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Jewish Journal

Podcast: New Iranian Jewish basketball league big hit in Beverly Hills

by Karmel Melamed

March 9, 2009 | 12:15 pm

The official J.E.M. basketball jersey showing off Jewish pride on the basketball court.

Late last year when some players from the new J.E.M. Iranian Jewish basketball league informed me they were playing in an official and organized basketball league in Beverly Hills, I thought they were joking. But to my pleasent surprise the league and its players are a reality and perhaps one of the few very productive organizations I have seen come to existance on behalf of local Iranian Jews in their 20’s and 30’s.

My article this week in the Jewish Journal not only explores these basketball games but also a unique trend of dating among young Iranian Jews that has arisen from the league. Our blog’s podcast also chatted with some of the J.E.M.‘s basketball players about their thoughts of the league.

The podcast can be heard: here

The following are some great images I captured of the J.E.M. basketball leagues championship game late last year:

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(left to right; J.E.M. basketball players Michael Cohanzad and Ramin Ram
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J.E.M.‘s Blue team players
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J.E.M.‘s Blue team players huddle for a prayer
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(left to right; J.E.M. center’s director Rabbi Yossi Illulian and Ramin Ram
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J.E.M.‘s Black team player Ryan Simkha
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J.E.M.‘s Red team players
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(left to right; J.E.M.‘s White team players Alan Nazarian and Issac Gabai)
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Fans watching the championship game from the sidelines
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Karmel Melamed is an internationally-published freelance journalist based in Southern California.

Since 2000, Melamed has specialized in covering the growing influential...

Read more