Posts Tagged ‘Joakim Noah’

NBA People Throwing First Pitches (Pt. 1)

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — All summer long, we’ve seen NBA players throwing out the ceremonial first pitches at baseball games. Not just major league games, and not just from active NBA players, but from NBA-related folks (coaches, retired players) all over the place.

I’ve been collecting these videos for a few months, and now we present them, all of them, in several parts, because there’s a lot to get through.

And so, here are a bunch of NBA people throwing out the first pitch at baseball games…

PART ONE | PART TWO | PART THREE

JOAKIM NOAH
There has been a strong Bulls presence on the mounds. We catch Joakim first at a White Sox game, where he took two tries to get it right. Because it’s important to get it right.


VIDEO: Noah White Sox

Then, a few days later, Noah tried it again across town at Wrigley Field for a Cubs game, where things went much better…


VIDEO: Noah Cubs

PAU GASOL AND NIKOLA MIROTIC
Two new Bulls stopped by a White Sox game and tossed consecutive first pitches. Both went pretty well…
(more…)

Joakim Noah throws first pitch(es) at White Sox game

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — There have been a bunch of NBA players throwing out ceremonial first pitches at baseball games the last few weeks, but I’ve been trying not to post each one individually in the hopes of later putting together a round-up of all the different first pitches.

But we had a first pitch earlier this week that I just couldn’t overlook. Bulls center Joakim Noah tossed the first pitch this week at a Chicago White Sox game. And after warming up a bit in a tunnel under the stadium, Joakim ran onto the field and…fired a pitch way low and outside.

But all is not lost! Instead, Joakim asked for another try, and this time lobbed a strike down the middle. There’s a reason you four balls to throw three strikes…


VIDEO: Noah pitch

NBA players dominate kids

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — NBA players are the best of the best, elite athletes who have reached the peak of their sport, and perhaps even the top of the sporting world. They have honed their craft and skills to reach their place among the greats, and they will do whatever it takes to prove that dominance against any opponent, no matter the size or challenge that opponent presents.

But as we’ve seen several times the last few weeks, as good as NBA players are against their peers, they are absolutely dominant against children. Seriously, kids, don’t challenge NBA players.

For instance, here’s what happened when this kid recently tried to defend JR Smith one-on-one…

Or how about Jazz forward Jeremy Evans? He actually took on two kids, a boy and a girl, and broke one kid’s ankles then dunked on the other one…

And then there’s Chicago’s Joakim Noah, who takes on an army of kids and dispatches all of them…

But fear not, kids! Because every once in a while, even if it is a really rare while, one of the kids stands up for the rest and shows an NBA player that maybe they aren’t quite infallible. Just ask Nick Young

Joakim Noah was Born To Run

By Lang Whitaker, NBA.com

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — One of the things that makes Bulls center Joakim Noah such an effective center is his mobility; it’s hard for most NBA players to keep up with him on the break, much less other big men. Watching him get out and run the floor, and particularly when he has the ball in his hands, there’s an element of danger there. Is he going to dribble the ball off his foot? Is he going to throw a pass out of bounds? But he generally makes the correct plays, which is why it’s so much fun to watch Noah run the floor. Rob Mahoney at SI.com put together this supercut of Noah on the break, set to, appropriately, Bruce Springsteen‘s “Born To Run”…


VIDEO: Noah was born to run

(via The Point Forward)

Big Weekend For The Mutombo Finger Wag

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — I grew up in Atlanta during the ’90s, a time that coincided with the run of Dikembe Mutombo as an Atlanta Hawk. Mutombo never really developed a dominant offensive post game, he was terrific on defense. He got dunked on from time to time, yes, but that was because he tried to block any shot that came near the rim. And when he did get his hands on a shot attempt, Mutombo generally turned that shot around pretty quickly. And then came the crowning glory: The Finger Wag.

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It was such a prevalent maneuver that my friends and I started using it in traffic to express our displeasure with other drivers. It was cheeky, but ultimately non-threatening. Also, it was awesome.

Even though Mutombo retired a few seasons ago, the finger wag remains relevant. Just yesterday, for instance we got two displays of the Mutombo finger wag. First Amar’e Stoudemire delivered one after blocking Cleveland’s Tristan Thompson

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And then we saw one from the stands, as Joakim Noah‘s dad, Yannick, dropped one following a block from Joakim that caused a Miami 24-second violation…

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Mutombo may be gone. The finger wag will never die.

Yannick Noah Is A Huge Fan Of His Son

Joakim Noah is a man of animation. News flash. But he had to get it from somewhere, right?

On Sunday, we got an insight into Noah’s fiery nature when his father Yannick Noah was interviewed by Lisa Salters during Sunday’s matchup between the Heat and Bulls. He was a willing participant, answering questions while keeping his eye on the game. Slowly, the steadiness of his replies lessened, until he finally lost it and stopped the interview to give the Bulls, rather his son, a standing ovation.

It stands simply as one of the better moments of the year.


VIDEO: Yannick Noah can’t contain himself during interview

After the game, fresh off an OT victory for Chicago, Salters asked Joakim about his pops:


VIDEO: Joakim talks about his father’s passion after the Heat-Bulls game

Detroit Pistons Mascot Gets Sweet Revenge Against Joakim Noah

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — A few months back we caught up with Detroit Pistons mascot Hooper as he had a very bad weekend. After first having a run-in with Andray Blatche and the Nets, Robin Lopez and the Blazers also had their way with Hooper.

But last night, Hooper seemed to draw some measure of revenge against Bulls center Joakim Noah. During pregame warmups, Hooper got on Joakim’s level and challenged him to a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors. This footage is a bit inconclusive, but it appears as though Hooper goes paper while Noah goes rock. Classic move by Hooper.

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This had no long-lasting effects on Noah, apparently, who went out and turned in his second triple-double in his last three games. After the game, leaving the floor, he must have felt as if he’d conquered the Pistons.

But not if Hooper was going to have anything to do with it…

joakimhooper

It was all enough to lead Hooper to talk a little Twitter trash…

Joakim, Jimmy Butler Won’t Be Stopped


VIDEO: Joakim Noah was a diming fool against the Knicks Sunday

The Chicago Bulls don’t want our pity. Despite being hit hard with injuries and attrition the last two seasons, they continue to make it their business to repel any “that’s OK, there’s always next year” sentiments fans are wont to throw their way. And these days, fresh off ripping the Knicks at home for their ninth win in 10 games, business is good.

For Joakim Noah, it was a historic performance. He recorded his fifth triple-double. By halftime, the deed was almost done, as he was two rebounds shy of the mark. His 14 assists were the most ever by a Bulls center, and the most by a center in the NBA since 1978.

His doings could have easily been the talk of the game, but not so fast, says Jimmy Butler. In the first quarter, he poked the ball out of Carmelo Anthony’s hands. After dashing toward the sideline to save the loose pill to the hands of Kirk Hinrich, things got a bit tricky for Jimmy.

But fear not, he had a solution:


VIDEO: Jimmy Butler runs through the stands to get back on the court

Rubio Racks Up On A Wild Night Of Sharing


VIDEO: Ricky Rubio runs wild on the Pacers’ vaunted defense

Wednesday night was a time of giving in the Association, as Joakim Noah, Ricky Rubio and Kemba Walker tallied career highs in dimes in three different North American regions.

North of the border in Toronto, Noah was generous early and often, feeding cutting and spot-up teammates 12 times for a basket, including a behind-the-back two hopper from the middle of the paint to the corner on a fast break.

Video: Watch Joakim Noah’s 13 assists against the Raptors

In the Southeast, Bobcats guard Walker took another step in his evolution from a shoot-first point to on-court chef. Using his ball-on-a-string dribble, Kemba carved the Pistons’ D with kick-outs to open shooters set up by a crisp two-man game with Al Jefferson. Reserve point guard Ramon Sessions recorded 10 assists of his own. (Further down on the map, John Wall weaved pinpoint passes through the Hawks in Atlanta for 12 in a win).

Video: Watch Kemba Walker’s 16 assists against the Pistons

But the facilitator of the night goes to the Spaniard in the Midwest. Rubio got busy to the tune of 17 assists, dishing a steady diet to Kevin Love (42 points) and Corey Brewer and Ronny Turiaf. He controlled the pill like a wand, harrying the Pacers seemingly with ease.

Video: Watch Ricky Rubio’s 17 assists against the Pacers

His abuse of Paul George and Roy Hibbert in this highlight might be the best Rubio playmaking moment of the season:


VIDEO: Ricky Rubio fakes out Paul George and Roy Hibbert for the dump-off

By no means are these the only superb givers on the night. Rajon Rondo and Trey Burke collected 10 dimes each, James Harden one-upped them with 11 and Kendall Marshall shared in 16 buckets. Marshall has seven games this season of 14 or more assists, tying Chris Paul for the NBA lead. He’s only played 25 games.

Even Phoenix’s P.J. Tucker got in on the milestone act, tying a career high with six helpers.

Clippers Cap Sunday’s Bona Fide Jam Fest

Every night, the NBA yields a jaw-dropping play, or 10. But certain nights give you more. With “only” eight games on Sunday’s slate, the leapers — particularly in Brooklyn — loosened their limbs and decided to occupy more space on the Dunk HQ and Top Plays Theater. From All-Stars to bench warmers to the guys in L.A., many hoopers around the Association ascended high and crashed hard:


VIDEO: Poster dunks abound from a eight-game Sunday in the NBA