out for. A few are crossposted on my my other platforms - The 30HG Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.

My collection of sneakers and the stories behind them
Explore #30HGkicks
Basketball references are always shoehorned into each Life snapshot
Porto Alegre, Brazil (Oct 2013)
Streetball experiences at home and in my travels
Bogota, Colombia (December 2013)
Collection of Basketball shirts collected in my travels
Explore #30HGtees
Crossposts of the Graphics found on this blog
'Team UNDFTD' emerge victorious
Basketball adventures found in my hometown of Sydney
'One Day Sundays' (Booze, Beats and Ball) at Vic on the Park
Kindly Follow '30 Home Games' on Instagram. Tell your friends :)

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Australian NBA Tourism: NBA Summer Leagues and other Pro-am Summer events

For International fans traveling to the States during the Off-Season there are still opportunities to catch NBA Action and quality Basketball in the Summer. Various Pro-Am and brand sponsored events regularly feature NBA Stars and other famed streetballers. NBA Summer Leagues in Orlando and Las Vegas also offer a limited set of NBA Teams showcasing upcoming stars.

My outlet store pickups from Summer League 2009
Find more at #30HGtees on the '30 Home Games' Instagram
Whilst I've had the pleasure of seeing NBA players in action at home (Sydney 2000) and abroad (EuroBasket, FIBA Americas) my only taste of them Stateside was during the 2009 Summer League in Las Vegas.

Samsung NBA Summer League: Las Vegas

My friend JY*, a Die-hard Pistons fan recently checked out the 2014 NBA Summer League. He had the fortune to preview Rookies Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins before they take the League by storm. I quizzed him on the experience and asked him to share some thoughts on what to expect at NBA Summer League and the Stars we'll see in the upcoming Season. All Photos courtesy of JY*

Where did you stay and how long were you in Vegas. How much were the tickets?
I only attended 2 days due to family commitments. We stayed with the In-Laws who live relatively close to the stadium. At $28 a day (up to 4 games) I thought that was a bargain, definitely worth it so no need to approach the scalpers.
Australia's own Dante Exum facing down Giannis Antetokounmpo
Basically there are 2 stadiums - Thomas & Mack Center and the Cox Pavilion (right next to each other). If the game you want to see is at the Cox Pavilion - book your tickets well in advance (limited seating). If your games are at the Thomas & Mack you can rock up on the day (plenty of seats).

[Ed: Scalpers approached us during my visit in 2009. As Re-entry with a stamp was possible, opportunists offered discounted Stadium Access with their replica stamps. I'm sure the system has changed.
The Thomas & Mack Center would later become infamous as it was the site of Paul George's gruesome injury a few week after Summer League play. The Non-regulation basket stanchion due to the Stadium's cramp spacing partly to blame for the freak occurrence.]

Giannis with an acrobatic layup
Any tips on players to look out for in Fantasy?
From the 7 games I saw, Giannis really stood out for me. Just an unbelievable athlete who had a LOT of confidence at both ends of the floor. He reminded me of Durant to be honest. Jabari reminded me of Melo, he had a lot of maturity and looked very comfortable with the ball in his hands during ISO plays. Great shooter too. Exum looked very comfortable too, great penetrator and fearless. I just think he'll get outmuscled by the bigger 2-guards, so best for Jazz to to play 'Run and Gun'. Tim Hardaway Jnr was an absolute scoring machine and was probably the most intense player I saw at the Summer League. Shane Larkin also made a big difference for the Knicks when he was on the floor, solid point guard and if Calderon picked up an injury, Larkin would be a Double Double player. The players I was disappointed in were Ben McLemore (quiet), Noah Vonleh (lacked activity) and Shabazz Napier (low points + assists) - I sure won't be grabbing these guys on my fantasy team!

Freshman Coach Derek Fisher speaking to his New York Knicks
How is Summer League Competition? Who would it appeal to?
100% this is for the nerds, definitely not enough star power there to excite the average fans. I honestly thought it was Disneyland though as there were plenty of coaches/players walking around the stadium and if you were lucky sitting in the stands with you! I'm also really interested in rookies and the other up-and-coming sort of players. Running into the likes of Ben McLemore, Nerlens Noel, Tom Thibodeau and Scott Brooks was really cool. I went up to Austin Daye too, not the biggest name but an ex-pistons rookie.

#2 Pick Jabari Parker leading the Milwaukee Bucks
Any other brushes with fame in Vegas?
Coincidentally went to the PALMS one night and ran into a NBA Table Tennis fundraiser. Couldn't actually get in but saw Mike Bibby, Mike Dunleavy Snr and Dennis Schröder walk out.
[Ed: If you know your players, you'll have plenty of sightings. During my 2009 experience Walt Frazier hopped into our Cab after we were done with it. I congratulated Corey Brewer on a standout performance as he was cashing Chips at the Casino]
Philadelphia 76ers "Rookie" Nerlens Noel
Which teams stood out for you? Upset Detroit weren't playing?
I think the Jazz and Bucks have a lot of young talent coming through which showed at the Summer League. If the Bucks have Larry Sanders playing, I think they are a very complete team. Same with the Jazz, solid at all 5 positions. Given a couple of years who knows where these teams could be. McBuckets didn't play on the day I went which is probably the biggest disappointment as from previous games it appears he was a steal for the Bulls and gives them another good wing player in addition to Snell and Butler. It was OK, the Pistons played the smaller Florida Summer League. Overall the Summer League was an unbelievable experience for this NBA diehard, still yet to see a Regular Season game live after 20 years following the League. I would definitely return, the next item on the bucket list is to see a Pistons game for sure!

As a Hoops nerd, I'd love to be a part of NBA Summer League or any of the Pro-am Events available during the Off-Season. Whilst I prefer the intensity of Playoff Basketball it's nice to celebrate upcoming talent and witness the future and potential of the NBA in casual surroundings. More often than not, they're also hosted in interesting parts of the Country.
I've compiled a list of annual Summer Events below
- Drew League (Los Angeles, August)
- The Seattle Pro-Am Basketball League (Seattle, August)
- Samsung NBA Summer League (Orlando, July)
- Samsung NBA Summer League (Las Vegas, July)
- Bobbito Garcia's Full Court 21 (New York City, August)
- Venice Basketball League (Los Angeles, July - September)
- Miami Pro League (Miami, August)

- Nike Hoops Summit (Portland, April)
Adidas Nations global basketball camp (Orange County, August)
- Under Armour Elite 24 (New York, August)

Find my other posts on American traveling tips from Australia:
- Australian NBA Tourism: Planning an NBA road Trip from outside the United States
- Australian NBA Tourism: NBA Summer Leagues and other Pro-am Summer events

Saturday, August 2, 2014

#SBC4 Tournament recap: Road to Glory (2 of 2)

<< continued from #SBC4 Tournament recap: Anatomy of a Champion (1 of 2)

After our low key win and the 30 minute break we were on bench duty. We were able to scout the first two teams who we considered formidable contenders for the Final. The Sonics gained the edge over Rack City in a game that went down to the wire. Their superior rebounding and interior presence overcoming Rack City's firepower. On the other court, hollering could be heard as Gators' guard 'Mik' lit up the Ruff Ryders with 4 triples. Mik was the reigning Champion GM, his long range form foreshadowing what was to come as we faced them next.

A gutsy 31-29 win by the 'Sonics' over 'Rack City'
After our hiatus we began our final Round-Robin, 10 minute game flat footed. The 'Gators' started the game hot, scoring exclusively from downtown on their first six shots. They also had the Tourney's most devastating Center and best Floor General so they controlled the game in the half court, lobbing it to their Big Man in the paint for easy points.

With 7 minutes to go and trailing 15-24 I'm sure it dawned on us that even if we were fortunate enough to win it all, it would lose its sting if we hadn't gone Undefeated. Our Big, "Superman" started the slow climb back with consecutive buckets before resting. Our last pick and virtual lock for 'Steal of the Draft' began to take the game over, forcing turnovers, hitting "And Ones" and a handy trey. Incredibly, 'Chang' had been making a case for each trophy the whole tournament. His performance in this game would have made it tough for the GMs voting for MVP. Remarkably we clawed our way back, trading baskets to close the match. "Uncle Drew" hit the clutch go-ahead jumper, our first lead of the game. 'Big D' got a questionable call the other way and knocked down his Free throws to put the Gators' back on top. With 20 seconds left our other Big 'Linsanity' dribbled it forcefully inside to hit the game-clinching deuce. 28-27, we survived. It was clear the team took it's name to heart. Whilst the title picture remained just as uncertain, this game showed we had the fortitude to match all Challengers

The epic comeback coming to fruition
The Semis pitted the Gators' against 'Rack City'. We would face the 'Sonics' who dropped to the 4th seed on for and against. Both matches were replays of our opening games, our showdown mirrored the first but shots were falling this time as both teams played loose. The 15 minute halves for the Championship stages worked to our advantage having the deepest roster. As we had a chain with solid links and standout players we could simply outlast opponents as their Stars got tired. The 10 extra minutes was the difference in our rematch with the Sonics.

The #SBC4 Stat sheet
Our toughest matchup, the Gators' faced a different problem. After being torched by 'Cannings' they applied a 'Box-and-One' defense for the rematch to contain him and force the other players to score. It was a fatal misdiagnosis as they underestimated the supporting cast and the equally deadly 'Taiwan Tiger' and 'Ridirkulous'. Rack City dominated, almost beating them by double. The 'Gators' unable to reverse their misjudged strategy change.

Whilst we expected the daunting prospect of facing the Gators for a Finals showdown. The incredible 50+ point Semi Finals performance by Rack City signaled they were coming into form. The MVP trophy was up for grabs with at least 5 players staking their claim. Check out these Tourney averages:
#8 Cannings (Top scorer, 1st Overall pick) - 12pts, 3asts, 5rebs, 2stls, 1blk
#41 Ridirkulous (Double Double) - 10pts, 10rebs, 1stl, 1blk

#11 Leo (Team leader) - 7pts, 3asts, 3rebs, 3stls
#2 Superman (Force in the middle) - 6pts, 5rebs, 1stl
#0 Chang (8th rd selection) - 6pts, 2asts, 3rebs, 2stl, 1blk
VIDEO: #SBC4 Finals recap - Team UNDFTD vs Rack City

Whilst the MVP trophy could have legitimately gone to any of these standout players, it was the Finals that ultimately clinched it. Leo in the game that mattered most dropped 9 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals to claim the award. To be fair his supposed "Stand-in" dropped a comparable line, in many ways 'Chang' wasn't an understudy as much as a duplicate of the MVP. He even challenged for 'Defensive Player' honors from the Guard position, the award going to 'Superman' who was an imposing anchor for our team.

Yes we did! 'UNDFTD' Championship Celebration.
Team UNDFTD, #SBC4 Champions
We did it! All the hard work and preparation paid off. Bringing on sideline coach Jesse was instrumental to our success and incredibly 'Jonesy' remained Undefeated claiming his 4th title. This one surely the sweetest, taking home the Championship trophy for orchestrating arguably the best campaign of #SBC tournament history.

Another amazing event hosted by Von RM. The standard of play, organisation and competition keeps improving with each iteration. Can't wait for the next one.

The impressiveness of the team was revealed in the following Tournament's Draft when 4 of our stars were selected by Round 2. The whole squad picked up by the fourth - SBC5 Draft Results

Find posts on previous Star Basketball events
- 30 Home Games participates in a Final Four Tournament
- 30HomeGames at the 2nd Star Basketball Tournament
Star Basketball Tournament II recap
- Star Basketball Tournament III: Kicks on Court Gallery
- Recap of the 3rd Star Basketball Tournament
#SBC4 Star Basketball Tournament IV: Kicks on Court Gallery
- #SBC4 Tournament recap: Anatomy of a Champion (1 of 2)
- #SBC4 Tournament recap: Road to Glory (2 of 2)

Friday, August 1, 2014

2010 FIBA World Championship posters

Below are a collection of Wallpapers to whet your appetite whilst we wait for the #Spain2014 promo wallpapers. These are from the 2010 FIBA World Championships hosted by Turkey, before it was rebranded as the 'FIBA World Cup'.

Brazil: Anderson Varejão 
Australia: Andrew Bogut
Turkey: Mehmet Okur
Turkey: Ersan İlyasova
Turkey: Hidayet "Hedo" Türkoğlu
USA: Kobe Bryant
Argentina: Luis Scola
France: Tony Parker
Russia: Andrei Kirilenko
Canada: Joel Anthony 
Puerto Rico: Carlos Arroyo
Spain: Pau Gasol
List of NBA Players suiting up for International teams at the FIBA Basketball World Cup, #Spain2014
- 30HG: Team USA are the new "Oceans '12"
- Team USA Basketball sings "We are Young" after winning Gold at London 2012 Olympics

#SBC4 Tournament recap: Anatomy of a Champion (1 of 2)

We recently wrapped up the 4th One-Day Basketball event amongst work colleagues - The 'Real Events' SBC Tournament. The 5 team GMs for the Tournament were ostensibly the Committee members that helped put the last two events together. 'SQ' (7pts, 9rbs, 4asts, 2.5 stls) the reigning two-time MVP declared he wouldn't be participating for #SBC4. His main rival 'Mamba' (8pts, 8rbs) followed suit which was sure to open up the field and herald a new MVP. This bore itself out as 3 of the teams split their games at 2 wins apiece and an MVP race that ended neck and neck.

The distinction of winningest player goes to 'Jonesy'. Having gone 3 for 3, he's been on each Championship team since the Tournament's founding. Tasked with being a GM this time around he had the opportunity to remove the "Lucky Charm" tag, seen as simply having the good fortune of being drafted with the most devastating player. Jonesy could remove all doubt for this latest campaign, assembling and managing his own team .

With the 4th pick of the Snake draft, Jonesy wisely built his team in consultation with his #1 pick. Despite being a standout of the group, 'Leo' remains humble and arguably the most enthusiastic of the pickup game crew. Together they selected a squad based on chemistry and consistent attendance to the Wednesday sessions. I had the pleasure of being drafted to this team in the later rounds. This was a masterstroke as the team gelled and defined their roles through constant play, there were times during the midweek scrimmages where half the participants came from our squad.

What we were playing for:
SBC Championship, MVP, Steal of the Draft and Defensive Player trophies
Another visionary move by our GM was creating a private Facebook group and bringing on board Jesse as 'President Team Advisor', a motivated player unable to participate on court due to nagging knee pain. The intensity of these moves was amusing and unsettling at first but the preparedness paid dividends on Game day. Particularly the advantage of having a detached observer to critique performance and manage the minutes.

In deciding our Team Name it was only natural we consider referencing our GM's remarkable winning run. It was audacious to be sure but we figured it was better to own it, place the targets on our back and galvanise the team into winning it for his legacy. We went with 'Team UNDFTD' and based our unis on the OG Toronto Raptors. In hindsight the 2014 Phoenix Suns had a more analogous identity with our Dual PGs, twin bigs and equally rounded roster.
The #SBC4 Uniforms:
Gators, Sonics, Ruff Ryders, Team UNDFTD, Rack City
The scouting report for our opponents were as follows:
Gators - The best PG/C Pick and Roll tandem surrounded by deadly shooters
Sonics - Balanced team with Height and solid rebounders
Ruff Ryders - Guard heavy with wiley veterans (read: Lots of Pinoys)
Rack City - Headed by 3 talented all-rounders that can shoot from range

We played the Sonics first up, our weeks of wargaming was finally going to be tested in battle. It was a tight game due to their size and rebounding, the shots weren't falling on both sides but we eventually took control with what would be our calling card for the Tourney, Points off Turnovers.

Our second Game was against 'Rack City' which featured the #1 Draft pick 'Cannings' in his first SBC Tourney. His hand was sizzling after torching the 'Gators' with some deep treys. He remained hot swishing a few times from a few steps beyond the arc but our balanced play deflated them as we ran away with the game in the second half.

The SBC's inaugural MVP tallying the wins and losses
We faced the 'Ruff Ryders' next. They were winless at this point so we came in confident after two solid wins against stiff competition. Knowing they had nothing to lose, the team of scrappy vets played with spirit and lead by 5 going into the second term. We knew we outmatched them in positions and had a second gear to access, we flipped the switch and took control with end to end to plays in transition.
Tournament intermission: Takeaway stir fry. 
Entering into the break we had lived up to our name, we knew we matched well with our opponents and it was just a matter of meeting the intensity come the later rounds. For the 30min intermission, Commissioner Von brought out takeway Stir Fry to feed the combatants and referees, an SBC first.

The months of scrimmages and excited chatter was coming to fruition. It was still a long Road to Glory but we were liking our chances. Would we meet our date with destiny?
Find out: #SBC4 Tournament recap: Road to Glory (2 of 2)

Find posts on previous Star Basketball events
- 30 Home Games participates in a Final Four Tournament
- 30HomeGames at the 2nd Star Basketball Tournament
Star Basketball Tournament II recap
- Star Basketball Tournament III: Kicks on Court Gallery
- Recap of the 3rd Star Basketball Tournament
#SBC4 Star Basketball Tournament IV: Kicks on Court Gallery
- #SBC4 Tournament recap: Anatomy of a Champion (1 of 2)
- #SBC4 Tournament recap: Road to Glory (2 of 2)