Cleveland stands together with LeBron

By Jeff Case

The Cleveland Cavaliers are set to open their season tonight against the New York Knicks (8 p.m. ET, TNT) and the city’s anticipation for the official return of their native son, LeBron James, is growing by the hour. As our Steve Aschburner points out, the grand homecoming of James is about more than basketball. But if that story doesn’t convince you, perhaps this new commercial from Nike will:


VIDEO: LeBron James’ new Nike commercial called ‘Together’

Even if you’re not a Cavs fan, you can’t help but get goosebumps for tonight’s big game. (And, oh yeah, this little billboard is going up tonight, too).

(h/t Scott Soshnick)

Throwback Thursday: Classic ring ceremonies


VIDEO: Relive the San Antonio Spurs’ 2014 championship ring ceremony

Welcome to Throwback Thursday here on the All Ball Blog. Each week, we’ll delve into the NBA’s photo archives and uncover a topic and some great images from way back when. Hit us up here if you have suggestions for a future TBT on All Ball. Suggestions are always welcome!

Today’s Topic: Classic Ring Ceremonies

Opening night in the NBA is reason to celebrate in and of itself, but for the team that won the title the season before, it takes on special meaning. Last season’s NBA champions, the San Antonio Spurs, got their championship rings on Tuesday night before their home (and season) opening game against the Dallas Mavericks.

With that in mind, we take a look back today at some great ring ceremony moments from throughout NBA history.

(NOTE: Click the “caption” icon below the photo for details about each moment.)


Gallery: Throwback Thursday: Classic Ring Ceremonies

Got a favorite ring ceremony memory or anything else to share on Throwback Thursday? Let us know by using the hashtag #NBATBT or visit for NBA.com’s Throwback Thursday page.

 

Russell Westbrook dressed to impress last night

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — First of all, let’s make one thing clear: Russell Westbrook was incredible last night. Leading a Thunder team riddled with injuries, Westbrook was nearly unstoppable, finishing with 38 points and 6 assists against Portland in a losing effort.

But that performance was a bit overshadowed by his style performance off the floor, including this Mylar jacket Westbrook wore to the game.

And as often happens, Twitter went in on Westbrook’s gear…

The New James In Miami


VIDEO: James Ennis delivers the boom

Well, that didn’t take long. On just the second day of the 2014-15 season, we already have a dunk worthy of a couple of extra looks.

Enter Miami’s new James, James Ennis.

The Heat rookie officially put his name on the NBA map Wednesday night after finishing off a play that in recent years has become a staple in Miami: the fastbreak. During these recent years, it was usually LeBron James doing the finishing. As we know, his days in South Beach are over.

The days of the Miami posterizer apparently are not.

Oh, Rasual Butler, you didn’t think you were getting off the hook, did you? It’s been said time and time again: taking a charge when in position to potentially get dunked on rarely works. D up or get out of the way! #NoCharges

The Mike Conley Show

ALL BALL NERVE CENTERMike Conley has established himself as one of the best point guards in the NBA. And with videos like the one below, he is also establishing himself as one of the worst interviewers in the NBA. Unless it turns out Conley is just a huge Chris Farley fan, in which case, you know, yeah, that was awesome.


VIDEO: Conley Show

Charlotte Hornets introduce biggest burger ever


VIDEO: Lang at Barclays

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — This summer the Charlotte Hornets went out and, building on last season’s success, signed Lance Stephenson and Marvin Williams, setting themselves up as contenders on the court. And they’re also stepping up their game in the…kitchen?

Food options at NBA games is a big deal, as you can see in the video above from Barclays Center in New York. And the Hornets may have jumped into the lead among people seeking calorie explosions with their new option, Hugo’s Boss Burger, which features 8(!!!) pounds of meat and costs $70…

The Hornets’ main competition for NBA food supremacy may come, ironically enough, from the defending champs Spurs, who late last season introduced a sandwich covered in onion rings.

Your move, Cleveland…

Ben McLemore is Sacto’s new pizza guy

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — One of the joys of watching games via League Pass is seeing local commercials you might not otherwise come across. As such, it was fun last season watching Kings guard Isaiah Thomas star as the Pizza Guy.

But alas, Thomas left this summer and found a new home in Phoenix, meaning the coveted Pizza Guy slot in Sacramento was vacated. To fill it, the Pizza people looked no further than Ben McLemore, who apparently used to actually order the pizza.

And now he’s not just a customer, McLemore is the new pizza guy…


VIDEO: McLemore Pizza

(via HP)

The Los Angeles Clippers are relentless

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — When a new owner takes over a franchise, he usually changes a few things. Maybe they get new uniforms or some in-arena upgrades, but whatever it is, it’s a way for the new ownership to subtly remind fans that things are going to be different from here on out.

In Los Angeles, when Steve Ballmer purchased the Clippers, they were already a team with title aspirations, with not many adjustments needed on the court. Off the court, though, there was plenty of work to be done.

One way Ballmer’s influence is already showing is in the way the team is being marketed. Not only did the Clippers introduce a cool new ad campaign, they did it in a big way: They bought ad space during each of last night’s TNT games. So you may have tuned in to watch the Mavs, Spurs, Lakers or Rockets, but you got an eyeful of the new Los Angeles Clippers’ ad campaign, “Be Relentless”…


VIDEO: Clips Relentless

The New Orleans Pelicans would like to prepare your dinner

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The New Orleans Pelicans convincingly won their season opener at home last night, beating the Orlando Magic, 101-84. And to commemorate the start of a new season, the Pelicans created a video where the players and coach Monty Williams messed around in a kitchen and, um, basically showed why they’re basketball players, not actors.


VIDEO: N.O. Dinner

(via EOB)

John Wall’s alternate future in fast-forward

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — In a new ad for adidas and Foot Locker, Washington point guard John Wall sees what lies ahead for him, as his entire future occurs in about 30 seconds. There’s the possibility of great moments (a title, a family) and not so great moments (selling cars, gaining weight), but one redeeming feature of the whole thing: Having a shoe retro’ed. Which is hard to complain about either way.


VIDEO: Wall Future