Hi all! It’s been a long time since I’ve written anything here… I’d be a liar if I was saying I was pretty busy lately… I guess I was just outta inspiration.
Anyway, it just dawned on me that I’ve never explained how Basketball became a real passion. Quite awkward when you write a basketball blog, ain’t it?
I live in France and I’m fortunate enough to dwell in a city (Limoges) that hosts a famous basketball team: Limoges CSP. It’s been almost 35 years now that this organization enlightens the city. For my part, I’ve been hooked since my teenage years, so more than 15 years ago. When you live in Limoges, being a BB fan is almost unavoidable, so I guess I just jumped on the bandwagon.
All the city supports its team… and during the games, the atmosphere is just electric in the arena, which can contain about 6.000 fans. Everybody in the arena root for the local team, howl, scream or booh the opponent, including the old ladies. It was, and it still is, a nightmare for the opponents to play in this arena!
Rumor has it that back in the day, some old gray-haired man, seated near the court, were even surreptitiously putting their walking sticks in the opponents’ legs! I wasn’t attending the games at the time, so I can’t confirm nor deny it, but it’s just a funny legend that I think was worth sharing…
Limoges won several titles, but I won’t go into details (it’d be way too long), just be advised Limoges won the European championship in 1993, which I think kind of sets the tone!
Oh yeah, I know when it comes to talking about basketball, you guys often think about the NBA… and you’re right on the money, since the NBA is undoubtedly the best basketball league in the world: the top dogs play over there (but not the best coaches IMHO) the game is more physical, more spectacular and whatnot. There’s no point in denying it.
That being said, it’d be a shame to ignore that some pretty good basketball is played in Europe. The latest international competitions over the last decade have showed us that some pretty good basketball can be played overseas… and even beat the Americans!
So my point is you sure as hell can find some pretty good and exciting BB players in Europe. Besides, mind-blowing players have played in Europe, including a bucketload of former famous NBA players. For the record, back in the 90′s Limoges called up Billy Knight, Trevor Ruffin, Kelly Tripucka, Tim Legler, Rolando Blackman, Vern Fleming, Chris Smith and a great deal of others NBA players… damn, I just can’t remember the others, my memory plays tricks on me right now…
Among all those players, a few of them were some real NBA stars and maybe in a future post I’ll talk about their adaptation (more often than not difficult) to the European game.
Be aware from the get-go that being a former NBA superstar didn’t mean you’d outclass your opponents in Europe, far from it! Some have been quite surprised to see how tough the game was in Europe.
But like I said, that’ll be another story for another day…
Stay tuned and keep enjoying the game ;-)