The Atlanta Hawks are 23–15 and fourth in the Eastern Conference as of Jan. 12. And sometimes when this professional Uno cohort gets together, basketball games break out.
A terrific New York Times piece by Scott Cacciola details the rise of the famous card game as a road-trip activity for the Hawks (they’re 10–8 in away games, for what it’s worth), a game which, as guard/forward Kent Bazmore puts it, “is always a thrill.”
A group of Hawks players has taken to playing the game on every plane ride. This is no casual, recreational thing. This is Dom Toretto’s fast and furious version of Uno, in which all the craziest cards are thrown in from extra decks, all of which are stashed away in Dennis Schröder’s backpack, a team pastime dating to last season that has seen Tim Hardaway Jr. cast by the wayside and permanently exiled from games (nights off are not allowed).
“The Uno guys are screaming and cheering,” says assistant coach Darvin Ham. “It’s every emotion possible.”
A photo posted by Kent Bazemore (@24baze) on
Among those who do not play Uno are Shelvin Mack, Paul Millsap, Mike Scott and Thabo Sefolosha, who play spades, and Mike Muscala, who likes to read, sleep and eat, per the Times. They have not yet been fully ostracized from the team, but it’s a long season. The team is apparently ordering a custom championship belt.
Bourré, we hardly knew ye.
- Jeremy Woo