Dwight Howard Learning From The Dream

Dwight Howard Learning From The Dream

Dwight Howard and Hakeem Olajuwon Training Sessions

words_Brandon Richard

In the annual NBA General Manager Poll, Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard was named the best center (96 percent) and best defensive player (79 percent) in the league. As things stand right now, it’d be hard to argue with that assessment. Dwight is a four-time NBA All-Star, two-time and reigning NBA Defensive Player of the Year, four-time All-NBA Team member, an Olympic Gold Medalist and the league’s leading rebounder and shot blocker for the past two seasons. He also has an NBA Finals appearance under his belt, guiding the 2008-2009 Magic to an Eastern Conference Championship. However, the general consensus on Dwight is that while he’s great, he can be better. Dwight hears the critics, and took steps to silence them this summer.

Most of the criticism surrounding Dwight’s game is that he’s not polished enough on offense. People believe that his footwork and arsenal of offensive post moves don’t measure up to the NBA’s all-time great centers. So, in an effort to make improvements on the offensive side of the ball, Dwight scheduled summer training sessions with the man who is generally regarded as the greatest all-time center in regards to footwork and post moves – Hakeem “The Dream” Olajuwon.

In the video below, you’ll see Olajuwon (who looks like he could throw a uniform on today and still be a top-10 center) helping Dwight fine-tune certain elements of his post offense. Howard notes that he and Hakeem are similar in the fact that they’re both undersized centers who have (or had) advantages in terms of speed and athleticism. During a media session at his annual basketball camp for children this summer, Dwight said the most important thing he learned from Hakeem is to not be afraid to make mistakes on the court. He likened the situation to the mentality of a ninja – no hesitation, just actions.

Where exactly did this relationship begin? Flash back to the 2010 NBA Playoffs in May. The Orlando Magic were down 0-3 to the Boston Celtics and on the verge of an embarrassing sweep. Dwight was coming off what may have been his worst performance of the season, a seven-point, seven-rebound effort in game three. Prior to game four, Howard gets a call from Hakeem, offering some bits of wisdom and an emotional pick-me-up. The result was a 32-point, 16-rebound effort from Howard in a Magic win to avoid the sweep. Will personal training sessions between Dwight and Hakeem spell trouble for the rest of the league? We’ll find out soon.

via dr34mshake

Derek Jeter Throwback Defining Moments

words_Nick Engvall

The Jordan Jeter Collection is far and above the greatest current baseball signature line running, especially now that Ken Griffey Jr. has decided to hang up his cleats. Take a look at this exclusive video detailing the upcoming Jordan Jeter Throwback for the 2010 Major League Baseball All Star Game in Anaheim, California.

These Eastbay exclusives will be available to order on Eastbay.com soon! Be sure to check out the rest of the Jordan Jeter Collection that is available in the meantime.

Dwight Howard Learning From The Dream

Video: An In-Depth Look At The Future Sole Melo M6

words_Nick DePaula

This Saturday, May 29th, to help celebrate Carmelo Anthony’s 26th birthday, Jordan Brand will launch the Future Sole Jordan Melo M6 on Eastbay.com, marking the first time that a shoe in conjunction with the rapidly evolving Future Sole Design Competition will be made available.

For Austin Jermacans, a 17 year-old from Reading, Pennsylvania, winning the 2009 Future Sole Jordan Finals last year was only the beginning of his already accelerated design career, as he was then given the opportunity to refine his final entry into a full-fledged signature model that would go on to be worn by Denver Nuggets star and Future Sole partner Carmelo Anthony.

A new take on the original high performing Jordan Melo M6, created by Jordan Brand Designer II Justin Taylor, the Future Sole iteration designed by Jermacans would go on to take on a more lifestyle-inspired approach touching back to Melo’s more matured tastes and style. In working closely with “JT” as a mentor, Austin was able to get feedback and insights directly from Carmelo Anthony and polish his design into a sneaker deemed worthy for production by Jordan Brand. Surely presenting the final version to Melo in person was an experience he’ll never forget.

Sole Collector caught up with Jordan Brand Design Director and Future Sole founder D’Wayne Edwards to learn all about the path and journey of Austin Jermacans in the latest edition of the Sole Collector Video Series. Learn all about what inspired Edwards to launch the annual design competition, and how Austin Jermacans went from teen-aged aspiring designer to landing his very first manufactured sneaker design on the feet of Carmelo Anthony.

For more info, please visit FutureSole.com