Go hoops! Go MK Lions! / by Shaun Armstrong

Basketball photography and impressions from Marshall MK Lions in Milton Keynes - my local BBL basketball team.

Go hoops! Go MK Lions!

I've always enjoyed Basketball, when I've stumbled across it on the TV, whether that was (showing my age) the Harlem Globetrotters showboating at Wembley - Meadowlark Lemon and Curly Neal goofing up to the whistled strains of Sweet Georgia Brown or watching the last game of the 1997 season in a bar in Vancouver, between the legendary Chicago Bulls (Michael Jordan, Dennis Rodman (sans rouge) et al) and the Utah Jazz. Jordan stealing from defence in the final seconds to take a 3 point shot on the buzzer to win - classic.

At a business network event I met Vince Macaulay the then head honcho and driving force behind local basketball team MK Lions. They were really going great guns and had a strong vision and aspiration to European standards. He talked passionately and eloquently of the support of the local community from their humble beginnings and how the shopping centre with its large Middleton Hall atrium was their current "home" fixture pending a hoped-for move into the evolving MK Dons stadium complex, where we were seated having breakfast that morning, in the future. Wow - this sounded fantastic! When Stewart (who also sponsors the MK Lions!) put out an email asking who would like to go along to the next home match I put my name down straight away.

Well this was a superb event and a great win for the Lions. I enjoyed the whole thing from the pre-match warm-ups to the final buzzer with end-to-end action and 100% effort from a really dynamic set of character players. I did also notice a chap down under the hoop with a rather tasty pair of 1ds MKIII's and some L series glass (for the camera nerds) who looked like he knew his stuff - now that looks like a challenge thinks I. Now not being overly reserved I congratulated Vince on the win, told him what I did  and in a round about way asked if I could come along and take some basketball photography. By all means he smiled (what a guy) "let me have you details" So here I find myself crouched on the sidelines (need to do some yoga) along with Mr 1ds MKIII who is a Finnish guy travelling about and doing pics and reviews for the BBL.


Now, I try and put a bit of my "take" on whatever I shoot, so these images aren't all not the normal action shots (but did try and do a few of those), but as a first time out doing this (man, do those guys shift!) I'm pleased and hope you find they share some of the effort and spirit of what goes on.  See my basketball photography