NBA

A Farewell to ‘Mr. 94 Feet’

Houston-based poet Joshua Nguyen expresses his city's love for Patrick Beverley in farewell tribute.

Houston-based poet Joshua Nguyen sent us this lovely tribute to the people’s champ, Pat Beverley. Here’s why in his words (poem below!):

I wrote the poem just as a thank you to Patrick Beverley for always being the heart and soul of the Houston Rockets team. We’ve had a lot of turnover the past 4-5 years but he was always the constant. He was the driving force and the grit that my city respected. I will miss him a lot and will never forget his tenure as a Houston Rocket.

Patrick Beverley

by Joshua Nguyen

runs into Steven Adams,
a screen punches the
gut of each basketball fan
in the arena. impact
brick wall & hardwood
lungs deflated Spalding
left too long outside.
Patrick, stomach-first
forehead resting into
arms, crescent dark
fortress to remember
playing overseas, the
blacktops in Chicago,
his grandfather, who wore
every single jersey his
name bestowed, his
grandfather, who went
to every game he could,
who guided his chin
from the ground. raise
your head, he proclaims.
you are the heart of this
city. pile-up on 59-south.
the carnage. bulldog.
grit & grind of this team.

Patrick Beverley bounces up from the floor, momentarily phased. Proceeds to knock down back-to-back three-pointers with a hand in his face. Snarls towards the arena.

looks like he’s okay. like
three fingers to the sky.
like unbalanced, hop
on one leg, know it’s
going nothing-but-net.
like Houston thunder-
storms can’t make him
shake. like fans erupting.
like rich folks in the front
keep sitting. with flash
on him. like he can
defend The Flash. lock-
down. like you choose
him first on your team,
like he’s the last person
you want guarding you.
like every game is his
last. like everyday
can be your last. like
sidewalks. cracked.
like grandfathers. like
shot-clock running
down to zero.

Joshua Nguyen is a Kundiman Fellow. He has been published in The Offing, The Acentos Review, Freezeray Poetry, Button Poetry, Birds Thumb and The Texas Review. In 2015, he was part of the Word Around Town Poetry Tour (WAT) in Houston, Texas. He is a tapioca connoisseur and plays an aggressive-tight strategy in poker. He is a MFA candidate at the University of Mississippi.

Website: joshuanguyenpoetry.com
Instagram: @namesjoshua0304
Twitter: @namesjoshua0304

BONUS MATERIAL:

There was a meme going around for awhile of Patrick Beverley as Wolverine so we asked our man Ken Knudtsen (who actually drew Wolverine) to do his interpretation. SNIKT.

Patrick_Beverley_Wolverine_lowres

Ken Knudtsen is a recently relocated NY writer and artist (Wolverine) and the creator of My Monkey’s Name is Jennifer (SLG Publishing), and has also worked on animation for projects developed by Comedy Central, Robert Reich, and PBS. Feel free to discuss with him the awesomeness of Huey Lewis & the News, Fast Five, John Wick, and Aquaman at your earliest convenience.

Website: http://kenknudtsen.com
Twitter: @kenknudtsen
Instagram: @kenknudtsen

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