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Slam January/February 2020

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Slam is the fastest way to bring home the entire world of hoops from playgrounds to high schools, college and the NBA.

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United States
SLAM Media Inc.
6 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
the sixth man

The NBA season is rolling along, the college season is a few weeks in, and the high school season will be tipping off over the course of the next few days. So with no specific form of inspiration bringing to life our newest issue beyond a whole bunch of stuff that’s popping in basketball culture at the moment, we stumbled into our unofficial version of “The Hot Issue.” (Shouts to Rolling Stone, the pioneers of the concept.) We wound up literally hotter than expected—the first cover worth mentioning here is of the Miami Heat, who gave us some time down in sunny M-I-A to shoot Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo and Tyler Herro. Those three are leading a somewhat surprising but seemingly very solid team that could shock some folks this spring…

2 min.
trash talk

Ayo! Y’all gotta come and check out the basketball program for Bexley, Ohio!!! The varsity team is legit and even tho we’re only in 5th grade, me and my boys got real talent. We the future superstars in the NBA!!! So, please try and make some mixtapes and get us noticed…please, and thank you! Marcus Nathan (5th grade beast) via email Everyone said these guys [the Pelicans] were trash with the Lakers. They move to the Pelicans and now they have a bright future? Love those guys but funny how the narrative changes. Tury Botello via Facebook Honestly, those three sort of spotlight what’s wrong…Think they’re stars, get star money which hampers salary cap, put up hollow numbers, defense is non-existent, effort is questionable and they’ve won not a playoff series between them. Yeah,…

2 min.
the opening tip

THE GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS had their moment in the bright lights. Actually, they had more than a moment, since they went to the NBA Finals five years in a row and won the championship twice. The Warriors have won at least 50 games every year since 2013-14, and when they were rolling, it seemed break-’em-up-this-ain’t-fair was the only reasonable response. But it’s over for the Bay Area. The Warriors are battered and bruised and surgically deprived, and the .500 mark is a pipe dream this season. Even coach Steve Kerr has a half-ruined back. What does this mean? Goodbye NoCal, hello SoCal! The Lakers and Clippers down in Los Angeles now run California, and you could say it’s about time. Both those teams were in the dumps for awhile, and both are now playing…

2 min.
higher learning

THERE WAS A 12-by-12 blacktop square and a basketball hoop in David Hollander’s backyard growing up. It was his sanctuary. As he became older and pursued careers in various industries—from law, to marketing, to media, and ultimately, to teaching—Hollander always maintained a strong connection to the game. “It’s the place I return to,” he says. “It’s the place I find my peace, my balance.” Hollander is currently an associate professor at NYU’s Preston Robert Tisch Institute for Global Sport. He’s been at the university for the past 12 years, leading courses that cover sports management, consumer behavior, hospitality and more. This spring, however, there’s a new class available with Hollander’s name attached to it: “How Basketball Can Save the World: An Exploration of Society, Politics, Culture and Commerce Through the Game.” It’s one that…

2 min.
live from the jungle

“I’M THE BEST HOOPER [who raps],” says Yungeen Ace, with no trace of doubt in his tone. “I’m into it with Lil Durk right now. He’s probably the second best. I don’t know too much about the other rappers. Polo G can play, too. We were on tour together and about to play. I was gonna beat him.” Ace is at the SLAM offices in NYC, eyeing a wall decorated with old covers. He points to an image of Allen Iverson, the player he idolized as a kid, and starts talking about his impact on the culture, noting his patented arm sleeve and headband look. Growing up in Jacksonville, FL, a city he describes as the “jungle,” Ace developed a love for basketball. Rap was his true calling, however, and he began…

2 min.
coast to coast

FOR LUKE TADASHI, the pages of SLAM are where his love for basketball grew beyond just the sport itself. “[SLAM] was the first place where I connected the dots between basketball having a greater impact beyond just being a sport, but affecting culture and touching people's lives,” he says. “Design, fashion, music. All of these different aspects of culture being weaved together but through the lens of basketball.” When Tadashi’s college basketball career at Kenyon College (OH) came to an end, he needed a way to stay connected to the game he loved. He moved back to his hometown of L.A. and started Bristol Studio, a high-end clothing brand that’s artistically influenced by Tadashi’s basketball fandom in the late ’90s and early ’00s. To celebrate SLAM’s 25th anniversary, the two brands collaborated on a…