STEAMFest, Sea Dubs, and Warriors Gaming: a wonderful Saturday at Chase Center
Chase Center is where it's at for family friendly fun and great hoops
Saturday in San Francisco the Santa Cruz Warriors tangled with the Cleveland Charge in an exciting G-League matinee. The young Sea Dubs were defeated 127-110, but as the old saying goes: sometimes you win and sometimes you learn.
And that’s very apropos considering that before the game the Golden State Warriors celebrated the power of education via the Basketball Decoded STEAM (Science, Technology, English, Art, and Math) Fest, presented by Hewlett Packard Enterprise.
It was a beautiful event where Dub Nation came together to celebrate the wonderful Bay Area organizations that are helping our youth gain the skills and experience they need to make lasting impact on their families and communities.
The family friendly extravaganza helped introduce kids to STEAM related fields and connect with various organizations involved with STEAM and sports. The event featured school supply giveaways and a special guest appearance from OG Warrior Adonal Foyle.
Funny enough, when I as a young Warrior fan back in the 90’s Foyle hosted a summer basketball camp in Oakland. I remember him in a wheelchair with a giant cast on his leg, imploring us kids to follow our dreams and never give up. It was awesome seeing him with two working legs at the STEAMFest continuing that same message all these years later for the next generation.
And speaking of learning about the intersection of tech and basketball, I got a chance to chat with one of the greatest NBA 2K players of all-time and a brand new Warriors Gaming Squad addition, Neadal Nasser. He’s more commonly known by his gamer tag, Mama Im Dat Man. He’s a former MVP and a Bay kid, growing up in San Bruno!
DH: Warriors Gaming Squad has had some nice playoff runs including an NBA Finals trip, but they’ve yet to win a title. What do you see that you bring to the team that's gonna make the difference?
NN: I think leadership. From that standpoint, I think that we have all the talent in the world, but I think that when you have a lot of guys that can put it together mentally, I think that's the biggest difference in all of it.
And I think that's a big part of what I bring and I think this year we have a really good chance to do it.
DH: How many years have you been in the league?
NN: This is my sixth year.
DH: So you're an OG veteran in the game, right?
NN: (laughing) Unfortunately.
DH: So in your six years, how have you seen the sport evolve?
NN: I would say when I first got into it it was more so about the video game itself. You know? I think that as time has gone by, we've been able to implement real basketball into the video game. And I think that's the biggest difference is that you need IQ nowadays to succeed. Just being good at playing the game only can do so much for you. I think that's been the biggest difference in the six years that I've seen is that the IQ has been implemented.
DH: Six years in man! Like what's keeping you motivated, keeping you sharp and on top of your game?
NN: I'll be honest with you, the money. This game, it'll take a toll. It'll take a toll on you sometimes, man. But the motivation for the money, the passion for the game, it all makes it worth it.
DH: And so coming to into this year, what are you trying to work on for your individual game? I mean, obviously you've had an amazing career and even become MVP, but what do you wanna add to get to that next level?
NN: I think just playmaking with the ball as a shooting guard. This year the game build is a little bit slower. From that standpoint, it's different. So being able to adjust to that and make do.
DH: So now you’re teaming up with Charles “CB13” Bostwick, the man the myth and the legend. What is that gonna be like having a guy like that creating for you?
NN: I mean, his IQ is insane. His brain is like an an ongoing clock. It doesn't stop ever. So just picking his brain and us putting our brains together and figuring out what works, what doesn't. I can’t wait to see what we accomplish.
DH: And what's it like joining an organization like The Warriors? Obviously this team has, has, uh, so much success on the hardwood both here at Chase Center and back in the Oakland days at Oracle Arena. When you come to this organization, what does that mean to you?
NN: It means a lot. I mean, I'm a Warriors fan. I'm from here. I'm from San Francisco.
DH: No way! What high school did you go to?
NN: I went to Cappuccino High in San Bruno. So I've been around Warriors basketball forever, and I’ve been wanting to come here to Warriors Gaming for a while. So now I’m here finally.
DH That's dope, man. Any advice you would have for the young guys and gals trying to get into the NBA 2K League?
NN: I would say play the game to have fun. Don't take it too serious and just enjoy it. You gotta be realistic with yourself. You gotta see where you can put in the hours, but also you gotta maintain your school, your other activities. Make sure that your mental's all right.
Cuz to me, I think that's the biggest thing in all of it. You know, once you reach that peak level, everyone's gonna be good. Now it just depends how strong you are mentally.
For more information on Warriors Gaming Squad, visit @WarriorsGaming on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and NBA2KLeague.com.
Wonderful. Reading about events like this makes me want to create a class that marries sports and science - i think i need a sabbatical - or if the warriors can pay me...
> I mean, his IQ is insane. His brain is like an an ongoing clock. It doesn't stop ever.
I'm sure traditional pro athletes require this type of processing as well, but having followed a few pro gamer streams in the past where they just play and talk through their entire thought process, it's insane what these guys can keep track of.