The Outside the Lines side of the ESPN online network has a fun story up about the current DC hoops scene. President Obama, a diehard pickup basketball player, has apparently ignited interest in the game.
Here’s an excerpt from the story, “The Power Game”, by Wright Thompson:
Obama loves all things hoops. By executive fiat, the White House tennis court is being retrofitted for basketball. He mentions the game every other speech, including his controversial commencement address at Notre Dame. There’s a blog devoted to his on-court exploits called Baller-in-Chief. His brother-in-law is the coach at Oregon State. His friends hoop. His personal aide, Reggie Love, hooped his way to a national title at Duke and is the gatekeeper for the presidential game. The senior staff hoops. The junior staff hoops. Four members of the Cabinet hoop. Wanna guess what comes next? There’s a new prize to be won.
“What’s the hottest invite in Washington?” former Clinton press secretary Dee Dee Myers asks. “Yeah, it’s great to go to White House state dinners or Stevie Wonder kinds of events. But what’s the sine qua non? It’s a pickup game with Obama. That’s the inner, inner, inner sanctum. Proximity is everything in this town. How close are you to the epicenter?”
There are some significant matters on which I disagree with the President. But changing the White House tennis court to a basketball court is a decision I can only heartily applaud. As an obsessed pickup basketball player (who used to play ball in a very competitive men’s league at Gonzaga High School in DC), I fully agree with this “executive fiat”!
Read the whole story–it’s fun, and shows a good deal of what makes Washington work.