Latest Basketball News

NBA Trophy Visit to Newcastle - Photo Recap May 28, 2017 19:13

NBA Trophy Visit to Newcastle

It was a bit of a dream come true for us to be able to host the Larry O'Brien NBA Championship trophy at our brand new basketball store in Newcastle upon Tyne. A big thank you to the hundreds of people who turned out to see the trophy, listen to some tunes from Flint & Steel and have a few beers with us to celebrate the occasion. 

Check out a few of the photographs from the event below!

NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle

NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle

NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle

NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle

NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle

NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle

NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle

NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle

NBA Trophy Hardwood Ventures Newcastle

Lots more over on our Facebook page - see if your picture is there :)

 


Boston Celtics Secure No.1 Pick in 2017 NBA Draft May 16, 2017 18:25

The NBA draft lottery happened last night, and there were some big winners and losers throughout. No one won bigger than the Boston Celtics though, who secured the number 1 pick for the 2017 draft. 

The Celtics were already having a great season. They finished 1st in the Eastern Conference, and right now they're about to face the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals in the play offs. That makes the Celtics the first team to finish top in their conference, and get the first pick in the draft, since the Lakers drafted James Worthy in 1982.

Boston, and GM Danny Ainge in particular, have to be extra happy about the first pick, since they got it thanks to that 2013 trade deal that sent Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce to the Brooklyn Nets. The Nets finished dead last this year, and could have really done with the first pick, but goes to show how important the ramifications of those big trade deals can be, even years down the line. 

Ainge received a lot of criticism earlier this year when he decided to take no action during the trade window. Had the Celtics bombed out of the play offs early, or had this draft pick not come about, that criticism might have stood, but the Celtics are looking pretty smart right now. 

While Celtics fans continue to celebrate, here's a look at the top 14 teams in the 2017 NBA draft, which will take place in June:

  1. Boston Celtics
  2. LA Lakers
  3. Philadelphia 76ers
  4. Phoenix Suns
  5. Sacramento Kings
  6. Orlando Magic
  7. Minnesota Timberwolves
  8. New York Knicks
  9. Dallas Mavericks
  10. Sacramento Kings
  11. Charlotte Hornets
  12. Detroit Pistons
  13. Denver Nuggets
  14. Miami Heat

The NBA TROPHY is Coming to NEWCASTLE May 15, 2017 21:59

We can't quite believe it ourselves, but it's true! For the first time in NBA history, the Larry O'Brien NBA Championship Trophy is coming to Newcastle upon Tyne, and it will be displayed in our brand new retail space on High Bridge Street.

We hope you'll join us on May 19th to celebrate the trophy's visit, and get your picture taken alongside one of the most iconic things from the world of basketball. 

NBA Trophy Comes to Newcastle


Wilson X Connected Basketball - Free Range Mode April 21, 2017 13:49

The Wilson X Connected basketball uses cutting edge technology to track your makes and misses, shot percentage and distance from the basket when practicing your shooting. The basketball connects to an app on your mobile phone that logs the data and has various game modes to help you improve your shooting. 

See the full introduction to the Wilson X Basketball here

Free Range is the standard mode on the Wilson X app and can be used while you're casually shooting around, or going hard at your training. The app tracks your progress and gives you audio feedback. You'll be able to see in real time your makes and misses, your shot percentage and distances from the hoop. 

The app will help identify the areas of your game that need the most work, and encourage you to get better in those areas. With Free Range you can collect lifetime shooting data that you can share with your friends or coach, and you can work towards unlocking achievements in the app.

All seriously addictive stuff that can help you improve your shooting. Take a closer look:

You can purchase the Wilson X Connected basketball, with presentation box, right here.


Wilson X Connected Basketball - Become A Clutch Shooter with Buzzer Beater Mode April 21, 2017 13:35

The Wilson X Connected basketball uses cutting edge technology to track your makes and misses, shot percentage and distance from the basket when practicing your shooting. The basketball connects to an app on your mobile phone that logs the data and has various game modes to help you improve your shooting. 

See the full introduction to the Wilson X Basketball here

A great game mode that's included with the Wilson app, is Buzzer Beater. The clock counts down on the app, and every time you make a shot to add time back onto the clock. The constant countdown and pressure to make your shots, makes every shot a clutch play. 

Throughout the Buzzer Beater mode, the app records your stats, including makes / misses, shooting percentage and distance from the hoop. Shoot from further away to add more time onto the clock. 

This is a hugely addictive game mode, and being able to share your data with your friends, unlocking achievements and seeing your improvement logged every time you play is only going to encourage you to keep going, and getting better.

Take a look at the app in action:

You can purchase the Wilson X Connected basketball, with presentation box, right here.


Wilson X Connected Basketball - Game Time Mode April 21, 2017 13:33

The Wilson X Connected basketball uses cutting edge technology to track your makes and misses, shot percentage and distance from the basket when practicing your shooting. The basketball connects to an app on your mobile phone that logs the data and has various game modes to help you improve your shooting. 

See the full introduction to the Wilson X Basketball here

One of the game modes featured on the app is called Game Time, and it replicates the sounds and pressures of an actual basketball game so that, even if you're training by yourself, you can get closer to simulating actual game play while you practice. 

The app tracks your shooting progress, and gives audio prompts as to how well you are performing in the 'game', as well as surrounding you with the sounds of playing in an arena situation. Fouls are called, you'll get cheers when you're on fire, and you'll be heading to the bench if you're underperforming. 

The whole point of this mode is to get you to practice like you play. Check it out in the video below, and see the other game modes that are available here.

You can purchase the Wilson X Connected basketball, with presentation box, right here.


Wilson X Connected Basketball - Improve Your Free Throws April 20, 2017 17:20

The Wilson X Connected basketball uses cutting edge technology to track your makes and misses, shot percentage and distance from the basket when practicing your shooting. The basketball connects to an app on your mobile phone that logs the data and has various game modes to help you improve your shooting. 

See the full introduction to the Wilson X Basketball here

One of the game modes that you can use is FREE THROW, which focuses on helping you to improve your free throw shooting. Repetition is hugely important when you want to improve your free throws. So while you're at the line, working on improving your shooting form and free throw confidence, the free throw game mode is keeping track of your makes, misses, lifetime attempts and shot percentage. 

Use the Wilson X free throw game mode to track your progress, challenge your friends to beat you and show your coach your progress over time. You can also unlock achievements, which always helps with motivation.

Check out the video below to see it in action!

You can purchase the Wilson X Connected basketball, with presentation box, right here.


Wilson X Connected Basketball - The Future of Stat Tracking and Training April 20, 2017 16:58

Wilson X Connected Basketball

We live in a world where we are forever connected to technology, and in particular our mobile phones, so the Wilson X Connected basketball is the obvious evolutionary step in basketball technology. 

The Wilson X Connected basketball links to your mobile phone via Blutooth, then via the Wilson app, it will allow you to track your shooting stats as you train. That includes using cutting edge technology to track your makes and misses, your shooting percentages and distance from the hoop as you shoot.

The app tracks and displays the stats on your phone in real time, and in-built games and training programs allow you to work on your game and identify which areas might need more work than others. 

Here's a quick video to give you the full introduction to the Wilson X Basketball

So the Wilson X comes with 3 game modes, and a free range mode. The game modes are Free Throw, Game Time and Buzzer beater. Each of these game modes focuses on a particular part of your shooting game. As the app tracks your stats, you're able to focus more on your form and getting better, without worrying about counting or keeping a mental note of your performance. 

We take a look at each game mode separately via the links below, but the Wilson X Connected basketball is the ideal basketball for a permanently connected generation. Challenge your friends to beat your stats, share progress with your coach and unlock in game achievements, all via your mobile phone. 

You can buy the Wilson X Connected basketball right here, complete with display box. 

Check out the various Wilson X modes:

 


How the Spalding Official NBA Game Basketball Gets Game Ready April 19, 2017 11:19

Spalding and the NBA have a long and successful relationship; Spalding have been the official basketball supplier to the NBA for over 30 years and as such, it feels impossible to turn on the TV and watch an NBA game played with anything but a Spalding basketball.

Even Russell Westbrook has been talking about how, on the court, Spalding is his only friend.

As the current NBA season comes to a head, Spalding have produced a video to show us how their basketballs are prepared to be part of the game, and how they provide quality, reliability and consistently; factors which become even more important during the NBA playoffs and finals - when careers can be made or broken, and legacies can be written. 

Check out the video below, it's always good to see the journey of all of these little things that come together to create the spectacle that is the NBA!

 


Russell Westbrook is Serious About Spalding Being His Best Friend April 19, 2017 11:10

Russell Westbrook is easily one of the most entertaining players in the NBA when it comes to interviews with the press. His off the cuff comments, straight-talking and catalogue of facial expressions make him easily quotable, and an easy target for memes.

Speaking to reports at that the start of the playoffs, Westbrook was asked to comment on his relationship with MVP rival, James Harden, and he replied with, "once you get on the floor, you've got one friend, and that friend is Spalding." Spalding being the official supplier of all official NBA basketballs. Check it out: 

 There's a lot of sense in what he's saying, but a lot of people didn't take it the way that Westbrook intended the comment, which resulted in a further interview with Westbrook letting folks know just how serious he is about the basketball being his number one priority. 

So there you have it, Spalding really is Westbrook's BFF. The basketball is the most important thing on the floor to him. 


Minnesota Timberwolves Unveil New Logo April 12, 2017 13:05

Minnesota Timberwolves New NBA Logo

As the 2016/17 NBA regular season comes to an end, those teams who are going home early start to give us a glimpse of what they might have planned for next year, and the Minnesota Timberwolves are the first team to come out and showcase their new logo.

While the new Timberwolves logo was actually leaked in the press early, the actual reveal was done at the half time of the Timberwolves game versus the Oklahoma City Thunder last night. The Timberwolves showed a great hype video that recapped the history of the Minnesota franchise and their logo development over the years. Take a look:

After the reveal, there was a mixed reaction to the change - some fans love it, some fans hate it - but that's always to be expected when there's a big change for a team. 

The new Timberwolves logo features a new colourway, a mature wolf howling at a basketball and the North Star. Overall the design is more modern and sleek and is said to represent a 'new era' of Timberwolves basketball.  The franchise is keen to stress the upward goals of the franchise (having failed to make the play-offs for 13-years straight) and the potential of their young team.

We're now eagerly awaiting the release of images of the new Minnesota Timberwolves jerseys, although that's not likely to happen before the official end of the season, since it will be a Nike NBA jersey, The current Adidas contract runs until the conclusion of the NBA Finals.

Stay tuned for more updates on how the look of the league will be changing for next season, and join the conversation on our social media pages about how you feel about the Timberwolves new logo. 

See what our Instagram followers think, or post your opinion on Facebook.


Adidas Harden Vol. 1 Disruptor - Disrupt the Game, Leave Your Opponents Weeping March 22, 2017 16:05

Adidas Harden Vol 1 Distruptor

James Harden has catapulted himself into the MVP race this season, thanks to a deadly offence that includes a good mix of skills, smarts and speed. Take Harden's full court charge and game winning layup against the Denver Nuggets on Monday night (where he just so happened to be wearing the Harden Vol. 1 Disruptor). Sure Denver's transition defence was trash, but that's the level of tenacity and audacity that Harden has shown all season, in order to get his team buckets, and put them up in 3rd place in the Western Conference.

With all that going on, Harden is king at disrupting any basketball game, and straight up making his opponents weep, which is why the adidas Harden Vol. 1 'Disruptor' is an ideal shoe model for the beard.

Adidas has gone in on some new materials for this version of the Harden Vol. 1, including a perforated mesh upper across the white section of the white shoe, which contrasts really well with the black toe cap. The static-grey laces sit well, and are capped off with gold lace tips. 

In fact, it's the gold that really stands out on the Disruptor. Used on the Harden logo and the 3 stripes on the heel, the gold colourway is a nod to Harden't ultimate goal in the NBA - to grab himself, and his teammates, that Larry O'Brien trophy.

The adidas Harden Vol. 1 'Disruptor' is available now, take a closer look below. 

Adidas Harden Vol. 1 Disruptor

Adidas Harden Vol. 1 Disruptor

Adidas Harden Vol. 1 Disruptor


Dirk Nowitzki Joins Elite Club After Scoring 30,000 Career Points March 08, 2017 16:48

When a slightly goofy German kid joined the Dallas Mavericks in 1998, who would have guessed that he would become one of only 6 players in the history of the NBA to score over 30,000 regular season points in his career?

Last night, against the LA Lakers, Nowitzki put up 25 points. His 20th point in that game was the 30,000th of his career, and the crowd in the arena went wild, and rightly so. That many points is no joke. Just take a look at the company he nows keeps:

  1. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - 38,387
  2. Karl Malone - 36,928
  3. Kobe Bryant - 33,643
  4. Michael Jordan - 32,292
  5. Wilt Chamberlain - 31,419
  6. Dirk Nowitzki - 30,005

The only other active player that is anywhere near Nowitzki in the list is LeBron James, who currently sits 8th with 28,316 career points (Shaquille O'Neal sits sandwiched between).

With retirement no doubt peeking around the corner for Dirk, who has spent an admirable 18 seasons with the Dallas Mavericks, winning 1 NBA Championship in 2011, it was great to see him reach this career milestone.

As he becomes the first international player to reach those lofty scoring heights, there's no doubt that other international players in the NBA, or those players who are looking to break into the NBA have a great role model in Nowitzki.

Take a look at how Nowitzki scored the points that pushed him over the 30,000 tally. 


A Closer Look at Andrew Wiggins Adidas Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoes February 15, 2017 14:16

Andrew Wiggins Adidas Crazy Explosive Home Editon

When images started to surface of the adidas Crazy Explosive basketball shoe, opinion was very divided, based on the fact that the shoes are quite out there in terms of how they look. Once these shoes were put to work, opinion quickly changed. 

Here we're going to take a look at how the Crazy Explosive shoe has been constructed, and check out Andrew Wiggins home player edition of the shoe. 

Like a good car, adidas' approach to building the Crazy Explosive was very much about the performance and support of the model, while considering how design would impact on the way the player moves and feels while they're wearing them.

Adidas Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoes

When looking at what sort of player would wear the Crazy Explosive shoe, adidas picked Andrew Wiggins as a case study, and built the shoe around the key parts of his game, including his explosiveness at the rim, his dynamic approach to his game in the paint, and the hours that he puts into improving his game. From this starting point, adidas were able to look at what key elements the shoes needed to fit this player profile. 

Adidas Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoes

Adidas Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoes

Key aspects that were then built into the Crazy Explosive shoe were a full length bootie, with Primeknit upper for a tailored fit that was comfortable and also allowed airflow across the foot. Dynamic lacing allows for a good lockdown, while not causing discomfort over the foot. 

Adidas' unique boost technology has been used across the full length of the sole to help explosive play and provide comfort and protection while playing for long periods of time, in a high intensity manner. The midsole had a TPU roll cage, and plate wraps in the arch for support, while tuned suspension up the side of the shoe house the boost, and allow for increased expansion and contraction of the boost unit. 

Add in a new max wrapping power tread for traction that ensures the ability for making decisive moves, and getting the step on your defender when powering to the rim, and the adidas Crazy Explosive shoe is complete. All of these elements come to life in a unique looking shoe that has become a popular silhouette, and looks set to be a base model that adidas will continue to improve and innovate around in seasons to come.  

Andrew Wiggins Adidas

This season, Andrew Wiggins of the Minnesota Timberwolves has been wearing the Crazy Explosive, and that recently released in a home colourway, as a special player edition shoe. Check out some pictures of the shoe below, courtesy of adidas, and tune into any of Wiggins games to see the tech behind the Crazy Explosive go to work on the big stage!

Adidas Crazy Explosive Andrew Wiggins PE

Adidas Crazy Explosive Andrew Wiggins PE

Adidas Crazy Explosive Andrew Wiggins PE


James Harden Makes History with 2nd 50-Point Triple Double This Season January 28, 2017 14:49

James Harden Adidas

James Harden is making is case for being part of the MVP conversation this year, after chalking up another triple-double, to help his Houston Rockets past the Philadelphia 76ers.

Harden’s 51 points, 13 rebounds and 13 assists bagged him an NBA record, as he became the only player in NBA history to record two 50+ point triple doubles in a single season. Harden also moved up to second in the league in scoring last night, after averaging 29.1 points per game.

At the final buzzer, Harden was just 2 points shy of his career-high in the game. He scored 19 of his points in the 3rd quarter, shot 16 of 28 from the field, including 6 of 11 from long distance.

Despite Harden’s form, Philadelphia didn’t make it an easy ride for the Rockets, as they continue on their current uptick in form. The 76ers have only lost 3 games in their past 11, and they only lost to the Rockets by 5 points at 123 - 118 last night.

Take a look at Harden's highlights from the game:


Basketball Tech Uncovered: What Is adidas Boost? January 25, 2017 16:18

Adidas Boost

It's no secret that adidas has been hard at work developing new shoe technologies over the past few years, in order to grab a bigger share of the basketball footwear market (and of the footwear market in general), and Boost has been a huge part of those developments. 

Here at Hardwood Ventures we currently see Boost on a daily basis, in shoes like the Crazylight Boost, D Rose 7 and Harden Vol. 1, but what exactly is Boost, and why is it changing the face of adidas basketball footwear?

Adidas Crazylight Boost 2016

ON A MATERIAL LEVEL

On a material level, Boost is an innovative cushioning, that is made up of loads of tiny pellets, formed from a material called Thermoplastic Urethane. Even in pellet form, this material has properties that are rarely seen together at the same time, but are ideal for use in footwear.

As described by Mikal Peveto, adidas' senior director of innovation, these Thermoplastic Urethane pellets are "super soft, but also super springy". When they're formed together in the midsole of a shoe, the inherent properties of those individual pellets are almost magnified to provide excellent cushioning, but also excellent energy return. 

ENERGY RETURN, WHAT?

The term 'energy return' is used to describe a function of Boost, but it's more of an adidas marketing term because what Boost actual does, is control the loss of energy. You can't get more energy out of your shoes than you put in, so a big feature of Boost is that it hugely limits the amount of energy lost when your foot hits the floor. 

With Boost holding on to more of that energy that you're putting into walking, running or jumping, effectively this means that you should be able to perform the same exercise or action, with less effort. Or you should be able to run up the court faster, or run further than normal, without expending more energy. 

(Sadly this doesn't extend to putting any serious inches on your vertical - keep doing those squats.)

Adidas D Rose 7 Boost

BOOST ON FOOT

Boost offers a better energy return than anything else on the market right now, and having tried Boost personally (in the adidas D Rose 7), it's crazy soft to walk and run in. It definitely lives up to the performance hype AND it looks good, which has been a key aspect of Boost being able to transcend the performance market, and cross over into straight fashion and streetwear.

In store, sometimes just talking about Boost and it's properties isn't enough, you really have to get it on-foot to truly showcase how good it feels, and how different it is to the other midsole materials in the market right now. 

There's on overwhelming sense of adidas making some serious gains in the basketball footwear market on the back of technologies like Boost. It's going to be interesting to see how things develop from here. 


Adidas Harden Vol. 1 - James Harden's Game Changing Signature Shoe January 25, 2017 15:08

The arrival of the adidas Harden Vol. 1 marks a new movement within the adidas signature shoe game. James Harden and adidas are working together to create a collaborative partnership that produces basketball footwear and apparel unlike anything else in the market.

Driven by Harden's style of play and his performance needs, the Harden Vol. 1 features a range of specific technology and design flares, that adhere to his core on-court requirements and creativity.

The adidas Harden Vol. 1 features:

  • Leather toe shroud for premium protection
  • Full length BOOST for all game energy return
  • Adaptive support with asymmetrical lacing
  • Fractal traction pattern for game changing grip

VIEW THE ADIDAS HARDEN VOL. 1 HERE


Nike Doesn't Plan to Continue with Sleeved Jerseys January 24, 2017 14:47

With the announcement that Nike would be taking over as the official jersey supplier to the NBA come the 2017-18 NBA season, a whole load of questions have been thrown out there in regards to how Nike will change things up. 

A key point that Nike have recently made, much to the delight of most fans, is that Nike does not plan to produce sleeved jerseys. That information, which was revealed in the WSJ, came along with information that Nike will only be releasing authentic and swingman jerseys into retailers that they're partnered with, and not replica jerseys. 

The production of replica jerseys has been handed over to US-based sports company, Fanatics, so replica's will only be available via Fanatics and the official NBA store. 

Nevertheless, we can breathe easy in that Nike will not be putting out sleeved jerseys (at least for this initial season - they've not said that they'll never make them, just that they don't plan to). LeBron James will no doubt be pleased, as Nike's biggest current global basketball representative, he was very vocal about his dislike of the sleeved jerseys when adidas started to produce them in 2013. 

LeBron notably tore the sleeves open on his jersey in 2015 as the ultimate show of defiance, and given Nike's relationship with LeBron, I'm sure they'd have taken notice of what he had to say on the matter. 

Nike NBA swingman and authentic jerseys will be available to purchase right here for the 2017-18 NBA season.


Blake Griffin Involved in Remake of White Men Can't Jump January 18, 2017 16:17

White Men Can't Jump Remake

I'm not going to lie, the thought of a remake of White Men Can't Jump fills me with equal amounts of joy and dread, but it's coming, thanks to Black-ish creator, Kenya Barris, and with the help of the LA Clipper's Blake Griffin. 

Currently sidelined with a knee injury, Griffin is reportedly helping to produce the remake, under his new production company Mortal Media, which he owns with NFL player, Ryan Kalil. The script will be written by Barris and it will be released by 20th Century Fox.

The original movie starred Wesley Snipes (as Sidney Deane) and Woody Harrelson (as Billy Hoyle), as an unlikely street-ball duo, who hustled their opponents by relying on Harrelson's 'chump'-like look, to ensure people underestimated his skills on the court.

It's easily one of my favourite basketball movies, and can be quoted for days by anyone who grew up loving basketball in the 90's (the South Beach scenes where Hoyle first hustles Deane stand out). Let's not forget just how magically the movie captures a certain period in fashion as well.

No further details have been released about the remake, but here's to hoping that it can do the original justice, and introduce a whole new generation to the joys of White Men Can't Jump. It definitely flew too far under the radar originally, despite ending up as a bit of a cult classic in certain circles. 


2017 New Orleans NBA All-Star Jerseys Are Unveiled January 06, 2017 00:00

We always look forward to this time of year - we're settling into 2017 nicely, and the NBA All Star voting is ramping up. Then we have the unveiling of the All Star jerseys! Over the years there have been some seriously iconic NBA All Star jerseys (like this one!), so we're always looking for that new design that's going to make that kind of impact. 

Sadly, 2017 isn't going to be it. That's not to hate on these latest Adidas creations, they're quite clean and have some strong design features, like the architecturally inspired 'E' and 'W' that features on the shorts.

The plainness of the kits is in-keeping with current trends for simple and clean design, while the dulled down colours, with the blue or red highlights also sits nicely amongst the wider Adidas design spectrum (think NMD's and so on). 

Despite the on-trend design, it's unlikely that these particular All Star jerseys will go down in history, or be talked about in the way the likes some of the 90's ones are, but it's still a pretty good look.

Check them out below, images via Slam Online

East NBA All Star Jersey 2017

Adidas NBA All Star Jersey 2017 West


Bringing Hardwood Ventures to Life December 22, 2016 17:22

After our recent rebrand from Basketball Megastore over to Hardwood Ventures, we needed to get our store space up to spec, and what better way than to have the North East’s premier sign writer come in and do all of our new signage by hand.

THE REBRAND /// HARDWOOD VENTURES

We’d spent a long time discussing changing our name and branding. While ‘Basketball Megastore’ was a great name for us being online in terms of search engines and such, it didn’t really reflect how we truly viewed our business. To those who didn’t know us, or who hadn’t dealt with us, the name sounded more like a large discounter or lower-end sports store.

In changing over to Hardwood Ventures, we wanted both the name and the branding to reflect a deep-seated passion for the game, and an authenticity in what we do. We wanted to present a higher-quality image that does justice to the work that we put in, and to the brands that we represent.

Hardwood Ventures is our project in paying homage to the hardwood - the traditional home of our favourite sport. We wanted to represent the rich history of the game, as well as immersing ourselves in the contemporary culture of the sport, and looking forward to the future of basketball in the UK and beyond.

In the name, we’re also acknowledging the adventure, and the risk that we take in pursuing this. Everyday brings new challenges, and nothing about this is easy, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

North East designer, Alan Wardle, was the guy to bring this all together in the branding that you now see on our store. From pulling together our logo and monogram, to masterminding how our branding should filter through everything that we do going forward. From the website and social media, through to in-store branding and image.

WE LOVE THIS GAME /// ASH WILLERTON

Ash Willerton Sign Writer

When working with people to bring this all to life, it pays to work with people who are as passionate about their area of expertise as you are in your own, because there’s so much more mutual appreciation, and the outcome is always going to be outstanding.

Through Alan, we were very lucky to be able to hook up with Ash Willerton, a sign writer who is fast making a big name for himself. Having worked with the likes of The Independent and Fortnum and Mason, as well as local independent stores like ours, Ash has worked his magic across a range of impressive projects.

For the store, Ash undertook a few different projects; the full logo on the outside of the store, a monogram for the till area, and a great piece for the front door letting people know exactly what they’re getting themselves in for when they come inside.

The door piece was influenced by the original ‘I Love this Game’ promo, ran by the NBA in the 1990’s. The sentiment couldn’t be more true for us, so Ash free-handed the saying in a unique script and brand colours, then painstakingly painted it onto the glass of the front door (in the dark nonetheless!).

Ash Willerton

Ash Willerton

Ash Willerton

Ash Willerton

Ash Willerton

We Love This Game

HV /// FRONT AND CENTRE

The monogram for the front counter, and the full logo outside were hand painted with a great amount of precision, super slick straight lines and all. I’m told it’s all in the brushes, but I’m sure it’s more to do with the hand behind the brush, and the hours and hours of practice, and previous experience that allows Ash to make this all look way easier than it actually is.

Ash Willerton

Ash Willerton Hardwood Ventures

Ash Willerton Hardwood Ventures

Hardwood Ventures Ash Willerton

Ash Willerton Hardwood Ventures

We’ve been really impressed with the outcome of the whole thing. The new branding looks great on the store and we now feel we have a look that we can be really proud of moving forward.

We have a lot of new things planned for 2017, and now we have the right branding to move forward with. Once again, big thanks to Alan Wardle for his inspired branding and design work, and to Ash Willerton for his time, energy and passion in keeping the craft of sign writing alive while bringing Hardwood Ventures to life.


Nike NBA Jersey Images Leaked with Jersey Adverts November 09, 2016 00:00

There's much anticipation surrounding the fact that Nike is taking over the license for NBA jerseys and on court apparel for next season, and here is a leaked picture of what we can possibly expect from Nike when the 2017-18 season comes around. 

Images of what can be assumed are Nike Philadelphia 76ers jerseys and shorts, were leaked on Twitter by user @PhillyStein_ and passed around quickly in the media. Here's what they look like.

Nike NBA Philadelphia 76ers Uniforms

There's always a lot of debate surrounding the idea of having adverts on NBA jerseys, but starting next season, it will be a thing. Judging by these leaked images of of the Sixers NBA jerseys (on the white version), the advert doesn't look too imposing, although the Sixers have picked StubHub, which is a whole other debate of it's own in regards to the ethics of having a ticket touting site as your sponsor. 

We'll have to wait to see if more images emerge to confirm the validity of the leak, but either way the change over to Nike NBA uniforms is going to be huge!


Allen Iverson Still Setting Trends With Stance Socks October 28, 2016 23:12

Allen Iverson Stance

If you think about the history of the NBA, and try to identify the people who set new trends, and changed the way that we think about basketball and culture in a significant way, the name at the top of that list is always going to be Allen Iverson

Few players have managed to stand out as much off the court, as they did on the court. Iverson did both with ease. He grabbed as many column inches for his off-court style and antics, as he did for his killer crossover and deadly passing skills. 

While tattoos and a bad attitude are common place in the NBA these days (think Matt Barnes, Willie Cauley-Stein or DeMarcus Cousins) that wasn't always the case. In fact, before Iverson, it was pretty much non-existent. 

Iverson strolled in with cornrows, baggy clothes and a f*$k you attitude, and he had the game to back it up. His popularity around the league meant that, in 2005, the NBA had to introduce a players dress code to counteract (or try to counteract) Iverson's influence. 

Allen Iverson The Answer Socks

Flash forward to 2016 and Allen Iverson has been inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame; to be remembered forever as a true legend of the game of basketball. He also happens  to have partnered with one of the current high-flyers in the trend-setting game: Stance.

Stance and Iverson seem like a match made in heaven. Both see no end to creativity and innovation, and both aren't afraid to put themselves out there and see what happens. For those reasons, it's great to see these guys collaborating on a whole new line of Allen Iverson socks

This first batch of Iverson socks have very specific motifs taken from his career and legacy in the league. From the Division 1 socks that pay homage to Georgetown, where Iverson made his name in the NCAA, through to the Fame Ring socks that give a nod to his new place in the Hall of Fame. 

Allen Iverson Stance Division 1 Socks

We're loving this current range, and as people who really got into the NBA around the time that Iverson was doing his thing, we can't wait to see what AI and Stance cook up next. 

Head over to our curated collection of Allen Iverson Stance socks here, to see the latest releases.


Adidas D Rose 7 'Halloween' in Tech Steel / Ice Blue / Core Black October 15, 2016 20:36

SHOP ADIDAS D ROSE 7 HALLOWEEN HERE

We're only a matter of days away from the start of the 2016/17 NBA season, and a lot of us are holding our breath when it comes to seeing how Derrick Rose is going to perform in New York this season. 

We're definitely hoping that he can stay healthy and really throw it down at the Garden; leaving anything remotely ghoulish to his sponsors adidas, and their upcoming 'Halloween' release of the D Rose 7. 

Adidas D Rose 7 Halloween

Stepping away from anything we've seen in the D Rose footwear line up, the D Rose 7 Tech Steel / Ice Blue / Core Black has a blue and black coloured upper, with a raging graphic patter across the overlays. 

The white BOOST layer is still on full display with this shoe, wrapped up in a translucent outsole to finish off the look. 

We're hoping to catch Rose in a pair of these shortly, with the NBA season ready to tip off ahead of Halloween this year. The shoes on the other hand will be arriving in store next week.

AVAILABLE NOW - SHOP HERE