The recent news of the NBA filing two claims against the NBPA (National Basketball Players Association) casted an even darker cloud around the harsh NBA lockout negotiations that have gone on for over a month. The players have made it clear that they won’t budge from their stance, while the owners are holding true to their beliefs of taking the NBA back financially.
So, in other words, this NBA lockout will be here for the long haul. Many NBA players have found other ways of exercising that caged energy and athleticism.
It’s never been foreign to see NBA players getting a run in at the famous Drew League in Los Angeles or causing standing room only crowds at the legendary Rucker Park in New York City during the summer time. What is foreign is seeing a huge amount of NBA players traveling across the United States to play in multiple Pro-Am leagues and compete with such passion like it was Game 6 of the NBA Playoffs.
For example, Kevin Durant is one of the many NBA stars that’s blessed some of these elite Pro-Am leagues with a jaw dropping display of skill. It started at the Drew League in Los Angeles, CA and as recently as Monday, Durant packed his filthy jumper and alien-like length into a suit case and arrived in New City to turn heads.
At the famed Rucker Park, who many call the Mecca of streetball, Durant operated on the heads, legs and eyes of every defender that attempted to check him. Whether it was a fade away jumper in the mouth of a defender or a power dunk in front of thousands of camera phone lights, Durant was a “Basketball God”. When the dust settled and “man crushes” from adoring fans were ushered off the court, the NBA’s scoring champ finished with 66 points.
There have been other NBA players that have released their lockout frustrations on helpless Pro-Am defenders. Brandon Jennings, James Harden and LeBron James have all participated in Pro-Am leagues. Harden baptized the Drew League for 51 points, Jennings took over the Melo Center in Baltimore and finally, LeBron James made a surprise appearance at the Drew League.
It’s only a matter of time until a basketball player becomes tired of working out with personal trainers in solo sessions. Ball players want to test their new post game or fade away release in a competitive 5-on-5 game.
Whether it’s in a Pro-Am summer league or across the waters in European leagues, NBA players will lace up their sneakers and compete against whoever steps forward.
If the NBPA and the NBA owners can actually sit and compromise their proposals without arrogance, the greatest professional sport in the world can get back to work. Until that happens, look forward to more highlight videos of NBA players toying with summer league defenders or European players.
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