When President Barack Obama was aboard the USS Vinson for the Michigan State / North Carolina game about a week ago he said that the lockout was killing him. He referenced feeling sympathy for the concession stand workers and arena employees adversely affected by this Lockout, and even offered a dig of sorts directed towards the millionaires and billionaires currently involved in trying to divide up all this NBA money.
This past weekend he said that he was hosting a basketball game featuring locked out NBA basketball stars that will help fund his re-election effort. The game will be played in an effort to raise money for the Obama Victory Fund specifically, and will be played on Monday December 12th at 4pm in Washington DC. Venue to be announced shortly.
The game is said to feature a list of NBA superstars including Dwight Howard, Carmelo Anthony, Ray Allen, Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, John Wall, Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant.
The complete list of players currently confirmed to play in the First Ever Obama Classic Basketball Game according to the website BarackObama.com is as follows:
Ray Allen - Carmelo Anthony - Chris Bosh - Vince Carter - Tyson Chandler - Jamal Crawford - Kevin Durant - Baron Davis - Patrick Ewing - Derek Fisher - Rudy Gay - Blake Griffin - Tyler Hansbrough - Dwight Howard - Juwan Howard - Antawn Jamison - Dahntay Jones - Brandon Knight - Kevin Love - Jamal Mashburn - Cheryl Miller - Alonzo Mourning - Dikembe Mutombo - Chris Paul - Quentin Richardson - Doc Rivers - Steve Smith - Jerry Stackhouse - Amare Stoudemire - Tina Thompson - John Wall - Russell Westbrook
Patrick Ewing is actually coaching one team in the game, and Doc Rivers is coaching the other. What's interesting there is that the NBA has lifted the requirement that coaches and players cannot interact with each other during the Lockout specifically for this Obama fund-raiser event. Doc Rivers will be allowed to talk with Ray Allen, Ewing able to talk with Howard, and so on.
Tickets for the Obama fund-raiser game start at the affordable price of $200 per seat for a General Admission ticket too. Premium Lower Deck are $500 per ticket, and a Courtside seats will run you $5,000 each.
The date Obama's people picked for the game is an interesting one also. If the League is still locked out on December 12th, there's a good chance it will be locked out for the duration of this season. With thirty days being the requirement to go from ending the Lockout to the first game, that would put opening night way past the Christmas Day date that's been mentioned as the latest the League is willing to start. It would also be still only eight days before the January 20th date the League opened their 50-game 1999 season on though too, but they've seemed pretty serious about not wanting to start that late again.
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