Do you like game-winners and cool blocks? Do you like dunks happening and passes being passed with various degrees of fancy? If so, then you’ll love this edition of our top 10 plays of the past week. If not, you should stop watching basketball.
I know you’re thinking it’s pretty silly that Roy Hibbert has a portrait of himself hanging above his fireplace, but Carmelo Anthony has one too, so maybe it’s just standard practice for NBA players to have someone paint their portrait and then to hang it above the mantle. I’ve never sat through a rookie orientation, so there’s a chance they mention this requirement when players are first coming in to the league. I don’t know. It could happen.
Or, I suppose, it could just be one of those things where NBA players have paintings of themselves above the fireplace because they think there could be nothing cooler than a painting of themselves hanging above the fireplace. One of the two.
On Friday’s live episode of The Starters, the guys discuss all three of the thrilling blowouts from last night, our favorite players to bring in off the bench, who the NBA’s best fans are and whether or not we should be worrying about the Heat.
All that, plus a few different ways to pronounce the word “pasta.”
This is a very good singing performance by Victor Oladipo — and a pretty solid Clint Eastwood impression by Regis, though I’m not entirely sure that’s what he was going for — but I have to wonder if he can sing any other song besides this one. Don’t get me wrong, he’s great at Bill Withers, but I’d like to hear some variety. Maybe an Aloe Blacc tune or something by Jagged Edge, since those seem to be in his vocal register. Or if he wants to rap the DMX part to his remake of this song. Anything really. Gotta fill up that EP somehow.
(via Patrick Muldowney)
Shoutout: Any time Joakim Noah has one of those “keeps showing up in a lot of places” games, things turn out well for the Bulls. Going for 17 points, 15 rebounds, three assists, a steal and no turnovers qualifies as a ”keeps showing up in a lot of places” game, so the Bulls beat the Heat. Simple as that.
Not so much: If you add up the margin of defeat for all three games from last night, the evening’s losers dropped three games by a grand total of 70 points. Doesn’t really make for a thrilling night of basketball.
Angries: ‘Twas such a downer night that this was the greatest bit of excitement from all the games.
The most Kevin Garnett confrontation possible — against a foreign player who’s regarded as soft while holding his hands up in the air like he didn’t do anything, both of which are vintage Garnett moves — followed by Andrea Bargnani, of all people, being ejected for trash talking in Italian. Like I said, weird night.
According to the Magic’s team website, Glen Davis is listed as 289 pounds. That makes him the heaviest player on the Magic by nearly 30 pounds, heavier than Andrew Bynum, heavier than Marc Gasol, heavier than Hasheem Thabeet (the league’s tallest player), and, now that I’m looking at it, heavier than every other player in the league besides Roy Hibbert (who weighs a pound more), at least when you’re looking at their listed weights. Yes, even more than Aaron Gray.
And the funniest thing about that is that this is the lightest Big Baby has been since eighth grade. From Magic.com:
Fresh off a spectacular 33-point effort spread over 50 minutes Tuesday in Philadelphia, Davis will take the Madison Square Garden court Friday night as slim as he’s been in, well, almost a lifetime.
“Eighth grade. Yeah, really, it’s the lightest I’ve been since the eighth grade,’’ said Davis, seemingly shocked himself. “This time it’s consistent (with the weight loss). There have been times when I’ve lost a lot of weight, but I’d just gain it right back. But as far as consistently staying at this weight and staying down, it’s been since the eighth grade when I was this thin.’’
Just to clarify — most people are 13 years old when they’re in eighth grade, and since Big Baby is nearly 28 now, this means he is literally the skinniest he’s been in more than half of his life. Join me in enjoying a hearty laughter at this fact.
There’s always a chance Big Baby was joking, but I’m willing to believe him here, mostly because I have eyes and it’s pretty obvious that he hasn’t been shrinking over the past few years. So just think about a 13-year-old Glen Davis for a second, weighing more than he does right now. Can you imagine his parents’ grocery bills? Cue the hearty laughter again.
Just because he hasn’t played a single minute so far this season and counts a barely-squeaked-in dunk off his non-injured leg among his greatest recent achievements, doesn’t mean that Kobe Bryant’s not an important cog in the grand scheme of NBA things. He is, obviously, which is why it makes sense that Nike is in the process of showing off the latest iteration of their Kobe signature shoe line, the Kobe 9 Elite. As you can see, it’s a bit different.
Designed with Kobe’s tech insights and design inspirations, the KOBE 9 Elite features three key technologies: Nike Flyknit, Flywire and Lunarlon, giving the shoe superior lightweight performance. The innovative design enhances the foot’s natural movements while providing Kobe with strength, durability and speed, plus all the benefits of natural motion where he needs it most.
That’s all well and good, but this is the part that matters.
Reverting back to a higher cut for the first time since his third signature shoe in 2007, Kobe’s ninth signature shoe features a knit collar for the proprioceptive feel of a low-top with the support of a mid-top.
You see? It’s got that tall, flexible upper because Kobe still wants the “proprioceptive feel of a low-top.” Duh. Everybody knows that. Gotta keep your proprioceptors engaged. (If anyone wants to know what proprioceptors are and what they do, I will teach you in the comments. It’s not that cool though, FYI.)
Nonetheless, those tallies are going to give quite a few people the gasface. Personally, I think they’d look pretty tough with the up top stuff hanging all dangly style with a pair of slim sweatpants (or jeans, I suppose) dropping in to the knit collar. But that’s just me, and I liked the Jordan XX8 with the shroud too, so take that opinion with a grain of salt, though I can certainly vouch for how great FlyKnit is on a pair of shoes.
The coolest part about this whole launch, however, is that Nike will also be re-releasing the eight previous signature Kobes prior to the release of this newest version. They’re called the Kobe Prelude Pack, and they’re pretty awesome.
From left to right, that’s the Kobe 1-8, which I’m sure you could have figured out via counting. To quote the Swoosh, “The collection celebrates his career accomplishments linked with art movements,” which explains why these are all crazy looking versions of his shoes. Personally, I’m a fan of Nos. 1, 2, 4 and 6, but the last five are all such similar silhouettes that it’s hard to decide which is the best.
The Kobe Prelude Pack will release weekly beginning with the first one on December 7, all the way up until February 8 when the ninth one drops. That’s going to be an expensive couple of months for Kobe completists, so maybe just pick your favorite of the nine and snag them. Or go crazy and get all of them. I’m not your boss. Do what you want.
More snaps of all the shoes after the jump.
On Thursday’s live episode of The Starters, the guys discuss whether LaMarcus Aldridge is the league’s best power forward, Kyle Korver’s three-point streak, our Eastern Conference All-Letdown Team, Rose’s press conference, and our sandwich starting five.
All that, plus Leigh has a lot of random facts about Melbourne.
Shoutout: Just a low-key, jumper-driven 38 points for LaMarcus Aldridge, who also grabbed 13 rebounds in the Trail Blazers’ big win over the Thunder. The victory gave them sole possession of first place in the Western Conference, which is way cooler in April but still pretty OK in December.
Not so much: 3-for-17 shooting for James Harden, who also went a sterling 0-10 from behind the arc in the Rockets’ silly loss to the Suns. Maybe he’s a big Josh Smith fan.
Malfunction: Another loser of the night is whoever designed the generator that messed up the Spurs-Timberwolves game in Mexico City.
The game was postponed, which means the Timberwolves get a home game back, so that’s alright. However, I have to think that if Ja Rule was filming a video there, he would have appreciated all that ambiance for his basketball scenes.
This, from yesterday’s show, is just a bit of small business advice from one man whose wife runs a small retail shop to another man whose wife runs a small retail shop. Sure, one of those men is Tas and the other is LeBron James, but this is the kind of hard-hitting guidance that any entrepreneur needs to know.
And after the jump, we try to figure out why Ernie Johnson thought Macklemore could be on the show.