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Straight to the Hole (like my man Malik Sealy)

Love this short essay Jeff MacGregor wrote in 2011 about basketball at the West 4th Street courts in Greenwich Village:

There is no inside game at all, except on the putback. Nobody drives, nobody works down low or inside. Sometimes the airball falls straight from the sky, is caught, is lifted back or is lofted downrange. But it is a shooter’s game without shooters.

This is strange, because the game at West 4th is historically tough, all elbows and grunt and hard feelings. The miniature court rewards ruthlessness and body mass, not speed. Games here in August, played by older, angrier men, unfold like long-form fistfights in the heat. Not today.

The Cage is filled instead with city peacocks. Black and white and brown. Dazzling and radiant and useless.

Ayo, Rob Sutton: Hit the Button.

[Photo Credit: City of New York, Parks and Recreation]

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