ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Just yesterday we checked in with Michael Jordan at his eponymous basketball camp, where we saw that he still has a sweet shooting stroke. Well, today video has emerged of MJ at that same camp, teaming up with a camper and playing a two-on-two game of hot shot against another camper and his partner, gulp, NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard. It really gets going around the four-minute mark…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Rob Dyrdek is involved in many things — he’s a skater and a businessman among other things. But Dyrdek might be best known as a TV show host, with his show “Ridiculousness” still airing regularly on MTV. Previously, “Rob Dyrdek’s Fantasy Factory” was in heavy rotation on MTV, a show where Dyrdek and his pals basically got into misadventures inside a gigantic warehouse filled with toys. With a seventh season supposedly being taped now, yesterday Dyrdek post a photo of a celebrity visit with the caption, “Mega Ballin with the NBA Champion and the Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard at the Factory today.”
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The NBA Finals shifted irrevocably when Gregg Popovich inserted Boris Diaw into the San Antonio Spurs’ starting lineup for Game 3. After two games that were rather close, including a Miami win in Game 2, Diaw helped space the floor and move the ball, and the Spurs won three straight games in decisive fashion to win the championship. Kawhi Leonard may have been the Finals MVP, but Diaw was unarguably crucial to what the Spurs accomplished.
This summer, Diaw became a free agent, and without much drama he agreed to a three-year extension to remain a member of the Spurs. He announced the extension via Instagram with a photo of “GO SPURS GO” spelled out on a beach…
Then yesterday, Diaw actually signed the contract…while on a boat. As Diaw wrote in the caption, “Could i find a better place to sign my extension with the spurs? #gospursgo” No, I don’t think you could, Boris.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — During last year’s NBA Finals, I did a post about Spurs fans getting elaborate haircuts featuring their favorite Spurs players. You read that right: Spurs fans were getting images of different Spurs players shaved into their hair. I even got on the phone and spoke to barber Rob the Original, who explained how the whole thing works.
One year later, the trend doesn’t seem to be slowing down. Here are a few recent pics shared by Rob, including an ornate Kawhi Leonard pic and a Tim Duncan portrait…
Also, another barber in San Antonio, Joe the Barber, posted these videos showing off some of his fresh Spurs cuts…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — NBA players are just like anyone else, and end up celebrating Halloween by dressing up in wacky costumes. Here’s a sampling of images they’ve shared of them in costume via various social media thus far…
Serge Ibaka as Coming To America‘s Prince Akeem, and girlfriend Keri Hilson as Lisa McDowell…
The creator of the Horry Scale, Micah Hart, has moved on from NBA.com-land. Still, his brainchild will live on. Now, only two days into the season, we have our first candidate of 2012-13 in Tony Parker.
For those that are new around these parts, the Horry scale examines a game-winning buzzer-beater (GWBB) in the categories of difficulty, game situation (was the team tied or behind at the time?), importance (playoff game or garden-variety Clippers-Nets game?), and celebration, and gives it an overall grade on a scale of 1-5 Robert Horrys, who is kind of the patron saint of last-second clutchiness.
For longtime Spurs fans, it might have been sweeter than usual to see Parker nailing a game-winning jump shot, if only because it wasn’t all that long ago that many questioned if Parker could add a reliable jump shot to his dangerous dribble-drive game.
How does Mr. Parker’s shot Thursday stack up? Let’s take a look.
As mentioned above, this is a now-routine shot for Parker — which was something you couldn’t always say about his outside game. We’d rate this one a medium difficulty, though, seeing as how last season’s shotblocking king, Serge Ibaka, was in the neighborhood and wasn’t that far behind in getting a hand on the ball. The shot could have been a lot tougher, though, had OKC All-Star Russell Westbrook not gotten lost on the pass from Danny Green to Parker, something that Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith took Westbrook to task for on “Inside the NBA.”
This was the second game of the season for San Antonio and OKC’s season-opener, so the importance would seem muted. There is, of course, the fact that these were the teams in last season’s West finals … and that OKC came back from an 0-2 hole to vanquish the Spurs … and that these squads remain among the West favorites again. This game adds another chapter to the overall lore of the rivalry and may end up mattering come season’s end. The importance factor, then, is semi-high with a chance of super-high later in the season.
Very Spurs-like: The always-loyal San Antonio fans go nuts, Parker lets out a celebratory yell, Tim Duncan gets him in a loving headlock, Stephen Jackson comes over to bask in the moment, coach Gregg Popovich has a look of “welp” on his face and the Spurs head giddily to the locker room . Perfectly matched to the importance of the game.
3½ Horrys. It’s a well-executed shot and Parker proves that his game has plenty of range. The rivalry factor with OKC colors things and the potential future impact of this game to the West hierarchy beefs up the rating from what it would be were it any other game or teams (it’d probably be like 2 stars, IMO, if that were the case).