ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Well, not Harry Potter, exactly, but while in Orlando earlier this week, Klay Thompson, Harrison Barnes and Leandro Barbosa from the Golden State Warriors spent some of their off day at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, which is set to open in April at the Universal Studios theme park. As Thompson and Barnes note, they grew up reading the books and couldn’t wait to spend some time in Diagon Alley. Of course, the last thing the Warriors needed was more magic, but it looks like they’ve got it. Alohomora!
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — How impressive are the Golden State Warriors right now? Not only are they steamrolling almost every opponent they go up against, they’re doing it in increasingly impressive ways. Last night in a win against Chicago, for instance, the Warriors were able to score even when two pairs of shoes revolted at the same time.
Check out this play, where Klay Thompson and Draymond Green both stop on a play to deal with loose laces, and instead of burning a timeout, the Warriors just got the ball to Harrison Barnes, who went one-on-three and scored, no sweat.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Warriors forward Harrison Barnes enjoys interacting with his fans, like we saw last year when he opened a post office box just to send and receive mail with them. This year he switched it up a bit, and surprised a bunch of fans with tickets to the Warriors home opener, and then a meet-and-greet after the game. Pretty cool stuff, HB…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — As part of our ongoing attempts to chronicle every time someone in the NBA gets POSTERIZED, in order to have a most perfect Posterized Poll when that time comes, I’m doing my best to keep up with every posterization happening. And this weekend there were a few developments.
To begin with, Harrison Barnes POSTERIZED Dwight Howard. There’s no arguing this one. Also, notice the celebration by the Warriors bench in the background…
There were two other dunks worth noting, although I don’t believe either should qualify for the POSTERIZED Poll. I believe the rules are open to interpretation, however, so I am willing to hear arguments for or against in the comments section.
First, Boston’s Avery Bradley had an awesome dunk yesterday down the stretch against the Spurs. And while it was a thunderous dunk, the closest Spur to the finish is probably LaMarcus Aldridge, and I don’t think we can definitively say that Aldridge got POSTERIZED.
The other play worth considering came in the Thunder/Nuggets game. Russell Westbrook threw down an incredible put-back dunk, over a couple of Nuggets players, most notably Danilo Gallinari. But I am hesitant to consider this an official POSTERIZED play because Gallinari had his back turned. I guess he still got dunked on, but my definition of being posterized is when you are face-to-face with the dunker.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — I don’t think this will qualify in our Crossover Contest, because Courtney Lee doesn’t actually do a crossover dribble, but Harrison Barnes almost definitely breaks something here. During last night’s Golden State/Memphis game, Lee dribbles toward the basket, stops short, and Barnes slams on the breaks. The only problem for Barnes is, one foot stops, and the other just keeps going…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — As we’ve chronicled in this space, Lance Stephenson has done some impressive work on the court the last two seasons, particularly when it comes to flopping. (See here and here, for example.) But his latest maneuver may be his best one yet.
In a game against the Warriors this weekend, Lance ran into a screen set by Harrison Barnes. And in what appears to be an attempt to draw a foul, but in actuality is a play for the ages, Lance Stephenson slapped himself in the face…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Earlier this year I spent a weekend in Des Moines, Iowa, with the D-League’s Iowa Energy. This was my first trip to Des Moines, and I had a lovely time there. Part of the reason I enjoyed my time so much was that before I got there, I got some sightseeing tips from Warriors forward Harrison Barnes, an Iowa native.
So with the Barnes and the Warriors in Iowa to play an exhibition game, it only made sense to have Barnes quiz a teammate — in this case Klay Thompson — and see just how much he knew about some of the “celebrities” produced by Iowa’s capital city, Des Moines.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Warriors forward Harrison Barnes genuinely cares about his fans. And after doing a few autograph sessions in different places, he realized it was easier for the autograph requests to come directly to him. So Barnes rented a post office box in Oakland and put a note on Facebook telling his fans how the process would work — they needed to enclose return postage and a self-addressed envelope, for instance — and noting that this might take some time. “Keep in mind I will be signing when my schedule permits,” HB wrote. “My time is limited because of daily workouts, appearances, travel, Game of Thrones, House of Cards, and video games.”
And then the items started rolling in, and by looks of things on this video, they really are rolling in — like, so much so that HB needed a huge rolling cart to get the stuff to his car. But he keeps on signing. Pretty remarkable stuff…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Welcome to Volume Two of the Crossover Contest, in which we highlight the best of the best (and worst). In the same way that we look at who got dunked on in our All Ball Posterized Poll, in the crossover contest we examine which NBA players have been put in a blender. 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 …
WILL BYNUM ON DEVIN HARRIS, Feb. 22 Zettler: Devin Harris didn’t really stand a chance. As soon as he stepped up, Will Bynum hit him with the stutter dribble. That was enough to set Devin up for the inadvertent Cupid Shuffle. Quick, efficient move by a man with an arsenal of them.
KYRIE IRVING ON THABO SEFOLOSHA, Feb. 26 Zettler: This was unique in that Kyrie Irving provoked Thabo Sefolosha’s (perennial All-NBA defender) fall before he performed the crossover. Irving drove hard right and stopped on a dime, which was enough to send poor Thabo sprawling on all fours and his bench off their seats for the inevitable dagger.
ANDRAY BLATCHE ON TYLER HANSBROUGH, March 10 Zettler (channeling his inner Hubie Brown): See, we know Andray Blatche likes to create like a guard. We’ve seen him hit fancy scoops. We know he’ll dunk it on ya. But now we see that he has the killer — slow, but killer — crossover to turn Tyler Hansbrough in circles and get the finish. Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful.
RUSSELL WESTBROOK ON PATRICK BEVERLEY, March 11 Zettler: Considering the contentious blood between these two, this is classic payback. Patrick Beverley stood too tall for a defensive stance and reached. Russell Westbrook taught with an old-school Zeke lightning cross through the legs. Speed and quickness under control.