By Nicki Jhabvala, SI.com
The summer may be nearing an end, but the best NBA action since the start of the lockout is just now getting underway.
Plans for a rematch of last weekend’s Drew League vs. Goodman League showcase have been put into gear for next month (and it may include Kobe Bryant), and a two-week league featuring 50 NBA players at the Impact Academy in Las Vegas is slated for mid-September (possibly including Blake Griffin, Kevin Durant, John Wall and Rudy Gay).
But the most star-studded game yet will be in Baltimore, on Aug. 30.
In what is being dubbed the Melo All-Stars vs. Goodman All-Stars, Baltimore-native Carmelo Anthony will play alongside Chris Paul and LeBron James as they take on Durant’s D.C. crew at St. Frances Academy at 7 p.m.
The event, which was first reported by Hoopsworld and later detailed by The Washington Post’s Michael Lee, is being organized by Curt Lee, the athletic director at the Melo Center and the head of its summer pro-am league. Curt Lee has asked Goodman commissioner Miles Rawls to serve as MC and help assemble a group of All-Stars to fill the gym. As the Post reports:
“KD’s down for whatever,” Rawls said, adding that the game is not a Goodman League event but just a showcase of two teams.
The game was originally set for Sunday, but got pushed back because of Hurricane Irene. More details are still being finalized, since St. Frances only seats 1,000 and organizers are still in process of trying to find a larger venue to accommodate what should be a large crowd. Lee said he has reached out to Towson, Morgan State and Coppin State but the schools have yet to be receptive.
“A lot of kids are going to miss out on this game and it might be LeBron’s first and last time in Baltimore city,” Lee said. “We’ve got to take advantage of this, because very seldom are you going to see LeBron close up, like you’re going to see him on Tuesday. He’s leaving right after the game.”
Goodman’s team will feature Durant, Jeff Green, DeMarcus Cousins and Brandon Jennings, who played for the Drew League at the Aug. 20 showdown in at Trinity University. Though Wall has been a Goodman/pro-am regular this summer, Rawls told the Post that the Wizards point guard won’t be able to play in the Baltimore game. He is currently in L.A. serving as an assistant coach at the Boost Mobile Elite 24 high school showcase.
In addition to James and Paul, Anthony’s team will feature Josh Selby, Gary Neal, Donte Greene, Eric Bledsoe and none other than Eddy Curry, as Alex Kennedy reported Sunday.
The game will not be streamed online like the Drew-Goodman game, but tickets will be available for $40 on game day for those willing to make the trek to Baltimore. Doors will open at 6 p.m.
Road trip, anyone?
UPDATE: The game has been moved to Morgan State. Tip-off is still at 7 p.m. ET.