Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Obama, Pippen Team Up For Election Day B-Ball Game




    President Barack Obama took his game face on and off the court Tuesday afternoon in Chicago.

    After morning TV interviews and an unscheduled visit to a South Side campaign location and before his big watch party at McCormick Place, Obama found time for his Election Day round of basketball.

    It's become tradition in the president's campaign, and this one ups the ante thanks to some star talent.

    Obama teamed up with former Chicago Bull Scottie Pippen and former State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias against Reggie Love and Education Secretary Arne Duncan. Former Bull Randy Brown also was involved, as well as Mike Ramos and Marty Nesbitt.  

    "We did this four years ago," Duncan said. "It was a good luck charm then, hopefully it will be one tonight."

    "No talk about tonight, we were just talking about the game, and he was talking about how old Scottie and I are and the good ole days," Brown said. "At the end of the day the score doesn't matter, just some friends having fun."

    "He was In a good mood," Giannoulias said after the match. "He was with friends, he was himself, and he was competing. Still he was glad to get the victory."

    Obama's team won 102-80.

    Giannoulias and Obama have been playing basketball since before either of them was elected to public office. “We played in Iowa, we found a cold gym in Des Moines, Iowa," Giannoulias said of the first Election Day game. "We had nine guys. The tenth guy was actually the janitor who played in his blue jeans."

    “Now here we are today with NBA stars and referees and it’s become an international event. So, it’s cool but we think about how the world has changed.”