Monday, June 28, 2010

The Ballers

 Last night, Federico, Brent and I headed off to the Anastasio Girardot sports complex to play some basketball. The green structure next to the stadium is one of the coolest buildings I've ever seen, having been designed to resemble the mountains that surround it. It's also completely open air, with little green gratings that resemble leaves in the jungle being used in place of walls. The courts there are really nice so I wasn't sure if we would be able to use them for long (if at all).

Luckily we met Edwin, who is assistant coach of the University of Antioquia Basketball Team and has access to use the courts whenever he wants. He was there with two players from the team. Not one of them could have been over 5 feet 5 inches. There were 9 of us, so they picked me to play with the three of them against the remaining five players. I was a little concerned at first, then the we got down to it. I've never run so hard during a game in my life. What these guys lacked in height, they made up with in skills and hustle. Their "run and gun" style was also supplemented by their excellent passing abilities. As I caught my second wind, they started to feed me great passes, which to my delight I actually played halfway decent. The highlight for me was getting (but just barely missing) an alley-oop pass from halfcourt from the assistant coach.

While all of us were hustling our butts off, these guys looked like they were just having fun. Brent and I noticed a fair amount of traveling with the ball though and had some problems recognizing the plays and directions shouted by the rest of the players. Guess we'll have to brush up on our Spanish basketball vocab because we're scheduled to play again next Tuesday. I have a theory that they like playing against us because despite our gaps in skill, we are still much taller than them and hence, a different type of 'challenge.' Though they will still manage to take us to school, hopefully we can practice up and give them a good game.


  1. Dear Miles,

    I am so very excited to find your blog from medellin. I need to contact you direct via your email account to chat about my friends with IMER and ciclismo in Medellin. Especially if you are interested in cycling, I have several contacts there who you should meet.

    I live in Charlotte, NC and was most recently in Medellin during the Games.

    Please contact me via my email

    I look forward to chatting with you.

    Regards, Harry
    Also, have you met the Banda de Piratas that comes to all of the Nacional games from around Colombia? These guys are amazing and interesting. They are some of the kids hanging out at the stadium before the games asking for moneditas to get in the game.

  2. Harry, thanks for the comment, I've just sent an email with some contact info.

    Y nunca he ido a un partido Nacional por que mi hincha es Deportivo Independiente de Medellín!