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Being in America, and loving live sport, I thought it essential to go and experience as much of the American sports as possible. I went to the Timbers, in the MLS, so next up the Trailblazers in the NBA. Now I dont profess to know much about Basketball, but going to watch it, actually made it way easier to understand. It all starts with Cheerleaders anyways, so thats a good intro.
This is the Rose Garden, home of the Blazers. Now, in the states having a draft system and no promotion or relegation, teams can either buy players from other teams (provided they stay under the salary cap per team) or they rely on the Draft pick system for their new players. Now this is where its different to the British football system. The Worse you are, the better players you can get in drafts, so the Timbers, have recently aquired a new player who is the latest and greatest. Besides him they also have the L Train on the team. Actually sounds like a system that could be adopted in football, but I guess we have relgations, and not a franchise system, so I guess it wouldn’t work.
These are the highlights.
Its just a quick walk over the bridge. Again, nice weather. There is a pattern here. Now inside the stadium basketball is a lot more aggresive with more contact than I could have imaged, its a big workout for the players, and with the timeouts, expiring shot clock, it becomes a pretty intense game. Obviously the main difference is that you get to see a lot more baskets scored than goals in football, but you know, you get used to it.
Now the best part of it, every time the other team have a free throw, there is a self appointed “Free Throw Guy” who we saw who looked like he was having a fit, but infact he is putting off the opponents. Turns out he is famous here. Maybe the swans need something similar.