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University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.

Meeting John Wall

Hi, I’m Josh and I’m an idiot.

The first step is admitting you have a problem, right?

Well, I’ve been an idiot about Kentucky basketball for as long as I can remember. I have embarrassed myself in countless ways in front of U of K ballplayers since I was a young’n. Whether it was following any number of them around Fayette Mall numerous times, calling the number that was on Rex Chapman’s IROC In The Lodge parking lot that said, “for sale by owner” and pretending to be in the market just so I could hear Rex’s voice (the King smelled me out as an idiot fan quickly and hung up on me) or, when in high school, a group of us went and sang Christmas carols at The Lodge in September just to lay eyes on the Cats ( John Pelphrey and Derron Feldhaus came out in robes and were nice enough to let us finish our horrendous rendition of “Jingle Bells” before rolling their eyes and heading back in. True story.)

The point is, one would figure or at least hope, that I might grow out of such undignified behavior as I have moved into my 40s. But I must not know the next eleven steps, because I’m still an idiot for The Cats, which brings me to this picture I had made with John Wall last Wednesday night.

I had just returned from a pretty good work out and was laying on my bed reading emails and catching up on KSR (true story) when I realized that there was nothing in the house to eat. Too tired to shower, I threw on some gym shorts and a tee shirt, grabbed my wallet and phone and headed to the car. My dog Max saw me stirring and gave me the desperate look of, “Can I go?” It was just a ride to the supermarket but my dog likes the simple things and knowing that getting out of the house would make him happy, I whistled Max over as he enthusiastically jumped up and met me at the door of my garage.

Just down the hill, I arrived at the grocery story at about 7:30 pm and the weather being cool I rolled my four windows down half way (a safety tip for all of the young KSR readers) and told Max I’d be right back. I walked the aisles, grabbing some healthy food and more not so healthy snacks to munch on as I watched the Olympics later and thought the trip would be of the usual variety. But then, while at the check out I received this text from my buddy, Brett who tends bar at a nearby restaurant called The Local Peasant.

“John Wall just walked into Peasant”

The world stopped. Of course Brett knew to text me right away, as would all my friends or even distant acquaintances. They all know my condition and to be fair, they could be called enablers. But the true test of a friend is what lengths he will go to make his friend happy, and that text from Brett spelled infinite happiness,

I immediately threw all my groceries to the ground and sped off to The Local Peasant, making the ten minute trek with such ferocity that even Little E would have been proud. I arrived to find the usual LA reality of no available parking spot, so after a manic ten minutes of searching I decided that law breaking was in order. John Wall is not this close very often, so I chose to park near the restaurant on a street that required special neighborhood placquereds. I locked the doors, cracked the windows (safety first) and told poor Max I’d be back.

I bust through the door trying not to look as excited and anxious as I did singing to Pelphrey and Feldhaus. Honestly, seeing John Wall would be the highlight of my day, or week, but he didn’t need to know this. I saw my buddy Brett at the bar and when I walked up he was giggling and said, “I’m surprised it took you that long.”
I tried to ignore his patronizing comment, and asked “parking troubles, now where is he?”

Brett’s grinning eyes motioned behind me and there, twenty feet away, eating dinner was John Wall. My John Wall. Our John Wall. Just sitting there eating dinner with a friend, much the way you or I might eat dinner. Except John Wall was doing it way cooler. It was awesome.

I ordered a beer and planned my strategy of attack. I wanted a picture. A picture that would document to all that on this day, the first day of August, in the year of our lord twenty hundred and twelve, the lightning quick former basketball point guard of our beloved Cats and I broke bread at the same establishment. I knew he was in the middle of his dinner and I didn’t want to be so rude as to interrupt him, so I decided my best strategy would be to wait him out.

I chatted up Brett and watched some Olympics at the bar, ever aware of Number 11’s presence. I could not let him sneak out without me seeing him, and thus we had to cover all flanks. After about twenty minutes, I remembered that yes, I had a dog in the car and I told Brett to watch him and not let him escape while I was gone. I took a very indirect path to the front door, one that (surprise!) took me right by John’s table. As I passed he happened to look up and make eye contact so I seized the moment and used my highly trained acting skills for their most important role.

I looked up non-chanlantly and said, “Hey, John Wall! My favorite player! Cool.” (acting.)

He smiled and I asked if I could get a quick picture when he was finished with dinner. He agreed and out the front door I went.

Awesome! I totally pulled that off! I didn’t seem like a desperately pathetic 41 year old creepily following around/stalking a 21 year old basketball player that I didn’t know. Nope, I used my ACTING to make it seem as if I was surprised to see him. I ACTED as if I wasn’t creepy and he was none the wiser. Elated, I walked to the car to find Max comfy and cozy napping in the back. I assured him I was around and all was well and…Damn! What?! Sixty seven dollars?!! For one parking ticket? Sixty Seven bucks?!! That’s all? That’s all they were charging me to get a chance to get a pic with the fastest point guard in the history of totally awesome people ever?!!! Well, the jokes on you City of Los Angeles Parking Enforcement because that was nothing compared to my chance to meet my basketball hero. Deterrence? Whatever.

I walked back to the bar the same meandering route in which I had exited, but this time when I passed John Wall’s table I got cocky. I didn’t even look down at him. BAM! ACTING as if it is no big deal. That’s what is called a power move and I was feeling pretty good as I arrived back to the bar.

I sat, knowing that my eyes were locked on him but still somehow nervous I would miss his exit. That’s when I think I started creeping him out. He looked up in my direction at a few points and I’m pretty sure he cought me staring at him every time. I would try and look away super fast but lets be honest. I had no chance against the cat quick reflexes that are sported by the fastest, quickest, freshest, most awesomeness point guard ever on earth. He was sniffing me out so I had to devise a different, more chill plan. I got Brett to keep watch over him (that’s what friends are for) and when the moment arrived of possible movement, he would give me a secret signal. Brilliant! I’d have eyes on him and I could still ACT as if I wasn’t that excited. Score!

Then irony played her subtle hand as two ladies came and asked to have their picture with me. With me? Umm, you know The John Wall is right over there, right? Whatever, your loss. I agreed and then I thought how cool it would be if John Wall saw me getting my picture taken and then maybe he’d think I was cool. Then he might say, “hey, you are cool let’s be best friends” and then he’d call me when he was in LA and say stuff like “hey, Hop (he’d call me that) lets go shoot around and then go out to a club and dougie and stuff”,

And I’d be like, ” Cool, I think my schedule’s open Jimmy Wall (I’d call him that)” and then it’d be awesome.

Alas, as I got my picture snapped with the women and he didn’t even notice. Oh well. Finally, after a wait that seemed to never end, I saw he was signing his bill. I got my camera phone ready flash on, no video. Here we go. Let’s roll. I tried to ACT as if we just happened to meet at the door exiting at the same time, but I think at this point, the jig was up. I was officially creepy old, freak fan but I was proud I had done so well up until then. Does he know how hard it was for me to sit there that long while he ate (he didn’t have to order dessert). I asked for the picture and not surprisingly, John Wall couldn’t have been nicer. He thanked me, shook my hand and was on his way. Best…day…ever.

On another note, no I didn’t get a championship ring. Those of you that have tweeted saying I should have gotten one before Drake, thanks you but you are wrong. Drake is one of the hottest rappers around. If he mentions Kentucky in one hit song young ball players all over the world will hear it. It’s genius branding. Sadly, there’s not one high school baller on earth that would care if some guy on that Cougar show got a UK ring. Doesn’t mean I’ll ever stop representing with the rest of the BBN. Plus, I’ve got a pretty swell picture.

Article written by Josh Hopkins

84 Comments for Meeting John Wall

  1. Hayes4Prez
    8:54 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Enjoy you being involved with the site. Keep it up!

  2. Bradley
    8:54 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink


  3. blah
    8:59 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    the story would have been so much better if the picture was at the end! i knew you were successful, it killed the suspense.

  4. Awesome
    9:00 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Good stuff, glad you are here. Agree with #1

  5. Lisamarieky
    9:00 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Awesome story Josh. Hilarious to know you are the same as the rest of us about our BBN guys

  6. Yeah
    9:01 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Cool story, bro.

  7. Nate
    9:03 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Great story

  8. JackB
    9:04 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Love the story. Too funny. Need to train the dog to scare away the parking ticket person.

  9. SexnNursinHomes
    9:05 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    These are great. Glad KSR is letting him do this.

  10. Tom
    9:07 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Great story, and i have a favor to ask, can i be an extra on the show. lol

  11. Amy
    9:07 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Ha ha!!! I loved it! I could totally picture it all as I read it. That’s good stuff. Keep up the good work dude!

  12. Mike Parks
    9:09 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    this very same thing happened to me except for the dog and girls and friends and it was the rap group The Pharcyde instead of Jimmy Wall

  13. NostraDanis
    9:10 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Great story and story-telling.

    Now, if we could just get a companion piece from the two girls that got their picture taken with that guy from the cougar show.

  14. dh
    9:12 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink


  15. Sean
    9:13 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Hop should join Matt’s growing army of unpaid bloggers.

  16. mapcatfan
    9:16 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Great story, Josh! And yes, Matt, I did laugh out loud. 🙂

  17. NotMattJones
    9:18 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    We need to get Josh writing more columns on here. He’s the best writer I’ve seen on here. Yes, Matt, that includes you.

  18. tyrus
    9:18 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Hey if your cool about the ring diss then alls good. See your point but still…

  19. C Ray
    9:18 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    GOLD!! It felt like Cawood Ledford was telling that story.. Like I was really there.. (See what I did there)?

  20. StitchRivet
    9:21 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    What a great read. Loved it man!! I froze eating breakfast next to Cal a couple months ago. Damn, wish i had read this!! Again, great read!

  21. Bart in Henderson
    9:22 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Great writing, Josh. I totally understand your fandom. When I met Senator John Bunning and his 45 grandchildren I was shaking.

  22. david
    9:24 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Hope to see you at basketball game in Lex this season! It is going to be a great year!

  23. Bart in Henderson
    9:26 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    I sat next to Ed Davender in the Fayette Mall Chick-Fil-A in 1996. In between waffle fries I tried to catch his eye. He finally smiled and said hi. I giggled & ran out of the mall like a little girl.

  24. Shelbyjoe
    9:27 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Good story. Kinda reminded me of the seinfeld episode where Jerry is waiting for the cop to finish eating so he’ll escort him outside.

  25. compelled to comment on this one
    9:27 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    This makes me feel better about the time that I saw John Wall walking down Limestone and hurdled (fell in a dress) over the fence at Two Keys, sprinted discreetly to catch up with him, finally did, and when he said “What’s up girl?” instantly became an awkward, deaf mute.

  26. giveme96
    9:30 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Dude, that is a great story — excellent writing. I felt similar when I was at Cheddar’s with Joe B. Hall AND P. Patt. Awkward, but awesome.

  27. stockboy at grocery
    9:32 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Thanks a lot Josh. I had to put all dat chit back on the shelf.

  28. WestWorld
    9:34 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Josh – if that whole acting thing doesn’t work out for you, you might find a place as a writer for a KY website.

  29. Jaxalum
    9:34 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    hilarious. love the King Rex part.

  30. 3rdDownDrive
    9:39 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Haha, awesome. Oh, and appreciate the humility but you for sure should have gotten a ring before Drake.

  31. SuperTroy
    9:41 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Very cool story. I actually think it is pretty cool that Hop (he lets me call him that) is a member of BBN. I like his stories too, surprisingly. Pretty funny and well laid out. Ya know, I kinda always thought he was a bit of a Streisand, but he’s rocking the shit in that pic with John Wall.

  32. boogiefan
    9:43 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    That is so awesome, Josh truly is one of us.

  33. Biglaw Dawgin'
    9:43 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Friggin’. Hilarious.

  34. 44 Stitches
    9:45 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    HAHAAAAH… This is good stuff. Good to know that famous people get the same way around people they would like to meet. Big Boi (Outkast) lives in the same suburb that my wife grew up in down here in Atlanta. Outkast 1st album Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik is my favorite album of all time. Long story short we saw him in Petsmart. We eventually met him, talked a few, and got a pic.

  35. HeshimuEvans'2ndGradeTeacher
    9:46 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    A real fan woulda had him signed their dog lol. Awesome story! The only thing I don’t get is, I thought you would of already met John Wall by now.

  36. Jessdogky
    9:49 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Great story man keep it up!!

  37. KSR Fan
    9:51 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    I would feel the same way getting a picture with you, Josh….well, maybe not quite as excited as with John Wall, but almost!

  38. bluebee
    9:54 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    A well thought out article. Hollywood BBN representing very well.

  39. Baldy in Mendo
    9:54 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Dude, that cracked me the hell up. Well done, my man…well done

  40. Jay in Lyndon
    9:54 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    This is quite possibly the greatest article written on KSR! It shows the great fandom of grown men.

  41. Alex
    9:55 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Random Fact: The Local Peasant has the worst/tiniest bathroom in the world. I met Josh at the Elite 24 game in 2010 when we both went to see Wiltjer commit to UK. Couldn’t have been a nicer guy.

  42. kes
    9:55 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    great story josh!

  43. Bilhelm
    9:55 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    twenty hundred and twelve! John Wall is afraid of you but John Short thinks you’re a PIMP! Well played sir, go cats… go Romney road Krogering!

  44. Frew Dranklin
    9:57 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Well done and a great story! Wish I had been that cool when I ran into Ashley Judd at he peak of her hotness years ago, but I turned turned into Ryan Lemond when I got face to face with her. I once thought about asking Matt Jones for a photo once but changed my mind after watching him dig through a garbage can outside of a drug store.

  45. Hicks
    9:58 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Are you 6’4? I did not know that. If you get a chance, let’s get a Hop Meets the Cats, Gilchrist edition.

  46. jeyhey
    9:58 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Nice story j-hop (can i call you j-hop?…no?..oh..ok) excellent story Mr Hopkins..keep up the good work. Find as many UK legends as possible and keep us updated.

  47. Slappy
    9:59 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Two articles or so, and Josh Hopkins is my favorite KSR writer. Nice work Josh!

  48. Bill
    10:05 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Bravo! Great job!

  49. Memphiswildcat
    10:09 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Great post. If Corey wrote half as well I would look forward to 900 am….

  50. LeSigh
    10:13 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Josh, please write more! I always love hearing your self deprecating humor. You’re one of us. ::hi-five::

  51. Paparazzi
    10:23 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Good story, but man you need to get a better camera.

  52. Josh E
    10:27 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    HA…….”hey Hop”. Good read.

  53. UKnowMe
    10:34 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    That was great!

  54. FloydsScissors
    10:41 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Great story Hop………..that’s my kinda writing!

    Come soon, y’hear!

  55. FloydsScissors
    10:42 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    BACK soon……..BACK

  56. UKBlue
    10:43 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Damn Josh keeps bring it, his post just keep getting better & better.

    The Local Peasant is good if any BBN is ever out near Sherman Oaks.

  57. H
    10:53 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Love it!!! I also feel creepy as a 34 year old grown ass man stalking these teenagers at midnight madness campouts so it’s awesome to hear your story! I would lose it in ur situation trying to play it cool. Lol. Anyway, awesome story and please keep posting stuff. Ill be honest id never heard of u before ksr but I’m quickly becoming a fan!

  58. New Day Co-Op
    11:04 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Hop is the best. Keep the posts coming.

  59. 1ofBunning'sGrandchildren
    11:12 pm August 7, 2012 Permalink

    Killed it Hop (I’d call u that). Glad to call u one of us.

  60. jodyray25
    12:06 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    These articles are even better than Corey Nichols. Great story Josh.

  61. bgblue
    12:12 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Actors are artists. Writing is a form of art. Though not all actors can write. Hop can write. Matt, make him write at least once a week.

  62. GoodStuff
    12:14 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Nice to know that someone in Hollywood is like the rest of us. Very funny story, too

  63. Ben Moore
    12:21 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Best KSR post ever. Unfortunately, yours will be topped if we somehow get Olivia Munn to post.

  64. HeHateUK
    12:56 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Well done, Hop.

  65. HB
    12:56 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Awesome post Josh! Very funny!

  66. Winston Churchill
    1:18 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    HAHAHAHAHA great story! Sounds just like something I would do, lol

  67. I rarely comment, however i did some searching and wound up here %BLOGTITLE%. And I do have some questions for you if it’s allright. Could it be only me or does it seem like some of these remarks look like coming from brain dead folks? 😛 And, if you are posting on other online sites, I would like to keep up with anything new you have to post. Could you make a list of all of all your public sites like your Facebook page, twitter feed, or linkedin profile?

  68. BravoBigBlue
    5:12 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Who is this Josh Hopson that you speak of?

  69. Chad in Evansville
    6:39 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Hey Josh,

    Awesome story, :-). First thing, it’s never cool to leave a pet or a child in a parked car for ANY REASON. No matter what the temperature is outside, the temperature inside the car is going to heat up. Next time, please leave Max at home or with a neighbor.

    OK, with that out of the way, let’s move on to brighter subjects. John Wall is the best point guard we’ve had at UK, probably ever. While he didn’t break many records, his highlights were spectacular. Brandon Knight was just a notch below Wall, but Brandon was a better shooter.

    GO BIG BLUE!!!

    Chad in Evansville

  70. J newt
    7:59 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    great story!

  71. Jrod
    8:10 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Classic! Had me laughing.

  72. jhn
    8:19 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    #69- If its not hot out, its perfectly fine to leave a dog in a car for a short period of time. And no one is talking about children…

  73. ElmerFudd
    8:52 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Enjoyed reading your story. Had me laughing at work this morning. It is funny that I would have been like a little kid waiting on Christmas morning just to get a picture with him. My wife on the other hand would of been like that too, just to get a picture with you though. haha I guess you are ok too.

  74. cool hand luke
    8:55 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Great post!

  75. brianboone99
    9:13 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    haha that was great. Funny stuff.

  76. Bob
    9:14 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Moral of the story – always make friends with the bartender. Great story. Thanks for sharing.

  77. Wildcat4life
    9:23 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    What a great post and a good way to start off the morning

  78. Jonboy
    9:50 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Stars! They’re just like us!

  79. Kevin in Georgia
    11:15 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Josh, excellent post!! It is very cool to know you are just like the rest of us “crazy” followers of the BBN!

  80. Just noticed
    11:31 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Wall musta liked you, that’s one of the few pics I’ve seen of him where he’s actually smiling!

  81. Stmitch
    11:58 am August 8, 2012 Permalink

    great post! and even better picture of two of my favorite ballerzzz….

  82. 8&Counting
    1:07 pm August 8, 2012 Permalink

    Like John Wall doesn’t know Josh Hopkins. He’s like Ashley Judd but not as pretty!!

  83. bigbluebear
    3:25 pm August 8, 2012 Permalink

    69) Hey Chad in Evansville… Yes it is okay to leave a dog in the car if the weather permits. Its a dog, not a person, moron.

  84. Sarah White
    8:45 pm August 8, 2012 Permalink

    I cracked up with this one. I know exactly how he feels – and, now we know it is just like us – salivating when a star gets near us! Great job, Josh.