The Manimal, pickaxes, sweet new Nuggets unis — win win win.
Class back in session so I up’t it a grade
Two years the Dwayne Wayne became the Dwyane Wade
Please don’t start me
I’m like Gnarls Barkley meets Charles Barkley
I’m pop the barkers, I’m hood like parkers
While you all was in limbo I raised the bar up
— Kanye West, The Glory (2007)
“He’s not throwing behind-the-back passes, he’s not doing tomahawk jams, he’s not doing anything that’s very flashy. He’s just a very unassuming guy who goes about his job, and the next thing you know he’s got 23 points and 20 rebounds.”
— Veteran NBA coach, Byron Scott, on the plainness and dominance of Tim Duncan
Called up the homies and I’m askin’ y’all
Which park, are y’all playin’ basketball?
Get me on the court and I’m trouble
Last week messed around and got a triple double.
Freakin’ brothers every way like M.J.
I can’t believe, today was a good day.
— Ice Cube, It Was A Good Day (Remix)
“I didn’t think anyone was capable of doing what Michael has done to us. He is the most exciting, awesome player in the game today. I think it’s just God disguised as Michael Jordan.”
— Larry Bird
Michael Jordan looked to capitalize on his Rookie of the Year campaign during the 1985-86 season. Things started off swimmingly with a wins over the Cavaliers and Pistons. In the third game of the season at Golden State Jordan broke his foot. The second year star would be sidelined for months.
Meanwhile, the Boston Celtics were fielding the greatest team ever. Danny Ainge, Larry Bird, Dennis Johnson, Kevin McHale, Robert Parish and Bill Walton off the bench. They were a dominant team that tallied an incredible 67-15 regular season record and an even more remarkable 40-1 record in the Boston Garden.
After his injury Michael was encouraged to sit out the rest of the season but against doctors wishes he decided to test his foot. At the tail end of the season the Bulls gave him limited playing minutes and he played in the final 15 games of the season. Chicago squeaked into the playoffs with a 30-52 record. Their first round opponent, the Boston Celtics.
In the first game of the series Michael scored 49 but Boston’s team was too much and C’s won 123-104. This was only the appetizer. For Game 2 the Bulls returned to the Garden and MJ put on a show. He set a playoff record by scoring a dizzying 63 points against the team. It took two overtimes but Boston would pull out the victory 135-131.
“Michael was doing so much and so well, I found myself just wanting to stop and watch him — and I was playing.”
— John Paxson
(Source: Sports Illustrated)
Speaking of “The Iron Leg”, Nike has created a custom set of Air Force 1 designs for the German legend. The design features the Dallas Mavericks’ team colors, Dirk Nowitzki’s jersey number and the date Dallas won the NBA Finals. This is all topped off a detail of his signature move, “The Iron Leg”, that crazy one-legged off balance fadeaway. You know the move, “Here’s Dirk and he’s… Ready to shoot, Jack.”
The Iron Legman is the new Jumpman.
It’s finally here, the NBA playoffs. Seems funny to say “finally” after a lockout shortened season but these past few weeks of the regular season seemed to drag a bit. But now we’re onto the second season and to celebrate Nike is rollong out a special line of elite footwear. Nike always sweats the details and this is no exception.
Home and Away colors are the inspiration for the elegant white and black base of the shoes; as the trophy is the inspiration behind the gold details spread throughout the series. Each style of the Nike Basketball Elite Series worn on court will initially display a Swoosh design in team colors. As the playoffs evolve, Nike will replace the team-colored Swoosh with a gold one for the Finals.
We are so ready for the playoffs.
It’s nights like last night that make me think God created Twitter for Blake Griffin dunks. Four years ago I would have watched the dunk, maybe sent a text message to a friend and then relived the dunk the next day on Sports Center. Now I get to watch the dunk and enjoy it for the next hour on Twitter through jokes, animated gifs, photoshops and video. And it’s not just fans and media types, players too. What’s sliced bread again?
After Blake’s second dunk induced attempt at manslaughter, Pau Gasol’s wikipedia page was updated with a death date and location — April 4, 2012, Los Angeles, California. It’s always humorous to view Wikipedia’s revision history.
08:42, 5 April 2012 (restore birthdate)
07:58, 5 April 2012 (Removing vandalism from Clippers bandwagoners)
07:01, 5 April 2012 (couldn’t find evidence of death, im guessing there was an important game that inspired trolling)
06:57, 5 April 2012 (→Death: “Death” section should not be necessary, Gasol is alive and well.)
06:48, 5 April 2012 (contentious unsourced statement)
After playing in Milwaukee to start his NBA career Kareem Abdul-Jabbar requested a trade to either New York or Los Angeles. Kareem got his wish and was acquired by the Lakers in 1974. Upon returning to California Kareem wanted to get back into martial arts. Bruce Lee was living in LA at the time and the two of them started to train together Talk about an underwhelming sentence, Bruce Lee and Kareem Abdul-Jabaar hanging out together!
“Bruce, more or less, backed up what I had learned from John Wooden. The whole thing about being prepared and understanding your own skills. What you have to offer and what you don’t have to offer. Channeling to your approach to everything specific. It was just an echo of John Wooden, from Hong Kong as opposed to Indiana. You have to be committed. You have to be prepared. You have to be willing to sacrifice to be totally prepared. To be in shape and understand the nature of competition. And he wanted to do that.”
It would be difficult to find two more popular athletes in the 1970’s than Bruce Lee and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Put them in a movie where they’re fighting in Jeet Kune Do, a martial arts system founded by Bruce Lee himself, and the cool factor is raised to near life threatening levels. The two were pitted against each other in a scene for Game of Death. Tragically, Bruce Lee died before the film was completed, it’s easy to notice stand-ins and repeated shots throughout the movie. In Game of Death Bruce Lee meets an athletic and shaded Kareem. Lee is only able to defeat him when he realizes his weakness — a high sensitivity to light. On and off the court Kareem always did know the importance of proper eye protection.
“I’m tired of hearing about money, money, money. I just want to play the game, drink Pepsi, wear Reebok.”
— Shaquille O’Neal
Happy 40th birthday, Shaq.
D’Antoni remains a beloved hoops figure in Italy, where he played for most of the ’80s and won four league titles, all while sporting the same duster (in cut, if not color) that remains today. Marc Berman wrote in the New York Post last season that D’Antoni is still referred to in Milan as “Il Baffo” — The Mustache. Or, says Google Translate, The Whisker, which I think we can all agree is superior.
— Katie Baker Grantland
Michael Jeffrey Jordan was a lot of things; he was a supremely gifted athlete, blessed with an incredible work ethic and above all else the ultimate competitor. One thing I didn’t know about Mike is he was also superstitious. In 1982 he made the game winning shot to secure the NCAA Championship for his UNC Tarheels and in his mind it was the North Carolina shorts are brought him luck. It’s been said that Michael wore UNC shorts under his uniform in every game he played in the NBA. Perhaps giving way to the longer shorts trend that Jorden is credited with starting.
Happy birthday, Michael.
A Chitwood & Hobbs Field Report