Thursday, July 29th, 2010 at 2:25 pm  |  54 responses

World Hoops 2010: On Sale!

A special issue featuring Kevin Durant, the World Basketball Festival and so much more.

by Matt Lawyue / @mlawyue

February 16, 2010.

This is when it started. I just returned to college to finish up my final semester of senior year. Snowmaggedon was blasting through the northeast, leaving my housemates and I restricted to our off-campus house and devastatingly vulnerable to boredom.

To help pass the time, doing myself a favor and passing on the alcohol, I started researching countries to backpack through as an all too typical post-grad adventure. I’mKevin Durant not one for just sightseeing and partying, as ridiculously blackout as that may sound. If there was a way for me to get some work in, I was all for it.

As snow continued to pound the tri-state, my travel bug bit harder and harder at my complacency. There’s only so much shoveling, snow activities and coffee one person can handle during a blizzard. For an entire day, I nearly blinded myself searching through countless travel websites, until I finally stumbled upon this:

The FIBA 2010 World Basketball Championship Turkey – late August to early September – the FIFA World Cup of basketball.

Perfect. So on that Tuesday afternoon, I emailed Ben the E-I-C asking about SLAM’s plan to cover the event and how I could get involved.

Six months later, and I have a media credential for the WBC, a plane ticket to Turkey and a hotel reservation in Istanbul.


Six months later, the World Hoops 2010 issue is here with Kevin Durant gracing the cover (on newsstands this coming week in New York City). Throughout the season and Playoffs, the gold medal winning “Redeem Team” had wavered about reppin’ USA for the World’s. One man who didn’t was the increasingly popular Durant. The Thunder superstar, who was cut from that ’08 team as a 19-year-old rookie, had as great a shot as anyone to make Jerry Colangelo’s and Coach K’s squad. He was coming off a fantastic season, averaging 30.1 ppg while pushing the Lakers to a six-game first round series.

With a little help from Nike and their World Basketball Festival announcement in mid-June, Durant was a lock for the team (according to Colangelo that afternoon) and consequently our cover. As I said then, “we ducked in to a photo shoot where our man Atiba was ready to photo Durant and Yi.”

What you see is the result of that shoot. A respectful, confident young man who is growing into the face of Team USA and its number one option on offense. I’ll admit, we got a little fortunate when the free agency fiasco roared its ugly head and the complete contrast was KD simply relaying on Twitter he had signed an extension with OKC. Simple and to the point. Everything the free agency circus wasn’t.

Besides the Durant cover story, which Norman MacLean, I mean Lang, obviously kills, I try my hand at my first multiple-page feature about Yi Jianlian and his varying degrees of success with Team China and the NBA. I also penned the four group, 24 team preview for the World’s. It includes some history, what to expect and who to look for in Turkey. There are also stories on Carlos Arroyo, Team USA history (an Old School by Michael Bradley at that), and in-depth coverage of the upcoming World Basketball Festival in New York City about two weeks from now. And of course, there are spreads of the new Nike Hyper Elite Uniforms; fresh Nike, Converse and Jordan kicks for 2010; and a lot more apparel reflective of the impending World’s. Everything you will need to know in preparation for the World Basketball Festival and World Basketball Championship is in the pages of this issue. Enjoy.


As for me, I’ll be situated in Istanbul primarily covering Team USA in Group B at the Abdi Ipekci Spor Salonu arena (there are four different cities/venues for the group stages) and then when the knock-out rounds begin and the entire Championship shifts to Istanbul at the Sinan Erdem Dom. And of course, I’ll have a duffel bag full of this issue, reppin’ SLAM the best way I can.

Ma, I’m going to Disneyla…I mean…İstiklâl Caddesi!

SLAM Presents World Hoops 2010

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  • andrew

    kd for the win.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Eboy

    I love this cover….the text looks great too!

  • kwame

    is this going to be shipped out? or newsstands only…cuz i didn’t find out til later that the KOBE/LEBROn issue was newstand only

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    We did it again!

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    @Eboy: Thanks
    @kwame: This is newsstand only. Out now in NYC, nationally next week. Sorry for any confusion on Kobe/LeBron issue.

  • Hussman25

    The text on the cover reminds me of an old Washington Bullets poster of C-Webb… KD sure did wait his turn and now it’s his time… welcome to the big time Kevin!

  • http://www.slamonline.com Eboy

    Wait a minute…..does the cover price really say $7.99 or am I reading that incorrectly? Whoa.

  • JTaylor21

    And he claims he lifts weights. Please, dude must be moving that britney spears.

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    @Eboy: That’s what the Jordan issue was as well as Kobe/LeBron. I think the parent company has us slotted to all retailers to be $4.99 for all regularly scheduled issues and $7.99 for all special issues. I humbly say I think it’s worth it, and I’ll add that both Jordan issue and Kobe/LeBron have sold well, so I guess people agree. KD is obviously not at the stature of those guys so we’ll see what happens, but again: certainly not a decision any of us in the office get to make, and possibly a locked-in situation for all special issues from here on out. Thanks

  • http://tengu23@hotmail.com tato

    Whe drops SLAM KICKS special???

  • Neil

    Even though I’m gonna cop this anyway, y’all should think about adding a few bucks to the subscription fee and send kicks and any specials you do out to us

  • http://slamonline.com/ Tzvi Twersky

    @Tato: We’re wrapping up work on KICKS as we speak. Look for that later in August.

  • http://tengu23@hotmail.com tato

    Thanks, i´ll waiting both specials, thanks again SLAM from México…

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  • http://www.twitter.com/TheDiesel Anton

    Awesome. As far as pricing, why do luxury cars demand a higher price? Cause they’re the best.

  • http://slamonline.com Maurice Bobb

    SLAM does it again…

  • Robb

    And JTaylor21 claims he has a brain, please…

  • hoodsnake

    I will never see the inside but nice cover anyway…

  • http://www.stonesthrow.com Michael NZ

    New Zealand better be picked as a darkhorse contender.

    BTW, the LeBron/Kobe issue came out at an outrageous $24 here. Whaaaat? The usual monthly issues are under half that.

  • str8 from samoa

    @Michael NZ i got me a copy of that lebron/kobe issue and it was $15

  • str8 from samoa

    they sold pretty quick too!

  • http://www.stonesthrow.com Michael NZ

    Hmm, well it was hard to find… a couple places had sold out so perhaps they had it at $15 or whatever. PaperPlus had it for $24. That’s probably why they hadn’t sold out.

  • Jon

    How about SLAM offering two subscription packages, the regular one and a premium line. This would include kicks, worldhoops, olympics, etc. Now I wouldn’t have to literally trawl Hong Kong, London, Newcastle and Singapore for these magazines! Please offer it, send it to my home and end the hassle of us international fans searching high and low!

  • http://hoopistani.blogspot.com hoopistani


  • http://www.slamonline.com J

    great cover

  • total scrotal implosion

    Backpacking in europe after graduating college? STUFFWHITEPEOPLELIKE!!! Youre so white dude. But hey, if u can afford it, why not? And slam def needs to have a premium subscription that includes all the special issues and kicks. Great idea, do it ben!

  • total scrotal implosion

    And as great as kd is, granger is not far behind. It still cracks me up that portland took the perpetually injured gimpy grampa over durantula. Its not like he got hurt once he got to the league. He was constantly hurt in hs, and at ohio state. And they already had a better version of him in ghostface. Meanwhile durant was an obvious once in a generation talent with a ceiling so high its on jupiter.

  • daniel

    yeh i agree with Jon, would be mad if you guys had another way to subscribe to special issues, heaps hard to find them in Australia, i went to a local newstand last week looking for the kobe/lebron issue and they still had the issue with KD/Russell Westbrook/ Jeff Green on the cover 138 im pretty sure

  • http://www.slamonline.com Eboy

    The premium subscription suggestion is a great idea.

  • Vankov

    Hi guys,

    sooo, how does one get a hold of this in Germany? Got an online subscription – would this issue be included?

    Many thanks.

  • http://slamonline.com Jacob J

    I really want this special issue but 8 dollars? No way, its not worth more than a normal issue.

  • James

    Great cover! I’m very excited about watching this young USA squad at the FIBA WC 2010. KD will elevate to the LeBron, Kobe status this summer if he brings home the gold medal.

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    @totalscrotal: your comments about Matt couldn’t be more ignorant or off-base. As for subscription stuff, those decisions are made way above my head. I can direct the people in charge to this comment section (already have, in fact), but I have no power over what issues go to subscribers and which don’t. Thanks to everyone who does subscribe and who does buy issues on the newsstands. Obviously we wouldn’t be here without you.

  • Lz – Cphfinest3

    I would book a premium subscribtion in a minute, and I have never even bought a ‘Kicks’ issue and only invested in one or maybe two special editions (the first Jordan SE come to mind), since I can’t be bothered to go on a wild goose chase for a (albeit great) magazine that is read cover to cover within a couple of hours. Please make the premium subscription happen SLAM.

  • http://kb24.com DreXnaW21

    Love this cover!!!
    can’t wait to get it :)

  • Casey

    While I’ll never waver on the Oden-Durant debate … I’d be remiss to not say I was happy with the man-child doin’ his thing half a world a way. Lawyue, I mean — though I guess Durant seems to have lived up to the hype, too.

    And when’s Oden going to get some love, SLAM? 2010-11 Comeback Player of the Year, smellin’ it now.

  • http://google c_cantrell

    absolutely love the cover bro.. keep up the good work

  • nickyG2010

    i love issue fer sure. kevin is my boy, but honestly how do you have an issue for this team this year and not one for last year when we had a super team. GOLD MEDAL SON

  • larry

    tyreke and stephenson are better than durant

  • hitman

    when is it gonna be released? and is this issue 142? or just a special?

  • orin

    I belv in u kevin, u can bring home d gold!

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    @nickyG2010: um, we totally did an issue in 08:

    @hitman: it’s in NYC now and should be everywhere in the country in the next 5 or 6 days. It is NOT SLAM 142. Next up we’ll have KICKS, and then SLAM 142 comes out in September.

  • http://www.twitter.com/gerardhimself Gerard Himself

    Ben, it won’t be released in Europe, right? I remember the one you did in 2008 also wasn’t available over here?

  • jaime

    any chance to buy it in europe¿

  • total scrotal implosion

    ben, how was it ignorant? just pointing out a common thing some white people do after college, and he did it, so thats just a fact. have you never heard of stuffwhitepeoplelike ? its called comedy. but there is some truth to it, as he showed by backpacking through europe. why so serious? got sand in your va..? ah nevermind

  • Jordan

    how do i buy on if i dont get it through the subscription? am i able to buy it online or do i have to go to the local bookstore? im down in florida if that matters

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    @Jordan: it should be in bookstores everywhere by this weekend at the latest. Or click here and order it online: http://www.primediabackissues.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=PB&Category_Code=SLAM

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    @total scrotal: maybe that was strong language by me, but the main thing is that Matt isn’t white.

  • WADE

    Love this issue! You guys really did this one up – big ups!

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  • nickr

    Awesome cover shot and dope graphics, as usual guys. Hope this one makes it to my Borders in North Idaho….

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