Posts Tagged ‘Marc Gasol’

J.J. Dynamites Clippers In Showdown


VIDEO: James Johnson crushes Willie Green’s layup attempt

When the Clippers marched into Memphis for a Friday night clash, the stakes were obvious. Prior to the contest, defensive stalwart Tony Allen was on the shelf for 21 straight games with a sprained left wrist. But when the Clippers, the Grizzlies’ first-round playoff opponent the last two years, came calling, he wasn’t going to sit out any longer.

The game lived up to its physically demanding, plenty of trash talk billing. Z-Bo, Marc Gasol and Allen made an impact, for sure, but it was the guy who was signed out of the D-League in December who beat the loudest drum.

A man who is no stranger to the spectacular, James Johnson arrived into the Grizz’ locker room December and has been wowing since. He is a nightly highlight machine, giving a hard-hat bunch a creative playmaker from the wing, thus another dimension as they get set to make a playoff push in the second half.

On a night the organization honored him by giving fans a temporary “GRIZZLIES” neck tatoo (Johnson has his son “NAYMIN” inked around his neck), he flat out showed out, executing a play that will be remembered in the Top Plays Theatre for the foreseeable future:


VIDEO: James Johnson gets creative and throws down dunk off backboard

Welcome To The NBA: Vitor Faverani

No matter how well a rookie plays in his first season, there invariably comes a moment where he gets somewhat humbled on the court by an NBA veteran. Here at All Ball, we’ll do our best all season to keep track of these moments, which we’re calling “Welcome to the NBA” …

By Jeff Case

Undrafted rookie big man Vitor Faverani has been a nice find for the Celtics in the season’s early going. He had two solid, early performances, including 13 points and three blocks in the season-opener vs. Toronto and 12 points, 18 rebounds and six blocks against the Bucks on Nov. 1. His minutes have dried up a bit of late — due mostly to the improved play of veterans Brandon Bass and Jared Sullinger — but he logged 27 minutes against the Grizzlies and reigning Defensive Player of the Year Marc Gasol.

Faverani got a good look at why Gasol is one of the more polished offensive post players in the NBA, though, the other night. Gasol catches the ball after setting a pick for Mike Conley, fakes a jump shot and then backs down Faverani. Gasol then turns into the paint and puts up a nice scoop shot under the outstretched arms of Faverani.


VIDEO: Marc Gasol puts a nice post move on rookie Vitor Faverani

Can’t fault Faverani too much here … he played Gasol about as well as you can play him. And, barring something worse than this, his Welcome to the NBA moment has come and gone.

Pau Gasol Loses Bet, Shaves Beard

By Jeff Case

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Pau Gasol is known for his smooth footwork in the low post, a reliable jump shot and, to a lot of Lakers fans, his up-and-down play throughout his 5 1/2 seasons in Los Angeles. Another thing Gasol is well recognized for, perhaps, is his combination of flowing locks and a beard that he’s sported since before the 2005 season.

Gasol’s beard/hair combo last season was pretty tame compared to some of the levels it has gotten to over his years in L.A. For example, check out how he looked when he first arrived in Lakerland in 2008

That look may be a distant memory come 2013-14 as Pau recently had to shave off his beard after losing a bet to his (equally bearded) brother, Marc Gasol of the Grizzlies. As part of Marc and Pau’s Gasol Foundation charity, the pair started a campaign called “The Healthy Competition” that ran from June 10-Aug. 2. Marc and Pau served as coaches, challenging children in L.A. and Memphis, respectively, to get healthy. The children were outfitted with Nike Fuel Bands and the coach whose team burned the most fuel would win the bet for their coach. The stakes of the bet? The loser shaves off his trademark beard, of course.

In the final leaderboard, Marc’s Memphis team edged Pau’s L.A. team, 1,352,639-1,328,320. Being a good sport, Pau Gasol busted out the clippers, shaving cream and a razor and took to YouTube to pony up.

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You can see more of Pau’s beard-shaving exploits on his YouTube channel if you so desire.

And in case you forgot what he looks like beard-less, we’ve got some photos of a clean-shaven Pau for you.

(H/T PBT)

Talk Show: Ricky Rubio

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ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — I first met Ricky Rubio back in 2007, when he was all of 16 years old. He was already playing in Spain’s top league, the ACB, holding his own against grown men. So I’ve followed his career closely since then, and watched with some interest as he’s started to make a name for himself in the NBA with the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Last week I caught up with Ricky in Los Angeles, where he was at an adidas event for his new shoe — the Crazy Light 3, which drops August 1. More than anything, I was surprised at how big Ricky’s shoulders and arms looked. The kid’s growing up (he turns 23 in October) and, for the first time in his career, has been making a concerted effort to hit the weight room to help fend off the physical guards he goes up against on a nightly basis.

The injury bug has bitten the Timberwolves hard the last two seasons, including taking a bite out of Rubio, who missed significant chunks of his first two NBA seasons after tearing his ACL.

Yet Rubio says for the T-Wolves, there are no more excuses: “It’s time for this team to show what we can do.”

ME: So how’s your summer going?

RUBIO: Been good, been good. I’ve been working out. Actually, I rested a little bit, which let my knee finally heal up. So I feel good.

ME: We’re here at this adidas photo shoot. I know last year was your first year wearing adidas, adizero Crazy Light 3 blue-electricity-white (Ricky Rubio) G66521 HEROand now you’ve got a shoe and your own colorway coming out.

RUBIO: They’re great shoes, very light. Actually, I don’t wear a lot of shoes. A lot of NBA players wear like one a game, or something like that. I wore like one pair every two months or something. When they get dirty, I change it, but I don’t want to change it. I don’t like to wear new shoes. I like when the shoe is broken in. I almost only use two or three each season, which means it’s a good type of shoe, you know?

ME: Because it holds up.

RUBIO: Right, because I play a lot of games. And it’s pretty light, which I like. I don’t like to wear a low top, because I kind of twist my ankle, and I don’t like to wear a high-high top, because it stop me from doing some things. So I think it’s the perfect size for how I feel comfortable playing.

ME: Wait, so you wear the same shoe in practice, too? You wear the same shoe every day for like three months?

RUBIO: Yeah, I do. Clayton [Wilson], the guy who is taking care of us and ordering shoes …

ME: The equipment manager?

RUBIO: Yeah, he’s always like, “You need new shoes?” And I’m like, “Not yet.” And he says, “Um…” He was wondering in the beginning, but I told him I’m not going to order new shoes until I feel like the shoes need to change. I like that way.

ME: Last time I sat and talked with you was last summer, when you had just had surgery and you were still on crutches, still icing your leg like five times a day. How long this season did it take you to feel comfortable?

RUBIO: It took me a long time, more than I thought. In the beginning I was playing, and I was ready. My knee was 100 percent, but I wasn’t. I wasn’t feeling in shape, because if you are 9, 10 months out of the game, you can do whatever, but the game speed is just different. So actually, I think it take me a while. I think the Charlotte game, the first time I scored more than 10 points, was actually the first game I feel like I was back, you know? After that I was playing pretty good. Actually, I think it was March, end of March, that I was feeling the best I felt in the NBA. And now that I’m working hard and trying to get stronger legs and all that stuff, I feel pretty good. I’m excited for next season. (more…)

NBA Style: Spotlight on Trendspotting

NBA Style

by The NBA.com Style Crew

The 2013 playoffs have provided many fantastic memories and moments, on and off the court. Players have had a chance to showcase their skills on the biggest stages, and show off their personalities at the podiums. While there have been many unique looks, there have also been a few trends embraced by multiple players. In this spotlight, we’ll take a look at “Stars in Stripes” and the red/pink/orange color scheme that seems to continually pop up in arenas across the country.

As always, keep up with the conversation on Twitter using #NBAStyle.

Mike Conley, featured in last week’s spotlight, pairs a modern beige jacket with a casual black and white striped shirt.

1_Mike Conley_round 2gm5

Carmelo Anthony looks classic in a white sweater with thin red and blue stripes.

2_Game 6 clinch_Carmelo Anthony

(more…)

NBA Style: Spotlight On The Modern Suit

NBA Style
By the NBA.com Style Crew

While many NBA players have different interpretations of high fashion and the latest trends, some are sticking with basic suits, while still mixing it up a bit. Perhaps the most important facet of today’s suit is an ability to break up the pieces and wear them with other items in your wardrobe. Let’s take a look at several different styles, including trends that can become part of any closet. Keep up with the conversation using #NBAStyle.

THE EXPERTLY TAILORED SUIT
Derrick Rose
, Amar’e Stoudemire and Zach Randolph are in favor of finely tailored, slim cuts.

1_Derrick Rose-Game 4

2_Amare Stoudemire_bench (more…)

Marc Gasol Is The Most Interesting Basketball Player In The World

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — He doesn’t shave, he tells his beard when to stop growing.

He once allowed someone to dunk on him just to see how it feels.

He corrects John Hollinger‘s math.

He is Marc Gasol, and he is the most interesting man in the world.

Well, something like that. By now you probably know how the meme goes — playing off the Dos Equis ads, any series of outlandish fictional statements can be applied to a person to brand them as the most interesting person in the world.

If the meme had to spill into the NBA, perhaps we should be surprised that it came at the hands of the internet-savvy Memphis Grizzlies owner Robert Pera. Over the weekend, as his Grizzlies were moving into a 2-1 lead over the Oklahoma City Thunder, Pera took to Twitter and helped stake Gasol’s claim to the title of MIMITW (Most Interesting Man In The World)…

All pretty great. My three best attempts at furthering the meme are at the top of the post.

Can you do better? Leave us your best “Most Interesting” lines in the comments below…

(via B/R)

Watch Out Ref!: Marc Gasol Edition

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — We have nothing against referees here at the All Ball blog, but for whatever reason this blog has been the home of a few cases of anti-ref basketball activity. Just within the last few weeks, there’s been a spate of bad times. For instance:

Unfortunately, we need to check back in with Kennedy, who got jacked up yesterday during the Grizzlies/Thunder game. While chasing after a loose ball, Grizzlies center Marc Gasol grabbed the rock and accidentally plowed into Kennedy…
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Say this for Kennedy: He gets knocked down, but he gets up again. You’re never going to keep him down.

CP3 shows Gasol a move or two

by Zettler Clay

Well, there’s just not much to say about this one other than the obvious: 7-foot-1 centers shouldn’t get caught on the wing with 6-foot point guards. Particularly those named Paul, Chris.


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Happy Valentine’s Day From the Memphis Grizzlies

by Micah Hart

Looking for the right way to tell your loved one how much he/she means to you this Valentine’s Day? I’m pretty sure a card from one of the Memphis Grizzlies is exactly what you are looking for:

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Nicely done Memphis. I choo-choo-choose to watch you play basketball tonight against the Rockets at 8 ET.

H/T Chris Vernon

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