NBA All-Star Weekend 2022
The NBA Crossover is an interactive fan event that showcases the convergence of the NBA and pop culture. The mall that housed the event was filled with fans shopping at the pop-up shops spaced every few feet throughout the entire venue so that fans could buy local to support Cleveland Small Business Owners (most of whom were Black). Shoutout to Real Estate Broker Beth Azor of Azor Advisory Services for putting it all together!
My favorite store supported the #HBCUs with licensed college sweaters at great prices. I look forward to finding a way for Sports Philanthropy Network to partner with them in the future!
The highlight moment for me was watching a dad and his son build their own pair of sneakers. I mean, that’s what the fan experience is all about, right?!
The NBA focused on its niche — pop culture. From bobbleheads to race cars, there was something for every age group and basketball collector to admire. I was all over the Milwaukee Bucks displays.
I was disappointed by the extremely limited merchandise for sale. Besides the red and the turquoise jerseys and a few tee shirts, there wasn’t much to choose from. This really surprised me, because people certainly didn’t seem to be stingy with their wallets at the Crossover.
Shoutout to the NBA for continually bringing in current and former athletes for autographs and encouragement. Roy Kessel and I were able to enjoy the inspirational words of the legendary Bill Walton who was the #1 pick in the 1974 draft. He led the Trail Blazers to an NBA championship in 1977 and was MVP. He won another title with the Celtics in 1986 and was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1993.
His words encouraged and inspired the hundreds of fans gathered to hear him from grade-schoolers to old people like me.