Posts Tagged ‘Miami Heat’

A recent history of NBA players writing open letters

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — It’s so hard to say goodbye to yesterday. And that’s never more clearly felt than of late, as we are currently in the midst of a time of change in the NBA. Free agency has seen a bunch of NBA players change franchises and cities, and while at this point we’re used to seeing guys move cities at the drop of a hat, it’s still often difficult for a player to leave behind the fans and people who have helped them reach their current status. So how better to reach out directly and let people know exactly how you feel than via an open letter?

The open letter is not a new form — athletes on the move have done things such as taking out ads in newspapers to publish open letters for years. But the advent of the internet has allowed for new forms and forums.

Here are some of the letters we’ve seen over the last few weeks…

KEVIN DURANT
In a letter on The Players’ Tribune announcing his departure from Oklahoma City for Golden State, Durant said he will always miss the relationships he built in Oklahoma City…

I’m from Washington, D.C. originally, but Oklahoma City truly raised me. It taught me so much about family as well as what it means to be a man. There are no words to express what the organization and the community mean to me, and what they will represent in my life and in my heart forever. The memories and friendships are something that go far beyond the game. Those invaluable relationships are what made this deliberation so challenging.

It really pains me to know that I will disappoint so many people with this choice, but I believe I am doing what I feel is the right thing at this point in my life and my playing career.

I will miss Oklahoma City, and the role I have had in building this remarkable team. I will forever cherish the relationships within the organization — the friends and teammates that I went to war with on the court for nine years, and all the fans and people of the community. They have always had my back unconditionally, and I cannot be more grateful for what they have meant to my family and to me.

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Curry, Cavaliers top NBA merchandise list

OAKLAND, CA - JUNE 19: Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors shoots against Tristan Thompson #13 of the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game Seven of the 2016 NBA Finals on June 19, 2016 at Oracle Arena in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2016 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

ALL BALL NERVE CENTERStephen Curry may have lost in the NBA Finals, but he remains on top in at least one metric for popularity: jersey sales.

In the newest rankings of most popular NBA jerseys, based on overall sales on NBAStore.com from April through June, Curry remains in the number one spot, where he’s been since the end of the 2014-15 season. Also in the top five are Cleveland’s LeBron James, recently retired Kobe Bryant, Kyrie Irving and Klay Thompson.

Meanwhile, when it comes to team sales, fans are clearly celebrating the recent title for the Cavaliers, as Cleveland is atop the most popular team merchandise list for the first time since January 2015. The Cavs are followed by the Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers, Chicago Bulls and Oklahoma City Thunder.

Also worth noting, Andre Iguodala (No. 14) makes his debut on the jerseys list while teammate Draymond Green (No. 7) earns his highest ranking ever. Also, San Antonio’s Tim Duncan (No. 11) and Portland’s Damian Lillard (No. 13) place for the first time since June 2015 and April 2015, respectively.

Top 15 Most Popular NBA Jerseys:
1. Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
2. LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers
3. Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers
4. Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers
5. Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors
6. Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
7. Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors
8. Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder
9. Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio Spurs
10. Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls
11. Tim Duncan, San Antonio Spurs
12. Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat
13. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
14. Andre Iguodala, Golden State Warriors
15. Kristaps Porzingis, New York Knicks

Top 10 Most Popular Team Merchandise:
1. Cleveland Cavaliers
2. Golden State Warriors
3. Los Angeles Lakers
4. Chicago Bulls
5. Oklahoma City Thunder
6. San Antonio Spurs
7. Miami Heat
8. Toronto Raptors
9. New York Knicks
10. Boston Celtics

Toronto Raptors mascot attends city council meeting

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The Toronto Raptors advanced out of the first round by the skin of their teeth, and last night began their series against the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. To celebrate their first second round appearance since 2001, Toronto’s City Council recognized the efforts of the Raptors, and Toronto’s mascot, The Raptor, showed up and caused all kinds of trouble…

Jeremy Lin does his best Michael Jordan shrug

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — One of the most iconic moments in NBA history came during the 1992 NBA Finals, when Michael Jordan opened the festivities with 6 three-pointers during the first half of Game 1. After making a couple of shots, Jordan knocked down a three over Blazers’ forward Cliff Robinson and had no response remaining other than just to shrug…

mjshrug

Fast-forward to last night in Charlotte, where Hornets guard Jeremy Lin had to force a three-pointer against the Miami Heat with the shot clock running down. His shot went in, off the glass. How do you respond to something like that? Lin looked to the sideline, where Hornets owner Michael Jordan himself was sitting, and broke out his best MJ imitation…

The NBA reacts to the NCAA championship game


VIDEO: Jenkins shot

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Last night’s NCAA Championship game between North Carolina and Villanova came down to a game-winning buzzer beater by Villanova’s Kris Jenkins, just seconds after an incredible game-tying three from UNC’s Marcus Paige. With the NBA taking a final night off before the sprint to the playoffs, plenty of NBA players tuned in to the big finale and reacted on social media…

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Wade crashes Kobe’s postgame news conference

By Jeff Case

Just seven games remain in the Kobe Bryant farewell tour (and only two more in Los Angeles). Last night marked the final showdown between Bryant and Miami Heat shooting guard Dwyane Wade, which Bryant’s crew won in overtime thanks to youngster Julius Randle‘s hook shot.

Afterward, Kobe did his traditional news conference … and got an unexpected guest as Wade crashed it.

Fast-forward to the 8:40 or so mark below to see a classic exchange between the two future Hall of Famers …


VIDEO: Wade crashes Kobe’s news conference

A decade of the NBA on Twitter

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Today is Twitter’s tenth birthday, and over the last decade the social media platform has become an invaluable tool to use while following the NBA. Not only can fans and teams interact in real time, but NBA players and front office members have also taken to Twitter as a way to communicate with fans.

So, to celebrate Twitter’s tenth birthday, we got into the wayback machine and checked out some of our favorite NBA people’s first tweets…

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Dwyane Wade and Vanilla Ice perform “Ice Ice Baby”

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — At the Miami Heat’s recent family festival, the Heat brought in ’80s rapper Vanilla Ice to perform his former hit “Ice Ice Baby.” We already knew that Dwyane Wade has a hard time resisting the call of nostalgia, so maybe we shouldn’t be surprised that once Vanilla Ice started rapping, D-Wade just couldn’t help joining in…

Miami Heat mascot attempts to set long jump record

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — First of all, we should wish a happy birthday to Miami Heat mascot Burnie, who celebrated his birthday over the weekend. And to commemorate the occasion, Burnie had several other mascots over and tried to perform a flip over them. At least Burnie had a soft landing?

Mascot jump world record jump #Burnie. You're welcome

A video posted by Steve Conklin (@stevieconklin) on

Pro golfer sinks chip from halfcourt

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — We’ve seen the occasional fan at an NBA game take the court during a break in play and make a halfcourt shot to win some cash, but how about knocking in a golf shot from midcourt? That’s what happened earlier this week in Miami, where pro golfer Matt Kuchar took a wedge to midcourt and chipped a plastic golf ball off the glass and in.

https://platform.vine.co/static/scripts/embed.js

Even more impressive? He did it not once but twice, and generated some money for charity in the process…