Friday, August 31, 2012

Kareem gets Statue (Finally)

After feeling like he was slighted and even sometimes belittled at times Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Will now get honored the same way Jerry West and Magic Johnson do. It was announced that sometime during this season the NBA’s all time scoring leader will get his own statue like Magic and West. This has been LONG overdue for a guy who is one of the games greatest players and arguably the best player in team history, its just great too finally see him get his due. Everybody who is a Laker fan  right now knows who Kareem is and with the statue Laker fans will never forget who he is. This man, Magic Johnson, James Worthy  and the “Showtime” Lakers of the 80s changed the game forever with there uptempo high octane style of play. They were a Dynasty and one of the models for greatness in the world of sports and are apart of what makes being a Laker so great. Kareem was a central part of those teams and its about time the Laker organization pay him with that gesture for his 20 years of longevity (If only they did the same for Elgin Baylor). If you don’t know who Kareem is or how great he was here are some of his many accomplishments.

38,387 Points
NBA’s All-Time Leading Scorer
19 Time All-Star
6 Championships
2 scoring Titles
4X leading Shot blocker

Congratulations to Kareem-Abdul Jabbar

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Tru school Sports on the web

Its Been about 2 months and some change since i had this thing and its doing great Thanks too all you guys!! I f you guys want too stay connected with me and this Amazing thing you continue too make possible for  me Follow me on twitter @ThatBoyBtaylor ill follow back and For My interactive Facebook Page its www.Facebook.Com/TruSchoolSports be sure to hit that "LIKE" Button and suggest away. This is just the start everybody of something great and truly special thanks for being along for the ride

Monday, August 27, 2012

Still a Kids game:Little League World Series

Its late August and the stretch run for Major League Baseballs pennant races are upon us. Players will be scrutinized and embraced by thousands of people in the next few months lets forget all about the MLB just for a second. Remember being 9 years old swinging a baseball bat in your backyard with your friends emulating your favorite players swing? I do and watching the little league world series these past few days took me back too the spirit and fun of baseball. Watching these young and very talented young kids enjoyment and passion for the game really took me back to what baseball is really about. Its not about performing up too your contract or trying to get endorsement deals, Its all about having fun, Playing the game too the best of your ability and trying to win. If you ever forgot why you loved the great game of Baseball then all you had too do is watch the Little League World series and im 150% sure that you would be quickly reminded of why you love it and memories of your playing days would come back. I think we as a society can learn from watching the Little League World Series. We can learn or even relearn that if you don’t love what your doing in the first place then don’t do it at all. We can learn how too have fun. We can learn why Baseball is still great and what the core values about the sport truly are and that even though this is played by adults it is still a kids game. Being a Marlins fan has been a frustrating thing this season because they don’t even look like they are having any fun playing a kids game for millions of dollars, So when I would tune in to Espn in the afternoon too watch kids from the opposite sides of the world play the game with so many smiles and such high intensity it was incredibly refreshing. One thing that really captivated me this past Little League World Series was seeing the poverty stricken country Uganda  play the game with such class and enjoyment. Its mind boggling too me that kids who come from a third world country have so many things they could dwell or complain about can find something like baseball play it at a high level and use it as an outlet for greater things in there life. A country like Uganda even being in the event is really a testament too the continued growth of the sport. So next time you walk by your local baseball field and you see young kids playing the game of baseball I would advise you to stop and watch for a little bit you might actually learn something from the young kids passion for the game. So next time you see an MLB player not playing the game hard for Millions of Dollars remember what baseball is really about. This is, was and will ALWAYS be a Kids game! 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Marlins Park (My Take)

Marlins Park 2012-Present

We came along way as fans of the marlins going from the slums of sun life stadium to the art deco beauty of the brand new Marlins Park. In the 1st season at the brand new digs ive had the privallege of attending 4 games this season (Most of them losses). Let me tell you the difference is night and day from the food, Concourse, seat quality, the fan experience at Marlins park is much better then what I experienced at pro player stadium/sun life for 12 years of my life. When you walk around the park  there is a buzz and energy I rarely ever felt at that football stadium. Its great  too walk into a park where this is more people wearing Marlins gear then opposing teams gear. I have a lot of love for our old home, It treated us to 2 world championships in 1997,03 and his home to a lot of my childhood but marlins park is more fan friendly and in the long run that’s truly matters.

Sunlife Stadium 1993-2011


A big concern coming into the new park was transportation. Parking garages are for season ticket holders only so if you are coming too the game and aren’t a season ticket holder your best bet is too use one of the lots on various business plazas and parking lots.. They usually aren’t that that pricy and range from 5-15%. If you don’t have a car like my father and I then you can take the tri-rail to the game. Let me give you a HUGE warning that the learning the correct route is confusing and so is figuring out which side  to stand on at the station, it took me 4 games to really figure it out. Once you get it down though it is faster then a car and tri-rail and metro rail tickets combined are 11.25$ estimated and should be sure to save your money on gas. After the ballgame concludes there will be trains waiting for fans at train station.

Outside of the park

my commute too Marlins Park with Miami skyline in the back
If you get off culmer station like I do and walk to the park that commute  is a fun picturesq route that offers alternatives to the pricey ballpark food. The walk is 10-15 minutes long and there is a Winn  Dixie super market before you get too the park. At Winn Dixie  they offer  a wide assortment of Spanish food such as empanadas and other cultured Cuban food. What you get there for 13$ will fill you up more then 13$ at the ballpark. After you get past Winn Dixie you will cross the street ahead and make your way onto the bridge where if you look to your left you will see the Miami skyline. Once you actually get too Marlins Park there are a few things too do. Around stadium are vendors who sell hot dogs, sodas, water and my favorite arepas. Around the ballpark are several stores like metro pcs and ever delightful Yo Blendz yogurt shop which you won’t find in the ballpark. The main store outside of Marlins Park is the official team store which is where I scored this sweet Justin Ruggiano T-Shirt.  There is all of that and towards the main entrance is the video board which usually has on other sporting events too keep fans entertained while waiting for the gates to open.

Marlins Park

When you walk into Marlins Park you are hit by an array of color and smells of exceptional food. Like I said earlier I’ve had the privallege of attending 4 games this season (Most of them loses) and have seen the park from many angles. Let me first start off by saying no matter where you sit the view is intiamte and seat quality is bar none the best in baseball. There are many features that make this ballpark unique and very Miami. First and foremost lets start off with the homerun feature in left-center field (which is hideous) that thing looks like one giant over priced bag of skittles mashed up into a sculpture. No other park in baseball has something so colorfully hideous to obstruct players view but the art deco colors make it very Miami. Another thing I absolutely love is the bobblehead musuem which features thousands of bobbleheads from all 30 MLB teams. My personal favorite bobblehead in the musuem is of former Marlins Great Luis Castillo. Another cool thing you can do is walk around the park and watch the game at the same time while walking through the promenade level. While walking in Left field you will spot the Budweiser bar where you can stand and watch the from a great view without a ticket and mingle with other fans in an outgoing atmosphere. If you have kids and they get bored take them to center field they have video games such as Guitar hero, Gallaga, MLB 2K12 and of course pacman. When you walk into the park there are pictures of the batting order up and  a wall dedicated too a player, That’s pretty cool I like knowing whos batting before intros so I can analyze the matchups as a fan.
Homerun sculpture

Luis castillo bobblehead


Cuban sandwhich

Food the ballpark is a great thing. At Marlins Park from what I had to grub on I can tell you this placed gets an A+ in that department when you go too the park its best to go to the taste of Miami which like Winn-Dixie offers a plethora of Cuban food and won’t dissapoint. If your not into Cuban food head over too Miami Mex and get the steak tacos those things are perfect but pricey as heck at 13$ for 2 tacos. If you sit in the club level and have a sweet tooth get the gelato the quality is great but the amount is scarce. Marlins Park is a place where you can’t lose when it comes too food choices.

As great as the park is I have a few problems. Of course there is the disaster on the field that has us in last place. I told Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria when taking the picture above “Lets get this thing turned around”. “Most definetly “ He replied and gave my dad props on the throwback Dontrelle Willis Jersey he was sporting that night. Another problem is I don’t see too many things that comemorate or celebrate our history, hopefully that changes. This park is amazing and if we can fix the product on the field and match the quality of female dancers at the Clevelander then we are in business

Friday, August 17, 2012

Dreams Come true for NBA 2K Fans

Over the last several years the NBA 2K series has dominated sports gaming and it looks like they took another step in doing so several days ago when they announced that the the 1992 “Dream Team” will be in NBA 2K13. It will have every player on that team except Scottie Pippen due to copyright reasons. As a fan who has been playing NBA 2k for years this is a HUGE day for me having the chance to play with the dream team. I know its just a game but boy I can’t wait to settle this WACK debate people keep having with me saying that the current USA men could beat the “Dream Team”. I know basketball has evolved into a more up tempo game based on athletiscm rather then fundamentals and half court sets. I Can’t wait to just throw down the ball in the post to guys like David Robinson and Karl Malone and just go to work on the wannabe “Dream Team”. The opportunity to settle this debate on the sticks is a great one and I really believe  NBA 2K does a great job of making the games as authentic as possible from the uniforms, to hardwood and just overall game presentation. The one thing they did best last year in NBA 2K12 and will continue too do in this years installment of 2K  is bridging the generational gaps between basketball fans. What I mean is kids who are my age didn’t get too see Oscar Robertson or Jerry west play get too learn about them and literally fell how great they were through the game play. With them Putting the Dream team in the game the younger generation will get to see how great that team was through game play. Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, John Stockton the list of hall of famers go on and it the matchups up and down the court will be intriguing. Magic vs. Cris Paul or Kobe Bryant vs. Michael Jordan just too name a few., Whenever people decide to pickup the sticks and play as the 2 gold medal teams it should be entertaining and it will definitely spark debates not end them. So if you dunk on Clyde Drexler With Lebron James and Start Taunting your uncle you know its about to be an exciting 4 quarters. NBA 2K13 Having the Dream Team is a celebration of basketball and should be an improvement over last year. All I know is October 2nd cant come quick enough for me.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Throwback Thursday: Spectrum

Happy Throwback Thursday to everybody. I Just want too thank everybody who took the time to read last Thursday article on NBA Street. I want too give a special thanks to NBA point guard Baron Davis who retweeted my article last week make sure you follow him on twitter @Baron_Davis and while your following him you can follow me @ThatboyBtaylor I’ll follow back. Enough of the chit chat though lets get into it today on throwback Thursday we are gonna talk about the Philadelphia Spectrum.

Opened in 1967 the Spectrum aka “America’s Showplace” was the home of the Philadelphia Flyers and Philadelphia 76ers. This arena represents a special time in Philadelphia sports history. Names like Julius Erving, Bobby Clarke and Moses Malone all gave fans many reasons too cheer with there excellent play. The Flyers and Sixers combined for 3 Championships in that building Sixers (1983) Flyers (1973-1974,1974-75). Too this day Americas showplace is still the only arena to ever host the NBA and NHL all-star game in the same season. It wasn’t the most luxuorious arena like the ones we have today, lack of luxury suites and higher operating costs would ultimately be the end of the spectrum with both teams moving out in 1996 to the more convient Wells fargo Center. The Spectrum would be Knocked down in 2009 but the memories still live,

Philadelphia Flyers

The time the Flyers spent taking the ice at the spectrum saw some of the most violent play in NHL history. Dave Shultz Bob Kelly and company led the ever goonish gang known as the “Broad Street Bullies” Known for their physical and violent play the Broad Street Bullies would focus on beating opponents through intimidation and fighting.Whenever Teams came to The spectrum too play the flyers it was gonna be a blood bath. Those teams represent Philly in a lot of ways tough, Gritty, blue collar just like Philadelphia. Anytime people came to play Bobby Clarke, Bernie Parent and The rest of this team it would become a war. They made history in 1974 Becoming the 1st team too ever beat an original six team to win the franchises 1st  Stanley cup defeating Bobby Orr and the Boston Bruins in 6 games. The following season the Flyers would face the Buffalo Sabers in the Stanley Cup and repeat as champions in 6 games. The “Broad Street Bullies” were like super heroes and the Spectrum was they’re home.

Philadelphia 76ers

Dr.J, Moses Malone, Andrew Toni, Maurice Cheeks just a few names that hold value in spectrum lore. These are some of the men that the spectrum faithful would erupt in enthusiasm for and why not? They brought home the city of brotherly love a championship in dominating fashion to. Prior to the 1982-1983 playoffs Moses Malone came out and said that Sixers were not going too lose a game in the playoffs. After a sweep of the New York Knicks and a 5 game victory over the Milwaukee Bucks the Sixers would sweep Magic Johnson and the Lakers and become the 1982-1983 NBA Champions. Malone would be named  Finals MVP. The Sixers had gone 12-1 in the playoffs losing a measly little 1 game. They were one of the Greatest teams in NBA history. The Sixers would close out the spectrum on March 14th 2009 vs. Chicago Bulls. Julius Erving had some words of encouragement for the current Sixers saying “We issued a challenge to be great ambassadors and always play hard and give your best as you take care of the Chicago Bulls like we used too”. The  Spectrum crowd was electric and the Sixers kept them that way winning 104-101 over the Bulls behind a career high 31 points from Thaddeus Young. It was a perfect way for a great franchise to close out a building that was great too them.

Whether it was the orange and black of the “Broad Street Bullies” and the Philadelphia Flyers or the patriotic red white and blue of the Philadelphia 76ers or the Rocky statue outside the arena the spectrum was home too greatness.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

"Seattle Redenbachr":Get your popcorn ready Seattle

Seattle get your popcorn ready, T.O is taking his talents to Century Link Field. Monday after a tryout with the Seattle Seahawks they agreed on a 1 year deal. Its been awhile since America “got they’re popcorn ready”. Terrell Owens hasn’t been in the league for 2 seasons but with number one receiver Sidney Rice sidlined by injury the Seahwaks are looking for answers at the wide receiver position and have reached at out to the ever flamboyant Owens for help. There is no questioning his talent or physical condition as a football player but his off the field quotations and actions have always rubbed people the wrong way. With 15,394 yards and 153 Touchdowns Terrell Owens stands as one of the greatest receivers too ever play this game. Many people believe he is primed for a big season in Seattle. He will play 8 Sundays on the same gridiron where he famously pulled out a sharpie after scoring a touchdown with the San Francisco 49ers on monday night football and put is autograph on the football and gave to a fan in the crowd. If T.O can keep his mouth shut and stay out the headlines for the wrong reason he has a chance to change public perception of him. All I know is I got my popcorn ready and im ready to see  “Seattle Redenbacher”

Sunday, August 5, 2012

The Starting point:2012 NFL Season

Tonight marks the starting point of a Long and gruesome journey known as the NFL regular season. In Canton,Ohio Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints take on Larry Fitzgerald and the Arizona Cardinals at 8:00 on NFL Network in the annual hall of fame game. The result obviously doesn’t matter but for football junkies across the nation seeing the pigskin being thrown, the sound of pads hitting each other is a welcome sight. Over the next 20+ weeks the unexpected will happen. Careers will end,careers will come out of nowhere. Upsets will happen and critics will be proven wrong. Guys who we didn’t know months ago will become household names. Fantasy Football leagues will start up soon. People will come out victorious and some will be humiliated. The boss at the office will be the main target in the company fantasy football league. With Football returning tonight we are closer too the holidays. Thanksgiving Football creeps closer and you and the family will gather around with the welcoming odors of mash potatoes, Pumpkin pie and hopefully if your team is on the gridiron that day a win. The beginning of the week tradition known as “Monday Night Football” is inching closer and im sure many in our country are anxiously awaiting too see some of the leagues most electrifying players slug it out in primtime. The start of preseason marks the Sunday tradition of regular season tailgating inching ever so close. Hot Dogs, burgers, Bratwurst  and passing the football in stadium parking lots is rapidly approaching. Waking up in the mourning and immediately putting on your favorite players jersey as a ritual is weeks away. Inner family rivalrys arguing who’s team is better you say the 1985 Chicago Bears are the greatest team ever. Looking in disgust your brother from Wisconsin says they shouldn’t even breath the same air as the Vince Lombardi Green bay Packer teams. Its rival fans arguing who they think is better like Tom Brady or Dan Marino. Its 70,000+ fans yelling “Who dat who dat who dat say dey gon beat dem saints”. It’s guys like Maurice Jones-Drew and Cam Newton making the impossible look routine. The upcoming season will bring us moments we never thought were even imaginable like “music city miracle” or David tyree’s catch. It’s the trash talking between rivals like Steelers-Ravens and Jets-Patriots. As fans we will experience many emotions this year Pain, Suffering , Nostalgia, Euphoria but as diehard fans we will wear our colors proudly. Whether you are sporting the Black and Electric blue of the Carolina Panthers or the Black and silver of the Oakland Raiders we will be there for our teams. The next 20+ weeks will take teams fans from every fan base through a seemingly never ending rollercoaster of emotions. So sit back try to relax, grab a coke and a smile and enjoy the 2012 NFL season

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Throwback Thursday: NBA Street

Its Thursday so you already know I don’t got to tell you what time it is but I will anyway, It’s Throwback Thursday. Just want too say thanks to everybody that read the Joe Namath Article last Thursday if you Haven’t make sure you do so. Today for throwback Thursday we are changing the pace rather then talking about a legendary athelete we are going to talk about a classic throwback video game near and dear to my and a lot of other peoples hearts. I’m talking about the Classic NBA Street.

Released way back in the Great year of 2001 My Dad and I were just paying a visit to a local Target on a Thursday afternoon. As I was looking at the video games a cover caught my eye. It was a tall dark afrocentric guy with an afro Dunking a basketball the title read “NBA Street”. My father purchased the game for Playstation 2 for 25.19$. The game was amazingly fun and unrealistic at the same time. You play 3 on 3 Basketball with some of your favorite NBA players on Blacktops in various areas such as South Beach, Route 66, Home Rucker Park and you rather then set pick and rolls and play fundamental basketball just rack up trick points by crossing over opposing players and breaking ankels. The game features Players such as Steve Francis, Reggie Miller, Tracy Mcgrady, Vince Carter, Gary Payton, Baron Davis, Chris Webber, Alonzo Mourning, Eddie Jones, Afro Kobe Bryant, Allen Iverson, Michael Jordan and Vitaly Potapenko. All the then 29 team are featured and 5 players are available from each of the franchises. In city circuit mode which is my personal favorite you pick NBA team and play other NBA teams in various venues and once you beat them you can have them on your team, so usually after getting far enough in city circuit I would pick the Charlotte Hornets and once I beat the Heat and 76ers I would pick up Allen Iverson and Eddie Jones and I would have them play alongside Baron Davis. Another cool thing about City circuit mode is when you beat the NBA teams in a venue you got too play the boss of that stage which are all fictional Streetballers like Stretch (the guy on the cover) once you beat them you automatically get them on your team. NBA Street is a classic you can play it right now in 2012 and you will still have a blast playing it just like I did for 6 hours yesterday. The game was well received and was certified as one of Playstation’s greatest hits. It was a pioneer that spawned 2 more NBA Street games an NFL and FIFA version as well. If you have never played this game then you are missing out, I highly suggest that if you still own a Playstation 2 that you go out and buy the game. All I know is that every time I pick up a controller to play I don’t put it down for hours. Maybe it’s the rim shattering dunks to end the games that I perform with guys like Keyon Martin and Jermaine O’neal. Maybe it’s the Challenge of beating Stretch, Bonafide and Biggs.  Maybe it’s the way Joe “The show” blurts out “HELLO OPERATA”! from his megaphone every time I shoot a 3 pointer. Maybe it’s the sounds of Real Hip-hop in the back round when I’m Crossing someone over with Brevin Knight. No matter how you look at it NBA Street left an untouchable legacy which is hard for any sports game to live up too.

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