Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Venice Basketball League

  I was hoping I would run into something like this at some point. Being a pretty big sports fan I wanted to see some action on the court and with so many ballers here I knew there had to be some.  It turns out that they do actually have their own group, it's called the Venice Basketball League (or just VBL).  Street ball is a treat to watch.  It's a little more aggressive than regulation basketball and even thought the  players don't have contracts they sure do play like they do.

   Just another instance where I am strolling down the boardwalk to see what new and interesting things are happening on a random day in Venice Beach.  Naturally, I always gravitate toward the crowds with the highest amount of activity.  This time the mob was surrounding the basketball court.  I could already hear the announcer from a distance shooting off wise cracks as he playfully criticized the players during the game.  Any missed opportunities or badly executed plays would result in a quick joke or a lashing comment that would incite a short giggle in the crowd and keep the players on their toes as to avoid any further ripping sarcasm. Jamming over the loud speakers was the booming rumble of contemporary hip-hop which set the tone and pace for the game and really pushed the momentum for the players. The music was accented by a lone drummer leaning against the goal post adding his own style of drummer beats into the background.  I liked how he would improvise and use the pole every now and then as cymbals  There was plenty of action on the court as these two teams battled relentlessly for glory. Never missing an opportunity for a fast break or a slam dunk, these fiercely competitive players pushed, shoved, and trash-talked their way to dominance on every goal.  I don't really track the league since this was totally a random event for me. I am not from around here (or anywhere), so I couldn't tell you the name of the team that won.  All I know is that it was a good game and a fight to the finish, but in the end, the team in black opened a can of whoop-a$$.

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