Saturday, December 20th 2014
Academy Award nominated. Atlanta born, Brooklyn bred. World reknown director.
Spike Lee is one of those special individuals who has been able to have a major impact on different avenues across the globe, including: Movies, Sneakers & Basketball.
For starters, let’s talk about some of his work behind the camera, including some of my personal favourites:
He was also a huge part of the incredible marketing campaign which accompanied the legendary Air Jordan IV sneaker in 1989:
Eventually in 2006, Jordan Brand (& Nike) gave Spike the opportunity to design his own shoe, appropriately called the “Spiz’ike”:
I drove to Buffalo at 5am to get a pair (or two), because I don’t think they released in Canada at the time.
But, before the movies and sneakers, there was basketball. Spike has been a longtime court-side seat holder at Madison Square Garden, where he has been like a “6th man” for the Knicks for decades. His trademark glasses are always easy to spot along the sidelines, often accompanied by a blue/orange jersey or other Knicks themed memorabilia. When you visit MSG, you can bet that you’ll have to deal with Spike’s sideline presence and diehard Knicks/NY attitude.
He has definitely got the attention of an opposing star player once or twice, most notably Reggie Miller during the 1995 NBA Playoffs:
(Footage courtesy of ESPN Films. The majority of the clip is centred around Reggie Miller, but it’s glorious so watch it and enjoy)
The above is just a small sample of the huge impact Spike has had over an international audience during the past few decades, so needless to say I had to be there for his Toronto appearance!
I arrived at 4pm (about an hour into the event) and there was a big line of about 80-100 people which went from the doors of Livestock to Adelaide St! Much thanks to the people who helped me slide in and gave me this great opp(ortunity).
Thank you Mikey, Ryan, Erin, Sheldon & Livestock TO.
Check out some highlights below, additional photography by Shelon A Isaac.