PANDEMIC FANTASY LEAGUE: THE BASKETBALL JERSEY DRAFT ROUNDS 2-3



Hosted, written and dissected by Rick Kang @Kangski_sez.

To get up to speed on the background of the fun and the qualified participants : PFL History

THE RULES
That said, ANY basketball jersey was eligible. That meant pro, college, all-star games, fictional teams (like Teen Wolf’s jersey, or the Fresh Prince’s Bel Air Academy joints), whatever. As long as it was a basketball jersey (questionable picks would be discussed as/if they occurred).

We also said specifics matter, in both year and colorway. But once a jersey is picked, no one else can pick the other (“home” or “away”) colorway. And we expanded the number of teams to 10—including our old one-time Toronto homie and Spitgan head honcho Nick Chan—to make this a truly international affair.

While clearly Toronto-centric, the draft was fun, unpredictable and a great way to explore the unintentional history of basketball jerseys through time and space—as well as our friends’ weird-ass taste. Here’s the results. Commentary and analysis follow every round.

Click on photos for larger images.
Catch up on picks 1-10 in the Pandemic Fantasy League: The Basketball Jersey Draft Round 1!

BASKETBALL JERSEY DRAFT ROUND 2


11. NICK—MARYLAND TERPS 2002
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12. STEVE – 'SOTA WOLVES 95
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13. JODY – VANNY GRIZZLIES AWAY (INAUGURAL)
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14. RAY—NORTH CAROLINA 93/94 AWAY
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15. WADDS – BLAZERS 77 HOME
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16. RUSS—RAPTORS CHAMPS RED CHEVRONS
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17. JED – 92 SUNS AWAY (PURPLE)
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18. GERRY – NIQUE HAWKS AWAY 88
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19. BRIAN – SHOWTIME LAKERS HOME
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20. RICK – MICHIGAN FAB FIVE HOME
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REFLECTIONS ON ROUND 2.

Biggest Reach: Maryland Terrapins at #11.
Look – I love this team! They defeated Indiana in the finals (after Indy took out the perennially-hated Duke along the way to the Final Four). I thought Chris Wilcox (aka, Weezy) was gonna be this millennium’s Shawn Kemp! Juan Dixon was clutch in the tourney (and drafted by the Raps along w/ Lonny Baxter!) But those jerseys? I dunno, Nick...

Biggest Surprise: Portland Trailblazers (1977)
Wadds’ second stunner in a row! Who knew that the Big Carrot’s jersey would be the first Blazer joint selected? Big upset over the ‘sheed/Pippen/Sabonis ninja-D Blazers of the early millennium.

THE BIG PICTURE
When it comes to jerseys, I guess it’s Pros over Joes (aka, college joints) — something I clearly didn’t anticipate in going NCAA-heavy in my first few rounds. Overall, NBA jerseys numbed 71 picks to 16 college jerseys—a blowout if there ever was one.

Maybe it’s the collective nostalgia of watching so many CBS college bball games on the weekends back when all I had was time (aka, the 90s)—something clearly not shared by the majority here. Regardless, three jerseys in the second round is likely the most dominant performance by the NCAA since the Bird/Magic final in 1979—STILL the most-watched basketball game of all time.

Catch up on the Pandemic Fantasy League: The Basketball Jersey Draft Round 1!

BASKETBALL JERSEY DRAFT ROUND 3


21. NICK – CINCY BEARCATS 1998 AWAY
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22. STEVE – MIAMI FLORIDIANS AWAY
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23. JODY – NY NETS 74 HOME
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24. RAY – NEW JERSEY NETS TIE-DYE 90S
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25. WADDS – SPIRITS OF ST. LOUIS HOME/AWAY
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26. RUSS – 2002 ROSWELL RAYGUNS
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27. JED – DENVER NUGGETS 88 AWAY
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28. GERRY – PHILA 96/97 AWAY THROWBACK
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29. BRIAN – BLAZERS AWAY 1999
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30. RICK – ZONA WILDCATS 1998
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REFLECTIONS ON ROUND 3.

Biggest Reach: Arizona Wildcats at #30.
As clearly seen, college jerseys got little love in this draft. I could’ve probably had this uni-combo (featuring one of the best bball shorts EVER, period! I’m a sucker for vertical-lettering on the trim of shorts...)  much later—especially since I whiffed on the two picks ahead of me—the simple-yet-never-basic Blazers of 2000 and the instantly iconic Iverson-wore PHILA throwback jersey during the NBA’s 50th anniversary season (96/97). BTW, AI himself numbered 4 jerseys picked (G’town, PHILA, 2000s, Rookie)—still a distant second to Mike, but not too shabby for hoops’ biggest post-MJ icon. (Yup—over Kobe AND bron. Don’t @ me…)

Biggest Surprise: ABA love (picks #22, 23, 25, 26, 27)
The wildest era in pro basketball history — aka the ABA—got a surprising amount of love early on. Yes, technically the #26 Roswell Rayguns are also a fictional team/jersey — but their “narrative” is all ABA. Add in the ABA-inspired Miami Floridians (#22) and ABA-stalwart Denver Nuggets (#27) with their iconic skyline jerseys and you get a surprisingly ABA-centric round.

THE BIG PICTURE
This round is a perfect microcosm of all the idiosyncrasies of this jersey draft: ABA eccentricities, college standouts and classic as well as infamous (looking at you, Nets tie dye!) NBA jerseys abound. Every era from the 70s to the D-Wade/Shaq Miami saga repped.

Check out the Pandemic Fantasy League: The Basketball Jersey Draft Round 1!