Chat with Patrick Hruby
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday, Page 2's Patrick Hruby will stop by to chat about what he's been up to lately, including the second part to his hellish pickup players.
Two years ago, Hruby came up with the 8 guys you find playing pickup hoops. But, as the streams of e-mails came in to Hruby, it was evident eight players was not enough and he started researching another 10 guys to come up with his second list.
Send your questions now and join Hruby Wednesday at 1 p.m. ET!
Patrick Hruby (1:02 PM)
Howdy everyone, in the words of MC Hammer -- back before he was too cool for "MC" -- let's get it started.
Jim (Wilmington, DE)
Patrick, please tell me you guys are looking into doing more quizzes! I miss the WiR ones!!!!
Patrick Hruby (1:03 PM)
I would love to bring back the WIR quiz -- I miss them -- but it's not really my call. Simple as that. Still, thanks for the kind words.
ok, so out of all these pickup guys you've written about...how many of them have you played ina game with?
Patrick Hruby (1:04 PM)
Played with? I've BEEN most of those guys at one time or another. Er, except for the Girl Who Has Game.
Patrick Hruby (1:05 PM)
In all seriousness, the fun of doing those pickup articles is thinking about how every pickup game really does have the same cast of characters -- I wonder if NBA players feel the same way about their sport, or if any pickup archetypes correspond with certain NBA players (beyond the obvious, like the Playground JR Smith).
Is there any player more frustrating than the little big man? The only close one is the guy who thinks he's too good for the game, but then just plays half hearted. Why play at all if you're not going to go all out? I can't stand that guy.
Patrick Hruby (1:08 PM)
The Little Big Man drives me crazy. Actually turns me into a Coach on the Floor, in that I'll just start holding the ball and pointing at the key and demanding that they post the f... up. I think the frustration for everyone comes from that sense of "if only I was as tall as you ... the things I could and would be doing out there ... " It's actually pretty similar to the frustration you feel as a fan when you're watching a pro athlete not make the most of their incredible natural physical talent.
I don't really have a question: all I have to say is Hayden Panatierre on Letterman the other night = WOW!
Out of all of them, the nastiest one has to be the sweaty guy, right?
Patrick Hruby (1:11 PM)
Joe, thanks for the tip. I missed it, but there's always YouTube.
Patrick Hruby (1:11 PM)
Ted, it all depends -- do you have to guard them in the post? If so, then yes.
Patrick Hruby (1:12 PM)
I sometimes feel like I need a back-strapped proton pack to deal with the Sweathog.
Chris (Stratford, CT)
Do you realize you write BY FAR the most for page 2 than anyone else??
Patrick Hruby (1:13 PM)
Hey, I'm angling for a new contract! Also, I have no life outside of pickup basketball memories, 80s pop culture references and making fun of the Washington Nationals (later this week). That helps.
Is there a guy on the list who plays defense by putting his arms around you, but you don't want to call a foul on him every time, because that's the way he plays defense, so you don't, but then when he gets overly rough, you finally call him and he's all mad because he says that's how he always plays defense....I. Can't. Stand. That. Guy.
Patrick Hruby (1:15 PM)
You know, that sounds similar to a guy I left out -- the Playground Stopper. He's a little bit Battier, a little bit Artest, all he does is D up the whole time, never wants to shoot, never switches, only wants to envelope you like a one-man UNLV amoeba defense. NOT FUN. Unless you're one of those guys. My guess is that they are having a ball.
Jason (Ellicott City, MD)
Just read your 8 guys...good stuff, but I don't think you should meet Rasheed in a dark alley.
Who would you rather play a pickup with? the trash talker or the little big man?
Patrick Hruby (1:17 PM)
Hey, I'd just offer him a Centrum silver or something. Speaking of 'Sheed, did anyone ever see his episode of Cribs? He had, like, a 14-year-old son who must have been 6-foot-8. I always figured that kid would be playing for Carolina by now.
Patrick Hruby (1:19 PM)
I'd rather play with a trash talker. I LOVE a good trash talker, makes any game 10 times more fun. And by good, I mean clever, inventive, snappy delivery. Usually a guy who isn't THAT good of a player, but verbally styles himself godlike. I think everyone appreciates that.
Patrick Hruby (1:20 PM)
also, sorry for the disjointed questions and answers, the chat moderation stuff is acting up.
Hank (Arlen, TX)
Hwhat in the hell is a back-strapped proton pack? P.S. Propane is the best!
Patrick Hruby (1:21 PM)
It's from Ghostbusters. Never cross streams! And the next time someone asks you if you're a god, say yes.
I've have to guard Hot Girl Who Has Game when her boyfriend was playing too. That has to be the most awkward thing, touching a dude's GF with him right there. But you have the right since they decided to play, right?
Patrick Hruby (1:23 PM)
Yeah, that seriously does add another level of potential creepiness. However, if the BF and GF are both playing, don't they HAVE to guard each other? That should be a pickup rule.
Big Red (Cinci)
Do you think The Who were better in the 70's with stuff like Baba O'Riley, or the 80's, with Eminence Front, Who Are You, etc.?
Patrick Hruby (1:26 PM)
Ding! Ding! This is the MOST random question I've ever gotten on a chat -- though I assume by saying that, I am inviting a ton of random questions. Which I welcome, as anyone who has ever sat through my chats knows.That said, Baba O'Riley is one of my top 5 psych-up songs ever, waaaaaaay better than eminem's 'lose yourself' or all the other modern pregame urgency anthems you hear on TV and in stadiums these days ... so I have to go with 70's The Who.
Dan G. (Chicago)
With all of the content that you produce for this page, including the hellish pick-up players (loved it), the 80's quiz (Bo knows), and the weekly power rankings (my personal favorite), how long will it be before Page 2 is renamed to "The Patrick Hruby Show, with special guest Jim Caple"?
Patrick Hruby (1:27 PM)
I'm just shooting for Endor forest moon-to-Sports Guy's World status.
Patrick Hruby (1:28 PM)
Note: no Ewoks.
Outside of the playground stopper, what are the main type that you felt like they had potential but they finished out of the articles?
Patrick Hruby (1:31 PM)
Ha ha -- there are a couple. One is the Non-Nash: the dude who thinks he is some sort of Serpentor-like amalgam of Magic Johnson, Bob Cousy, Pistol Pete and Jason Kidd, only all of his full-court wraparound no-look bounce passes go cartwheeling out of bounds ... the guy who is always gesturing for you to cut to the basket, even though four defenders are parked there and going backdoor makes as much sense as attempting an alley-oop ... which he also throws waaaay too many of, given that none of his teammates are, in fact, Vince Carter or Shawn Kemp circa 1995.
"Don't you ... forget about me."-- Simple Minds
Patrick Hruby (1:32 PM)
Barbaro! That's amazing you have time to chat! I always figured forgiving all of the world's horses of their sins would take up the bulk of your days.
Michael G (Detroit)
Hey Patrick, when I was in junior high (Mansfield, that pepto-bismal pink building across the street from the Student Rec center on 6th), we got to play a pick-up game with Mighty Mouse himself. Don't know is Damon was doing a community service deal or something but I can't explain how scary fast he was. Eventually, it was 2 on 8 and he STILL killed us. Called his own fouls though ;)
Patrick Hruby (1:35 PM)
Wait -- what?Okay, first of all, who is this? Because I went to Mansfeld. I must have played hoops there every lunch break, every PE, every morning. Last place I ever got into a fight (60 seconds, a kid grabbed my shirt and swung me into a chain link fence, I pushed him, the bell rang, we went back to class).Anyway, that's funny. Would that have been one of Damon's weed-related pleas?
Patrick Hruby (1:36 PM)
And yeah, real players are SCARY SCARY good. I once had to guard the country's leading D-II scorer at a game here in DC. It was brutal, and we was going maybe one-tenth normal speed. I asked him to do a real, full-speed crossover on me. I nearly tore my abdominal wall in half trying to change directions to stay in front of him.
Patrick Hruby (1:37 PM)
I also played pickup with Isiah Thomas once, which is ironic on about 1 million levels.
Patrick, Is there anything worse that the guy who has the ugglyest Jump shot in the gym THAT GOES IN....I cant take that guy he struts through the gym with a sense of swagger and confidence as if he has the jump shot of Ray Allen.
Patrick Hruby (1:38 PM)
It's beautiful if he's on your team ... but yeah, I feel you. It's like, "why did I spend all this time trying to learn perfect shooting form, and meanwhile, Mr. Two-Hand Line Drive Sidespin" can't miss?Envy is an ugly thing.
Who Are You came out in the 70s. FAIL.
Patrick Hruby (1:39 PM)
FAIL is one of the best things to come out of the Internet. I just want to note that.
Your thoughts on the guy who shows up at the courts in an actuall NBA jersey as if it validates his play..futhermore the guy who shows up with a personalized jersey displaying his name on the back
Patrick Hruby (1:40 PM)
My thoughts are best summed up here:http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=hruby/051205
Jason (Ellicott City, MD)
Shawn Kemp and Payton were nasty on NBA Jam.
Patrick Hruby (1:42 PM)
Yep. And you know who was AMAZING? Dell Curry. I kept hoping someone would have asked his son about NBA Jam during the draft. I mean, if Steph Curry was any kind of gamer at all, he must have thought his Dad was Basketball Jesus -- just from that game, never mind any driveway games.
What's up Pat? What's the deal with this "lower cap" for the NBA? I've been saying for years that the players get paid way too much for what they do...are they all of a sudden realizing how ridiculous these contracts are? Being a Knick fan...I'm saddened by the news because that means less money to lure LeBron.
Patrick Hruby (1:43 PM)
See, your true feelings only came out at the end of what you wrote. There's probably a psychological term for that, too bad I took Psych 101 like 12 years ago.As for the lower cap, it's simple: the NBA is making less money, because the economy is brutal. As for LeBron: I'm sure Nike can make up the difference.
Patrick Hruby (1:44 PM)
Speaking of LeBron: did anyone else see the story that a kid from Xavier dunked on him at his skills camp Monday night, and that Nike CONFISCATED THE VIDEO?
Patrick Hruby (1:44 PM)
I'm totally demanding a congressional investigation. Screw the BCS and the banking crisis.
Mike (Rochester, NY)
If I'm the Glad Hander, what do I do? Should I work on my Kobe Bryant glare? Start yelling at everybody? Or should I embrace it, and start cheers for the other team's sick moves?
Patrick Hruby (1:46 PM)
Just limit it to the pre-game handshakes and, especially, the post-game beers. Better yet, bring a cooler full of ice cold sports drinks, don't tell anyone, pull them out of your car after the game and hand them out without saying a word. You will be seen as MVP, and everyone will pretty much forget any bad feelings or torn ligaments incurred during the game.
Patrick Hruby (1:47 PM)
NEVER CHEER FOR THE OTHER TEAMS MOVES. Unless it's some And 1 thing where you have a crowd watching and everyone just stops and rushes onto the court and starts dancing and stuff.
Music Videos (Basement of Viacom Building)
Wait, do we have to stay here forever ... again?
Patrick Hruby (1:48 PM)
Yes, until Madonna dies.
Michael G (Detroit )
And it probably was a weed-related plea, only St. Lute kept it out of the Papers. He was good like that :)
Jacques Rogge (Lausanne, Switzerland)
Is it true that you are going to bring back the Armchair Decathlon this summer?
Patrick Hruby (1:49 PM)
Yes, but only if drug testing is NOT involved.Actually, we may do something with Wii Sports Resort.
Did you ever read Paul Shirley's description of every pick up game ever? It was spot on. I especially loved the part where in every game you have to stop and individually count up points because no one can remember the score
Why does everyone lose the ability to count to 7 (or 11 or 15) in a pickup game?
Patrick Hruby (1:50 PM)
Yeah, that is really strange. We'd need a neuroscientist to figure it out, some sort of collective temporary amnesia.
The Bulls vs Lakers game was hilarious. You could hold Jordan to 2 points, but Steve Kerr would score 76 and grab 28 rebounds.
Patrick Hruby (1:52 PM)
Nothing was worse than Bulls vs. Blazers, which moved and played as if the game cartridge was forcing the television set to have an seizure.
Michael G (Detroit )
I was there from 91-92 to 92-93 so I think we just missed each other. Those concrete courts surrounded by portables were insane though. NO breeze and brutal sunshine. DO you remember having to take breaks to let the soles of your shoes cool off?
Patrick Hruby (1:53 PM)
Yeah, I was there 88-90. Before the portables. Here's the thing: there STILL was no breeze. Just brutal. Also, you have to love how every outdoor court in Tucson has a nice layer of slippery dust on it.
Patrick, you ever had one of those Michael Jordan games where you absolutely take over a game? I did it a couple of months ago, haven't played since, I had never done it before and I know I'll never do it again, so I figured it would be best to go out on top.
Patrick Hruby (1:56 PM)
You know, I think everyone does at least once. And it's pretty much one of the top five feelings in life. No wonder Jordan kept coming back to the NBA -- he had them every night. The funniest thing for me was that all of mine came at my college gym with the same group of friends and one particular guy guarding me ... this poor guy thought I was incredible, when in fact, I'm average at best. Maybe that's another playground archetype: The Playground Ehlo, a guy that somehow brings out the best in you, and you just abuse them horribly.
Josh (Knoxville, TN)
As I sit here listening to my coworker in the next room SCREAMING into the speakerphone, I continue to appreciate your blurb from awhile back about conference calls. Good stuff.
Patrick Hruby (1:57 PM)
Thanks. If Dante was writing today, I think he'd place them between circles 6 and 7.
Michael G (Detroit)
Nike WILL make up the difference. Heard about the Xavier thing on DSpin (oops, sorry WWL) Do you think getting dunked on by a D1 player at a pretty good B-Ball school is really a bad thing for LBJ? I mean, they could and SHOULD spin it as King James being nice enough to not swat the kid to the ground or cut his legs out
Patrick Hruby (1:58 PM)
That's the thing -- I have to figure they're going to use it as a "LeBron is such a great humble funny guy" marketing thing. Otherwise, LeBron might be kind of a ...
Jason (Ellicott City, MD)
Can we talk about the consistent 4 point plays and block shots in March Madness 04...the one with Melo on the cover?
Patrick Hruby (1:59 PM)
If EA ever produces a semi-competent modern basketball game, we'll talk.
Michael G (Detroit)
Speaking of Steve Kerr, how long before he gets fired? I mean, just about everyone in the league likes the guy but he took a Conference finals team and in two trades, turned Marion into Ben Wallace's expiring contract (TM TSG) and freaking Sasha Pavlocic
Patrick Hruby (2:01 PM)
Simmons has actually written well and extensively on this, but what has happened to the Suns - from Kerr's stupid Shaq trade to the absolute gutting of what could have been a long-haul contender out of sheer owner cheapskateness -- is a basketball tragedy. I mean, they could have had Deng, Fernandez and Rondo COMING OF THE BENCH.
I just had to confess that I broke a Cardinal Rule of pickup: I called out Rashad McCants at a pickup game our freshman year (WHY???) He proceded to bounce the ball off my face.
Patrick Hruby (2:02 PM)
Let that be a lesson to us all -- never talk smack to a future D-league player.
Patrick Hruby (2:03 PM)
Okay everyone, I've got to get back to some writing. Thanks for stopping by ... stay safe, and if you see Rashard McCants, tell him he's a once-in-a-generation talent, and that 30 NBA teams have no idea what they're doing.