Haifa Comes to Newark
Exhibition game leads to blowout but respect
Ron Kaplan, proprietor of one of my favorite blogs, also has a real job wherein he edits and writes for the New Jersey Jewish News (which, no, isn’t that paper). This week, he combines his two vocations and files a dispatch from Sunday night’s exhibition contest in downtown Newark between the New Jersey Nets and Maccabi Haifa, whose owner, Jeffrey Rosen, lives in West Orange (and whom Kaplan, naturally, has profiled).
Here’s my favorite part:
Proud mom Stacy Harvey said more than 75 family and friends had come from New City, NY, and beyond to cheer on her son, Brett, one of the newest members of the Haifa team. Harvey, a point guard from Loyola University Maryland, was signed by Haifa out of a July tryout camp in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
It just so happens I was at the game too, which among other things meant I got to meet Ron, which was great. As for Haifa, they played how you would expect: Small, fast, scrappily, and much less well. Nets Coach Avery Johnson admitted at a press conference after the game that Haifa—whose starting center is 6’6”—gave the Nets (who, rusty, nonetheless won by 40 points) the most trouble when they went small, specifically at the power forward position. And he expressed admiration for their ability to run the court—something the Nets (including new Jewish point guard, Jordan Farmar) will have to do if they want to exit the NBA’s cellar.