Basketball was my first love. When I moved to Houston back in 2011, I found solace with the hoopers of third grade. They were all easily recognizable -long, slightly overside Nike t-shirts with ball shorts and the nicest basketball shoes their parents can afford. I remember when Sameer got his pair of Jordan 17 - with the protective sticker still on. At the time, Yao Ming was the hottest signing for the Houston Rockets and naturally, due to my black hair, yellow skin and tall, lanky body, I was nicknamed 'Yao' by my peers.
I played pretty damn well for a kid that never watched a NBA game, let alone play a game. I owned the post. I grabbed boards and caught those alley-oops that always ended up as hyper-aggressive lay-ups since we can't dunk yet. My game developed over time and I sort of grew into comfortable power-forward with solid post game. Just today, I played a pick up game at the local park and got hurt on my right leg. Don't know how it happened, but it made it hard for me to walk. I just took a minute to reminisce about my basketball career: elementary legend, middle school rising star, high school quitter and college pick-up hooper. I've been playing all my life and I'm sad it all can end though age or injury.
Totally should kept at it during my younger years and got that mean NBA contract. I mean, look at Jeremy Lin.