Off The Court

What’s cooler than cool? Swaggy P at a hockey game

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The Lakers season may be over, but the always entertaining adventures of Nick Young, a.k.a. Swaggy P, who endured this awful Lakers season with what felt like unlimited enthusiasm.

Just because the season is over, though, doesn’t mean the Swaggy stops. Last night Swaggy went to an L.A. Kings hockey playoff game and had a chance to be as swaggy as ever…including a chance to ride shotgun on the Zamboni…

(via FTW)

Miami Heat’s DJ Irie introduces HYDE AmericanAirlines Arena playoff playlist

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

Sacramento Kings v Miami Heat

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — I’ve been to a bunch of games in Miami the last few years, and one of the interesting things at Heat games that sets them apart is they have their own in-house DJ, DJ Irie, who spins during games and keeps the crowd fired up. After games, Irie plays inside HYDE, the nightclub that’s actually inside the AmericanAirlines Arena.

This year, as the Heat chase a three-peat, DJ Irie has come up with an official playlist. So if you want to watch a Heat game like a Heat fan who is in the arena, you can download or stream this playlist and listen along at home…

HYDE AMERICANAIRLINES ARENA NBA PLAYOFF PLAYLIST BY DJ IRIE

1.       Booyah – Showtek feat. We are Loud! & Sonny Wilson

2.       Turn Down for What – DJ Snake feat. Lil’ Jon

3.       Drop That Nae Nae – We Are Toonz

4.       Animals – Martin Garrix

5.       Trophies – Drake

6.       Stand Up – Henry Fong

7.       23 – Mike Will Made It feat. Miley Cyrus, Wiz Khalifa & Juicy J

8.       My Hitta – YG feat. Young Jeezy & Rich Homie Quan

9.       I Won – Future feat. Kanye West

10.     Watch Out For This  (Bumaye) – Major Lazer feat. Busy Signal, The Flexican & FS Green

Drake sits courtside in Toronto, rolls lint off pants

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Last night’s Raptors/Nets game was big for Toronto, where the Raptors won their first playoff game since 2008 to even the series against Brooklyn at 1-1. But the moment of the game that won the internet happened off the court. Like, literally just inches from the court.

Sitting courtside at the game was Toronto’s “global ambassador,” music superstar Drake. Part of being a celebrity is looking as great as you can at all times, of course, because at one point during the first quarter last night, cameras caught Drake in the background as he vigorously wiped his pants clean with a lint roller.

Started from the bottom now he’s here…right around the knee area…

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(via Ben Golliver)

Lance Stephenson gives local students ultimate prom experience

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Pacers guard Lance Stephenson is not only in the running for most improved player in the NBA, he also seems to be doing great things off the court as well. Last Saturday in Indianapolis, three high school students received free prom dresses (and tuxes for their dates) courtesy of Stephenson’s Ultimate Prom Experience. The three girls were selected after submitting essays explaining why they deserved the opportunity. Stephenson then teamed up with Indianapolis-area dress shop RaeLynn’s Boutique to make a few dreams come true.

Stephenson posted the following image on Instagram of the winning entrants…

(via TNLP)

Trend Alert: Blakeing

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — On the internet, it doesn’t take much to constitute a trend. So after Blake Griffin dumped a cup of water on a fan during the Clippers’ game one loss to the Warriors — perhaps by accident, perhaps not by accident — Michelle Beadle over at “SportsNation” decided to try making this into a a new trend: Blakeing.

So if you see Beadle around, maybe stay a few steps back…

Kevin Durant turns into a giant

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — With the start of the playoffs usually comes a new slew of commercials featuring your favorite NBA players. For instance, this new spot from Sprint featuring Kevin Durant as a giant version of himself who hangs outside of treehouses and takes off into the sky…


VIDEO: KD Joins Framily

(via FTW)

Toronto Raptors release cool playoff promo

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Canada has some of the most intense basketball fans in the world. Unfortunately, the NBA’s lone franchise in Canada, the Toronto Raptors, has had a five-season drought of not qualifying for the postseason. All of that changed last night, however, as the season ended and the upstart Raptors officially won the Atlantic Division. Now, as they ready for the postseason, the Raptors have released a pretty cool video to rally their fans. As the video says, “We are the North side, a territory all our own. If that makes us outsiders, we’re in.”


VIDEO: We The North

Choose the best Trail Blazers opening

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The Portland Trail Blazers seem to really appreciate fan involvement. A few weeks back they allowed fans to vote on their favorite court design to help choose the floor they will play on next season. Now they’re opening the polls again to allow fans to vote on their favorite version of the pregame intro. Fans can vote here, and the winning video will be played tonight against the Clippers. As for the choices, you’ve got four to choose from…


VIDEO: Sabotage edition


VIDEO: Rip City edition


VIDEO: “Hands” edition


VIDEO: Comics edition

Driver runs into Chandler Parsons, asks for his autograph

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The first time I visited Houston, Texas, was just after Christmas in 2002. I was there for SLAM magazine to write a profile on Yao Ming and Steve Francis, and I spent about a week hanging around the Rockets. I also saw one of the strangest things I’ve ever seen while driving.

The Toyota Center, their current home, was not yet built; back then they played in the Compaq Center, previously known as The Summit. On a Sunday morning while I was there, the Rockets held a shootaround at their arena. It was relatively early, and because it was a weekend morning, I remember how quiet things were on my drive to the arena. I was in no hurry, so I cruised along, looking out the windows and trying to get a feel for Houston.

And then I came upon a railroad crossing. As I pulled up to it, the light above it turned red and the crossing flags began to lower, blocking the road and signaling that a train was coming. I slipped my rental car into park and settled in to sip my coffee and wait for the train to pass.

In my rear view mirror, I noticed a late-model sedan coming toward me. This car was in the lane next to me, so it wasn’t in danger of hitting me, but it was coming fast, much too fast to stop in time for the train crossing, and it seemed to be accelerating. I looked ahead and saw the train nearing the intersection. I turned my head just in time to follow the car as it hit the wooden crossing flags at full speed, shattering the wood and sending shards flying. The car shot across the train tracks, bouncing as it hit the other side of the road. Maybe two seconds later the train barreled through the intersection, as I sat there, my heart pounding, wondering if I was being Punk’d.

(Initially I wondered if the car was being pursued by authorities, but no other cars ever came along. I just sat there, totally alone, at the intersection until the train passed. I combed the local papers the next few days but never saw any mention of what I’d witnessed.)

I bring all that up because we have another NBA-related driving story out of Houston. Last night on his way to the Toyota Center, Rockets forward Chandler Parsons was involved in a minor car accident. How do we know it really happened? The other driver asked Parsons for an autograph after hitting his car…

A driver outside Toyota Center ran a red light and hit Parsons’ SUV near the entrance to the loading dock. Parsons said he and driver were not hurt, though it made him a few minutes late for treatment before shooting to see if he would be cleared to play.

“She said she ran a red light and it was her fault,” Parsons said. “She had a little car so it kind of messed up the front bumper of my car. She was OK. Asked me to sign her insurance card.”

I think we can say Parsons was fine — he played 40 minutes and scored 21 points.

Damian Lillard wants rings

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — In the world of Foot Locker commercials, famous athletes randomly hang out together like it’s an everyday occurrence. In this new spot from Foot Locker, we find Portland’s Damian Lillard sitting around a mod house chatting on his phone, when he offhandedly mentions he would like to win a championship ring at some point in his career. This is a perfectly acceptable feeling to have, unless perhaps you express that feeling aloud within earshot of Barry Sanders, LaDanian Tomlinson, Chris Webber and Karl Malone.


VIDEO: Lillard Foot Locker