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The Hoop Doctors

10 Things Fans Can Do During the NBA Lockout

July 11, 2011 – R.S. De France

If the NBA lockout persists long enough to miss any appreciable game time this upcoming NBA season, here are a few things hoop heads can do to satisfy their basketball jones:

1. Watch International Basketball League Play

Follow ex-, and perhaps current, NBA players in international leagues. The Nets’ Deron Williams has apparently signed with Turkey, who is also looking to add the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant. And, last I heard, Stephon Marbury and Steve Francis were still playing in Asia.

2. Follow High School Hoops Action

Keep up with high school basketball. We recommend you make a daily read, and supplement by following the highlights from Allen Moll who keeps you updated on the action here at Also, check up on the best highlights in the nation at sites like, and

3. Watch More NCAA College Hoops

Follow the NCAA and join your office tournament pool. If there isn’t one, start one. The style is less about the matchups and more about high tempo team ball. Let’s be honest, the NBA should be worried about hoops heads liking NCAA ball a bit TOO much given an extended lockout.

4. Books, Books, and More Books

Read some recent New York Times Best Sellers on NBA basketball, like ‘When the Game was Ours’ by Jackie MacMullan and ‘The Book of Basketball’ by Bill Simmons. MacMullan explores the connections between Magic Johnson and Larry Bird like never before. Simmons provides terrific insight into the history of basketball, among other topics, in his comprehensive 700-page book.

5. Dust Off Your Handle, and Play

Join your local basketball league(s) or 3-on-3 tournaments. Find some like-minded friends and start a team. All it takes is a minimal time and financial commitment, and, with the NBA lockout, it looks like you may have some free nights on your hands. Use the money you would have spent on tickets to a game, or that you may save by reducing your cable package.

6. Take a Trip Down Memory Lane

Relive some of your favorite seasons, moments, or playoff highlights on DVD, you tube,,, or here at

7. Become a Film Connoisseur

If you have time to spare when you would normally watch an NBA game, why not watch a great basketball movie. Here are some of our favorites, but you might want to also check some of the newer documentary hits like ‘More than a Game’, or ‘Gunnin’ for that #1 Spot’.

8. Time to Be a Gamer

Get obsessed with the next great basketball video game. If you don’t already have 2K Sports’ NBA 2K11, that should do the trick. This is a fantastic game with next-level graphics and a real-game feel. The controls are pretty easy, and the player-movement is fluid. And you get to play as Larry Bird’s Celtics, Michael Jordan’s Bulls, Magic Johnson’s Lakers, Clyde Drexler’s Trailblazers, Isiah Thomas’ Pistons, Karl Malone and John Stockton’s Jazz, and Gary Payton’s Supersonics. Not only does this have everything the other games have, it features the Jordan challenges, ten challenges, where you recreate some of Jordan’s best moments. After completing the challenges, you get to draft Michael Jordan onto whatever team you want.

9. Go Team USA!

I know it’s a while from now, but next July, 7/29/12, about a year from now, USA Men’s Basketball will get started. This exciting team will likely feature the talents of LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Dwight Howard, Derrick Rose, Dwayne Wade, Chris Paul, among many others. There’s been no indication that a lockout would have any effect on the USA team, so this is some great basketball to look forward to.

10. Kids are the Future

If you are a parent, and your kid(s) is the right age (5 or above), then why not get your child onto a local kid’s basketball team or NJB (National Junior Basketball)? If you are already doing it, keep it up; get more involved. If you are not, become a coach. Become an assistant. Become a referee. You take a workshop or class, and that’s about all you have to do. You can do it! Being there to support your children means everything to them.

Rob S. De France is a College and University instructor of English Composition living in Los Angeles. He has a B.A. in English and an M.A. in Rhetoric, Composition, and Writing. De France has played, coached, and officiated competitive high school basketball in California for many years. Recently, De France, his wife, and another colleague started an internationally read magazine at

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