Growing Up With Joakim Noah

Alfonso Felipe grew up spending his Saturday mornings in the gym of P.S. 149 in Queens. That's where Felipe, and a young player with the odd name of Joakim, learned basketball from the man they still call Mr. Green.

Felipe has a blog, and uses it to explain that Noah is unlike anyone else he knows, and unlike most people expect:

The irony in someone like Joakim is that he is exactly what he is supposed to be: Joakim is a cross between French culture, a Swedish supermodel, the upper crust of society, but the humility to never be above anyone.

Looking at him many would think he's not the smartest guy, but you have no idea how sophisticated the guy really is. He's very educated: from Saville Row to Jazz and back to the origination of 50 Cent, which is why I love him even more -- an anomaly to society. On the surface, he looks like a guy with long hair, a basketball player but sit down and have a conversation with him about tennis, restaurants, or wine -- he knows what's going on around him, it's just he chooses to express himself differently.