Bad officiating and brawls, a winner is declared.

The end finally came for the inaugural season of the Love2Ball League.  It took exactly two months to finish this league out.   Regular season games were played at Settegast Park on 2nd ward with the playoffs and finals finished out at the Filhoops Gym out in Spring Branch.

8 teams signed up to take part, Aztecas, Charlton, Hoopgrinders, Da Nets, The Gentlemen, By Any Means,  Free Agents, and Southside Ballers.  Two teams dropped shortly after the season started with Aztecas not able to commit due to their multiple leagues on Sunday and Da Nets who disappeared.  An AAU team played one game but decided not to come back.  We were able to get one last minute team to join (Pineypoint) and lock in the season with 7 teams.  

All teams played 6 regular season games and the 1st placed team (Southside Ballers) got a bye for the playoffs.  The first game of the playoffs was between Charlton and By Any Means which Charlton won pretty easily after winning by more than 50+.    The second game was Hoopgrinders vs Pineypoint.  Both teams had faced each other during the regular season and reinforcements finally showed up for Hoopgrinders since they were playing with different players throughout the season and it looked they finally got a good mix of players for the playoffs, however in the playoff game they started trailing by 20 points after the second half and bad turnovers, missed shots led to frustration and fighting broke out among the hoopgrinders.  The game was called off and Pineypoint advanced to the semifinal.   The gentlemen faced off the free agents which was basically a rematch of an regular season game where free agents pulled an upset win after taking it to overtime. The gentlemen brought their full squad and the free agents had only three players with them in the beginning requiring them to use two players from the stands and most importantly be penalized in points.   The game seemed as if the gents were going to pull an overwhelming victory however two regular players from the free agents showed up right before half time and helped the team get as close to within 8 points while being down almost 20+ points. All that hustle from the free agents took a lot of energy and a couple of players got very winded, with very little subs to use they had to keep on playing on an empty tank.  In the end fatigue was a factor and the free agents ultimately succumbed to not having a full roster.  

The first semi-final and most exciting match of the night was between Charlton and Southside Ballers.   The match was anticipated as Charlton and Southside Ballers didn’t face off in the regular season.   The game had multiple lead changes back and forth and it went down to the final minute and a half of the 4th quarter to determine a winner with Southside Ballers advancing to the final. 

The gents faced Pineypoint in the second semi-final game.  Both teams didn’t play each other in the regular season as the gents didn’t show for their game and pineypoint got the default win.   The match went underway and the gents took an early lead in the game although pineypoint kept it very close.  Around the third quarter the referee had to stop the game due to tempers flaring up and calls not being made.  After 15 minutes of deliberation with the referee the game resumed.  Game was pretty close till about the 5 minute mark at the 4th quarter when after several deliberate fouls were made from both sides and since they weren’t called by the referee, it led to both teams getting into a heated argument and a fight broke out afterwards between the teams.  Fortunately everyone came to their senses and calmed down but because punches were thrown from both teams, they were disqualified. 

The champs.

Because Southside Ballerz advanced to the final and the two teams in the other semifinal both got disqualified, they had no one else to play and thus were automatically crowned champions of the inaugural season.  

Moving forward I would like to thank all the teams for participating and being patient with getting the games scheduled.   Playing at a public park is not easy since we have to rely on several factors such as weather,  court conditions, and availability.  I know several players had issues with Settegast being very slippery and to have good quality games we need to have a place with good surface so more than likely we won’t be playing at that park any longer.  Because of heated arguments from players, we’ll have to have mandatory security and most importantly have good quality refs that can officiate the games properly.  This is my first time running a league and I’ve tried my best with the limited resources available to make things run efficiently but things can only improve from here on out.  I’ll be taking a small break from competing in any leagues or organizing but this will give me time to brainstorm and provide a better and improved league for Season 2.  While there isn’t any definite date on when this league will start, I want everyone to save up because in order to get this upcoming league ran the correctly, it’s going to cost a little bit more.  Hopefully we get a good amount of returning teams with the addition of new teams to make it great and exciting. 

Thank you all.

frank

 

2017 Blacktop Tournament hosted by ZTE, the Recap.

For the first time ever,  the Blacktop 3vs3 tournament was to be played indoors.  For the last couple of years hosting the tournament outside has been a hit or miss with the weather.  Two years ago, the tournament had to be rescheduled due to a rain out and just today while I was driving to the MI3 center, it was raining so it was a good thing that it was hosted indoors this year.

HSB Los Misteriosos.

I had talked to my friends who I played with previously in the blacktop tournament along with other 4vs4 tournaments and they decided that this weekend was going to be hard for them to show.  Since I wanted to play I put a last minute together and signed us up in the elite division.   Gage Guest, Lezhon Gill, Courtney Cash and myself went out firing on all cylinders in our first game.   Our second game was against 3x reigning champ UBAL and they had this one versatile big man that helped them get a lot of second chance put backs. Our third game was a do or die as we needed to win to advance to the elimination round. We had a good lead for a while and even had game point but the other team climbed back and tied the game at 14-14.  Game needed to be won by two and the other team got a point and one second remained in the game and towards the end we couldn’t get a shot in time and ended up bowing out early.  

Emmerich Grimm aka Dunkzilla

In between the games was the three point contest, dunk contest and skills contest. I actually competed in the three point out contest but for some odd reason I had an issue with the rubber balls and didn’t do so well.  The skills challenge was a little bit different with the way the obstacles were placed and I didn’t so good either.  The next event to watch was the prestigious dunk contest which has been won multiple times in a row by Issac White aka Sir Issac.  There was a couple of other contenders out there but it came down to Issac White which impressed early with him jumping over this dude who was probably 6’10” and Emmerich Grim who goes by the handle “Dunkzilla” with an awesome alley oop honeypot dunk (vince carter arm dunk).  The two dunkers squared of and Dunkzilla busted the alien dunk which he covers his face with a tshirt and puts the ball in back of his head and then dunks it, the crowd went wild. Issac White had to in turn go all out, however he missed his two attempts trying to do an eastbay over a guy dunk (which I seen Issac nail it several times).  The new winner was crowned and Dunkzilla won the Dunk Contest.  

After the dunk contest was of course time to watch the final of the Elite Division which was UBAL against The Generation.  The Generation are a team who are competing in the Houston Streetball league as “Southside Ballers” and were the underdogs.  UBAL being the reigning champ were heavy favorites.  The game went back and forth in the very beginning but Generation had a hard time with UBAL’s Big man who kept getting many rebounds and driving to the goal at will.  It seemed towards the mid game that UBAL was going to take it as they got into the bonus being that Generation had accumulated over 7 fouls very early on trying to contain the big man, however they kept pushing and pushing and started nailing consecutive three’s (two points) and eventually tied the game up 14 to 14.  With the game needed to be won by two points, nobody wanted to give up any shots from the perimeter.  In one play, the big man from generation got a rebound and took it out from the corner three and shot it and miraculously it went to win the game and become the new Blacktop Battle Champs.  Congratulations to Oquine Nickles, Konkheis Sipsey, Viston Nelson and the coach Segun Adesena. 

The Generation

With over 500+ players from all parts of Houston and even players from Daisetta, Galveston, Louisiana,  Conroe, the tournament went very well.  Of course I’m slightly bitter still going out early in the group stage but that’s basketball, you win some, you lose some. I’ll be back next year and come back even better. I didn’t get to stay long enough to see who won the three point contest nor the skills contest but I hope to have that info later on.  I took a couple of pictures that you can enjoy in the gallery below.

Until next time, keep calm and #houstonstreetball

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The Love2Ball League

Houston Streetball and Love2JamRadio have partnered up for the GREATEST COLLABORATION of 2017! LOVE2BALL is the official league of Houston Streetball.   8 teams have takne part in the first season . 
contact frank mar via email to fmar@ocean.ms or message on Facebook. 

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Team Profiles

 

 

Antonio Brown Celebrity Game

Tonight I was invited to check out a celebrity game hosted by Antonio Brown, professional football player for the Pittsburgh Steelers.  My good friend Adrian Mack aka Konfusion Hoops was one of the local ballers invited to partake in the event and invited me to come over and check the game out.  When I got there, there was a long line of people waiting to get inside and I didn’t want to wait in the cold.  I went over to the media entrance to see if I could get in, I was blocked by security.  I told them I was Konfusion’s professional photographer so they asked me to talk to the person in charge of the media entrance. They checked the list of people to see who would get a media pass, of course my name wasn’t going to be on there.  I told them, “I work for Houston Streetball and I drove 100+ miles to cover this event, my name should be on there, yall not gonna make me drive back for nothing” … after a bit of discussion among themselves they still weren’t sure about letting me in,  I pulled out my phone and showed them the Houston Streetball website and all the things on there of other events, it was getting pretty crazy and they had a million of things of other things to do so they gave me the thumbs up. 

Access Granted 🙂

Once inside I was able to pretty much move freely and it felt pretty cool showing the badge and being cleared by security. I saw another local hooper who was invited, Issac White aka Sir Issac practicing a couple of his signature dunks and getting the crowd excited.  Among other notable celebrity guests in the building was Jarule, Kirko Bangz, Boosie, Stevie J, and DJ Khaled.  Floyd Mayweather who is in Houston for Superbowl 51 didn’t make it and Tracy McGrady had appeared prior in a pregame mixer but wasn’t seen tonight.  

Terry Turner, Adrian Mack, Nadia Atiya, Issac White The ZTE team

The game started off with Sir Issac facing a bigger player from the opposite team in the jump off which of course he won since he has a ridiculous vertical of 60″ and after getting it back quickly he slammed it down for the first points of the game.  Adrian Mack started going off and must of had about 20 points in the first half and the black team were up quiet significantly. Terry Turner who showed up to support his good friend disappeared during the half time break but then appeared dressed up in full uniform for the white team.  There was a definite difference with Terry on the lineup as the ball flowed more fluidly and started getting everyone involved and they started climbing back little by little. Kirko Bangz had a couple of good jumpers for the white team but Brandon Armstrong (B-Dot, NBA Impersonator) also had a couple of good three pointers to maintain a gap for the black team. Adrian Mack finished the game with 35 points for the black team.  In the end these kind of celebrity games are about having fun and putting on a show for all the spectators out there, I was glad to be a part of it and hopefully I start covering a few more this year.  I even managed to grab a picture and autograph with rap legend Snoop Dogg.

I took several pictures of the event and made a gallery for everyone to check them out. Our Houston Streetball league starts in a few weeks and we already have so far 4 teams taking interest and registering which will leave only room for 4 more teams, do not miss out the season opener on February 26th at Settegast Park. 

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