ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Last night the Los Angeles Clippers hosted the Golden State Warriors in a game between two of the better teams out West. The Clippers led throughout and finished with a 111-98 win, but that apparently wasn’t good enough for all of the Clippers. Following the game, Chris Paul went back out to the court to put in more work. Paul, who finished 5-15 from the floor (and 1-3 on threes) apparently wasn’t satisfied with the win. Perhaps you’ll recall Kobe Bryant once did the same thing after a Lakers loss game in Miami. In the video above, Paul explains that he feels like the Clips have a special team this season and he has to do his part.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Throughout this season, perhaps you’ve seen our ongoing series, The All Ball Posterized Poll. In those posts, we examine which NBA players have been victims of the most vicious dunks.
We are proud to continue the tradition of highlighting the best of the best (and worst) with the new All Ball Crossover Contest. From time to time, we will check in and look at some of the best ankle-breaking dribbling exhibitions we’ve seen. We want to see the greatest moves, of course, but we also want to take note of who got shook.
So who broke out the best crossover in this edition of the Crossover Contest? We culled this selection of videos, and NBA.com’s Zettler Clay is providing the written commentary to accompany what you see.
Check out the videos below and vote at the bottom of the post …
NORRIS COLE ON DERRICK ROSE Zettler Says: I know, Derrick Rose was only minutes into his first game back from an ACL tear. Still, as Avon Barksdale accurately summed it up, the game is the game. Norris saw an opportunity and made a quick decision. We’re rooting for a full recovery for Rose, if only for a chance at redemption, because this move is nasty.
JOHN WALL ON TERRENCE ROSS Zettler Says:John Wall hits Terrence Ross with the double. If you were to ask for defining Wall plays to teach to youngsters, this would lead the reel. A stutter step to freeze Ross, then a crisp crossover followed by another, followed by speed to the cup. Great read, timing and execution.
STEPHEN CURRY ON REGGIE JACKSON Zettler Says: There’s nobody else in the NBA that could pull this move off, save for Jamal Crawford and Kevin Durant. Curry’s ability to quickly set his feet after a move combined with his deadly deep aim gives his crossover another element. No spot on the court is safe for any Steph defender.
DERON WILLIAMS ON CHRIS PAUL Zettler Says: Classic end of half isolation clash between two of the league’s best. What gives this play flair is the stealthy rivalry between these two players since they entered the NBA in 2005, one pick behind each other (D-Will was the third pick, Paul fourth). On this night, multiple times, the third pick had the upper hand.
J.R. SMITH ON TRISTAN THOMPSON Zettler Says: This is just Earl Joseph Smith III doing his thing. Thankfully Tristan Thompson took an unnatural fall, which not only made the play pop, but saved his ankle. If he doesn’t hit the deck, his talus is broken. Believe.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Tony Allen has made himself into one of the NBA’s premier defenders, but his aggressiveness on the defensive end went a little too far last month against the Clippers. As Chris Paul drove the lane, Allen reached out to stop him and made contact with Paul’s face. Except Allen used his foot.
Allen served a one-game suspension for the incident. Now Allen is auctioning off the shoe to raise money for a Memphis-based charity. The shoe — autographed by Allen and mounted in a Grizzlies display case — is currently available on eBay to raise money for Youth Villages. Per the eBay description…
To celebrate the holiday season, Allen – the NBA’s Season of Giving Ambassador for the Memphis Grizzlies – is donating the renowned shoe to Youth Villages, a national nonprofit organization headquartered in Memphis. Youth Villages will auction the shoe online as part of an effort to raise $15,000 to buy presents for children receiving help on Youth Villages’ Memphis residential campuses and group homes.
“I’m glad that the shoe will be creating something special for kids in Memphis. Everyone deserves to have a Christmas to remember. I’m glad I can be a part of their memories,” Allen said.
“It’s a one-of-a-kind piece of sports memorabilia that will be an amazing addition to any Grizzlies fan’s collection,” said Richard Shaw, chief development officer at Youth Villages.Starting bid price of $750 will provide holiday gifts for 10 children in Youth Villages’ care. The auction ends Sunday, Dec. 22, 2013.
All proceeds generated from the sale of “The Shoe” will be matched 1:1 from an anonymous donor (up to $10,000) and will be used to ensure that all children away from their families this Christmas at Youth Villages experience the joy of the season.
Foot Locker has been on a roll of late with their hilarious commercials, starring everyone from James Harden and Steph Curry to, more recently, Kyrie Irving. This latest spot for Jordan Brand shows what happened when Chris Paul ostensibly went shopping at Kids Foot Locker for his son, and came away with so much gear that something had to give. In this case, that something turned out to be Blake Griffin‘s locker space… -
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — In terms of popular culture impact, guests on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” last week had their work cut out for them trying to make more noise thanKanye West. So when DeAndre Jordan, Blake Griffin and Chris Paul paid a visit last week, they might not have received as much attention as Yeezy, but they had an entertaining visit and talked about everything from leather jogging pants to “Scandal” to getting calls from new Clips coach Doc Rivers.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — One component of athletes taking trips around the world to promote brands or shoe lines is that there is usually some sort of interaction set up with best local basketball players. Perhaps it’s a game of H-O-R-S-E or a shooting competition, but because the NBA athletes are in their offseasons and don’t want to risk injury, rarely is actual, full-tilt basketball being played. But sometimes, for whatever reason, an athlete gets fired up and then you just can’t turn it off.
In the video here, we see Clippers guard Chris Paul, in China on a trip with Jordan Brand, squaring off against a streetballer known as MoreFree. He decides to challenge CP3 and, well, it doesn’t end well for MoreFree. -
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Prior to the 2012-13 season, after a two-year absence, the Los Angeles Clippers reintroduced a blue alternate uniform, as seen above. It was a great look, and a nice alternate to their usual red and white away/home looks.
Yesterday, the Clips posted a blue-tinted video to their Instagram account with the hashtag “#backinblue,” which would seem to indicate that the blue uniforms (or some permutation) will be returning for another run. And with the battle for Los Angeles in full swing, it certainly can’t hurt to bring in a third look to compete with the Lakers’ “Hollywood Nights” designs…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Over the past few seasons, we’ve seen Clippers F Blake Griffin explode onto the scene not only due to his basketball ability, but also because of his deadpan acting, which he’s flexed in more than a few commercials. (“Uvo, play funk.”)
In this new spot from Foot Locker and Jordan, Griffin teams with his Clippers point guard Chris Paul, as CP3 uncovers the secret of Blake’s ability to make any product sound as though he honestly, truly loves it… -
See, Chris Paul clearly loves Dallas and would enjoy playing in the city if given the chance.
The Los Angeles Clippers’ star ventured up the state of California earlier this week to watch Dallas Cowboys training camp with his son. There are a lot of handshakes and mini-CP3 dances with the Cowboys’ mascot, Rowdy. This is probably all a part of Mark Cuban’s mega-master-plan to get Paul to the Mavs.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — For fans of the Dallas Mavericks, having Mark Cuban as an owner must be nice. No, not every move Cuban and the Mavs make works out perfectly, but at the very least the Mavs try. Where other teams stand pat, the Mavs often make moves and have shown over and over that they are willing to spend some money. If they’re going down, they’re going down swinging.
At the same time, Cuban has frequently shown a willing to be open. He communicates with fans via Twitter and his blog, and regularly pulls back the curtain on the workings of the organization to let fans know the thinking behind decisions.
Over the weekend, Cuban took to his blog to check in with Mavs fans and explain where the Mavs are right now and how they ended up there. Cuban starts with the 2010 season and works his way forward to this summer, where the Mavs had cleared cap space and were planning to make a run at a “max out” free agent. With Chris Paul unavailable, the Mavs instead went after Dwight Howard. According to Cuban, they had a three-hour meeting with Dwight, and as part of their pitch, the Mavs showed him this video they created… -
Cuban adds as a reminder that the video was just a portion of their pitch, an example of the marketing support the Mavs put behind their players.
Since Dwight chose Houston, the Mavs have moved on to the next part of their plan. As Cuban writes…
“If we stay healthy, I think we can have a good team. How good? I don’t make predictions. I do believe that by having a core of players that we can grow and develop with, and cap room in the upcoming season and what we feel is the ability to develop and improve the performance of our players, we are in a good position for this year and for the future. We have been hurt by not having a core of players in place that free agents see as teammates they want to play with. That shouldn’t be the case next year.”