Over the weekend, I went to the DC vs Philly exhibition game. For the previous two weeks I was too hype for words to even describe it. I was going to see John Wall and his uber athleticism, KD and his in the gym range skill. I wasn’t going to not go for anything in this world. This game was worth the 30 dollars that I paid to get in.
I got there early, the game started at about 6:30 and I was there 2 hours earlier. I wanted to get as close to the players as possible. I wish I had official media credentials so I could get photos and other keepsakes on a real camera. Instead I had to settle for the up close seats. It was a beautiful expirience though, I couldn’t have mapped it out any better.
I was about to watch professional basketball players in the midst of a lockout. There aren’t a lot of things better than that expiriences.
Pre Game there were children from basketball camp out on the floor indulging in the moment. They were just playing around, but they knew that the lights were on them. It didn’t matter though, they were doing everything they could to showcase their talents. Some of them played really well too. I was embarrased because a couple of the kids looked like they had a better handle of the ball than I did. Don’t take my word for it though, please. I could beat them if I wanted to blind folded…..
I had my pen and my notepad ready, I was ready to do work out there. Before the game I saw my man Willie T who I did a podcast with. You can check that out right here. He had warned me before hand that the Philly squad doesn’t play. He told me the roster of Philly and instantly I figured they’d give the DC team some work.
Lou Williams was the first player on the court, I figured that he would be. From what I hear, Williams is a gym rat. He seemed ready and focused. The rest of the Philly squad came out and was ready to go. I knew right then that the DC squad would have trouble with them. Kyle Lowry was the one that stuck out to me. I knew he was about to have a big game.
The DC squad came about 5 minutes before the game was about to start. John Wall wasn’t even there for the first quarter. You could imagine the disappointing look on my face, my favorite player wasn’t there. I felt like the child on Christmas who got everything he wanted except for that ONE thing. It was cool though, I was glad to be there regardless.
The game started out rough for the DC team, they were down 46 to 29 after one. Jeff Green for the DC squad was the best player on the floor at the time, and that’s saying something isn’t it? Durant had started out with 10 points, posting up from the low block, then shooting 3s from as deep as the bottom of the ocean. Deonte Christmas, Temple product, had dropped 10 straight on the Goodman Team. It was a nice treat to see him back in the states. Christmas plays in Greece now, but I recalled the days that he was going off for Temple a few years back. Jarret Jack had started the game in place of wall, but “The Game Changer” as announcer and Goodman Team founder Miles Rawls calls him, was on his way.
At the start of the 2nd quarter, Wall was in the game. He didn’t come out from that moment. He was settling for jumpers at first, right off the plane. You could tell Wall wasn’t warmed up at all. He was still playing some nice defense, however, the Philly squad was executing their PnR plays flawlessly. That’s right, PnR in a street ball game. Crazy isn’t it? They had Lowry or Williams with the ball and they rolled the pick man down to the rim each time. Thye also had backdoor cutters in perfect position each time that they scored a bucket. It seemed unstoppable, even with Wall in.
Wall made it to the rim seemingly effortlessly each time, finishing in a different way each time too. Durant was quietly having a nice night, and so was Wall. At the half, the lead had been cut down to 85-75 Philly up. It was turning out to be more than I expected. Both sides were competing furiously; they were supposed to give minimal effort. I was glad it was turning out like this.
3 minutes into the third quarter, Durant had 49 and Williams had 52. It was impossible for Williams to score 55 like people are saying. I’ll explain why later. Kyle Lowry was doing anything he wanted to the DC squad also, he had over 30 points but no one was keeping track of him. All the attention was on Lou Williams. Everytime Lou hit a deep three you could hear the crowd go “LOOOOOOOOU” in excitement. I think that we all lost track of how many points he had, but by the time the game was over he dropped at least 70. It was amazing to see Williams and Lowry vs Durant and Wall. They took the battle to the final seconds.
At the end of the game, Wall had an opportunity to hit a three to tie the game up. I was so excited, I jumped up out of my seat in anxiety. The shot was going in slow motion in my eyes, I thought it would be his moment. It was coming down….it bounced outside of the rim. That’s when the DC team had to foul, the game was over. The Philly team won, 167 to 170.
Shoutout to Nolan Smith, who gained another fan in me over the past few weeks. He was defending well during this game and made a lot of plays, Lou Williams just caught fire and there was nothing anyone could do. It was simply amazing. There was no way Lou only had 55 points. He filled it UP!
This game was amazing, I really enjoyed myself. At the end of it though, I was kind of sad. This lockout is taking this away from me. Basketball never stops, as the players say, but I want to see the real thing. I want the normal coaches back, I want to see all of the plays they’re going to run. I want to see Wall improve that jumper over time, I want to see Durant become a top 3 guy in the NBA. I want to see Nolan develop with the Blazers, and I want to see Lou Williams get hot on defenders like Nolan. There is no replacement for the NBA, so please, Let Them Play!
Check out this video put together by Willie T of My Mind on Sports. Shoutout to him!