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BEST PICKUP BASKETBALL GAME Minneapolis 2000 -

In a decade's time, the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board has ripped out ten of the city's most storied basketball courts. Mercifully, they spared one of the two full-court runs that made this picturesque park on the edge of Edina a summer hot spot. (In 1996 the other full court was split into two halfs). From 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on any given weekend, those looking for a bounce can find some of the metro's best prep players, from Washburn to North, running alongside former NCAA hoopsters, aging hotshots, and weekend warriors. Games are played to 13. Winners stay, losers get in line. Neither race nor the price of a player's Air Jordans matters, but you'd better have your game on. The offensive pace is frenetic, defense is a necessity, and a knowledge of the game is assumed. One other warning: If you're a gunner, stick to the sidelines. Hot dogs are not relished on this scene, and those who don't know when to give up the rock will find themselves the target of trash talk on and off the blacktop.

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