Off The Court

Catching up with Paul George

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — One of the biggest disappointments this summer was Paul George‘s injury while playing for USA Basketball. The Pacers had made such strides the last few seasons, it seemed as though they were right on the verge for contending for a title this season. And with one bad landing, everything changed.

The good news is that Paul George seems to be recovering well. In this new video from Pacers.com, George talks about a variety of topics, including his recovery from injury, switching to number 13, having two middle names, his favorite video games and his love of soccer.


VIDEO: PG13

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)

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 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

Michael Jordan takes over Hornets twitter account

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan may be basketball’s GOAT, but thus far MJ’s social media game has been a bit behind the times. Which is to say, he hasn’t had a social media presence. Thena gain, why should he? When everybody knows your name, you don’t need to forecast your every move to the world. But today, to celebrate the start of the NBA season and the re-branding of the Bobcats to the Hornets, Jordan took over the Hornets’ twitter account and did everything from photobombing an employee to taking a selfie. Here are some highlights…

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