Hoops with House 7

Hey Sky Fans... I’m checking in from NBA All-Star weekend!

Did you watch every bit of All-Star Weekend?! I was fortunate to be there with Cathrine Kraayeveld and our owner Michael Alter. It was incredible to be in Los Angeles, visit with Cathrine Kraayeveld, see her compete and take in so many of the events and activities.

We have to bring All-Star weekend to Chicago! Can we convince the NBA to put the event in Chicago in February? Maybe we’ll shoot for the WNBA All-Star game first.

I’ve been fortunate to coach three WNBA All-Star games. It’s very different to be at the NBA All-Star weekend with some “work” requirements, but be able to enjoy all the events and fun as well. The NBA All-Star scene is very similar to the WNBA event or the NCAA Final Four, but also different in that the vibe, the hype, the people - fans… everything is just at such a higher pitch. The total fan numbers may be lower at NBA All-Star than at a Final Four and the atmosphere is different. It’s really a great event. Congratulations to the staff involved in putting it all together and pulling it off. From one coach’s view… it was very well run.

Did you know the host hotel is at a maximum-security level? It has to be kept that way. To even enter the hotel you have to be a registered guest and show your room key. There is security everywhere. That keeps the lobby area a little less crowded for the All-Stars, NBA and WNBA personnel to conduct their business. People forget with all the fun, the NBA and WNBA staff’s are still “working.”

I went to the East – West practices on center court at the NBA Jam Session. The practices aren’t really true practices when you are coaching an all-star team. There is usually one 60-minute practice with 30 minutes of media availability at the end. As a coaching staff, you try to put in a couple side out of bounds, baseline out of bounds and some offensive action so that the team is organized. I heard Doc Rivers joking with the players … “OK, run Miami’s “Floppy”, or when he had his four Celtics on the floor they ran “Shooter wide.” With the extensive scouting, preparation and video work that is done in the NBA – all the all-stars know every team’s plays inside and out. They had a lot of fun with that.

Congratulations to Team Atlanta for winning the Haier Shooting Stars competition hardware this year… Team Chicago was right there, that half-court shot on the second round killed us! Cathrine was great and ready to go! No surprise, she shot the ball very well and helped Team Chicago to stay in it! It’s crazy that it always come down to the half court shot.

Easily the best portion of the weekend was the NBA All-Star Day of Service. Any time that is given in service of others is such a great benefit. Even though it is designed to give time and assistance to others, in the end the people volunteering their time get just as much or more out of it than those that are on the receiving end.

The weekend contained a few other stops and “things” in my schedule. Maybe the video will give you an idea of what else I did on my trip.

It’s getting close to conference tournament time and then the NCAA’s! Our staff’s travels will take us to several of the conference tournaments and as always, I’ll try to shoot you off a little video along the way.

Enjoy your week Sky fans!

For previous editions of Sky Hoops with House, click here.