ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — In a new ad for adidas and Foot Locker, Washington point guard John Wall sees what lies ahead for him, as his entire future occurs in about 30 seconds. There’s the possibility of great moments (a title, a family) and not so great moments (selling cars, gaining weight), but one redeeming feature of the whole thing: Having a shoe retro’ed. Which is hard to complain about either way.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Marcin Gortat has only been a member of the Washington Wizards for a little over a year, but already he’s made a mark and become something of a fan favorite in D.C. for some of his off court work, such as teaching his teammates how to speak Polish.
(Also, check out this interview where he says the first thing he bought after signing a $60 million contract extension was a $150 fish.)
So, it makes sense that the Wizards would organize a giveaway for their fans involving Gortat. But it may be a bit of a surprise that the item they will be giving away, according to the Washington Post, will be a Gortat action figure!
Besides noting that we need a few of these action figures around the All Ball Nerve Center, let’s add this to the list of innovative giveaways this season, including replica rings and flip-flops, so we can have a swag-off at the end of the season.
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — For a while now, Tony Reali has pulled double duty on ESPN, serving as both the host of “Around The Horn” as well as having a role on “Pardon The Interruption,” where he was been known as “Stat Boy,” the guy who pops up at the end of each show to correct whatever the hosts have gotten wrong.
But Reali is moving on, at least from “PTI,” so on last night’s episode, they replaced Reali with…7-foot-7 former Wizards center Gheorge Muresan? According to their tweet above, it was only for a day. Still, it’s always great to see Gheorge doin’ work…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — One of my favorite moments during last night’s Pacers/Wizards game came toward the end of the third quarter. The Wiz were trying to make a run and get back in the game, and as they started pushing, the crowd there in D.C. started getting into the game. And at one stoppage in play, as Paul George walked past the scorer’s table, a couple of bros in the front row let George have it. (I couldn’t find room to fit this into last night’s 24-Second Thoughts. :( ) George, not one to back down, went right back and them, which caused these bros to stand and redouble their efforts, and George turned away. These sports bros may have gotten the last word, but Paul George got the win…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Before the playoffs started, I was assigned to write a preview of the Bulls/Wizards series for NBA.com. Once the series was set, I stayed up all night looking at stats and game histories and writing this look at the series. As you can see at the end, I chose the Bulls to win the series in 6 games.
That did not happen. Last night the Washington Wizards beat the Chicago Bulls in Game 5 of the series to advance, 4-1. However, it turns out that I was not the only person who was wrong in choosing the Bulls to win the series. As the Wizards pointed out on Twitter last night, almost everyone at ESPN picked against them. Bet that won’t happen in the next round…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Lakers guard Nick Young has been one of the few bright spots this season for Lakers fans. The Lakers may have missed the postseason, but Young, who calls himself Swaggy P, has provided a steady stream of entertainment, both on the court and off the court.
During last night’s game against the Grizzlies, Young drove baseline and completed a 360 layup. It was an awesome shot, the kind of singular, creative, athletic move that we’ve come to expect from Young. But as we look back through Young’s history, we realized the 360 is a staple of Young’s arsenal.
So we put together a Swaggy sampler of some of Nick Young’s greatest spinning hits. Vote for the swaggiest of them all in the poll at the bottom…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Washington Wizards center Marcin Gortat was born and raised in Łódź, Poland, which is why he’s known as The Polish Hammer. To celebrate his background, this weekend the Wizards held a Polish Heritage night hosted by Gortat. Over 500 Polish fans turned out, as well as a Polish cheerleading troupe and Poland’s ambassador to the United States.
To get his teammates involved, Gortat filmed this video where he teaches the Wizards some relevant Polish words and phrases…
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — We’ve seen a lot of Wizards big man Kevin Seraphin this season on the All Ball Blog. He may still be developing on the court, but off the court, he’s clearly capable of producing some terrific highlights.
This latest entry comes to us courtesy of the D.C. Sports Bog, and it shows Seraphin teaming up with John Wall to play a game of $25,000 Pyramid. Which is awesome. -
There might be some cultural differences between Wall and Seraphin — for instance, Wall didn’t seem to immediately seize upon creme brulee as a clue — but the two of them obviously have a connection. For a bonus clip, check out this footage from last year of Wall and Seraphin watching a game together… -
ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Last weekend in New Orleans, John Wall performed what was called the “Dunk of the Night” en route to walking away as the evening’s big winner. Even though it was only six years ago, the last time the dunk contest was in New Orleans was in 2008, and the winner of that dunk contest was Dwight Howard. These days Dwight’s dunks are more of the power variety, but yesterday at Rockets practice, Dwight showed that he can still get creative. James Hardengot in on it as well, but Dwight threw down a couple of nasty dunks, including this first one which left teammate Chandler Parsons speechless…