Maybe some things just can't be fixed
Random thoughts from a Saturday night/Sunday morning.
I don’t know what they can do to jazz up that Saturday night – nor do I know how it might have played out on television – but, man, something has to happen.
Even in the arena there really wasn’t a buzz, the girl/guy old/guy thing never creates to much excitement because fans are just setting in; didn’t seem to be an awful lot of extra effort in the punt/pass/kick contest and the three-point shooting thing capture some attention, but not much.
The dunk contest?
Been there, done that, bored the first time, more bored the second.
Best dunk, for sure, was the Evans one where he caught the two ball and dunked them both; hadn’t seen that before.
P. Diddy as a prop? Guy stealing DeRozan’s dunk from a year ago with the pass off the side of the backboard? A motorcyle rather than a car?
It was hilarious at the end when Derrick Williams was capping the night with two minutes of dunking futility – and that is a very, very long time of dunking futility, by the way.
As soon as the buzzer went to end the hijinks the fans started to flee like someone had pulled the fire alarm. Don’t blame them.
How do you fix the night? I have no clue, sadly; one suggestion in the hospitality suite was to make some of the competitions more team-oriented, have two three-point shooters from a team, make the dribble-pass-shoot thing a relay instead of guard-against-guard.
That might make some kind of sense but the dunk contest? I’m not entirely sure it can be saved. Sometimes things just run their course.
I have now seen Flo Rida perform live.
One of the coolest things of the night was Anthony Morrow doing the three-point shooting thing wearing a throwback tribute jersey of Drazen Petrovic, the former Nets great killed in a car accident.
At least this time, the majority of the people in the building got it, unlike a couple of years ago when Rudy Ferdandez was robbed in the dunk contest wearing a throwback jersey as a tribute to Fernando Martin, the first Spanish NBAer, who also died in a car crash.
Just got a release that says the TV ratings in the States for Saturday night were the second-highest in the 27 years of the event and got one yesterday that said the kids game Friday drew the biggest ratings ever.
If that’s not a sign the apocalypse is upon us, I don’t know what is.
You get to these things and they generally run buses from the media hotel to the arena and the volunteers who handle it are generally helpful and well-meaning.
But there’s always a glitch. Or two.
About 20 of us are on the first bus to the arena yesterday and the guy marshalling the drivers and passengers comes on and makes sure we’re all going to the Amway Center and not the Jam Session, which is about six or seven miles out of the way.
Yes, we let him know. We are.
Driver gets on, we start the journey and no one’s paying much attention because it’s a mind-numbing trek down traffic-jammed I-4. Well, no one’s paying much attention until the driver starts heading for the convention centre and the Jam Session when we all start mentioning the faux pas in somewhat loud voices.
Driver seems stunned that we’re going to the arena, ends up taking back roads back to the highway and a trip that took 25 minutes at the end of the night ended up taking 65 on the way there.
Oh, and we get to the security checkpoint on a small road about half a mile from the arena and the heavily-armed officers are somewhat upset. Seems the security seal on the luggage had been broken and all of a sudden the cops are quite upset, telling the volunteers to get away from the bus – while we’re still sitting on it! – and bringing out the bomb-sniffing dog to check things out.
There was no bomb, of course, but the fact they let us sit there like dopes while telling the others to stand back was a tad disconcerting.
I’m sure there were all kinds of famous people at the arena last night, wish I knew who they were.
We’re walking from the really good baseline seat I had to the back after the, um, competitions and there’s a great hullabaloo as people want their picture taken with this one young lad.
“That somebody” I ask the Friend Of A Certain Vintage who’s walking with me.
“No idea,” he says.
Guess the pop culture knowledge isn’t quite up to snuff.
I’ve got the West tonight.
How about you?
Oh, and don’t forget we’ll have an IGBT going tonight. Tip-off is allegedly just after 7:30; I’m guessing closer to 8 p.m. but I’ll be in place shortly after 7. See you then, right?
Of course, I’ll understand if you all only stick around for a half so you can get to bed early for a good night’s sleep. After all, tomorrow is NHL Trade Deadline Day, isn’t it?