EVENT REVIEW : NBA 3x World Tour – Westfield

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London is not foreign to rolling out her majestic and regal red carpet for the entire world to parade upon. September 15, 2012. It’s the day Westfield (Shepherd’s Bush) graciously played hosts to the globe-trotting NBA 3x world tour with NBA Memphis Grizzlies star and product of the University of Connecticut (UConn) Rudy Gay main eventing as special guest of honor on this global growing, glutton of slam-dunk action.
12 hours of rampantly, rapid-paced hoops heaven located at the atrium of the be-all-and-end-all of the first class internationally revered shopping mall, completed with every ardent fans proverbial wet dream; lifesize height charts of Minnesota Timberwolves dazzling Spanish rising star, Ricky Rubio, Dallas Mavericks seven foot superstar Dirk Nowitzki, and Toronto Raptors talented Italian forward, Andrea Bargnani. The sacred and most sought after prize in basketball – The Larry O’Brien trophy – was also displayed for lovers of the game to feast their eyes on. NBA world championship banners from vintage 90’s Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls, the golden age ‘Bad Boys’ of Detroit, and the 2008 Boston Celtics big three were erected high in the rafters.
Hardwood action was intensely gladitorial and coast to coast in the highly documented three-on-three 3x tournament to determine who the kings of the court mantle truly belonged to. The term ‘underdog’ seemed to be the recurring theme throughout the NBA 3x world tour. Basketball, by traditional standards, is a game where it’s the land of the brutishly bold behemoths patrolling the paint eviscerating competition single handedly. However, you simply can’t underestimate the capacity of ones heart when it comes to prevailing and claiming victory. Contests were closely contested, punctuated by Paul Pierce-esque draining clutch shots which were witnessed in front of Westfield’s three floors of fixated observers, who were simply lost for superlatives.
ESPN signature segment ‘Play of the day’ would have had a human highlight reel based on the freakishly athletic throwdowns, school yard hot-dog dimes dished, Rucker Park trickery and fundamentally sound textbook shooting from down town.
The Footlocker UK three point challenge was firmly memorable. With a mere 60 seconds on the clock, 15 balls to quickly catapult into the nestling twine, eyes attentive from nearby and more importantly – a grossly genrous £120 worth of prizes for the victorious competitor to utilize in none other than – Footlocker.
£90 was issued to the sharp-shooting, second placed participant.
While public announcers and DJ’s were literally pumping the adrenaline into the veins of those viewing the dog-eat-dog, touch-and-go, cut-throat showdown , those fighting for the right and demonstrating their speciality to become crowned Footlocker three point champion were figuratively sweating, as their fate could be sealed in the blink of an eye. A true ‘Britains Got Talent’ moment transpired when an 11-year-old contest, magically dialled up from professional range during the shooting confrontation, confidently bucketing shots resolutely in ‘Like Mike’ fashion.
During a brief intermission, NBA and WNBA great moments in history were dusted from the illustrious archives and shown via multiple king-sized monitors. Nostalgic, motion picture-type endings such as the heroic game 6 dagger into the Utah Jazz dreams courtesy of Chicago Bulls immortal number 23, An in-prime Allen Iverson in his finest hour delivering a ankle-crunching crossover on a hapless Tyron Lue in the 2001 NBA finals, and the shot that cooly doused the fire of the Miami Heat, when New York Knicks great Allen Houston sank the shot heard around the world for the deciding shot in the 1999 Eastern conference finals. The famouse footage provided a warm walk down memory lane, as well as a rich history lesson to those relateively new to the sport.
Announcers sincerely reiterated to the passionately-packed-housed at Westfield (Shepherd’s Bush) that NBA star Rudy Gay would be soon subject to arrival. Gay, 26, had made an apperance at Footlocker, stationed inside Westfield, at the earlier stages of the day for a special meet and greet signing session for fans who waited.
However, the silky smooth, athletically-inclined, slendor swingman was invited to Emirate Stadium in Islington, North London to watch EPL giants Arsenal FC entertain Southampton, which resulted in a 6-1 runaway win for the home side. In an exclusive interview, Gay stated unequivocally that his girlfriend is a huge soccer fan, and the team in which he follows avidly is – ironically, the bitter rivals of the North London-based franchise – Manchester United. In addition, when questioned in regard to the soccer goal fest in which he spectated, he noted of his EPL experience that ‘It was Great’.
Maryland-born, Rudy Gay, who has reached the NBA play-offs for two consecutive seasons added that Memphis will quote unquote ‘raise the bar’ for the upcoming NBA 2012-2013 season which returns next month. The 6-year professional with NBA career averages of 17.9 points per game, 5.7 rebounds and 45% from the field, is also a gold medalist via Team USA’s triumph at the World basketball championships in 2010 in Turkey.
Memphis is synonymous with a variety of conjured images and adored figures. Everyone from ‘The King’ (Elvis Pressley and/or Jerry Lawler), Academy award winning movie ‘Hustle & Flow’, southern fried hospitality, and if you’re a zealot of home team Memphis Grizzlies – Rudy Gay. The imminent re-appearance and introduction oozed stardom as the 6’8 230 pound NBA athlete took to the floor wearing a Grizzlies sweater admist photographers, NBA 3x three-on-three players, with anxious fans longing to savor a moment with the Memphis maestro.
Gay was given the objective to elect a member from the large crowd to partake in the Adidas challenge, which the designated participant would team with the star to go head-to-head in a multitude of fundamentally challenging showdowns. Friendly natured one-on-one games with Rudy Gay were primarily geared toward youthful hopefuls, which is appropriate as Gay is an advocate of giving back to the youth given his vast array of admirable charitable and humanitarian work.
To cap off a valiant experience in the day of NBA 3x world tour, which has previously toured Italy, Thailand, The Philippines and Canada, UK, once again, proved to be phenomenal hosts. A signing session was conducted for fans to interact with the NBA star and take photographs in addition.
With just one month remaining until the much hyped 2012-2013 NBA campaign, Memphis Grizzlies hit the road to take on the LA Clippers in the glitz and glamor of the Staples Center. In the meantime, NBA 3x world tour, Rudy Gay and Westfield proved that on this day, together they were a winning team.
@MemGrizz – Memphis Grizzlies
@RudyGay22 – Rudy Gay
@NBAUK – NBA UK
@WestfieldLondon – Westfield
@AdidasUK – Adidas UK
@FootlockerUK – FootlockerUK
Review by : Dean Perretta ( @Dean2185 )

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