Cleveland Cavaliers Lift Ban On Fan Who Ran After LeBron

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Four years ago, when LeBron James announced that he was leaving Cleveland to become a member of the Miami Heat, Cavs fans were understandably upset. Two seasons ago, when the Cavs were playing a game in Cleveland, a fan named James Blair ran on the court and showed LeBron his shirt that read “WE MISS YOU” and “2014 COME BACK.” As security hauled Blair away, LeBron gave him a high five. And as a result of his stunt, Blair was banned from attending Cavs game.

Until now. With LeBron back home and a member of the Cavs, according to multiple reports, the ban on Blair has been lifted.

Blair himself confirmed the cancellation on Facebook…

Report: Darko Milicic Retiring To Become Kickboxer

Detroit Pistons Announce Draft Choices

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — There are some thing NBA players can’t control. They can affect how hard the work, how much they practice, things like that. But they can’t really control where they are drafted, which is something that always seemed to work against Darko Milicic.

And now, according to a report from NBASerbia, Darko is done with basketball.

Milicic was the second overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft, selected after LeBron James, ahead of Carmelo Anthony. At the time, he was a prospect that most people — including NBA front offices — didn’t know much about. There were some reports that Milicic was not only ready but had the type of game that would translate well to the NBA, and his pre-Draft workout apparently was spectacular.

But once he got to the NBA, drafted by the Detroit Pistons, it never came together. His rookie season, the Pistons won an NBA title. Darko got into the clinching game in garbage time… and broke his hand. He bounced around between several teams looking for opportunities for playing time, and he showed flashes of ability and skill. (His passing ability inspired at least one memorable interaction between then-Wolves GM David Kahn and Chris Webber at summer league.)

If this really is it for Darko, he leaves having played ten NBA seasons, a fruitful career for any professional athlete. Unfortunately, that draft position would never go away.

According to the report above, Darko is retiring to pursue a career in kickboxing. And I don’t know about you, but a 7-foot, 250-pound kickboxer sounds like he’d be pretty terrifying to fight, at least to me.

Godspeed, Darko.

(via SI)

Tony Parker nails another trick shot

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — A few weeks ago we saw Tony Parker and a trick shot artist making all sorts of crazy shots in a viral video. At the time, I questioned the veracity of the video. Now a different video has emerged that would seem to validate Tony Parker as some sort of trick shot genius. Check the Vine below, in which Tony P nails a halfcourt show with his back to the basket. Do we believe him? Is Tony a trick shot savant?

How the San Antonio Spurs made their new court

VIDEO: Spurs court

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — An image of the new court design the Spurs will use this season leaked a few weeks ago, so if you want to see it from above, click here. But the video above is pretty cool, where you can see how the court is actually made — the sanding and painting and a dude with a watering can calmly pouring some sort of liquid all over the floor. I also like how the one guy refers to the court as “a living…person? In a way?” If someone sanded me down I don’t think I’d like it very much.

Jimmy Butler plays putt putt

VIDEO: Bulls Open Championship

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Athletes compete, no matter the sport, no matter the stakes. So finding Bulls forward Jimmy Butler on a putt putt course along with former Bulls center Bill Wennington should not be much of a surprise. The main surprise here is who ends up winning the first-annual Chicago Bulls Open Championship. One thing worth noting: This putt putt course looks awesome. It has buildings and elevators and water hazards and I would like to play there next time I am in Chicago. Maybe I can score an invite to compete in next year’s Open Championship?

NBA 2K15 evolves beyond a video game

By Jeff Caplan,

Reigning NBA MVP Kevin Durant dons the cover of the new “NBA 2K15″ video game that impressively elevates its standard of insanely realistic graphics and now unveils a first-of-its-kind technological breakthrough: a live TV show within the game.

Wrap your brain around that for a minute.

“NBA2K TV” is a live highlight and interview show designed to bind the NBA 2K community like no other video game has or can by delivering game news and community-driven content through a live studio television show. In many ways, says Jeff Thomas, Visual Concept’s executive vice president of development, the game is built around the weekly program that features as its host former Old Dominion star and sports broadcast personality Rachel A. DeMita.

Kevin Durant talks about NBA 2K15 during a media event last month.

Kevin Durant talks about NBA 2K15 during a media event last month.

The real-life DeMita — not an animated replica — will greet you every time you put on the game. She’ll provide a brief update on the latest happenings in the NBA 2K community. She might be back later with highlights of your game and ask you how you did it.

You getting this? In the game’s slickly produced trailer, a mesmerized Durant mutters, “Whoa, man, that’s sick.”

The actual show will be streamed into the game once a week and is planned to last about 15 minutes. It will feature fast-paced segments from highlights of actual NBA 2K games played by users who allow 2K to access their systems through the DVR function, plus highlights of NBA 2K tournaments and other large-scale events and interviews with actual game users and tournament winners and exclusive interviews with NBA players, coaches and experts.

NBA2K will be released on Oct. 7, which is also when the first live show will debut. The game will be released internationally on Oct. 10.

“There’s so many ‘wow’ moments as you play the game, as you’re experiencing things with your buddy,” Thomas said. “It may have come down to a last-second buzzer — we really do try to replicate the real NBA. You know how highlights are, how exciting that can be. Well, we really do try to replicate those moments and for our users and game players to share that with the world is what we’re really trying to capture. That’s one part of the content.”

Additional show content will include game news, behind-the-scenes looks at how NBA 2K was made, interviews with the game’s developers, plus NBA player cameos and basketball lifestyle.

“One of my favorite parts of this is I was a former Division I basketball player and to me the point of playing basketball and the point of playing video games is the same thing: to have a really amazing time competing,” DeMita said. “With the show, we always want to have a good time and show all of the culture and the entertainment value that surrounds the NBA, that surrounds NBA2K and that surrounds our gaming community. Everybody is coming there for essentially the same reason. Being able to bring these guys access to some of the things they couldn’t have access to before, for instance they wouldn’t know necessarily that someone in Maryland is at the top of the leader board, but I’ll be able to let the rest of the community know that.

“At the same time someone may not know that Kevin Durant loves to play NBA 2K, and also likes to play with other NBA players. So when I do interviews with him, the whole community will get to watch that and enjoy in those aspects of the culture.”

It is a brave new world. Game on.

VIDEO: NBA 2K15 cover boy Kevin Durant shows off the NBA2K TV feature


Mark Jackson Personally Calls Record Buyers

VIDEO: Strip Promo

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Hand down, song down?

Mark Jackson‘s wife, Desiree, is a gospel recording artist who also goes by the name Kadesh. We’ve seen her sing the National Anthem at Warriors games when Jackson was coaching there, and she recently released a new single called “Strip.” (You can watch the promo video above.)

To help get the word out about the new single, Jackson took to Twitter…

And then, yep, he kept his word…

(via FB)

Kevin Durant Supports The Washington Nationals

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — This hurts me more than you know. After all, I’m a fan of the Atlanta Braves, and I was watching the Braves play the Nationals in Atlanta the other night when the Nationals won, clinching the National League East on the Braves’ own field. The Nationals have now won two of the last three division titles, and their fans are rightfully excited. Fans such as DC-area native Kevin Durant, who goes by the nickname Easy Money Sniper, and who took to Instagram to celebrate the Nationals division title by showing off his own custom Nationals jersey…

James Harden Does The Carlton

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — He won a gold medal in Spain, he called in a beard guru, what’s left for James Harden to do? How about meet Alfonso Ribeiro, a.k.a. Carlton Banks from “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air,” and learn first-hand how to do “The Carlton”?

Are The Spurs The Ultimate Team?

San Antonio Spurs Championship Celebration

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The San Antonio Spurs won last season’s NBA championship, but are they the ultimate team in all of the major North American sports leagues? A new poll from ESPN the Magazine says yes, they are.

According to ESPN, they surveyed over 1,000 fans to form 25 areas of criteria, then polled over 100,000 fans and asked them to rate their hometown teams in each of those categories. From there they created a weighted average and incorporated “bang for the buck” and…well, you can read all the criteria for yourself.

As it turned out, out of the 122 teams considered, the San Antonio Spurs finished first overall. And they weren’t the only NBA team to rate highly: the Memphis Grizzlies finished fourth, the Oklahoma City Thunder finished seventh, and the Dallas Mavericks ninth. If you want to dig deeper, check out the entire poll here.