Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Wow! What a freakin weekend! Whenever you have No. 1 vs. No. 2, regardless of the sport, there will always be plenty of excitement and energy. But when it's in state rivals and two programs facing the biggest game in their history, the stakes are even higher. Needless to say, plenty of buzz in Memphis last weekend.
Thursday, the Fed Ex Forum hosted two Cirque du Soleil shows, followed by a Friday night home NBA Grizzlies game (I know, probably the least exciting event of the weekend, except they were playing Jason Kidd and the new look Dallas Mavericks), capped off by Saturday night's epic showdown. I will admit, it was pretty cool watching some of the Mavs Friday afternoon shoot around with Kidd, Dirk, Stackhouse, Josh Howard and Mark Cuban bumpin around.
Oh yeah, and Saturday night Priscilla Presley and Peyton Manning! (Note: JT didn't show up because he didn't want to take too much attention away from the game and he thought there would be too many people in his suite. Eli wasn't there, well, I guess because he didn't attend any of these schools.)
Penny Hardaway also made an appearance wearing an old Memphis #25 letter jacket. (I know, Penny, no big deal, but it's nice to know he's still alive.
As for the game itself, pretty awesome! Rumor was court side tickets were going for $5,000 on Ebay. I think both these teams will be there at the end come tourney time, they're both nice. I was on the court two hours before tip off for the shoot arounds. I mean, it was a bunch of brothers out there shooting the rock and having fun. Robert Dozier for Memphis is an absolute beast! Derrick Rose really came of age. Anytime a freshman can play that well in a game of that magnitude, remember him. J.P. Prince came off the bench and scored 13 second half points for the Vols. Big surprise, the game basically came down to free throw shooting and Memphis is horrible.
Bruce Pearl made the best coaching decision of the game when Tennessee fouled Rose with under 5 seconds left and made him go to the line instead of having a chance to tie the game with a three. Sounds pretty elementary, but you rarely see teams or coaches execute this way.
The highlight for me was easily Beale Street.
Beale St. consists of nothing but bars with cheap booze, live blues music, great barbecue and hot chicks. Our hotel was a block away from Beale Street and two blocks from the Fed Ex Forum, what a great set up! Beale Street was rocking all weekend!
I have to give props to Silky O'Sullivans. Was there Friday night and actually met Silky himself. Silky was a cross between Boss Hogg and Fog Horn Leghorn. He's also been the Grand Marshall for Mardi Gras the last three years. Yeah, he's a pimp. Check out the pictures, he's the old guy in the cowboy hat. Silky hooked us up all night with dry rubbed ribs falling off the bone, Divers (Silky's signature drinks, basically like a fishbowl but in a bucket.), and Silky knew every chick in the joint. He had my buddy and me parked in front of the women's restroom and introduced us every hot chick he deemed worthy. "If you can't get laid at Silky's, you are a certified queer." "Come back tomorrow and it will be like clubbin seals with an oar." Oh, I wish Memphis would have one. Enjoy the pix!