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U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The jersey has always been a very important factor in the game. He can represent the culture of a city and a team, and also reflects the mental outlook of a team. Over the past century, the NBA jersey has undergone several changes, and now it has not only the home and away points, but also the Christmas jersey jersey, the finals jersey, the team commemorative jersey… can be described as varied. Recently, the US media launched a vote to let fans choose the 30 favorite jerseys in their hearts! So which jerseys are selected? let’s look at it together–

30. 1996-2008 Minnesota Timberwolves

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The Timberwolves jersey of that period was closer to the cartoon style, and the exaggerated font was very eye-catching. The green wood decoration on the side of the jersey, coupled with Kevin Garnett’s iconic roar, has become the memory of countless people.

29. 1960-1966 Los Angeles Lakers

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

Speaking of the Lakers jersey, we recall the classic purple gold color, but in that era, the Lakers jersey is indeed blue-based. Most of the lake water is blue, so the Lakers’ jersey uses blue as the main color, which seems reasonable.

28. 2005-2010 Cleveland Cavaliers

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The navy blue jersey of the Cavaliers 1.0 period has the same status as the black jersey of the Cavaliers 2.0 period. LeBron once wore this jersey to create countless miracles. The extremely angular cutting is like a knight’s sword, and the sharp font design highlights the characteristics of the knight.

27. 2018-present Toronto Raptors

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

This season, the Raptors adopted a new jersey design, and the famous Canadian rapper Drake also participated in the design of the new jersey. This jersey does not write the name of the team or the city to which it belongs on the chest, but writes “North” to correspond to the team’s slogan “King of the North.”

26. 2002-2018 Los Angeles Lakers

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

Many teams choose white as the main color for their home jerseys. However, only the Los Angeles Lakers weekend white jersey can make such a deep impression.

25. 1981-1996 Detroit Pistons

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The two simple words are enough to describe the jersey. The three colors of blue, white and red are superimposed together, which is a very traditional font design. Of course, I think this jersey is not very tasteful, maybe this is the value of feelings.

24. 1996-2001 Detroit Pistons

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

This jersey looks more design. The ends of the two S have been elongated and changed into an exhaust pipe that emits flames. A galloping horse above it highlights the passion and speed brought by the name of Detroit “Car City”.

23. 2018-present Minnesota Timberwolves City Edition (city version)

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

This jersey made the Timberwolves join the Sao Zi family. This purple jersey can undoubtedly compete for the best jersey for half a season!

22. 1996-2001 Vancouver Grizzlies

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

It is true that the Grizzlies had a very poor record in those days, but their jerseys were really distinctive. They really integrated the “bear” element into the jersey, and the grizzly LOGO on the shorts is also very chic.

21. 1990-1997 Indiana Pacers

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The asymmetrical design of this jersey is classic. Who would have thought that this design came from an intern who didn’t even have a salary! The designer saw the design of the intern named “Rebecca” and decided to use this scheme to design the team’s new jersey. And Reggie Miller’s crazy career also added a lot to this jersey. It has become a feeling in people’s hearts.

20. 1972-1981 New Jersey Nets

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The Nets jerseys of that era represented stubbornness. They are the few teams that maintain ABA style jerseys after the merger of ABA and NBA.

19.2017-present Miami Heat Vice City (city version)

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

West Coast color matching has become an insurmountable classic in the trend world. Black with blue and pink, this style really has an indescribable beauty.

18. 1997-2001 New York Knicks

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The Knicks have always been dominated by orange and blue, but for the first time this jersey incorporates black elements into the jersey. Patrick Ewing, Allen Houston, Larry Johnson… This is also a memorable time for Knicks fans.

17. 2015-present Milwaukee Bucks

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

When other teams embarked on a retro path, the Bucks played the opposite way and played flat. Dark green with milky white, the color blocks on both sides of the jersey make the jersey look very delicate.

16.1988-1999 Miami Heat

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The most striking part of this jersey is its number. The shaded design is very eye-catching. This also allowed the Heat jersey, which also uses the black and red color scheme, to successfully draw the line between the Bulls and form their own style.

15.1989-present San Antonio Spurs

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The Spurs have not changed the style of the jersey for almost thirty years. The reason is no other. This black and white Spurs jersey really matches the team’s temperament. The most important thing is that no matter which star puts on the Spurs jersey, you will not feel the slightest sense of disobedience. This may be the greatness of this jersey.

14. 1992-2000 Phoenix Suns

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

Fiery Arizona should naturally choose passionate colors such as orange and purple. The sun across the shirt across the chest also let everyone to the owner of this shirt-Phoenix Suns.

13.1982-1992 Atlanta Hawks

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

Red and yellow were ridiculed as tomato scrambled eggs, but if you think about it, it seems that using this color matching jersey is enough to call it classic. The Eagles of this period never lacked violent deductions. From Weber to Wilkins, these flying guys wore this jersey and gave us countless wonderful performances.

12. 1997-2009 Philadelphia 76ers

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

This jersey has a special meaning in the hearts of fans all over the world. Alan Iverson, who represents an era, adds a bit of legend to this jersey.

11.1985-1995 Seattle Supersonics

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

I believe fans in Seattle really miss this jersey. They have lost their NBA team for ten years. So today, this supersonic jersey is still a hot style. Even if he looks so plain.

10.2018-present Philadelphia 76ers

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

Americans seem to have a special feeling for star patterns. But no wonder, after all, their national anthem is “Stars and Stripes Never Fall”. The red, blue, and white colors are to the Americans, just like the red, yellow, and white colors are to the Chinese. This 76ers jersey really has the taste of Captain America.

9.1988-2001 Charlotte Hornets

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The editor does not quite understand why this jersey is ranked so high, after all, the design of this vertical bar is really a bit ugly…

8. 1995-1999 Toronto Raptors

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

This cartoon jersey is really dazzling in the history of NBA jerseys. The jersey was controversial at the time. People who liked him felt that it was glamorous, but people who hated him said it was so naive that it was unacceptable. But the cool style of Carter and McGrady certainly added a lot to this jersey. Even now, it has finally become a classic.

7.1989-1998 Orlando Magic

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

Almost all jerseys in the history of the Magic are outstanding. The cartoon font and vertical bar style design make people miss the most outstanding magic team in history-O’Neill and Hardaway. If they can go further together, perhaps NBA history is another scene.

6.2018-present Golden State Warriors

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

If it were not for Curry to lead the Warriors to three championships, perhaps this jersey would not have such a high status. The editor still remembers that this jersey was just released at the time, and many fans ridiculed it as a goggle…

5. Portland Trail Blazers of all styles

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The Blazers’ jerseys are really beautiful. That diagonal line design is really unique in the NBA. The city jersey with “rip city” written on his chest also has a very high status in the editor’s heart.

4. 1982-1993 Denver Nuggets

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

This jersey is called “rainbow jersey” by fans. The jagged white mountain pattern represents the city of Denver, and the colorful colors also make this jersey very eye-catching. Coupled with the first black eight team in history, this jersey set is not out of the ordinary, and there are many interesting stories behind it.

3. All styles Boston Celtics

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

In fact, throughout the history of the Celtics, their jersey style has never changed! There is a classic famous quote in the design world-Less is more. The Celtics uniform is paying tribute to this famous quote.

2. 1985-present Chicago Bulls

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

The significance of this jersey for the Bulls is that as long as it exists, the fans will not forget the glory that Jordan gave them.

1. 1978-1999 Los Angeles Lakers

U.S. fans rated the 30 most beautiful jerseys in NBA history: those who have seen more than 25 pieces are senior fans

When you talk about baseball, you think of the Yankees. When you talk about basketball, you naturally think of the Lakers. With the addition of LeBron, the Los Angeles Lakers began to return to glory, they also put on this jersey this season, to pay tribute to the glory.

There are many excellent jerseys in NBA history. Which ones left a deep impression on you? (Repo)

US fans selected the 30 most beautiful jerseys! Come and see if you have any favorite styles and beautiful fans to choose the 30 most beautiful jerseys! Come and see if you have a style you like

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Judge denies Zion Williamson’s request to block improper-benefits inquiry

Zion Williamson is being sued for breaching his marketing agreement with Prime Sports Marketing.

A Florida judge has denied NBA rookie Zion Williamson’s attempt to block his former marketing agent’s effort to have the ex-Duke star answer questions about whether he received improper benefits before playing for the Blue Devils.

Prime Sports Marketing and company president Gina Ford filed a lawsuit last summer in a Miami Dade County, accusing Williamson and the agency now representing him of breach of contract. That came after Williamson had filed his own lawsuit a week earlier in North Carolina to terminate a five-year contract with Prime Sports after moving to Creative Artists Agency LLC.

Ford’s attorneys had submitted questions in filings last month that included whether the New Orleans Pelicans rookie or anyone on his behalf sought or accepted “money, benefits, favors or things of value” to sign with Duke. They sought answers within 30 days to establish facts under oath in the pretrial discovery process, while Williamson’s attorneys had argued the questions were “nothing more than a fishing expedition” and sought a stay to stop it.

Larry A. Strauss, an attorney on the legal team representing Ford and Prime Sports, said in an email Tuesday to The Associated Press that circuit judge David C. Miller denied the stay request, meaning the discovery process is set to continue.

Attorneys for last year’s No. 1 overall NBA draft pick had argued the questions were designed to “harass,” damage Williamson’s reputation and attract media coverage to “improperly gain settlement leverage” in a recent court filing. They had sought the stay while appealing the December denial of their motion to dismiss the Florida case based on lack of jurisdiction, or a protective order as an alternative.

Jeremy Watkins, a spokesman for Williamson attorney Jeffrey Klein, did not immediately return a call Tuesday from the AP.

The questions in filings by Ford’s attorneys offered no evidence of wrongdoing by Williamson or his family. They referenced Williamson’s mother and step-father as well as apparel companies Nike — which outfits the Blue Devils team — and Adidas.

The filings also inquire about any improper benefits received from an agent between January 2014 and his April 2019 announcement that he would go pro, as well as asking about a house where his mother and stepfather resided while he played at Duke.

Duke spokesman Michael Schoenfeld declined to comment Tuesday since the school isn’t a party to either lawsuit. He again referred to a January statement that the school had reviewed Williamson’s eligibility previously and found no concerns.

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Report: NBA owners, executives feeling hopeful for return of season

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski has reported an update following a virtual meeting between a board of governors and Adam Silver that there is increasing positive momentum toward resuming the 2019-20 NBA season as the coronavirus pandemic continues:

Owners and executives on the call were encouraged about the league’s progress toward minimizing health risk upon a return and the league office’s positive conversations with the National Basketball Players Association about the players’ desire to eventually restart the season, sources said.

Discussions centered on health and safety concerns, including the goal of getting team officials and players comfortable with the idea that a positive test for the coronavirus upon a return would not shutter play.

Silver told those on the call that if a positive test would “shut us down, we probably shouldn’t go down this path.”

The NBA is looking to make a decision over the next two to four weeks about whether they will be restarting the league, but are studying many factors first. As Wojnarowski noted, this includes:

Understanding the trajectory of new cases in those states starting to reopen, understanding who is getting severely ill and why, and developments in testing types. The NBA also is studying how other leagues are handling positive tests among participants, sources said. On the call, the league office wasn’t optimistic about rapid-response testing becoming widely available within the next month, sources said.

The league has now opened 22 of its 30 practice facilities. Wojnarowski also noted that the NBA is continuing to focus on Walt Disney World in Orlando and Las Vegas as possible isolated sites to host the league.

It should go without saying that it’s critical the NBA doesn’t try to rush the return of games. There are so many important factors besides just the health of players and team personnel, who shouldn’t be returning before it’s completely safe to do so (for instance, the league also needs to consider the wellbeing of families, the availability of tests, and what effects coronavirus could have on someone after they’ve had it).

It’s concerning to read that the goal is for players and officials to be comfortable with a positive test not stopping play, when we know how easily the coronavirus could spread to other players, staff members, and their families.

Wojnarowski added that the NBA, NBPA and medical experts are tackling the question of how many positive tests would be too many to carry on playing with, as they look to decide whether the league can return.

We should have more clarity about what the NBA is thinking and whether the season may resume in the next few weeks.

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Report: Poll of NBA players shows desire to resume season, if safe

Some of the NBA’s biggest stars reportedly formed a united front to resume the 2019-20 season during a private conference call Monday.

MIAMI (AP) — A person familiar with the results of poll of NBA players taken by their union says there would be “overwhelming” support for any plan that has this season resuming in a safe way amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The poll conducted by the National Basketball Players Association was informal but gave a clear sense that players would like to not only get to the playoffs but also resume at least some of the regular season, according to the person who shared details with The Associated Press on Tuesday on condition of anonymity because it was not to be detailed publicly.

The exact results of the poll were unknown, and the methodology behind the poll — including how many players participated — was unclear.

The NBPA sent a letter to agents Tuesday discussing, among other things, the results of the player polling and some details of the call the union and its membership had late last week with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. In that call, Silver talked about the possibility of resuming a season without fans and potentially playing at a centralized site — notions that have been discussed for some time.

The NBA suspended its season on March 11 with 259 regular season games remaining. Players have been paid in full on each of the four paydays that have followed, though that will change Friday when most of the league sees a 25% reduction in their paycheck.

Players stand to lose roughly $850 million in gross salary if the regular season is not resumed and the NBA exercises its right to withhold roughly 1.08% of each player’s salary for any game that is ultimately canceled. No games have been officially canceled yet; the 25% reduction starting with Friday’s check was negotiated between the league and the union with the expectation that the season will eventually be shortened.

A handful of teams have opened their facilities for voluntary workouts; Miami and Orlando are expected to be the next two teams to do so on Wednesday.

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‘The Last Dance’: 5 takeaways from Episodes 7 and 8 Bulls doc bridges championship runs as Jordan takes baseball sojourn, returns wearing No. 45

Here are five takeaways from episodes 7 & 8 of “The Last Dance,” the documentary series on Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls’ 1997-98 championship season: 

1. So that’s why he was a jerk

This wasn’t so much a scoop as it was a drilling-down into Jordan’s psyche and motivation. When he rode his Bulls teammates harder than most Marine drill instructors breaking down new recruits, he was doing it for himself, sure. He wanted to know that the Jordanaires were up to the task of winning championships. 

But it also was for them. We saw some of the toughest “tough love” you could imagine in Jordan’s demands, mocking and confrontations with fellow Chicago players.

And we got Jordan, finally, pulling back the curtain on it. 

“Winning has a price,” Jordan said in his recent sitdowns with he documentary crew. “Leadership has a price.” 

And: “Once you join the team, you lived at a certain standard I played the game. And I wasn’t going to take anything less.”

Center Bill Wennington, who had joined the Bulls during Jordan’s initial retirement, got a no-nonsense welcome when the boss returned. Wennington said Jordan told him, “I want you to jump on the cape. But you have to hold on.”

And if that meant punching teammates such as Will Perdue and Steve Kerr, verbally abusing Scott Burrell, or making Dennis Hopson cry (in 1990-91, not included in the doc), so be it.

“With that kind of mentality he had,” B.J. Armstrong said, “he couldn’t be a nice guy.”

With Jordan – as podcast king Adam Carolla likes to say – it wasn’t about you doing your best, it was you doing his best. He got very specific that he never asked a teammate to do anything that he didn’t do.

He got very emotional too.

“I wanted to win but I wanted them to be a part of winning as well,” Jordan said, his voice thickening. “If you don’t want to play that way, don’t play that way.”

At which point he paused and said, “Break,” calling his own “cut” to the scene.

2. James Jordan never left his side

It was inevitable that we were going to be taken through the summer of 1993, when Jordan’s father James was murdered in a random, roadside assault on a Carolina highway. What that portion of Episode 7 showed was that Michael didn’t decide to retire because of his dad’s tragic death – he already was thinking of pulling the plug after the ’93 title, possibly as far back as the fall of 1992.

But his sojourn into baseball was inspired largely by his father.Chicago Bulls@chicagobulls

Michael’s No. 1 fan from the beginning.#TheLastDance

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Jordan had played and loved baseball before his basketball fortunes soared. He had seen uber-athletes such as Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders tackle, pretty successfully, their two-sport careers. Still, it was his family’s embrace of baseball and his father’s lessons to do what makes him happy that sent him – naked to a skeptical sports world – down to Birmingham, Alabama, to play for the Class AA Barons in the White Sox system.

Two comments by Jordan at his 1993 retirement news conference 10 weeks after his father’s murder resonated. The first was, “The word ‘retire’ means you can do anything you want.” The second: “He saw my last basketball game.”

From there, as the documentary jumped back and forth in time, James Jordan’s presence was at his son’s side, a wingman to rival Scottie Pippen. Right up to Game 6 of the 1996 Finals against Seattle. Those of us covering that championship series, in which Chicago grabbed a 3-0 lead and then dropped Games 4 and 5 to force a return to United Center, wondered in hindsight if some invisible hand was writing poetry: The clincher was played on Father’s Day, with Jordan and the Bulls snagging their first title without Michael’s dad in the house.

We’ve seen NBA stars crying and emoting when that moment of championship victory really hits them. But Jordan on the trainer’s room floor, sobbing as he hugged the basketball and trying to turn away from the cameras rather than play to them, was a whole ‘nother level of genuine.

3. Pippen’s star turn, minus 1.8 seconds

Working in Minneapolis at the time, the cruel irony of Jordan’s first retirement was immediate: The Timberwolves, oddly amusing but basically awful for their first four years of existence, finally were going to step up to the big time, hosting the 1994 NBA All-Star Game in February.

And now (gulp) it was getting an All-Star Game without Michael Jordan.

That was a parochial outlook, of course. Imagine how Bulls fans felt, having the game’s greatest player take a powder while still in his prime. Both markets were pleasantly surprised.

Pippen had the greatest individual season of his career, leading Chicago to a surprising 55-27 season — c’mon, they’d lost Michael Jordan on the brink of training camp. He finished third in MVP balloting behind Hakeem Olajuwon and David Robinson. And he took care of Twin Cities hoops fans by stepping into Jordan’s role as the star of stars, taking home the All-Star MVP trophy.

Pippen was a different player than Jordan, with a different personality. It clicked with his teammates, too. Yet we’ve been so locked into Jordan’s nasty, pushy, obsessive style of prodding his mates, some of those Bulls sounded a little (dare we say) soft for welcoming the release.

Anyway, the whole dynamic within that team changed in span of 1.8 seconds when Pippen refused to participate at the end of Game 3 of the East semifinals series vs. New York. Coach Phil Jackson had drawn up the play for Toni Kukoc to take the last shot, with Pippen not even out on the court as a decoy. No, he had Pippen — the team’s best passer — inbounding the ball.

After years of being No. 2 to Jordan and then finally moving up in the pecking order, Pippen — as he saw it — was back in a supporting role to the rookie Kukoc (the Euro find of GM Jerry Krause, already an irritant to Pippen).

As right as his reasons might sound now, he was dead wrong. It was fascinating Sunday night to see both the ’94 footage and the looks back from various Bulls on how grown men behaved in the aftermath of being betrayed by one of their own. Oh, and this was after Kukoc actually drained the buzzer beater to temporarily fend off the Knicks.

“He quit on us,” Steve Kerr said. “It was devastating.”

Center Bill Cartwright was so upset when he called out Pippen in the locker room, he cried.

Pippen apologized then and there, and Kerr said the team accepted it. He was ferocious in the final three games of the series, though the Bulls were eliminated.

Pippen’s legacy is secure. He’s in the Hall of Fame, he was named one of the Top 50 players in NBA history in 1997 (when his career had another seven seasons left) and he is widely considered the most important No. 2 ever on an NBA team.

To this day, though, there are replica jerseys in Chicago that, rather than displaying his customary number 33, read “Pippen 1.8.” 

4. Comparing Jordan’s ‘bodies’ of work

So the NBA’s best player went off to play minor league baseball for a season and might have kept going if not for that sports extended labor strife into the spring of 1995.

It was a different look for Jordan to have his bat wagging at curveballs rather than his tongue wagging on dunks. But he looked like his old self throughout, recalling that detour and re-visiting the footage Sunday.

Except he wasn’t. He had traded in his all-world basketball body for one more suited to baseball, and … did we hear much about that at the time?

It seemed back then as if that sliver of a season and postseason from March 1995 through the Bulls’ elimination against Orlando was notable mostly for some echo-stirring performances by Jordan in his comeback. And his brief use of 45 rather than the famous 23 on his Bulls jersey. Turns out, Jordan wasn’t just rusty or too new, Air-dropping in on the reconstituted Chicago roster the way he did.

Jordan had trained to be a baseball player rather than a basketball  player. And he had to physically transform back again.Chicago White Sox@whitesox

Good Guys Wear Black (& Red) #TheLastDance

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“Looking back, I didn’t have enough time to get my body back to a basketball body,” Jordan said.

No offense, perhaps, to young Shaquille O’Neal and Penny Hardaway or former Bull Horace Grant, though good luck getting Jordan to say that.

Jordan’s personal trainer Tim Grover and the Bulls’ Chip Schaefer backed up that explanation. The reflexes, the strength, the agility needed for one sport was significantly different from the other. It might have been more subtle than, say, giving Yankees slugger Aaron Judge, at 6-foot-7 and 280 pounds, a serviceable NBA power forward’s body. But it was real.

This part of the doc showed Jordan taking on his role in “Space Jam” during the summer of 1995, and how driven he was to regain his form. He had the movie studio construct on its lot the “Jordan Dome,” a complete court and gym for his two-hour daily workouts. And then in the evenings, he led top-tier pickup games with NBA talent, both honing his game – and eyeballing theirs. 

5. Don’t look, talk or even breathe at Jordan

Not if you want to have a chance to beat him. Jordan’s penchant for spinning slights — real or concocted — into white-hot motivation got the full treatment Sunday.

We hear all the time in sports that players and teams, well, they might be able to dig a little deeper now and then, plumb the depths of their talents at opportune times and occasionally extend “the zone” in which they find themselves in particularly focused moments. What they’re not supposed to be able to do is flip a switch the way you would if you hit the nitrous oxide on the drag strip.

Except Jordan, apparently. He not only turned instant grudges into remarkable performances, he found ways to conjure them. At which point, he was Bruce Banner going full Hulk mode.

The LaBradford Smith story was early legend. That’s when Jordan got so incensed by the Washington guard’s big scoring night against him in Chicago that he torched Smith the very next night of a back-to-back. But the kicker was Smith’s alleged remark (“Nice game, Mike”) after the first game never happened. Somehow, Jordan convinced himself that it had and got his revenge.

That’s the sort of stuff that drove a wedge between Isiah Thomas and Jordan, and we got lots of it Sunday. There was Nick Anderson’s postgame remark after the Magic won Game 1 of their ’95 playoff series, that “45 isn’t 23.”

There was Seattle coach George Karl’s damned-if-he-did, damned-if-he-didn’t restaurant failure to stop by Jordan’s table to pay homage. Carolina guys? Didn’t matter to Jordan.

“That’s all I needed,” he said. “And it become personal to me.”

And finally a reprise of Jordan’s reaction earlier in the series to a Thomas comment, viewing video on a tablet handed to him. This time it was Gary Payton huffing about how the ’96 Finals might have gone differently had Karl used Payton to defend Jordan before Game 4.

“I kept hitting him and banging him and hitting him and banging him. It took a toll on Mike,” Payton said. “Then the series changed.”

Never mind Jordan’s cackling. The highlight was how he patronizingly said Payton’s nickname, “The Glove” as he handed the tablet back.

But the cackling was pretty good too. 

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Steve Aschburner has written about the NBA since 1980. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter.

The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting.

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Someone created the Warriors court on Animal Crossing — because why not?

This is the best thing you’ll see today.

The internet is generally a cool place. Scorching hot take, I know. But it provides a lot of entertainment, which we especially need right now, when the coronavirus has taken the NBA season and Golden State Warriors basketball for us.

A lot of people have been filling the voids created by the quarantine by playing the popular game Animal Crossing. But one brilliant soul managed to find the perfect spot to combine Animal Crossing with the Warriors.

Yes, Reddit user u/and1zhao spent some time — who knows how much — and created the Warriors basketball court in Animal Crossing.

This is the best thing I’ve seen in a long time. And, if we’re being frank, it’s one of the best Warriors-related things we’ve seen all season. Much of what the Warriors did on the court this year can’t really compare to this Animal Crossing creation.

You can take that as a slight to the team or a compliment to this creation. It’s definitely both.

I’ll confess that I haven’t played Animal Crossing, but I’m assuming this took a really long time to make. That assumption is backed up by the name of the post, which is, “Had a lot of time to kill today so I made a Golden State Warriors basketball court!”

In summation: Internet? Good. Animal crossing? Good. Golden State Warriors? Good.

Let this be a reminder to us all: The Warriors logo can make its way onto whatever crafts and hobbies we’re pursuing during the quarantine. Warriors cake? Hell yes. Warriors scarf? Absolutely. Warriors embroidery? Totally into it.

Get wild.

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NBA announces decision to postpone draft lottery, combine

With the 2019-20 NBA season still in a state of hiatus, many discussions have shifted to what the off-season may look like, including the timeline of the NBA Draft and free agency. Given that the season is still in flux, there is still uncertainty with how the draft order will shake out and, on top of that, there is incentive for the league to avoid holding the draft — currently scheduled for June 25 — until after the season has been a) completed, or b) cancelled.

On Friday, word broke that the first domino in the draft cycle has been “indefinitely postponed,” as reported by Shams Charania of The Athletic and Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

Following the initial reports, the NBA announced the postponement of both events, saying “more information on each event will be shared at a later date.” As of now, the NBA Draft itself has not been moved, though Wojnarowski reports that his sources “expect that will eventually be done.”
Wojnarowski also reports that discussions are ongoing on the overall timeline of the league, including the potential for a delayed start to the 2020-21 season.

Overall, it isn’t a surprise to see the lottery postponed, as the event was scheduled for May 19. Even with some assuming that the NBA could move to a playoff-only mode if basketball resumes, there is at least some question as to how the league will proceed and, as such, the lottery odds might differ based on results should the regular season continue in some form.

As for the combine, the nature of bringing players (and teams) together in that setting is seemingly untenable, especially in the previously scheduled slot of May 21-24 in Chicago. It will be interesting to see how the league handles the future of that event because, while the lottery (and even the draft) could be held in remote fashion akin to how the NFL operated in April, the combine requires a large gathering and thus would be much more challenging.

At present, the Atlanta Hawks have the 4th-worst record in the NBA and, if the league chooses to either cancel the season or move ahead in a playoff-only format, the team would be on track for the 4th-best lottery position as a result. Still, there are many hurdles to jump through before normalcy returns and, as of Friday, it is now common knowledge that the first official “event” of the offseason won’t be happening in its scheduled mid-May time slot.

Stay tuned.

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NBA executives calling to cancel basketball season

More time for next season and a more structured offseason are among desires of executives and agents.

Each time the NBA devises a plan to open the league, new concerns emerge. High-risk coaches and team personnel could contract the virus. Isolation from families for extended periods is a non-starter. That would put Keith Smith’s awesome Disney plan in doubt, and apparently the entire 2019-20 season. Some NBA execs reportedly called for the season to be shelved, which would make 2020 the first year without a basketball champ since 1946.

LeBron James — who originally shunned the idea of playing without fans — denies that cancellation is on the table. Despite the billions the league stands to lose and long-lasting salary cap implications, league sources told CNBC that liability and logistics are an even larger hindrance. No uniform idea exists and the league continues to seek anyone — Brad Stevens included — with new ones.

With 18 regular season games remaining for Boston and the playoffs, the league likely needs more than two months as currently structured, with each week drawing closer to next season and diminishing the NBA calendar. The draft combine, lottery and other related events were delayed indefinitely, a sign the league still hopes to continue in June or July.
As California and New York maintain stay at home orders that’ll likely end in June, continuing without structural changes becomes nearly impossible. Whether changing the playoffs, cancelling the regular season it’ll leave someone unhappy. An incomplete season may frustrate fans, teams and players but avoids a nearly impossible task of fairness.
Owners, especially ones operating at a loss, also see cost-benefit issues. Testing, travel and other expenses likely won’t return fans, while stadium employees remain out of work without fans. The perception issue of pushing forward while the nation is in lockdown, along with using testing resources remain hurdles too.
The Garden Report discussed this and more after cancellation movement grew within NBA ranks. Would you like to see this year conclude if it’ll impact next season’s structure?
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Tony Parker reveals how Kobe Bryant used to mentor him

The Lakers and Spurs were heated rivals, but that didn’t stop Bryant from giving advice to any younger player who asked.

The Lakers and Spurs had a terrific rivalry in the 2000s, one that spanned the primes of Tim Duncan and Kobe Bryant and also featured several other stars and Hall of Famers including Shaquille O’Neal, Manu Ginobili, and Tony Parker. The two teams faced each other in the playoffs seven times between 1999 and 2013, with the Lakers winning four series to San Antonio’s three.

Lakers fans grew to truly despise Spurs (perhaps my personal bias is creeping through here), but it was impossible for the players involved not to develop professional respect for one another. After all, these franchises have combined for 10 of the last 21 NBA titles, and nine within a 12-year stretch.

As it turns out, the Lakers and the Spurs had more than just the rivalry binding them together. In an interview with The Undefeated, former San Antonio guard Tony Parker disclosed that Kobe Bryant mentored him, even though they were on opposing teams. It’s why Parker made it a point to attend Bryant’s memorial service in February.

It was important to be there because he always had an impact on my career. He was always there for me, giving me advice and text messages. He was just an unbelievable player. Maybe the closest to Michael Jordan, who I think is the best ever. I played against Kobe in his prime. I will always have fond memories of Spurs-Lakers, which was a classic with all of us in our primes. We will definitely all miss him.

Bryant wasn’t only a model for Parker during their basketball careers. Parker hoped to follow his example in retirement as well in terms of Bryant’s impact in women’s basketball. Parker is currently the president and majority owner of a French club that has both a men’s and women’s team. He is also part of the ownership group for Lyon, the most successful women’s soccer club in the world. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the final interaction he had with Bryant was about women’s sports.

The last time I saw Kobe was in China last year when he was an ambassador for the World Cup. We were sitting together having conversations about women’s basketball and how we can grow it. He knew that I owned a women’s team and was investing a lot in women’s basketball. It’s just sad that I can’t see him anymore. I wish we could have done all that stuff together, because we would have done great stuff together in women’s basketball.

Bryant had a substantial impact on women’s basketball players domestically, from the youth level with his Mamba Academy, to the collegiate level with his involvement with Sabrina Ionescu, and even at the professional level with his WNBA clinics. Parker has a unique opportunity to spread that impact globally, and it sounds like that was something he wanted to explore with Bryant.

It has become clear since Bryant’s passing that his legacy stretches far beyond what he accomplished with the Lakers. He wanted young girls to have the same opportunities as young boys to play basketball, not just while growing up but also professionally. He saw it as his responsibility to use his platform to make that happen. Now that he is gone, other people will have to pick up the mantle. As someone who received Bryant’s mentorship, Parker is exactly the kind of steward who can carry on Bryant’s message.

For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, and Google Podcasts. You can follow this author on Twitter at @sabreenajm.

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Blazers Among Teams Planning to Reopen Practice Facilities on Friday

The Blazers, Cavaliers and Nuggets are expected to open their facilities to players on Friday.

The NBA is allowing teams to reopen their practice facilities as early as this Friday in areas that have eased safer-at-home restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic. Jeff Zillgitt and Mark Medina of USA Today report that the Portland Trail Blazers, Cleveland Cavaliers and Denver Nuggets are planning to reopen their practice facilities on May 8:

Even though the NBA targeted Friday for teams to open their practice facilities to a limited number of players at a time, just a few teams – the Cleveland Cavaliers, Portland Trail Blazers and Denver Nuggets and maybe another team or two – plan to make their facility available on that day.

The NBA outlined the restrictions that players and team personnel will have to follow during training:

No more than four players would be permitted at a facility at any one time.
No head or assistant coaches could participate.
Group activity remains prohibited, including practices or scrimmages.
Players remain prohibited from using non-team facilities such as public health clubs, fitness centers, or gyms.
You can read more about when additional teams may open their practice facilities here.