Time to dust off the kicks and re-lace the ankle braces, your city’s honor awaits you. In one of the more unique concepts in sports competition I’ve come across, The People’s Games is an Olympic-style competition within the confines of the United States. It offers athletes the opportunity to represent their cities in competition against other U.S. cities in various sports to prove once and for all which city boasts the best athletes.
For all those competitors out there whose hopes of making it big time were derailed by lingering injuries, parental responsibilities or a nagging mother, this competition is for you. The program will launch with a basketball competition pitting participants 18+ from New York and Los Angeles up against each other.
New York Knicks legend Earl “The Pearl” Monroe will coach New York’s team, and former Laker/UCLA great Lucius Allen, will coach the L.A. team.
“I’m really looking forward to it,” says Monroe. “This will bring us back to the old days when it was all about bragging rights and representing your city with pride. The great thing about The People’s Games, it gives people from all walks of life a chance to play competitive basketball. We are talking about teachers, doctors, former high school stars, lawyers will all have the opportunity to play. Maybe some didn’t have the chance to fulfill their dreams and they can now… representing New York.”
Different from pro sports whose teams seldom have players come from the city in which they play for, participants in The People’s Games must be a resident of the city they are representing and have no professional experience. The People’s Games will tip-off Sunday, March 13 with neighborhood tryouts throughout New York City and Los Angeles, followed by a “best of three” finals series in early May. Participants can register for tryouts at www.PeoplesGames.com or call 800.TPG.3098.
What city do you think has better ballers: L.A. or NYC?
Follow Arie on Twitter at @arnie_starkish.
Follow Dime on Twitter at @DimeMag.
Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE.