NBA Playoffs 2012

LeBron James Drops By Letterman To Discuss Title, Cleveland

by Micah Hart

Fresh off a title, LeBron James paid a visit to The Late Show with David Letterman last night, and of course the Midwestern-raised Letterman couldn’t resist tweaking LeBron about bolting Cleveland to win the championship in Miami. LBJ handled the questions in good humor (not that that will appease Cleveland fans, but it’s true) and generally came off pretty well. I guess it’s easy to be in a good mood when you’ve just lifted a thousand-pound monkey off your back, and you know, are the champion of the world and all.

I didn’t realize this was James’ fifth appearance on Letterman — I wonder where that ranks among active professional athletes?

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Top 10 Most Amusing Moments From The 2012 Playoffs

by Micah Hart

What a shortened, yet still very long, strange trip it’s been. In a season that felt like we inhaled on Christmas Day, only to exhale roughly two hours ago, I’m already counting down the days until we start this whole thing over again in November.

But before we start dreaming of a fresh start, let’s pause for a few moments to remember some of the fun and funny we had over the course of the 2012 NBA Playoffs, which started somewhat slowly but picked up speed to the thrilling conclusion that was the Finals series between the victorious Heat and vanquished Thunder.

Here’s a look back at the 10 most amusing moments from the last seven weeks:

10. Amar’e channels Andy Bernard

The Knicks had a lot of hype at one point in the NBA season, but it all began to fall apart starting with a rash of injuries to the likes of Jeremy Lin and Iman Shumpert. At least their injuries occurred on the court though. Amar’e Stoudemire made headlines when he punched a fire-extinguisher case after Game 2 of the Knicks’ first-round series against the Heat, causing a huge laceration and forcing the Knicks’ big man to miss the next game of an eventual 4-1 series defeat.

No one saw it happen, but I have to imagine it went something like this.

9. Spurs fan gets Matt Bonner haircut, gets suspended

In case you forgot, a Spurs fan got this shaved into the back of his head:

For doing so, he got suspended from school, which seems bad, until the Internet found out about it and the Spurs ended up invited him to a playoff game. Miss school AND see playoff basketball? BEST WEEK EVA! By the way, a month later, the kid did it again.

8. Metta World Peace being Metta World Peace

His playoff run may not have lasted long (one game against Denver and five against OKC), but that doesn’t mean Metta World Peace didn’t have time to make lasting contributions, including doing the local weather in Vancouver, being in Vancouver in the first place because he’s filming a movie there based on a novel by Nancy Freaking Grace, and unveiling his new superhero alter ego Metta Man:


Charles and Shaq Clown Shane Battier For His Purple Pants

by Micah Hart

If there has been an unsung star for the Heat in these playoffs (if anyone on the Heat can be called unsung), it would have to be Shane Battier, who has been absolutely lights-out from 3-point range the past few weeks and provided exactly the kind of offensive support so crucial to Miami’s Big Three at this late stage.

He joined the GameTime crew of Matt Winer, Charles Barkley, and Shaquille O’Neal after Sunday’s big Game 3 win for the Heat, and after getting the particulars out of the way early on Shaq and Chuck only wanted to know one thing (around the 4:20 mark). What’s up with the purple pants, Shane?

Gotta give the guy credit for having the confidence required to wear those pants, but shooting 73% from distance in The Finals probably goes a long way in providing it.

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Bill Hader Takes Over Hosting Duties For GameTime

by Micah Hart

Saturday Night Live’s Bill Hader is from Oklahoma, and along with Flaming Lips lead singer Wayne Coyne, is the Thunder’s resident celebrity fan. He’s also a master impressionist.

He joined the GameTime crew before tonight’s Game 2 and broke out a little of his Ernie Johnson impression, which he did earlier this season on the show when Charles Barkley hosted:

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Mike Tyson Serenades (?) LeBron James

by Micah Hart

With the NBA Finals on ABC, Jimmy Kimmel Live is once again up to its old tricks with a pregame show before each Finals game. Before Tuesday night’s Game 1, a certain former boxer dusted off the singing skills he so deftly showed in The Hangover II to serenade LeBron James, this time with an original composition. Take it away, Mike Tyson:

Amazing performance. I’d buy the single if it were available. Perhaps the best thing I’ve ever heard*.

*What, you think I’m dumb enough to be snarky to Iron Mike? No chance.

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Win Or Lose, James Harden’s Beard Is Here To Stay

by Micah Hart

Taken from hockey, the trend of growing a playoff beard has moved into other professional sports over the years. The Clippers did it earlier this postseason. The Thunder chose not to, instead expressing their playoff solidarity through silly press conference attire. There is a member of the Thunder with a very famous beard, but his can only be considered playoff-related if his postseason began when he was 16 years old.

NBA TV’s Jared Greenberg caught up to James Harden today at media availability to see what his plans are for the beard should OKC cut down the nets in the next couple weeks:

From the man himself, the beard is going nowhere. I will sleep soundly tonight.

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Heat Celebrate Game 7 Victory With Joyous Locker Room Dancing

by Micah Hart

The Miami Heat have more pressure on them (well, some of the players on their roster do) than just about any professional sports team in history. They aren’t all the way to reaching their goal of a title, but with a huge, emotional win over the Celtics in a thrilling Game 7 on Saturday night, you can’t blame the guys for doing a little dancing to celebrate, can you?

Thanks Heat, for reminding us that life is about the journey, not necessarily the destination.

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Russell Westbrook Plays 48 Minutes Of Defense (And Just A Little More)

by Micah Hart

You know that thing that Kevin Garnett made popular, where you swat away any shot headed towards the basket during a dead ball? Well Russell Westbrook just took it to a whole new level, trolling Danny Green and then some:

That’s a pretty jerk move, generally speaking, but this is the playoffs. Anything you can do to get in your opponents’ heads, I’m all for it.

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Kevin Garnett Feels His Youth, Does Push-Ups Mid-Game

by Micah Hart

The whispers are out there — this Celtics team is too old to handle the Heat, and Boston’s Big Three of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Ray Allen might want to start thinking about post-career plans.

Well, Boston may indeed lose this series, but KG will have you know he’s not ready to be put out to pasture just yet, a point he decided to make during Game 3 after a hard foul by the Heat’s Udonis Haslem:

And if you don’t know, now you know.

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Flaming Lips Rewrite Track For Thunder Fight Song

by Micah Hart

Charles Barkley may think Oklahoma City is a bit of a one-horse town, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have its share of celebrities and artists who call the Thunder their favorite team.

Take the band The Flaming Lips, born and bred in Oklahoma, who have taken the opportunity of this year’s playoff run to record a new fight song for the team, “Thunder Up! Race for the Prize”, a reimagining of their song “Race for the Prize” from the album Soft Bulletin.

Not bad. I was kind of hoping for “Kevin Durant Battles the Pink Robots“, but maybe they can do that for the Finals should the Thunder make it.

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