On the Court: Hoop dreams are answered | AspenTimes.com
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On the Court: Hoop dreams are answered

Chad Abraham

Pick-up basketball is back in Aspen – for a little while, anyway.After the Aspen Club dumped the informal noon games in March, the city recreation department was able to strike a deal with Aspen High officials.The school was gracious enough to allow the motley group of players access to its beautiful court from noon to 1:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. The arrangement will last until June 2, when the high school lets out for the summer. The hoops gatherings will end because of planned construction.After a slow start in which only seven or eight players showed up, the games have seen an upswing in attendance. Tuesday saw 13 players – the main contingent plus a few visitors.Playing at the high school has its advantages and disadvantages. To be sure, we are grateful for the venue. It provides the midday exercise we had grown accustomed to and allows us to play the game we’ve grown up with.The use of the high school gym until June also carries us through the chilly spring and into the summer, when we can play outside at the Yellow Brick court.As for the downside, there’s just one negative aspect, really. The court is big. Very big. Playing on the standard, 94-foot hardwood is considerably different than playing at the Aspen Club and its court. That floor is only three-quarters the length of a normal court.So playing full court at the high school is a much greater workout than many of us are used to. That isn’t a complaint as much as it is an eye-opener to the pathetic shape I’m in.And it seems the more tired I get, the more my team wins, meaning none of the respite that comes with sitting out a game after a loss. For me, that translates into tired legs, poor defense (well, even poorer than usual) and shots that come up short.In the end, I know it’s great exercise and I wish we could use the gym all summer. But as it stands, the players are indebted to the school and recreation officials for coming up with a solution to a small community desire.It is much appreciated.


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