Every player in the nation knows about the NYC aura. It’s the place where the lights are the brightest and the comp the deepest. The Jim Couch Reunion Games personifies that challenge through its Regional Reunion Series, and the players that compete are among the best in the nation. While a NYC Public School Athletic League pre-season conditioning clinic was held in the aux gym, attracting 200 plus players, 7th grader Unique McLean dunked in the Middle School Metro Showcase, Coach Munch’s Middle School all-star team shined, NYC triumphed over Long Island in the spotlight Rising Freshman Game that St. Raymond’s Shawn Jones (projected as a possible starter as a freshman) and Rice High School’s Shavar Newkirk dominated, as the starting backcourt of the New York Knicks watched. Kuran Iverson dropped 20 in the Sophomore Regional Showcase Game between Connecticut and New Jersey. At 6-8, Iverson showed the versatility of a guard, reminding me of Brooklyn’s Jerry “Ice” Reynolds, an extremely talented NBA point-forward with playground handle Read More »
TAG: Jim Couch
“Most people get it wrong. History isn’t about showcasing the differences between us and those who lived before us so that we can feel superior; it’s about revealing the similarities so we can feel gratitude and humility. – Forward written by Quincy Jones in the book: On the Shoulders of Giants.
I grew up in the same projects that Kareem Abdul-Jabbar lived in during his teenage years. Kareem’s importance as a player is obvious as the All-Time Leading Scorer in NBA history but it is his writing talent as a “MC” of African-American history that makes the book published a few years back titled On the Shoulders of Giants a must read. The book is written in the code of African-American communication – one that calls for a response from the crowd it addresses. Sounds like Streetball to me!
Jazz-inspired Kareem developed his famous hook shot from a never-duplicated inspiration that started with James Couch, his first playground coach. Ask him (At 78, still able to display the pristine hook shot form.) one day to shoot a hook shot and see what I mean.
I highlighted Jabbar’s importance in a piece I wrote in Bounce 23 called From the Dotted Line is Whack…?? Kareem’s dominance caused the NCAA to ban the dunk in ‘67 and the energy of the dunk became an after school project playground experiment back in the day. High School players expressed themselves in the air and at the rim after their seasons finished with a new creative style inspired by the R&B and subsequent Disco craze that swept the nation in the ’70s. Dr. J and David Thompson were children of that generation. That all turned into the greatest of all music phenomena – Hip Hop.
The creativity of the sample and scratch was the inspiration for one of the principle GrandMasters of the Air – Michael Jordan. Bounce 23’s article is a tribute to Kareem’s basketball talent and strong jazz background and shows the connection to the subsequent aerial explosion the NBA saw mature into a beast with Air Jordan.
So all you hip hop heads, feel Grandmaster Flash, Grandmaster Caz, DJ Hollywood, Jammaster J and DJ GrandWizard Theodore – men who gave RUN DMC, Jay Z, P. Diddy and the rest a way to eat well – as my inspiration for this article if you press Read More »
Winter Bounce: Issue 23 is here!! Best of Playground, Street Dogma, tri-state classic / Jan 11, 2010 / 12:16 am
Man, it happened…we got Bounce 23 off!! It was a lot of blood, sweat, and tears on this, but I’m personally feeling like Kobe after winning a chip with Shaq (understand what I’m saying)…Legendary Rucker Coach Antonio “Mousey” Carela rocks the cover and talks about his interaction with Fat Joe, Puffy and the NBA stars he recruited to play uptown…”Street Dogma” explores the American National Dunking Ban caused by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and my pops Jim Couch, back in ‘67…our “How We Do “column features one of Philly’s finest – Mike Keyes – who demonstrates the KOBE TURNTABLE…get into it! The new comic strip – GAME FACES – tells the story of a young player on his quest to build his basketball FOCUS under pressure, a combo of metaphysical western urbanism with eastern morals and values. As the ball leaves his hands and rotates through the air the forces of the playground go into action… Read More »