Monday, February 15, 2010

So I think its safe to finally sit down and do a little bit of reflection on the All-Star experience in Dallas. I left yesterday morning (before the game) so that I could come home and spend Valentine's Day with my lady. And before you attempt to make me feel bad for missing the All-Star game last night, let me attempt to explain why. 1)I interviewed all of the players I wanted to talk to on Friday and Saturday, and Sunday would have been overkill. 2)None of you reading probably remembers this, but February 14, 2009 was the due date for my lady and I's child, before she lost the baby. That is still an emotional subject and day for us, so again, there was no way I was missing yesterday, even with an All-Star game looming. I digress big time..

I'll focus on the good parts first. I met Kobe Bryant and his wife, Bernard Hopkins, Spike Lee, Erykah Badu, Spencer Haywood (for you old school basketball fans), Dell Curry, Jermaine Dupri, Bill Rhoden (writer for the NY Times), Chris Webber, Charles Barkley and countless others. I also met numerous fans who thought I was way more important than I really was, simply because I had press credentials. I was able to walk in front of many men and women who thought they were SO very important and undeserving of waiting in line to gain entry, because I had credentials (which fed my ego I must admit). And of course I gained some good audio clips from the All-Stars, which is why I was there of course. I can't wait to go back next year, when my approach will be much better, and my game plan will be airtight.

Now the bad..in list form
1)I was WAY overwhelmed. I mean WAY overwhelmed. Everything moves so quickly, and there was no formal schedule, so you just had to ask around, and navigate your way thru things as best you could. I felt like it was my first time covering sports all over again

2)I had no seating the entire weekend. According to the several people I talked to, the NBA gave out more credentials than they had seating (except for Sunday's game of course which was held in the monstrous Cowboys Stadium), so there were some folks like me who did not get seats. I was also told I was one of the last people to get credentials which further explained why I was on the outside looking in

3)I needed someone there with me. A camera person, a best friend, my girl, someone to share my experience, my jokes, my fears, my frustrations, somebody goddammit. I met folks here and there who I recognized, and I made new contacts, but it simply isn't the same as sharing things with someone who actually knows you and vice versa. A cynic would argue that I need to step out of my comfort zone sometimes, and I totally get that. But I needed balance

4)Remember all those famous people I met above? NONE of them were interested in talking with the microphone on..in fact some of them were great in casual conversation, but then when I wanted to record them for Hoops Addict (except for the All Stars of course) they got all shy and denied me, which pissed me off. Considering there hundreds and hundreds of journalists around, I know why they didn't do it, but still, selfishly speaking, I wanted that you know?

5)The hotel lost my flip cam which had been delivered to the hotel two days before I arrived, and they did not find it until early Sun morning...a few hours before I checked out, and WAY too late for me to capture any footage.

I have other regrets like getting a "speeding" ticket for going 48 in a 35, not writing an actual story or keeping a blog while I was down there, not attending any parties because I was DEAD tired, and missing out on staying downtown with the rest of the writers and journalists, because all the hotels were booked by the time I found out about my credentials. But I won't dwell on the negative. Overall, it was definitely a learning experience, and next year hopefully i'll have a photographer with me, a flip cam of my own, and I'll be armed with a much better game plan.

Oh and I briefly made it on tv. See below at the 2:09-2:24 mark. I'm the one with the green sweater and brown sportscoat

4 comments:

aroundthewaygirl said...

oooh u famous!

sixfive said...

funny how this is about the NBA All-star game, but I'm most excited about the fact you met Spike Lee and Erykah Badu.

Sab D said...

Man ... Spencer Haywood?
This might be borderline hating - but I just have a hard time giving props to a cat who let drugs cause him to let Iman walk out of his life. Iman, dawg? I mean ... This is Iman, we're talking about. Man they ain't made no drug that makes me want to divorce Iman - whatever the issue we couldve worked it out you know, I mean this is Iman, man ... Sorry bout all that, but are you feeling me on the Iman thing - I mean after that - Spencers credibiltiy is eternally trashed. Iman? As Rick James would say "cocaine is a powerful drug". Gotta be, make a fool leave Iman. Man you should jumped up and slapped him for all the brothers in the struggle.

Man that clip looks like you was on some ole "aw that's nothing we used to do that in high school" ... alright, I'm going to go
catch my breath about Spencer .... That fool lost Iman - SMH ....

rashad said...

Sab, I know, I know. He wasted his career and he threw away Iman, and I thought about all that while I was talking to him. But he did turn his life around..I guess.