Bread City Basketball


It’s the Eastern Conference Semifinals, and the Knicks are rocking black sneakers for good luck. This is their shot. 1994: the year without Jordan. New York has to win now, while they can. Because whatever little fantasy MJ is living out at that moment – pretending to be a baseball player, Indian chief, astronaut, or whatever – they all know it won’t last.

And the Knicks are winning the series 2-0, when the scuffle breaks out between Derek Harper and Jo Jo English in Game 3. These teams hate one another. Pippen and Charles Smith had technical fouls before the game even started. Now the benches clear quick.

The fight goes down to the ground on some bad jiujitsu. Arms and legs everywhere. John Starks is about to throw a punch when Phil Jackson grabs him from behind. They both get tackled into the stands, and security bodies Starks up. Ewing and Pippen play the old hold me back, hold me back game. And Pat Riley’s not even mad until Derek Harper puts hands on coach’s suit.

But the best part? David Stern sits a few mere rows from the melee. He’s literally close enough to reach out and break up the fight himself, but he can’t move. The commissioner just stares, bug-eyed, into his own personal slow motion disaster reel, as both teams crush the heavy spenders sitting courtside.

New York went on to win the series in 7 games, and Jordan returned to basketball the following season.


via Got’em Coach a.k.a. the director.




Stephon Marbury’s internet livecam is 100% the best reason for the internet.  In case you forgot: this guy once ran the floor in the Garden. Now there is a 24/7 window into the depths of his basketball-free bad judgment and paranoia. I’ve been dreaming of a show like this for years.

With just a little clicking around youtube highlights you can see him blazing roaches in the back of the black Phantom, getting into car accidents, eating Vaseline, and running his mouth way too much in sporting goods stores, in no particular order. But who cares about highlights? As long as this thing exists, I am watching live.

June 6, 2009, 12:00 am
Filed under: Basketball, Bread City, Los Angeles Lakers, Video | Tags: ,

Wait for it. Clip gets slowmotion classic about 17 seconds in. A perfect video companion to your NBA Finals.

May 10, 2009, 2:18 am
Filed under: Basketball, Bread City, Poetry, Sneakers, Video | Tags: , ,

Take some some sunshine, some tank tops, some LA Gear. Take two people. Have them pretend to have fun while pretending to play basketball while not knowing how to play basketball. Have them hop back and forth with the ball, blatantly traveling. Have them regress into childhood. The playground bully goes through the motions but does not know how to get what he wants. The girl-next-door knows how not to give it to him. This guy will never call her out on double-dribbling. Have them dance. Have them not pretend to not know how to play basketball.  Take a theme song. LA Gear. LA Gear. You’ve got the moovvves. LA Gear.

Sneaker Fact: Karl Malone rocked these.


As our team sat in the dark, dingy locker room … I emerged from a near-comatose state and jumped up, wanting to finish the game. I have no memory of anything that occured from halftime to the next morning … What happens to the human psyche when a person suffers traumatic harm? What does a person do with the deluge of emotions that infiltrates his mind and changes from minute to minute? One minute I felt that everything would be fine, that healing was happening. The next minute all I could think about was hatred and retribution … Emotionally and philosophically, I was in a crisis. Ron Behagan, Clyde Turner, Corky Taylor, and Coach Bill Musselman had become objects of what philosophers Jeffrie G. Murphy and Jean Hampton call ‘moral hatred.’ … After college, I played for a few years with the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA, but I never played with the same intensity of enjoyment that I had before the Minnesota game.

– Luke Witte’s post-brawl account is excerpted from an essay on forgiveness in Basketball and Philosophy. Sports Illustrated called the fight “the most vicious attack in college basketball lore.” This was Witte’s face. He is now a pastor.