As a blogger/writer/journalist, I live for moments and opportunities to be apart of something that people will talk about for years to come.
Standing on the baseline, right under the basket, to see the Goodman League All-Stars defeat the Dyckman League All-Stars, 82-71, was one of those moments.
Saturday in New York City at Monsignor Kett Playground, Dyckman celebrated their 25th anniversary with a day filled with games and a ceremony to commemorate the top 25 players in Dyckman's history. Names like “The Dribbling Machine”, who was apart of the And-1 mixtape tour, and “2 Hard 2 Guard”, who is well known for his Dyckman dominance and Dominican heritage, were apart of that ceremony that played as a pre-game for the main event.
Dyckman All-Star vs. Goodman All-Stars.
What I loved most about this game is that both leagues used players that currently play in the league on a weekly basis. Neither league went out and recruited NBA stars, even though they could have, but none of the two took that approach, giving the game a more classic street ball feel.
Dyckman League got out the gates early, starting the game with a 7-0 lead. Goodman League early on in the first half, was firing away from behind the arc, which I think hurt them initially, mainly because many of those attempts were not dropping. Dyckman took advantage by controlling the boards offensively and defensively.
It didn't take long before I got my first taste of Dyckman League Basketball when J-Dubb was put into an ISO situation, the referees even forcing the other players to clear it out. Meanwhile the DJ filled the airwaves with hip-hop instrumentals, and the Man on mic amplified the situation with clever fast-talking commentary.
It didn't take long for the Goodman All-Stars to close that gap, Terry Hosley connecting with Wayne Jackson for an alley-oop that tied the game at 20 with 6 minutes remaining in the half. Dyckman All-Stars would go another run, creating a 30-25 lead with 3:31 left in the 1st half.
Before the half ended, Goodman League used two trey balls from Corey Allmond to go up 43-40. From that point on it was all Goodman.
“It's tough to come up here in New York City and win on the road” Commissioner Miles said after the game speaking about the atmosphere. With the fans being so close to the court, it creates a very rowdy and intimidating enviorment, but the Goodman League faithful, who traveled from DC to New York, turned Dyckman Park into the B.F. Coliseum.
Goodman All-Stars fed off of the crowd and pushed their 3-point lead to 10 with 4 minutes remaining in the half, led by MVP of the game, J-Dubb.
“If they come down to DC, it's going to be a different story because I'm going to be in my bag [and] I going to have the whole crowd” J-Dubb said afterward when speaking of the potential game next year between Goodman vs. Dyckman.
The game ended early when Jackson did a reverse windmill right in front of me, who I thought was J-Dubb. J-Dubb joking saying that was “his twin”.
After the dunk, Goodman fans rushed the court which is the universal meaning for “It's over!”.
Even though J-Dubb won MVP, this was a great team effort. Chris Howard did his thing in the post, Marcus Ashton hit a few big three pointers and Dele Ojo provided the energy off the bench. Drew All-Stars coach, Drew Crawford, did a great job managing this team that was smaller in height, to a victory by pushing the right buttons when it came to substitutions.
This was the first time both leagues have played one another, and even though it had to be a winner and a loser, this was a win-win for everyone involved, especially the Dyckman community. Hopefully we can keep this tradition going and see this match-up next year “Inside The Gates”.