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Posts Tagged ‘Dwyane Wade’

It has been years since I’ve written a post but in my defense it’s been difficult with my work schedule as I work nights in the Casino & Hospitality industry.  When I’m not working, I’m spending my free time at the BMO Harris Bradley Center supporting my beloved Marquette Golden Eagles or going to watch former MU greats Dwyane Wade, Wesley Matthews, Jimmy Butler and Jae Crowder take on the Milwaukee Bucks.

(Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports)

(Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports)

On Saturday, March 7, 2015 I had the opportunity to see the Washington Wizards play the Bucks. Being from Arlington, VA you would think I’d jump at the chance to see my hometown play.  However, I opted to skip the game and sleep instead. That being said, I will never  pass-up seeing the Wiz Kids play ever again; thanks to NBA Champion, Paul Pierce and John Wall, the 2010 1st-overall NBA Draft Pick.

I was lucky enough to sit  at a bar in Milwaukee, WI when the “The Truth” came out. First, Paul Pierce, nicknamed “The Truth” by Shaq was sitting alone at the bar, smoking a cigar and drinking a ginger ale.  He was focused on reading the captions from the soundless special which FSN was airing about Kevin Garnett–Pierce’s former teammate and close friend.  KG recently returned to the Minnesota Timberwolves, the team that originally drafted him in 1995.  In 2007, KG was traded to the Boston Celtics, where he joined Pierce and the two went on to win the 2008 NBA Championship. Pierce started laughing out loud when FSN showed the same video that I posted on my facebook page, 4 days earlier.  I personally thought, it was so cool witnessing Pierce watch this clip.

Shortly after, two-time NBA All-Star, John Wall and Pierce’s current teammate walked up.  They started talking about their 91-85 loss they had suffered hours earlier.  Pierce was giving “JW” some constructive criticism by telling him to attack the paint. by saying “You sets too many ball screens, you’re the point-guard JW, you don’t set screens, you go around them.” Wall responded by saying “I got you but it doesn’t help when he (Gortat) is always standing at the elbow instead of under the basket.

(L-R) MU Players: Steve Novak, Jimmy Butler, Lazar Hayward, Wesley Matthews.

(L-R) MU Players: Steve Novak, Jimmy Butler, Lazar Hayward, Wesley Matthews.

Then walks-in another Wizard and former Bucks player, Drew Gooden along side a “jersey chaser.”  When Gooden walked-in he started talking to “P” so I started small talk with JW telling him that I was raised in the DC area in Arlington.  Pierce overheard me and joined the conversation saying he lives in McLean (the city next to Arlington). P asked what brought me out to Milwaukee? I replied by saying I went to school at Marquette which opened the door to a three hour conversation with these three players. I told them that I was huge fan of teams with former MU players like Wesley Matthews (Portland) and Jimmy Butler (Chicago).  At which point, Pierce said “It’s a shame to what happened to Wes,” who suffered a season ending injury (torn achilles), two days ago while playing for the Portland Trailblazers.  Then I mentioned that it sucks Jimmy Butler is also currently out with an elbow injury. Pierce jokingly replied “…and (Dwyane) Wade is always injured!”  I laughed, and stated that I have Wade’s college jersey signed and framed in my apartment.  I said I had all former MU players currently playing in the NBA jerseys signed, except for Jae Crowder.

I transitioned the conversation to March Madness and asked Wall if he thinks his Kentucky Wildcats were going to run the table and that sparked the debate of “The greatest player to play at Kentucky.” The debate was between Rajon (Rondo), Wall, and Anthony Davis.  Pierce teased and but I think he seriously meant it when he said Rondo. “Rondo has an NBA Championship and all you need is one of those under your belt and you’d be the best.”  Gooden said Wall has the potential to be the best especially because “you lead the league in minutes played.” However, Wall ended the debate by saying “AD brought a championship to UK and he has a Gold Medal from the Olympics.”

(L-R) Wall, Rondo, Davis.

(L-R) Wall, Rondo, Davis.

Pierce and Gooden both attended Kansas University and they joked saying its clear championships matter because when they enter the practice facility in Lawrence, the player with the biggest picture on the wall is Mario Chalmers.  Gooden laughed as he said he’s played in the Finals in high school, college and the NBA and lost all three times.

Then I looked at my phone and saw that Randall Cobb, WR for the Packers and agreed to re-sign with Green Bay! Wall asked if I was a Packers fan?  I said yea, even though I was raised in DC my Dad raised me as a die-hard Cheesehead.  He replied by saying Cobb, was his friend because they attended UK together.  I said that Cobb agreed to a 4-year-deal for $40 million, $17 million guaranteed.  I asked Wall who he supported, to my shock he said the “Cowboys.”  I told him not to ever mentioned that out loud in DC.  I inquired more to why he was a Dallas fan, since he’s from North Carolina.  He replied by saying “I’m a momma’s boy.” — I laughed.  I asked Pierce who he supported– Well “I’m from LA and since we don’t have a team, the Pat-riots” he replied.  Gooden chimed in saying “The Rams will be moving to LA soon.”

Again, I changed the conversation by asking Wall what city was their favorite to play on the road?  Wall responded by saying “That’s easy NYC or LA.”  I turned the question to Pierce (excluding NYC & LA) and he answered “Toronto. The people are friendly, the city is beautiful, the restaurants are delicious, and the city is diverse.”

Then Gooden randomly changed the subject back to the Wizards current state-of-play saying he wishes “Head Coach Wittman would take a page out of future Coach Pop (Gregg Popovich – Spurs) and quit running so many plays in practice.”  Wall and Pierce, both agreed saying that it’s exhausting as they play so many games and Pierce pointed out again that Wall leads the league in minutes played.  Not following the Wizards at all, I’d still agree with the players considering the players play so many games! They (the players) clearly know how to play but it has to get exhausting traveling and playing back-to-back nights.

The night concluded when I requested we change the TV Channel from FSN to ESPN to watch Sportscenter.  When the bartender changed the channel, a March Madness commercial was shown and there was John Wall in his Kentucky uniform hoisting up a three… The clip showed Wall releasing but not the finish, and I assumed the shot went in but Wall yells “BRICK!” indicating he hit the back of the rim and missed the shot.  Then he fast forwards to the end of the commercial, and say’s “watch me tackle my teammate at the end” and we all start laughing as he tackle his Wildcat teammate to the floor, at the end of the commercial.  When I think back about when Wall was in college, I picture his dance moves… which he brought to the NBA Rookie Photo Shoot:

Prior to departing with their driver, the three players thanked me and let me know that they enjoyed our conversation.  Needless to say, never it a million years did I think I would be able to have a conversation like this but hey it’s March so let the madness begin!!

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