I presume most of you got a good, make that great whiff of Kevin Durant's 66 points at the legendary Rucker Park. If you didn't, here, have some...
With the lockout probably going to be staying for a while, it might just make sense that the players locked out by the NBA find a way of getting in shape and getting ready in any case the season is somewhat salvaged. The best idea would be for those ProAm baller sessions to evolve and become a little bit of mainstream. Yup, those fabled Drew League, Goodman League, the secret baller sessions in LA that Bill Simmons was referring to at one point, the NC Pro-Am, etc.? It's an opportunity to showcase playground and streetball all across. Time to organize exhibition sessions all across the country. We can have 14 teams in this set up face each other.
Atlanta - Home to TNT. Black Hollywood?
Baltimore-Washington DC - You can have the team go with the vibe of "The Wire"
Charlotte - One can tap into the two differing shades of blue in town. Or Chris Paul.
Chicago - The City that Jordan built and currently maintained by Derrick.
Detroit - The Motor City Ballers have been a hotbed for Ann Arbor and East Lansing.
Houston - People generally flock to apprentice under Hakeem. Veteran former head coach John Lucas has a camp based there.
LA - The glitz and glam of Hollywood has its roots with playground ballers.They might have enough manpower for two teams under this set-up.
Lexington - I would presume the blue-bloods of the Commonwealth may want dibs in this little tourney.
NYC - The home of Rucker needs to be on this list. In fact you can probably have two teams, one from the city with 5 boroughs (a.k.a. the inner-city kids) and then the outskirts people can comprise the other team.
Oakland - Of course, NoCal needs to have representation
Seattle - The 206 Ballers would have a couple of loudmouths in Nate Rob and the Jet. If you want to turn back the clock you can have the Glove there, too. Besides, it sort of rights a wrong. (The only way they can right that wrong is returning the Sonics there)
So, how can we spice this up? We can have the shoe companies (Nike and its underlings, Adidas, UnderArmour, Peak, etc) support it. Playground and streetball culture can also be rooted in the sneaker reputation. Nothing like advertising for the sneaker culture. It's also staying true to the a certain aspect of the sport that Stern wants to keep under wraps. I personally never liked the corporatization of the NBA athlete, but the Commish saw the aftermath of the Malice at the Palace and made draconian decisions that had to be done to restore the reputation.
Incentives? Well, there's cash. I know the sneaker companies have a lot of those. Of course, there's the reputation. You gotta rep your playground. Your domain.
I know this is a pipe dream, but I'd like for this to be a reality that the players might want to opt to if they do not want to go overseas.