It's the offseason in the NBA right now, but that doesn't mean we can't get excited for next season! Spurring that excitement today is a new interview with our hometown hero Derrick Rose via Bulls TV. This is particularly worth sharing since Rose has been mum for much of the previous season, where towards the end, he drew an immense amount of attention for #TheReturn that wasn't. I personally think that got way out of hand, but I'll spare you the essay on the topic. Let's instead look forward as the Bulls will be championship contenders once again in '13-'14.
In the interview above, D. Rose sheds some light on his mental state throughout a tough last season, some behind the scenes looks into his day to day work and communication with Coach Thibs (the missed call anecdote is great), and leaves us on a couple of powerful messages transcribed below.
On any personal goals for next season:
"There is only one goal and that is to win the championship."
On any message to the fans about last season:
"Me sayin' it is somethin' totally different. I think me going on the court and showin' 'em will let 'em know it was the right decision."
He'll let his game do the talking. The end of October can't come soon enough!
Talk about the most high-profile Nike commercial that could've never been had the Spurs won Game 6 or 7. But LeBron James and the Miami Heat had other plans, and upon winning the deciding Game 7 tonight, Nike released their new "Leave A Message" ad campaign featuring the likes of Drake, Dr. Dre, Bill Russell, Spike Lee, and Warren Buffet leaving a voicemail congratulating LeBron on winning his second 'ship. Toss-up between Drake & Bill Russell for the most fun voicemail.
Important note: I was also in talks with Nike to leave a voicemail, but when they realized mine said, "Congrats LeBron! But next year, Derrick is back," talks mysteriously stopped.
In all seriousness... it's 2013, shouldn't these all be texts? OK, in all seriousness for real, congrats to LeBron and the Heat. No matter your opinion on James, there's no denying how phenomenal he played tonight, all series, and all season. Loved the matchup with the Spurs as it played out to be one of the best NBA Finals series in league history. And as a fan of the NBA, you can't ask for much more. What a season!
As if he can stand to make more money, the billionaire entertainer mogul Jay-Z has found a way to do just that. He's adding yet another title to his endless list of accomplishments, this time as sports agent. The Roc Nation Sports founder has partnered with Creative Arts Agency to represent professional athletes and has been certified as a an agent by the player associations for MLB and the NBA. A spokesmen for both groups confirmed the news today.
Mr. Carter has already signed Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano, Giants wide reciever Victor Cruz, Jets rookie quarterback Geno Smith and former Notre Dame guard Skylar Diggins, who recently was selected third by the Tulsa Shock in the WNBA draft. Diggins apparently received a pre-signing bonus from Roc Nation as well... after her graduation in May, Diggins tweeted "I got 99 problems, but a benz ain't one" along with a picture of a spankin' new silver Mercedes CLS 63 valued at over $100,000. Inside was a short handwritten note from Jay-Z himself simply stated, "enjoy."
But not so fast Jigga! The director of security and agent administration for the NBA Players Association, Robert Gadson, says that while Jay-Z's application has been accepted, he won't be able to take on player contracts until he proves that he no longer has any financial ties with the Brooklyn Nets. A spokesman for Jay-Z declined to comment. Earlier this year, Jay-Z said he was willing to comply with NBA rules to relinquish his stake in the team. Owners of NBA teams cannot represent players. But a close source says that as of Wednesday, the Hip-Hop mogul had not sold his small ownership share, less than 1 percent, of the team.
Jay-Z also may have violated the NFL "runner rule." I guess having the last name Carter doesn’t mean much in this case. The rule says that anyone who is not certified cannot recruit players. And Jay-Z is not NFL certified. Yet that certainly didn't stop him from meeting with the Jets' rookie quarterback Smith, who tweeted a picture of himself and Jay-Z at a meeting. Guess Smith didn't know about the rule before he tweeted the picture. In any case, Mr. Carter doesn't seemed to be phased by the hooplah. He was seen in a picture with Cruz, Cano and Smith at a party Monday in Manhattan to celebrate the 10th anniversary of his 40/40 sports bar.
The first NBA player Jay-Z is expected to sign is Oklahoma City Thunder star Kevin Durant. The basketball star told his agent, Rob Pelinka, in recent days that he would sign with Jay-Z. The news has been blasted on every social media site. But Durant has not commented publicly on the situation yet.
Jay-Z's agent certification is pending with the NFLPA.
It's the morning after and my head is still spinning at what happened last night. Game 6 will forever go down as one of the greatest Finals games ever played. It was a microcosm of an entire series as some players and the teams were polarizing at times with the game taking as many 180 turns as a GTA player with a 5 star wanted level. As a fan of the NBA (and neither team in particular), this was just beautiful for the game. I can't wait to see what the Heat and Spurs got in store for Game 7. And I'm prepared for anything. All the stars, and even some role players, have had a defining game in the series, so who's next? How about... T-Mac!?!
Relive Game 6 with some pics, GIFs, and MEMEs below!
A vintage Tim Duncan game (don't be so shocked, Mike Miller)
How about TP's stepback 3 over LeBron to tie it up?
(All images above courtesy of NBA)
The Dunk of the Night by Kawhi Leonard (which now seems nights ago)
The Block of the Night by Chris Bosh (foul on the body?)
The LeBron James Headband Twitter Account of the Night
The LeBron Headband x DaDa Drake MEME of the Night
The Metta World Peace Tweets of the Night
The Shot of the Night
Loading the player...
The Throwback Song of the Day
Public Enemy "He Got Game" (in homage to Jesus Shuttlesworth)
Common's Instagram tipped me off to a special day in NBA history today: the 15th Anniversary of Michael Jordan's Final Shot as a Chicago Bull. To us Chicagoans, we consider this the final shot of his career (the Wizards years never happened). And for me personally, it's always chilling to relive this moment. I remember as a young'n being glued to the TV just a few feet away as my folks and I watched history. Bob Costas' calls are forever embedded in my mind. Thought I'd share this video on the Blog for many of us out there, not only in Chicago but across the globe, who felt similarly about MJ's shot over Russell. #Classic
An instagram from our experience last night watching Bobbito Garcia's new documentary 'Doin' It In The Park'
Last nite, we were in for a treat. Rather than watching Game 4 of The Finals, Julian, Maks, and I all attended a screening for a documentary on NYC streetball called 'Doin It In The Park'. It's a film by Bobbito Garcia and Kevin Couliau, with Bobbito likely a familiar name to you for his involvement in the NYC basketball scene, legendary voiceover work for NBA Street Vol. 2 & 3 (I played this game ad nauseum back in the day), and his sneaker with Nike.
Nike put on this screening — one of many to take place across the globe — to further promote the great culture Bobbitto & Couliau were able to capture. We all came away impressed and with more knowledge about the whole NYC basketball scene, which is long regarded as the mecca of basketball. I myself knew of much of the names and background, but there were a lot of new revelations as well (like the culture of prison ball, which is not like the 'myths' we hear about, and the history of all the famous parks). Interviews with former NBAers Kenny "The Jet" Smith, Kenny Anderson, Smush Parker, and fellow NYC streetball legends like Pee Wee Kirkland, Homicide, Fly, and none other than Dr. J Julius Erving all lend a first-hand perspective to the ins and outs of pickup basketball in New York City. Job well-done by Bobbito & Couliau, who were fielding some questions and comments in the Q&A afterward. It seemed like everyone in the theatre enjoyed the documentary and for those not in attendance, you can watch it online at doinitinthepark.com. Shouts to Nike Chicago and Ron and his crew at Mid C Media.
In brief: 'Doin It In The Park' captured the essence, history, and culture of NYC pick-up basketball. By the end, we fully understood just how magnetic the game of basketball really is. And that's an amazing thing for one orange ball and two round hoops.
Get a glimpse of what I summarized above with the documentary's dope trailer below. And if you happen to catch this at posting time in Chicago, head on over to Villa where Bobbito Garcia is with Sir Michael Rocks & Save Money til 10pm, also previewing new Nike & Jordan gear.
The Finals are here! It features one team we expected at the beginning of the season and one team that many thought would never be back. They are, of course, the Miami Heat and the San Antonio Spurs respectively. (Ouch, look no further than yours truly to see how far I was off on the Spurs, ha!) I am personally very intrigued by this matchup — the first ever to feature 4 previous NBA Finals MVPs (LeBron in '12, Wade in '06, Parker in '07, and Duncan in '99, '03, '05).
So who you got?!
I've got the Spurs in 6. They're firing on all cylinders after the sweep of Memphis, Parker is at an MVP level and can take advantage of the matchups vs. Miami, and Coach Pop is a mastermind of adjustments. Plus, Miami's supporting cast around LeBron was shaky vs. Indiana; can they rebound for the Finals? What do you all think?
Loading the player...
ESPN's Animated Pump-Up for The NBA Finals
Be sure to also get pumped up for tonight with some of the greatest Finals moments artistically animated by ESPN above!
Finally, I couldn't let this NBA post get away without a shoutout and congrats to TBJ — The Basketball Jones! They are the premier, daily NBA podcast and just yesterday reached an amazing milestone of 1000 episodes. I have been listening to every episode this postseason especially, and love their mix of intelligent analysis on the games combined with humorous games they create on their own to cover the ins and outs of the NBA. For any big NBA fan, they're flat out a must-listen. To get a sense of their show and sense of humor, here's Eeeepppisode 1-0-0-0 (*Skeets voice*), which they did a special video rundown for of 20 of the best moments of their 7 years and 1000 epps. Lots of funny videos to see below and more from the ep on their blog here. Subscribe to TBJ on iTunes for their daily podcasts, including today's Game 1 preview. Shoutout to the tastemaker @Euggra for introing me to #TBJ.
Let's end the post though on some hip hop, shall we? As a tribute to TBJ, former Spurs guard and NBATV Analyst, Brent Barry takes on Eminem's "The Real Slim Shady" to list all of the players named "Jones" in NBA History. This is good. And also contains shoutouts from Ernie Johnson and Charles Barkley. Maybe Eminem shouldn't be collaborating with Kendrick Lamar and TDE and get Brent Barry on the phone? Ha!