Posts Tagged ‘Oklahoma City Thunder’

Kevin Durant is better at basketball than baseball

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant is a former NBA MVP, a guy who can do pretty much anything on a basketball court. But as we saw this weekend, while playing in Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman‘s Celebrity Softball Game, Durant’s outfield skills could seem to use a little work…


VIDEO: Durant Softball

MUSCLEWATCH 2015 (Summer Edition)

ALL BALL NERVE CENTERMUSCLEWATCH traditionally makes its debut each fall as NBA teams assemble for training camp. But sometimes the muscles just can’t be ignored, as has been the case thus far this summer.

But first! What, you may ask, is MUSCLEWATCH? Basically, it began decades ago when my friend Matt and I noticed our local paper would always report that players had gained 15 pounds of MUSCLE in the offseason. No matter the sport, it was never 12 pounds, never 16, never 9, never 18, but seemed to always be 15 pounds of muscle. So we began keeping an eye on the papers looking for references to the magic 15 pounds of MUSCLE. Eventually, MUSCLEWATCH became about more than just the 15 pounds of muscle and more about guys who had either gained or lost a lot of weight. Previous winners include Thad Young and Rudy Gay.

Whenever you come across MUSCLEWATCH news, please let me know! You can either email me via the link in the header above, or you can send me a tweet, and make sure you use the hashtag #MUSCLEWATCH.

Anyway, with Summer Leagues happening around the NBA the last few weeks, I’ve been getting MUSCLEWATCH reports on Twitter, and I felt that today would be a good day to round them up for posterity.

Let’s actually begin a few weeks back, as prospects were preparing for the NBA Draft. Here we see Willie Cauley-Stein, days before being drafted by the Sacramento Kings, sit down for an interview with ESPN’s Henry Abbott. Early on in this interview, Cauley-Stein mentions gaining 20 pounds of MUSCLE since his college season ended, a staggering figure by any account. Ace interviewer that he is, Abbott seizes on this tidbit and tries to get some details from Cauley-Stein about this important MUSCLEWATCH moment…

My favorite moment of the interview? Probably when Abbott asks Cauley-Stein if he knows who I am, and Cauley-Stein responds with an actual shrug…

Screen Shot 2015-07-14 at 9.54.17 AM

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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Celtics forward James Young has also made MUSCLEWATCH news, although he may be employing some fuzzy math. According to initial reports, Young had put on the magic 15 pounds of MUSCLE…

That’s when the controversy starts. One report says Young apparently gained 20 pounds over the last year, with a 10-pound burst of weight coming more recently?

Or maybe it’s 15 pounds plus 5 more?

Either way, Young is clearly aiming to make a MUSCLEWATCH name for himself heading into the season.

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An early MUSCLEWATCH championship candidate is clearly Oklahoma City’s Mitch McGary, who has reportedly shed 30 pounds…

According to McGary, the weight loss is a result of several factors…

McGary credits the weight loss to cooking classes, a healthier diet and rigorous workouts. By eating better and transforming his body, McGary believes he’ll put himself in a better position to stay healthy and play the best basketball of his life.

“I’m sick of being injured and not being able to play at full strength 100 percent,” McGary said. “So this summer was really key for me. I stayed in Oklahoma City and just been working my tail off to get into shape.”

“You were always eating at your parents’ house, and then you go and start living on the pizza and wings diet in college, man,” McGary said. “It’s not cool not knowing how to cook for yourself when you go home and you’re trying to eat out every night. I’d rather just stay home, cook myself up some chicken, some fish, and have a nice dinner at home.”

After only a few months trying his hand at cooking, McGary now proudly shares his creations with fans on social media and jokingly boasts of being a beast in the kitchen.

“Man, I’m nice,” McGary said. “They call me ‘Chef.’”

I think a Mitch McGary cooking show is something the world needs. Congratulations to Chef McGary!

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Down in New Orleans, we have a few MUSCLEWATCH notes. First of all, Tyreke Evans has allegedly dropped weight, according to new Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry

Also, guard Eric Gordon is just a few pounds behind Evans…

Also, as always, thanks to the Pelicans for using the proper #MUSCLEWATCH hashtag on their official Twitter account…

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The Timberwolves may be a young team still building, but forward Shabazz Muhammad is trying to grab a MUSCLEWATCH crown right now. According to the T-Wolves, Muhammad is reuniting with a legendary MUSCLEWATCH figure…

We first met “Crazy Frank” last season, back when he was referred to as “Hell’s Trainer.” Muhammad says he’s planning to lose more weight, which seems like a foregone conclusion.

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Some odds and ends…Bulls GM Gar Forman says Jimmy Butler has put on some weight…

Lakers forward Julius Randle is shedding bad weight while adding good weight…

Anthony Bennett has done serious MUSCLEWATCH work through the years…

Dante Exum is off to a promising start…

And finally…we don’t have any concrete figures, but Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo looks like he’s putting in time in the weight room…

Deep thoughts with Kevin Durant

ALL BALL NERVE CENTERKevin Durant has always been skinny. And while he’s now grown into that frame and made it work for him, he once told me that as a child and teenager, he tried (in vain) to put on weight by eating massive amounts of food, including milkshakes. So I like to think Durant’s new commercial for Sonic that debuted last night is rooted in some sort of reality — maybe, in his quietest moments, Durant really does daydream about candy slushes. Which makes me think…nerds, that’s a funny name…


VIDEO: Durant Sonic

Russell Westbrook loves Taylor Swift

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — When your season is over and you’re driving around in your car with the sunroof open and the windows down and the weather is nice and you’re feeling pretty good and that new Taylor Swift song comes on the radio and you are kinda nodding your head and starting to feel the beat and then Taylor starts singing, what exactly are you supposed to do?

If you’re Russell Westbrook, you sing along with her. Take it away, Russ…

BAD BLOOD!!!! @taylorswift .. Banger!!!!!

A video posted by Russell Westbrook (@russwest44) on

Russell Westbrook recommends Pitch Perfect 2

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — What do you do when you’re an NBA players and your team is out of the playoffs? Why not go to the movies? This is apparently what Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook did last night, as he not only tweeted that he saw and enjoyed the forthcoming film Pitch Perfect 2, but Russ also posted a photo of himself with his “girls,” the Bellas.

Kevin Durant stars in new commercials for Sonic

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — One of the annual traditions of postseason basketball is companies rolling out new commercials starring various NBA players. The drive-in restaurant chain Sonic just dropped a couple of new commercials starring Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant. I’m guessing they assumed these would air during Thunder playoff games, but injuries brought the Thunder’s season to an early end. Still, funny stuff from KD…


VIDEO: Durant Sonic one-on-one


VIDEO: Durant slush dunk

(via TNLP)

Thunder fans greet players at the airport

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — It was a disappointing season for the Oklahoma City Thunder — injuries robbed them of their expected lineups throughout the season, and despite a valiant effort that came down to the last day of the season, the Thunder just missed making the playoffs.

While the season may have been a disappointment, the fans in Oklahoma City wanted to show the team they appreciated the effort the Thunder showed this season, so they met the team in the middle of the night at the airport when they got home from their final game of the season…


VIDEO: Thunder Airport

Kobe has some words for Westbrook’s haters

ALL BALL NERVE CENTERRussell Westbrook has been playing out of his mind the last few weeks, single-handedly keeping the Oklahoma City Thunder’s playoff hopes alive. His most recent big game came Sunday against the Pacers, when Westbrook finished with 54 points, 9 rebounds and 8 assists. Westbrook scored that 54 points on 43 field goal attempts, although he did make almost half of his shots (he finished 21-43). So while that 54-9-8 line looks great, some people pointed out that maybe Westbrook took too many shots.

But maybe we should listen to someone who understands not only volume shooting but also deflecting criticism: Kobe Bryant

Russell Westbrook gives his All-Star MVP car to single mom

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — When Russell Westbrook was named the MVP of the All-Star Game back in February, his prize was a new car, courtesy of Kia. Once he got back to Oklahoma City, Westbrook realized that he could put this car to better use. So, Westbrook got in touch with Oklahoma City’s Sunbeam Family Services and surprised Kerstin Gonzales, a 19-year-old mother of two, by giving her his new car.

I could write more about this but really, just watch this video. As unbelievable as Westbrook has been this season, this might be his best moment yet…


VIDEO: Westbrook car

Steven Adams has some banking tips for you

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Oklahoma City big man Steven Adams hails from New Zealand, where they speak English but have a collection of their own phrases and sayings. These are obscure enough that when Adams breaks them out in this new ad for an Oklahoma bank, we need subtitles to keep up with him. Adams seems kind of presidential in this spot, doesn’t he?


VIDEO: Adams bank

(via CBS)