As we move past the veritable date of the NBA season, I begin to get more and more anxious as to how I am going to spend my time. I am preparing to bolster my expertise in soccer, hockey, and amidst new cheating allegations of a pair of cricket players, my interest has sparked in that sport as well. Now having taken the time to weigh out the pro's and con's of no NBA season, I have found it high time to enter stage 7 of grieving.
Acceptance and Hope.
I hope the NBA season will begin sometime before the New Year. However, I will begin to accept that it may not..
So I have gathered a few ideas that I would like to share on how time can be best spent during the NBA lockout.
10.) Evaluate income, prevent your own personal lockout.
If the NBA labor talks have taught us one thing, it's that you better have your ducks in a row when it's time to swim. You would think that someone would have the fiscal aptitude to think ahead-on both sides in the NBA dispute-to prepare for some sort of compromise that wouldn't tank a multi-billion dollar season. Unfortunately, they didn't and the end result is players taking their talents overseas, and even to the flag football field. (Hint, hint ChicagoNow DirtAngels!)
So learning from the potentially catastrophic mistakes of the NBA, I would suggest that during these current economic struggles, every family take a good look at their finances. Look for new ways to invest, save, and budget, plan for your children's education and save money aside for retirement. Anything can happen, and you want to be prepared for when it does.
9.) Watch Jabari Parker lead the Simeon High School Wolverines.
Just because there is no NBA season doesn't mean that there is no basketball period. There is still plenty of high school, college, and semi-pro basketball out there to catch. You just have to know where to find it. Here in Chicago, there is a very rich history of high school athletes that have gone on to play in the big leagues. So why not check some of the NBA's future lock-outee's in their most innocent fashion.
Then again, there's nothing innocent about the way Neal F. Simeon High School (now known as Simeon Career Academy) plays against it's opponents. Simeon (No.1 preseason rank in Powerade FAB 50) has been a perennial contender every season. Simeon has molded such talents as Nick Anderson, Wes Chamberlain and our hardwood hero, reigning NBA MVP Derrick Rose. Simeon looks now more like a D1 collegiate team than a Class 4A state champion. Led by junior small forward and No.1 overall ESPNU recruit Jabari Parker, the Wolverines' look to continue the trend of dominance.
The Wolverines have won 5 titles in the last 7 seasons. So go out and show support in their quest for a 6th and get a chance to see Jabari Parker. Undoubtedly the No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, how many years are left on Luol Deng's contract?
Here is Simeon's 2011-12 schedule
8.) Get your fix virtually.
Video games have always been my way to vicariously be the hero, or villain without the actually repercussions and consequences of real life. It also allows me to be Micheal Vick, Micheal Jordan or Larry Bird, and any of the world of sports greatest teams in the comfort of my own couch. This is going to be the most effective way of curing your NBA withdrawals. Pick up NBA2k12 and start up a franchise mode, trade away Carlos Boozer for a draft pick and pick up Dwight Howard in free agency. Oh the possibilities are endless. While your at it, make that draft pick the 2014 1st round and select Jabari Parker. Can you imagine? Probably the first Simeon High School champion alumni to play together in NBA history! That really needs to happen in real life.
7.) Really invest in your favorite teams that are still playing.
If there were any type of silver lining to the NBA lockout for a Chicago sports fan, it's that there is going to be more love for the Chicago Blackhawk's and Chicago Bears. Fans can now really dig deep into their hate for bitter rival Green Bay Packers, and Vancouver Canucks. Also, it enables minds to free up a little bit more for deeper statistical analysis. So you can really deliver in the dive sports bars and pubs with your peeps with lines like,
"Patrick Sharp's lack of power play goals is truly indicative of the fact his TOI has dropped the most since Blackhawks 2009-10 season. Which means that you can still get even strength goal production from your center while allowing the power play goals to be done by committee, and still win (7-2-2 record, 1st in Central Division, 6th in offense)."
And I can't tell you how wonderful it made me feel last year to enjoy a Bears victory, a Bulls blowout, and a Blackhawks nail-biter. However I won't be able to enjoy the Chicago trifecta, but I will surely put my bid in on the exacta!
If the 2010-11 season didn't leave Bulls fan wanting more, this lock-out will surely be a torture. Can the Bulls put the right pieces around the reigning MVP Derrick Rose in hopes to get past the Eastern Conference Final hurdle? Will the Bulls follow up their league best 62-20 record with an even better performance? Can they challenge the 96' Bulls 72-10 record? So many questions left unanswered and doesn't look to be answered anytime soon. So now we must open up the old photo albums, and youtube montage's to enjoy what was, and what has yet to be..
5.) Watch FIBA, somehow.
Now that the NBA season is officially postponed, players are taking their talents abroad. Players such as Deron Williams, Serge Ibaka, Kenyon Martin and Tony Parker headline a cast of NBA stars that have signed with teams in the Euro League. Unfortunately, this means that those holding NBATV packages will not be able to access the action that is going on overseas. This means that basketball fans are going to have to tap resources they never have before in order to gain access to international basketball. The good side to this is that this opens up the door for lesser known broadcasts and programs to gain popular appeal by showing these games and give up and coming broadcasting majors a new avenue of capital gain.
Streaming channels such as Justin.tv and p2pforum will undoubtedly be one of the biggest beneficiaries of this as they already have thumbed their noses at the major sports networks by allowing streaming access free of charge to all major games and PPV events. This does not help the NBA's case for they are looking for the fan's interest.
4.) Learn new languages.
Now that players are going abroad, you are going to need to learn new languages in order to follow some of the play-by-play. When Besiktas plays ASVEL at home, you will know exactly what the color commentary says. Kobe Bryant, Tony Parker, and many other superstars of the NBA are fluent in other languages. So you can rest assured that the post game press conferences will encompass alot of non-English dialogue. Plus it always helps to expand your culture, learning a new language can be a great accomplishment and mind building exercise.
3.) Visit Arlington Park.
Arlington Park was founded in the 20's by a California business owner and then acquired by Benjamin F. Lindheimer, a quoted, "savior of Chicago racing" and pioneer of modern day horse racing. Located in Arlington Heights, IL the track is among the finest in the United States.
Home of the first milion dollar Thoroughbred race, Arlington Park is full of rich history. Hosting the Arlington Million races brought the park into the professional spotlight. After being purchased by an Illinois investment group, a small fire threatened to cripple the tracks progress of championship races by destroying much of it's invested progress on July 31, 1985. After a brief move to Hawthorne race course, Arlington was back in business-hosting the Arlington Million race on August 25, 1985.
The 2002 Breeder's Cup World Thoroughbred Championships were held at Arlington Park.
For more information on Arlington Park, go to www.arlingtonpark.com
Also check out T.R. Slyder's rendezvous on Lists That Actually Matter.
2.) Make-A-Wish Tweet
Today's social media platforms enable user's access like never before into professional athletes lives. With the use of Twitter they have direct access to players cell phones by use of direct messages. All you need is a good idea and a little gall and you may have Kevin Durant pulling up to your house to play a game of flag football. Or maybe you can be the lucky tweeter that gets a chance to play with LeBron James when he supposedly takes on @KDTrey5 in a NBA lockout flag football match!
1.) Be patient
- An ability or willingness to supress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay.
This pretty much sums up the number one thing to do when waiting out the NBA lockout. There is absolutely nothing we can do as fans of the NBA besides wait and be patient. Taking up the other 9 ideas I gave you should blow off some time, but I know that it will not totally kick the addiction. So what I have done is provided some of my favorite quotes by some pretty knowledgeable people on the virtues of patience. I hope these help:
"Patience is also a form of action." ~Auguste Rodin
"One moment of patience may ward off great disaster. One moment of impatience may ruin a whole life." ~Chinese Proverb
"Genius is nothing but a great aptitude for patience." ~George-Louis de Buffon
"Patience is the ability to count down before you blast off." ~Author Unknown
"A handful of patience is worth more than a bushel of brains." ~Dutch Proverb
Now you are fully equipped to adjust to the emptiness of a no-NBA November, December. And hopefully not but potentially New Year.
Be patient my friends..
Tags: Arlington Million, Arlington Park, ASVEL, Besiktas, Breeder's Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, Carlos Boozer, Chicago Bears, Chicago Blackhawks, Deron William, Derrick Rose, Dwight Howard, FIBA, Green Bay Packers, Jabari Parker, Kenyon Martin, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant, Larry Bird, LeBron James, Lists That Actually Matter, Luol Deng, Make-A-Wish-Foundation, Micheal Jordan, Micheal Vick, NBA, NBA Lockout, Nick Anderson, Patrick Sharp, Powerade FAB 50, Serge Ibaka, Simeon Career Academy, SImeon High Wolverines, Tony Parker, Twitter, Vancouver Canucks, Wes Chamberlain