Top 10 Ugliest Jerseys in NBA History

Given that my lists on the ugliest hockey jerseys and ugliest baseball jerseys are my two most read posts, continuing the series was a no-brainer. Coinciding it with the end of the NBA Finals is decent timing on my part, but the truth is, I started working on this list months ago and gave up. The history of the NBA simply doesn’t get much attention, so the resources for finding some of these ugly jerseys was getting too difficult. It’s a league very much focused on the now, paying little attention to anything that happened before Magic and Larry, other than the obligatory nod to Dr. J, Russell’s Celtics, and Wilt. But I persevered, using the knowledge that people everywhere will click over to this blog, get pissed because I’m insulting their favourite team, and then never visit again.

To tell the truth, I could easily do ten butt-ugly jerseys from the mid-to-late 90s alone, and it would look pretty convincing. A basketball jersey should be a simple thing: choose a two-colour scheme (with maybe a third shade for accents), put a word mark across the chest, number on the stomach, number on the back, done. Sure, you could mess it up by choosing ugly colours, but more often (and especially throughout the mid-to-late 90s) what makes an ugly jersey is messing with this formula. There’s not a lot of real estate on a basketball jersey, so when teams try to push the limits, the results are usually gaudy monstrosities.

One note: given that there’s some repeat offenders, I’ve limited this list to one jersey per team. That way this whole list wouldn’t be all Detroit, Philadelphia, and Cleveland. Also, given the spotty info available out there on NBA history, some of my dates might be wrong. Feel free to point them out, just try not to think of me as stupid for making them (instead, rely on my opinions and prose to make your judgements on my intelligence).
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TIFF 08: Day 6

Time to review the theatres themselves. Thus far, we’ve only been to three of the different theatres showing festival screenings, with two others to experience later this week. A majority of our screenings have been at the Ryerson Theatre, which is a large amphitheatre for the college, seating 1200 people. This is the third big venue for the festival, following Roy Thompson Hall (home to the big gala premieres) and The Elgin Theatre (home to the Visa Screening Room, which features other big gala premieres and second screenings of stuff from the Thompson). Screenings at those two theatres aren’t eligible for use with our Festival Lite packages (which is, of course, complete bullshit – especially when it comes to repeat screenings at the Elgin. I can understand reserving gala premieres for those willing to pay $40, but repeat screenings? This is what has shut us out of films like Burn After Reading, The Duchess, Rachel Getting Married, and The Good, The Bad, and The Weird). So the Ryerson is the only place we can go for third-tier gala premieres (such as Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, Slumdog Millionaire, and tonight’s The Brothers Bloom), and the odd big name repeat screening (Passchendaele, RocknRolla). Luckily, because it’s such a big venue, we were able to get into all the screenings we chose for it, and have always been able to get seats where we want (which is generally close to the front to get a good view of the celebs, and off the side as close to the aisle as possible).

The bad side of the Ryerson is that it’s a pretty shitty place to watch a movie. The sound is fine and the picture quality is great (using Dolby Digital when they can), but the seats are terrible, meaning that you spend most of the film squirming from one uncomfortable position to another. The washrooms are also a mess, down the stairs and across a hall, with the ladies room usually a solid 15 minute wait (of course, the dude’s line is never that long, so I’m good. But I can still sympathize for my wife, right?).

The Scotiabank Centre is your typical modern cineplex, with comfy seats, cup holders, and stadium seating, plus fast food in the concourse. It’s also the only one that lets us line up inside, so that’s a nice touch on the rainy days (oh, and Kim wants me to add that it takes our Scene card for concessions). No complaints there, although you’re not gonna get any premieres here (that said, Ed Harris still showed up to introduce Appaloosa). The AMC is a new venue, similar to Scotiabank in that it has the modern amenities of a multiplex, but better. Every theatre is digital, the seats are more plush, the armrests pull up so we can sit closer to each other without the barrier, there’s a nice individual snack plan. So far, AMC is our favourite venue, with the only flaw being that they make you wait outside (although today we able to get out of one screening in time to walk into the next, foregoing the line). Too bad there’s no AMC theatres where I live.

Read on for musings on The Wrestler, More Than a Game, The Dungeon Masters, and The Brothers Bloom
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POST #31: Basketball

To pick up from where I left off, after high school my basketball playing started to slide off. Every once and awhile I’d find some friends interested in playing, but it didn’t last, as the lure of the adult life drew them to bars and the like (never been one for bars and nightclubs myself. They really aren’t that much fun if you don’t drink, which I don’t, or are socially awkward, which I can be in those situations… I’m much more of a small group or one on one guy). Eventually, I stopped playing altogether, pretty much because I couldn’t find anyone to play with, but also cause I got busy with adult stuff like college and, well, sex (cause as much fun as basketball is, it ain’t got nothing on sex).

Partially as a result of this inactivity, I got fat. Adulthood kinda sucks like that. Understand, I’m not morbidly obese or anything, and for the most part I’m healthy going from the standard doctor’s tests, but I’m definitely overweight (like the typical white dude, it’s all in the belly. I have the beer gut without the beer to show for it). So last September I finally decided to do something about it, since my job finally afforded me a fixed schedule (unlike retail and school), and joined up with a rec basketball league with my friend Anthony (). The next season (in January), we were joined by Stephen and Jon. Kim has even come out a few times when we needed a female sub.

It’s been a lot of fun. I’m not quite the player I used to be, but every once and awhile my game catches fire and it feels great. When it doesn’t, it’s still tonnes of fun. The people on my team are great, and it just feels good to be active and competing, even if its just once a week.

Sadly, I don’t think I’ve lost any weight as a result. So that’s annoying. I am eating better now too, and have maintained the same weight for at least a couple years. I guess I’ll have to actually work at it if I want to lose this gut. I’m still undecided as to whether or not it’s that much of a priority, since I’m otherwise healthy. But I am considering playing another sport this fall along with basketball, so I’ll be burning calories twice a week. Otherwise, I’ll just continue having fun playing the sport I’ve loved for so long.

POST #30: Childhood Summers

Jon asked me about my favourite childhood summer memories a few posts back. I don’t really have one defining memory that I can think of right now, mostly the summer was just an all around great time. I was good at school, but that doesn’t mean I liked being there.

Instead, I’ll write about my summers in junior high and high school. Basically, I spent them playing basketball constantly. We moved communities when I was in grade eight, but I stayed in the school I had been in since kindergarten. So for the summer between grade eight and nine, I had to either ride my bike the significant distance from my new community to my old one to play basketball with my friends, or get a ride from my dad. But I still did, because playing basketball was the best thing in the world.

The following summer was a very lonely one. Near the end of the school year I had a falling out with my group of friends over something really stupid, but ultimately it was probably a reaction to the fact that I was simply a lot different than them. We were evolving into different kinds of people, which probably made me someone they didn’t want to hang out with anymore. It made for a fairly uncomfortable final few months of school, but I was okay with it. I had mostly outgrown the whole place and was looking forward to starting over in a new high school were very few people from my junior high attended, and none of that group of former friends.

But this meant no more basketball games for me. Instead, I’d go out every night by myself and shoot hoops at a local elementary school hoop close to my house. Maybe once or twice someone showed up to join me, but for the most part, it was just me shooting around by myself. It sounds sad and maybe a little pathetic, but in truth, it was pretty great. I’ve always been pretty good at avoiding peer pressure in my life, but when you’re in grade nine, that’s not as easy as it sounds. I probably did a better job than most kids my age, but I was still letting myself be influenced by that group of friends in negative ways, and trying to be something I wasn’t. Spending two months with just a ball and a hoop let me re-centre myself and realise that I was far better than anything I might’ve been trying to be for them.

The next few summers were spent playing pretty intense games at the local junior high hoop, just a few minutes up the road. Heh, I could’ve been playing real games all along. But it was best that I spent the time alone. I’d arrive at the Annie Gale courts sometime around 5, then play til the sun went down (sometimes later, trying to keep going with the lights of the school going). One day we even painting the court, filling in the key and marking out three-point lines and the mid-court circle. There you go, a specific memory from my almost childhood after all.