Re: How old do you think you can carry on playing basketball til?
I just played in a nice full court coaches vs. refs game for the season end of the league I was coaching in. First time since probably college I played in a real game with real refs and a scoreboard and clock and the whole deal. We had 11 guys, and we played 10 minute quarters, so we were running line shifts every five minutes, which was fine with all of us. It's a big full size court we were playing on, and we easily would've run out of gas.
The refs are local college age kids, some still in HS even. It's a nice job the community rec department puts together. Pay is ok, and you work a couple days a week reffing little kids. The refs had won several years running, but when I walked in an hour early and started stretching and saw our guys coming in, I had to say I thought we had a shot. My buddy who I coach with is 6-6 and around 260 these days. And we had another guy in his mid thirties a little taller than him.
It's been a while for me, so when we started putting together teams, I deferred and sat until the second shift. Some other guy declared he was a PG, so I figured I'd wait till the second line so I knew we'd both have someone to bring the ball up.
We got up a bit in the first shift, but when I got out there I got hot quick. I banked a three, which I heard a bunch of shit about, then broke down my guy next trip and threw a no look to my big for a layup which drew an laughs and oohs from the crowd of other young kids who came to razz their buddies, and kids from the teams with their parents.
When I banked a second three the ref kids really started talking. They put their best guy on me, and I got a reversal around the top of the key about 6 feet behind the three point line stood with it, and when he didn't come I heard my buddy on the bench telling the other unit "that's going up" as I launched and hit, at which point I asked their stopper to let me know when he thought it wasn't "lucky shit" anymore and I'll stop.
The next few shifts there were more no looks. My big was good. And one Rondo style fake around the back which I lofted high off the wrong foot and banked in. They started playing off me in the lane realizing that I just can't get off the ground anymore and they're better off playing me to pass than to shoot. But I got a few off craftily. I backed rimmed a running halfcourter at the end of the third. I just generally felt great.
After each session I went to get water, where I was roundly given a talking to by the HS kids for blowing up their boys, and my buddy's kids were wildly impressed and couldn't believe all the oohs I got. They've seen me spin a ball on my finger, and shoot a bit, even dick around in a pickup game, but never seen me really play.
I'm was a week from my 36th Birthday, and had just spent three days on a bender at the Big East, and was heading down to the title game just a few hours after the game. And in spite of the fact that my knees swelled up like hell on Sunday, it was one of the highlights of my favorite week of the year.