NYDailyNews Ice Cube has the answer for NBA nostalgia. With entertainment executive Jeff Kwatinetz by his side, Ice Cube formally announced the beginnings of the BIG3 basketball league, which will feature former NBA stars playing 3-on-3 games, on Tuesday. The leagues most prominent embassador thus far is hall of famer Allen Iverson, who will be crossing people over on the court as a player and preaching about how dumb practice is as a coach. “The BIG3 was created as the ultimate basketball fan experience,” Ice Cube said. “We’re bringing some of the baddest names to ever play the game, and giving them a platform to not only showcase their skills, but to entertain their fans in a high-energy, physical and competitive environment. As a diehard basketball fan, I personally can’t wait to see my favorite players back in action.” Other former NBA players that will take part in the league include Kenyon Martin, Rashard Lewis, Chauncey Billups, Jason Willimas and Mike Bibby. BIG3 will consist of eight teams with five players on each competing over a 10-week season, the final two of which will serve as the playoffs. Instead of using a clock, the first team that gets to 60 points wins. There will be a draft to fill the rosters in March and the league’s first season starts on June 24.
I love this idea, it has a few problems, but a league for retired NBA players is a going to be a lot of fun. The first problem is going to be injuries, old guys get hurt a lot more than young players do, so the rosters better have some serious depth. Most of these guys would still be playing in the NBA, had lingering injuries not slowed them down, so old injuries acting up or new injuries developing is going to be a problem for BIG3. The second problem is style of play, Kenyon Martin is not going to be physically capable of throwing down hammer dunks like he was a decade ago, so a lot of the on court action is going to be like watching Al Jefferson or Joe Johnson currently play in the NBA. In fact, Al Jefferson and Joe Johnson and their polished old man games are locks to play in BIG3 in the future. Is this league half court? That might help cut down on injuries, and the players would not have to be in fantastic shape, you could have all 300 pounds of Charles Barkley or Shawn Kemp in the low post of the league was half court. Where are the games going to be played? High school gyms? Colleges? YMCAs? Why is the league called BIG3 when it’s five-on-five? The league did sign Allen Iverson as a player coach, which will make it a lot of fun, and I am interested to see several of these old guys balling once again.
Which retired players would you like to see out there most in BIG3? Obviously the most recently retired guys would be the most successful, like on the senior PGA Tour, Kobe and Duncan would be destroying everyone on the court. Garnett, headbutting the wall of the gym before a BIG3 game, psyching himself up would be entertaining. Sign up Dennis Rodman, get him out of North Korea, let him play in drag. I’d like to see the old school Knicks in BIG3, get John Starks and Charles Oakley on the court, let them bully everyone. How about Detlef Schrempf? Get the flat top back on the court. Or even Kareem, sure he’s almost 70-years-old, but he’s still got the Sky hook in his arsenal. There are so many wonderful options for BIG3 rosters.