December 25, 2013 - I don’t know how it happened, but I got the opportunity to photograph the LA Lakers against the Miami Heat on Christmas Day! Say whaaat? That’s right, I’d be shadowing a staff shooter for a game 5 days prior so I’d be ready to shoot by myself on Christmas.
I think it’s safe to say my parents understood why I didn’t mind being absent on Christmas. However, thanks to some last-minute scheduling adjustments by my awesome OC Varsity editor, Todd Bailey, I was able to fly home to Dallas for a few days and see my family. I was back Christmas Eve night in preparation for the game ahead.
I got there plenty early, and knew exactly where to park. As I clambered my way through press security and down in to the depths of Staples Center, I put on the pink Santa hat that I had worn in the Waterdown Holiday Parade up in Canada as part of a cancer float sponsored by my mom’s bakery business, Patti’s Place. As a gift to my mom I wore the Santa hat for the entirety of the game. I’m told she got rather emotional when she saw the pink hat flash quickly across the TV screen. :) In fact not only did my parents turn on the TV on Christmas Day for a basketball game, but both sets of grandparents tuned in as well. In my family that’s a power only previously held by the Queen. They’re the best!
If I learned one thing from this game it’s to always pay attention to the bigger story. I opened the paper the next morning and smiled at my picture on the front page of the Sports section, but I turned to the continuation pages and was disappointed when they hadn’t used my photos of star Kobe Bryant (injured for 6 weeks). Maybe it was because I didn’t submit them…facepalm! Somehow, I got distracted by LeBron and the lights (and I admit, the Laker girls) and forgot about the bigger picture about Kobe.
It was an amazing experience, and I thank Michele Cardon and Nick Koon at the OC Register for giving me the opportunity. They have assigned me to shoot the Lakers again on New Years Eve so look out for more photos!