Jamal Crawford dominating Seattle Pro-Am

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — One of the summer’s now-annual traditions is getting video of Clippers guard Jamal Crawford doing Jamal Crawford things up at the Seattle Pro-Am. Crawford has an ability to dribble and pass like few others, and while we get to see that occasionally during the NBA season, it’s in the summer when he’s in his hometown of Seattle where Crawford really gets a chance to put on a show…


VIDEO: Crawford Seattle

(via BIL)

Kevin Durant is better at basketball than baseball

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant is a former NBA MVP, a guy who can do pretty much anything on a basketball court. But as we saw this weekend, while playing in Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman‘s Celebrity Softball Game, Durant’s outfield skills could seem to use a little work…


VIDEO: Durant Softball

Spurs fan makes portrait of Boris Diaw out of pushpins

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Here is a portrait of Boris Diaw that an artist made over 20 days by using 11,750 pushpins, according to Reddit user “shelocksme.”

I think that sentence sort of explains it all. You can see how the project came together here.

HWo3bdf

(via r/NBA)

Paul George shows off some awesome dunks

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — It hasn’t been a year since Paul George suffered a terrible leg injury during a USA Basketball scrimmage. After a long recovery period, George returned at the end of last season and managed to show he was on track toward a full recovery.

But this week, while on a tour of the Philippines for Nike, George threw down a couple of impressive dunks that looked like the pre-injury George. Great to see he’s on the way back…

#RiseBeyondBelief #PaulGeorge

A video posted by Carlo Valenzuela (@_carlovalenzuela) on

(via B/R)

Pacers to wear uniforms to honor Hoosiers

hillhickory

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The classic hoops movie “Hoosiers”, about Indiana’s fictional Hickory High School, is celebrating its 30th anniversary this season. And it was announced today that the Indiana Pacers will celebrate the anniversary by breaking out Hickory throwback uniforms for a few games this season. Via Pacers.com

In a first-of-its-kind partnership, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios (MGM) and the Indiana Pacers will bring one of the all-time great underdog stories, Hoosiers, to the NBA hardwood, celebrating the film’s 30th Anniversary.

For the 2015-16 season, the Pacers will introduce the Hickory uniform to be worn in select regular season games as part of the NBA Pride Collection. The Hickory uniform is a tribute to the rich tradition of basketball in the State of Indiana and will serve as inspiration to fans everywhere that no matter how improbable the challenge may be, amazing things can be accomplished through teamwork, determination, heart and hustle.

“Our team will be honored to wear the Hickory uniforms because of the attention it will bring to the storied history of Indiana basketball and the success of that movie,” said Pacers President of Basketball Operations Larry Bird. “Hoosiers takes us all back to a special place and time.”

For more pictures of the uniform, click here.

No word on whether the Pacers will be able sign Jimmy Chitwood for their Hickory games.

Scottie Pippen responds to Shaq, says count the rings

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Yesterday, Shaquille O’Neal took to Instagram to make his case that an all-time Lakers team would win easily against an all-time team of Chicago Bulls players. As you can read in the comments here, you guys had plenty of thoughts and ideas on the topic.

Well, so did Bulls legend Scottie Pippen. The former Bull took to Instagram to point out that while Shaq’s Lakers may have won three titles, Pippen’s Bulls came away with six rings…

Shaq responded in kind, employing something of a sarcastic hashtag. #youwereok

Pippen then went with the obvious about Shaq, invoking his free throw shooting…

Easy big fella… if only you were as good at free throws as you are talking smack! @shaq

A photo posted by Scottie Pippen (@scottiepippen) on

Shaq then walked back his previous criticism a bit, proclaiming Pippen the best sidekick ever…

Anybody need a T MOBILE SIDEKICK. I GOTTa PRETTY GOOD ONE #BESTSIDEKICKEVER

A photo posted by DR. SHAQUILLE O'NEAL Ed.D. (@shaq) on

Pippen created a photo montage arguing that if anyone should know about being a sidekick, it’s Shaq…

Speaking of being a sidekick… if I recall correctly you know a thing or two about that as well. @shaq

A photo posted by Scottie Pippen (@scottiepippen) on

Shaq then finished the argument (for now) by invoking Game 7 of the 2000 Western Conference Finals, when the Lakers came from behind to get a win to eliminate Pippen and the Blazers…

Ray Allen got an awesome birthday cake

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — NBA great Ray Allen is turning 40 this weekend, so of course he’s having a party and a cake and everything goes along with a birthday celebration. But he’s not just having any old cake, as we see in the Instagram photo below, but instead a cake that incorporates every team he’s played for and uniform he’s worn…

Shaq says all-time Lakers would destroy Bulls greats

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — It’s always fun to argue about NBA history. Who is the greatest player of all-time? What is the greatest team ever? Could this guy beat this guy? Would this team be able to beat that team?

As it turns out, even former NBA players enjoy being part of the conversation, like how Shaquille O’Neal recently took to Instagram to stir things up. What would happen if a team of former Lakers greats (Magic Johnson, Kobe Bryant, Elgin Baylor, Shaq and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) faced off against a team of Chicago Bulls greats (made up of Derrick Rose, Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman and Horace Grant)?

According to Shaq, the Lakers great would “beat em by 50.”

We would beat em by fifty "what you think". Let me know and don't hold back

A photo posted by DR. SHAQUILLE O'NEAL Ed.D. (@shaq) on

 

Update:

Pippen has a different opinion:

 

Update II:

Shaq responds to Pippen:

 

What do you think? Is Shaq right?

LeBron James makes impossible shot at Summer League

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — I spent the weekend in Las Vegas at the Samsung NBA Summer League, where I, along with my Hang Time Podcast co-hosts Rick Fox and Sekou Smith, had the chance to announce a couple of games on NBA TV. The first we called on Friday was the Cleveland Cavaliers against the Minnesota Timberwolves, and who should show up to watch the game but the King himself, LeBron James.

LeBron didn’t play in the Summer League, obviously, but while he was sitting courtside, a ball bounced LeBron’s way, and something pretty cool happened. Check this out…

Buckets! @kingjames #NBASummer

A video posted by NBA (@nba) on

LeBron James: Movie Star?


VIDEO: LeBron Trainwreck

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The thing that makes LeBron James so special, that makes him so unique, is his incredible versatility. Need someone to bring the ball up the court? Grab a big rebound? Hit a three? Block a shot? Lead the break? Defend pretty much any opponent?

There really isn’t much LeBron can’t do, which is how he racked up four MVP awards and two NBA championships by the age of 30. And it also explains why he’s getting rave reviews in his latest venture: movie acting. We’ve seen LeBron in commercials and hosting “Saturday Night Live,” but now he’s legitimately co-starring in Trainwreck, the latest film from super producer Judd Apatow, opening in theaters today.

And as LeBron explained to CNN, the movie business is a whole different ball game…

“It’s different than walking on the NBA floor, I’ll tell you that,” he told Rachel Nichols of CNN Sports. “I had much bigger nerves walking on set. It’s my first time. I’ve done commercials, I’ve done PSAs (public service announcements). I’ve done so many great things, but I’ve never stepped on a movie set. But it was extremely fun to be around those guys.”

James makes his acting debut in the comedy “Trainwreck,” directed by Judd Apatow and written by Amy Schumer. The movie hits theaters Thursday night. James plays himself, and he is cast as the best friend of actor Bill Hader’s character, sports doctor Aaron Conners.

And his role isn’t just a cameo. It became much more than that.

“Judd Apatow is one of the greatest directors and writers that we have,” James said. “I had a few scenes that we were going to do — a couple scenes, not a few. I had a couple scenes — and myself and Bill Hader, we kind of just hit it off, right off the bat.

“And it was, like, ‘OK, well, you know, you mind sticking around for a couple more days? We’re going to write another scene in here.’ And then I got into a scene with Amy Schumer, who’s unbelievable. And it was, like, ‘You mind sticking around for just one or two more days?’ And I ended up doing, like, five or six, maybe, like, seven scenes. I don’t want to give it up, how many scenes I’m in.”

In the NBA Finals against the Golden State Warriors, James put the Cleveland Cavaliers on his back, averaging 35.8 points, 13.3 rebounds and 8.8 assists per game — leading both teams in those categories. His injury-depleted Cavaliers ultimately lost to the Warriors in six games, but James single-handedly kept the series closer than most anticipated.

But in addition to hoops, James also is interested in taking his talents to the big screen.

“I always talked about it as a kid,” he said. “And even as an adult, I was, like, ‘Wow.’ You know, I always wanted to be the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” he added, referring to the 1990s sitcom. “Will Smith kind of set it up. I was, like, ‘Man, that would be cool to be the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. How amazing would that be? Just be a silly kid in an unbelievable house and be around so many great people.’

“And then when I got older, you know, the ‘Bad Boy’ movies, I was, like, I would love to do an action movie — you know, be like a cop or something or be like Batman and be a superhero and be able to save people and save corruption and all that mess. I’ve always had it in my head.”