Ice Cube's BIG3 League
Sunday marked the beginning of Ice Cube’s BIG3 league and what a treat it was. With over 15,000 spectators at Barclays Centre, Brooklyn which saw former NBA stars go at it in an all new 3-on-3 league that included such features as a 4 point shot and a 14 second shot clock.
Whilst some of the former stars seemed to still be trying to shake off some of the rust they've accumulated over the years away from the pro’s it remained very competitive and a great watch.
"I think it's going to be incredibly good. The games are exciting, the players are still talented and they're fun to watch," said Hall of Famer Clyde Drexler.
The third game of the night saw the return of former NBA MVP Allen Iverson. Who occupies a player coach role for 3's Company after telling fans he doesn't plan on playing masses of minutes during the season. He limited himself to nine minutes in his BIG3 debut, where 3’s Company managed to defeat Brian Scalabrine’s Ball Hogs. Iverson went on to say "I think the best part about this game here tonight and all the other games, it was exciting all throughout, It didn't need Allen Iverson the player, per se."
Whilst Iverson may be the biggest star on show at the BIG3, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett have both reportedly shown an interest in joining the league. "Sky's the limit. Obviously you see the debut," Iverson proclaimed. "I didn't even expect it to be like this, and then obviously guys thats retired now to see the outcome of this situation right here probably are going to get that itch."
With players competing for a share of the revenue based on their teams final league position Ice Cube had previously promised it would be competitive. Pushing, shoving in the post, hard fouls along with the physicality and trash talk just added to the excitement for the fans. With the added inclusion of hand checking it looked nothing like todays NBA.
One player who sounded like they enjoyed all of the physicality was former number one draft pick Kenyon Martin. “Some players like that style, some don’t” said the Trilogy captain “we’re here to fill that void for the people that appreciate the way the game has been played forever, you know what I'm saying? Basketball is a contact sport.”
The BIG3 League runs over 10 weekends where eight teams will compete for the chance to play for the championship held in Las Vegas on August 26th.