John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton

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I got to do something this weekend I'd never done before: attend a professional basketball game. No, wait; that's not quite right. Many years ago, I attended a Harlem Globetrotters game. They get paid to play basketball; therefore, it was a professional basketball game. So forget that first sentence. What I did this weekend that I'd never done before was attend an NBA game.

A few weeks ago, my brother obtained at a charity auction four tickets to a Washington Wizards game, and he invited me to come to the game with my oldest nephew and one of his friends. I'm not much of a basketball fan, but I don't have any particular objection to it either, and generally speaking I'm interested in doing things I've never done before. So I said yes, and this past Saturday we all went down to the MCI Center in Washington DC to see the Wizards take on the New York Knicks.

And I have to admit, it was a very enjoyable experience. The game was, surprisingly, pretty good. The Wizards stink like dead fish, but the Knicks, having already clinched a spot in the playoffs, played rather lackadaisically during the first half. This had the effect of making the second half more interesting, as the Knicks worked to overcome the lead the Wizards had built up in the second half. And overcome it they did, 102-98, though the Wizards kept it close.

The highlight of the game, for me, was a slam dunk in the second quarter by Etan Thomas, which was made all the more entertaining by his landing on the head of Moochie Norris, resulting in a technical foul. Neat! It was also kind of fun to see Dikembe Mutombo take the floor for the Knicks, because a) he was one of the few players on either team I'd heard of, and b) he was the only player on either team, and for all I know in all the NBA, to be older than me. He still moves pretty well for an old guy, and man is he tall: 7'2". Late in the game, I saw him standing close to one of his teammates, and Mutombo made him look like a midget. I checked the other player's height in the program: 6'2".

The only part of the evening I didn't enjoy was the halftime show, which was... another basketball game. I guess they were a high school or a club team. Whoever they were, they were terrible, but not quite terrible enough to be entertaining. Instead, it was just tedious. Yay for the Wizards for giving young cagers a chance to play at the MCI Center, but next time they should try to find some good young cagers.

All in all, it was a very enjoyable evening. I'm not going to run out and buy season tickets or anything, but I'd definitely go to another game. Not exactly high praise, I know, but better than nothing. And frankly, until the Wizards start fielding a better team, they don't have much right to expect much more than that people be willing to attend one of their games.

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