"I'm gonna offer you a fist bump," Tinker Hatfield says, holding out his gloved right hand.
James Harden is having a moment, smack-dab inside one of the great individual stretches of professional basketball we've ever seen. After hitting one of the biggest shots of his life last Thursday, he finds himself at the center of the NBA universe.
Nike today introduced new iPhone-controlled self-adjusting basketball shoes based on its latest FitAdapt technology. The new Nike Adapt BB shoes feature an advanced power-lacing system with a custom motor that senses the tension needed by the foot and adjusts accordingly to ensure a snug fit.
"THEY REALLY DIDN'T take me seriously that I was going to leave," Tony Parker says in a room full of folding chairs at the Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina, more than 1,200 miles from the place he still calls home.
Being a Russell Westbrook fan is the emotional equivalent of playing basketball like Russell Westbrook—it’s spectacularly difficult, it takes willpower and imagination, it hurts, and if you’re not actually doing it, you probably can’t understand why anyone would try.
Around 14 years ago, the photographer Bill Bamberger came across a basketball hoop in Nags Head, North Carolina, while he was driving down the coast in his home state.
Murray is perhaps the league's most important swing player over the next three seasons. If he becomes an All-Star, the Nuggets could contend for a long time. If he tops out below that, Denver has more work to do.
Justin Verrier: Jimmy Butler will face off against the Timberwolves on Tuesday for the first time since his trade to the 76ers, and while the jerseys and the names have changed, the Charlie Brown cloud that loomed over his final weeks in Minnesota has followed him to Philly.
Imagine if Draymond Green, a chunky 6-foot-7 second-round pick, had been drafted into a situation that forced him to operate as a full-time small forward.
For all that the ongoing FBI investigation into college basketball’s underground economy has and could yet reveal, nothing is more obvious and undeniable than this: The on-stage performers in a multimillion-dollar entertainment industry do, in fact, have value beyond athletic scholarships and smal
For decades, basketball sneakers weren't like other sneakers. Take Reebok's "The Question," Allen Iverson's signature shoe: truly ridiculous, enormous moon-boot type high-tops with a whopping four visible bubbles of Reebok's "Hexalite" shock absorption technology in each shoe.
He’s an Instagram phenomenon who fascinates college coaches—but he’s not quite a sure thing. He’s also a high school freshman trying to navigate the awkward phases and social mysteries that come with being a teenager. Meet Nico Mannion, a 15-year-old (sorta-maybe) basketball prodigy
The rules of basketball, thankfully, are fairly straightforward. However, for the younger players, some rules can be easily forgotten. The three-second rule addressing how long an offensive player can be in the key before clearing out is a good example.
Editor's note: With the start of Olympic basketball medal rounds, WIRED is reprising this feature about how Kirk Goldsberry's obsession with basketball with statistics is changing pro hoops. As a kid, Kirk Goldsberry was a rabid basketball fan.
The most exciting play in basketball somehow happens five times a game. It’s always Russell Westbrook grabbing a rebound or an outlet pass, then deciding to dribble 70–80 feet for another defiant layup. Does he care how many opponents might be in his way? Not really.
Bound by professional obligation, the announcer is feigning impartiality but a wobble in his lilt, a slip of exasperation, gives him away. It’s March, 2012, the third round of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament, and Royce White is running free.
James Harden knew what he was getting into, back in 2016, when he signed with Trolli, arch-nemesis of candymaker Haribo, the dominant player for decades in the Gummi space. He approached Trolli, and together they were taking a shot at the king—Haribo, the Golden State Warriors of the Gummi world.
It’s funny, I’d just been celebrating. When I got the call from Danny, I was leaving the airport — my wife, Kayla, and I were coming back from having celebrated our one-year wedding anniversary. We’d gone to Miami for a couple of days — and now we were back in Seattle, driving home.
Jared Dubin is a freelance sports writer and lawyer based out of New York City. We caught up with Jared to chat about his path to becoming a full-time writer, how he decides what topics to write about, why the Knicks are such a mess, and what he’s been reading and finding interesting lately.
PHILADELPHIA — In mid-April, on the last day of the N.B.A.’s regular season, a group of reporters gathered at the Wells Fargo Center here, buzzing with an urgent question: Would Giannis Antetokounmpo, the Milwaukee Bucks’ impossibly elastic 6-foot-11 phenom, be in the lineup that night?
Is Nikola Jokic a basketball unicorn? Should Paul George be traded immediately? What would it take to get Anthony Davis out of New Orleans? Plus, 27 more deals from the Picasso of the Trade Machine.The NBA trade deadline is Thursday. I repeat: THE NBA TRADE DEADLINE IS THURSDAY.
A writer enrolls in a two-day seminar during NBA summer league and learns you have to be absolutely, insanely in love with basketball to survive the rigors of life as a professional scout I spent five days in Las Vegas by myself earlier this month.
Picture a solitary figure, shooting baskets and muttering. The man is pale and skinny, with round glasses and wispy brown hair. Looks fortyish, like he should be teaching calculus.
In the 24 hours before Koby Altman pushed to complete the three deals that resurrected a season and reshaped a franchise, the Cleveland Cavaliers general manager sought a most elusive engagement: a sit-down with LeBron James.
If fans remember Oklahoma City's improbable comeback in Orlando last Wednesday, it will be as the capstone of Russell Westbrook's wild, screaming, relentless MVP case.
The 4-out 1-in motion offense (also known as ’41’) is one of the most popular and versatile basketball offenses in today’s game at all levels. As the name suggests, this offense consists of 4 players spaced out behind the three-point line and 1 post player inside.
Which prospects boosted their stock at the combine? Which tweeners are best positioned to shoot up draft boards? And what the hell does Frank Mason III have to do to get some NBA love?The only NBA draft guide that promises little to no discussion of Markelle Fultz and Lonzo Ball is back with Part I
Leave it to the San Antonio Spurs. Just one day after celebrating one of the most emotional title clinchers in NBA history, the “Ozymandias” episode of the Duncan-Pop era was rendered irrelevant by America’s first World Cup game.
This story appears in ESPN The Magazine's May 29 Issue. Subscribe today! LeBron James shouldn't be shooting this free throw.
Jaylen Brown is one the most intelligent and interesting young athletes I’ve met in years and it seems fitting that, midway through our interview in Boston, he should retell a parable that brings together Martin Luther King and the great American writer David Foster Wallace.
On Sunday afternoon, I was watching my daughter play soccer in Parts Unknown, California, right as Sergio Garcia was stealing the Masters from Justin Rose. The Masters app kept freezing on me, so I settled on clandestinely following the last few holes on Twitter.
In a quiet moment during the Slovenian national team training camp before last summer's Eurobasket championship run, the team's coach, Igor Kokoskov, pulled aside Luka Doncic, his star prospect, for a history lesson. Doncic was not even born when Drazen Petrovic died in a car crash 25 years ago.
The visitors’ locker room in an NBA arena is meant to be a joyless space, devoid of color or comfort. Reporters step over piles of sweat-drenched laundry on their way to cramped lockers, where they listen to visiting players explain, more often than not, exactly where and how it all went wrong.
As someone who watches almost exclusively college basketball for five straight months every year, I always find it jarring to start closely following the NBA after the Final Four ends. The college and NBA games are both technically basketball, but they feel like two completely different sports.
Every year more than 100 players travel across continents to play in the NBA. What did that experience look like 30 years ago? Who helps players navigate the adjustment? How has it changed over the years? And how has it changed the NBA?
This article originally appeared in the premiere issue of Inside Sports (April, 1980) and appears here with permission from the author’s estate.
Iremember the exact moment when I realized NBA legends weren’t SHIT. My man Sam Cassell took me out the night before my very first NBA game. We were playing the Bucks down in Houston and he knew I was about to take his ass to the cleaners. But Sam is from Baltimore, and I’m from D.C.
We spent six weeks rewatching every movie about basketball. We did this because we are just (slightly) larger versions of children, but also because we wanted to figure out who is the best fictional basketball player of all time. This is a more overwhelming task than it would appear to be.
My grandfather is missing an ear. Melanoma was eating away the left one, so it had to be removed. He’s hobbled by bad legs, particularly the right one, banged-up since college—two members of a forgotten Big Ten special teams unit both decided to tackle his kneecap at the same time.
Jahlil Okafor pulls a blanket over his lap, leans back in the leather recliner, and gazes up at the projector screen. The lights dim and Reese Witherspoon begins to narrate the opening sequence of Home Again, a romantic comedy that proves to be light on both romance and comedy.
CLEVELAND—Doris Burke has never spoken a single word to Drake. And they never had dinner together, despite what the internet says.
On Wednesday night, Joel Embiid nearly made me miss an airplane. I watched his coming-out party from a hotel room in New York, where I had planned on falling asleep early before my cross-country flight the next morning.
This post has been updated to reflect additional reporting done the week of the NBA Draft. Jaylen Brown has been quite busy in his typical eccentric fashion since coming to New York City for the draft.
Scoring in professional basketball is one of the most beautiful things in sports. With only moments to set up his shot, a player tosses a ball into a soaring arc, and it drops through a hoop only slightly larger than the ball. That or he flies to the hoop and deposits the ball directly.
I didn’t write an NBA Bag on Thursday because I knew David Letterman was stepping down. I wrote an NBA Bag because I’ve been doing mailbags ever since I started writing this column in 1997 … and only because I loved Letterman’s “Viewer Mail” gimmick.
Before this year’s NBA season started, I had a conversation with a Golden State Warriors fan. He was excited about his team and was keen to explain its success: It was perfectly balanced, with perfect chemistry, role players, coaching and management.
The NBA draft is less than a month away, which means that if you haven’t already decided how the next 15 years of every prospect’s career will play out based solely on DraftExpress breakdown videos, it’s time to get your ass in gear.
No one looms over the sports universe right now quite like LaVar Ball. From the moment his boys could walk, he’s been molding them into basketball prodigies. His wife calls it “LaVar-ology.” Now Ball’s dream is becoming a reality: getting all three sons into the NBA.
The Bucks are trying to build Maker's muscle mass, but gradually. He's gained about 10 pounds since the summer to bring him up to 215. Eventually, perhaps, he will settle into the 230-240 rangeGarnett's playing weight for much of his careerbut that could be years away.
From the moment I started rolling my dad’s tube socks And shooting imaginary Game-winning shots In the Great Western Forum I knew one thing was real: I fell in love with you. As a six-year-old boy Deeply in love with you I never saw the end of the tunnel.
Sitting on a park bench overlooking Lake Ontario in Toronto on a brilliant summer day in 2015, I was approached by a woman looking for directions.
Mock draft season is now officially here, with the Boston Celtics winning the NBA draft lottery on Tuesday night. As is typically the case, most of the discussion surrounding the 2017 draft will likely focus on the first five to 10 picks.
But first, it’s a Grantland Basketball Hour alert! On the heels of last night’s “Hardcore Playoff Preview” with me, Jalen Rose and Zach Lowe …
How long does it take to become elite at your craft? And what do the people who master their goals do differently than the rest of us? That's what John Hayes, a cognitive psychology professor at Carnegie Mellon University, wanted to know.
The FBI announced Tuesday that 10 people, including four college basketball assistant coaches, were arrested as part of a two-year investigation into bribes and other corruption in the sport.
This story appears in ESPN The Magazine's May 29 issue. Subscribe today! It has been, what, six months since the world met LaVar Ball and his brood of big ballers?
It’s September 1 and LeBron James is on his knees, teetering on a purple medicine ball. He balances himself while holding up a weight in each hand before a trainer puts a lighter weight on top of each. Neither James nor the weights falls. To the fans that make up James’s 33.
When Charles Barkley sank his teeth into analytics this month on Inside the NBA, you could almost hear the whole Internet groan.
Larry O’Brien, fresh off propelling John F. Kennedy to his first Senate term, is busy plotting the young politician's ascent to the presidency, and in Minneapolis, the Westernmost city in the NBA, a professional basketball game is going down to the wire: It's Nov.
The Miami Heat shocked the basketball world in the summer of 2010 when they landed the two most coveted free agents on the market—LeBron James and Chris Bosh—to join their superstar Dwayne Wade. They now had a team stacked with an overwhelming amount of talent.
Marvin Bagley III raps like he plays basketball, smooth and fast. Dressed in Duke sweats, Bagley wedges his 6-foot-11, 234-pound body into a recording booth just outside of downtown Raleigh, North Carolina.
It might have been a second, or a millisecond, or a milli of a millisecond. Even were it the absolute slightest measure of time, Bryce Dejean-Jones had an opportunity to turn around.
R.J. Barrett shook up the basketball world last weekend. The 17-year-old prodigy led Canada to its first gold medal in basketball in the FIBA U19 World Championship, and he was named MVP of the tournament despite being two years younger than most of the other players in Cairo.
How did a 1972 exhibition game between Russia and Uganda become a crucible for Cold War tensions at the dawn of Idi Amin's brutal regime? Ask the former CIA agent who tried to embarrass the Soviets where they'd least expect it: on a basketball court in Kampala.
After the Lakers lost to the Cavaliers on Sunday, a transcript passed around to media said that LeBron James had labeled D’Angelo Russell “a special player.” Russell had scored a career-high 40 points with six assists, so it seemed appropriate.
Let's start with the truth. The 3-point shot was created for people who couldn't play basketball. It was made for people who couldn't grow tall enough, dribble well enough, drive hard enough or move fast enough. It was for the last kid picked on the playground.
This story appears in the Jan. 25, 2016, issue of Sports Illustrated. To subscribe, click here. Kristaps Porzingis sits in stages, folding his 7'3" frame into a leather chair, collapsing his legs under a coffee table, squeezing his elbows inside an arm rest.
The NBA is becoming a positionless league. Coaches are more comfortable playing nontraditional lineups, cross-switching defensive assignments, and sliding players between positions. However, there are still five spots in a lineup, and what spot a player occupies still matters.
A month with Luke Walton and the youthful, fast-paced, fun-as-hell Lakers, who are getting along, winning games, and waking up after the Kobe eraMuch of what you need to know about the Lakers — these Lakers, now mercifully absent Kobe’s interminable farewell tour and free of Byron Scott’s
His first winter in Philadelphia was brutal. The team was terrible. The weather was worse. Sam Hinkie went to high school and college in Oklahoma. He did his postgrad stint at Stanford. He was Daryl Morey’s most trusted lieutenant in Houston.
Yeah, I read LeBron James’s classy letter in Sports Illustrated. I believe him. I think he wanted to come home. I think he always wanted to come home. In the summer of 2010, LeBron handled everything wrong. He knows that now. His hometown turned on him. His former owner excoriated him.
Ricky Rubio looks confused. He’s standing near midcourt on a Wednesday night in November at Vivint Smart Home Arena in downtown Salt Lake City, surrounded by teammates and screaming fans, and he is staring blankly, registering the weight of the moment.
The last time Steve Kerr was in Beirut, his birthplace, with the bombs pounding the runway and the assassination of his father six months away, he left by car. The airport was closed.
He couldn't bear to watch.
LOS ANGELES — O.J. Mayo broke down in tears when he heard the NBA was going to ban him for at least two years for a failed drug test, and he surely would have cried even harder if he had known the embarrassment, loneliness and aimlessness that would follow.
The first paycheck of Giannis Antetokounmpo's big new contract will hit his bank account next month. In the modern NBA, that means the Milwaukee Bucks are now on the clock.
Joe Harris, fresh from the D-League, couldn't believe what Brooklyn's new coaching staff was telling him in training camp. But the Nets knew Harris could shoot 3s, and they would figure out the rest later.
This story appears in ESPN The Magazine's Oct. 30 NBA Preview issue. Subscribe today! The sanctuary for the early check-ins, the merely laid-over and the maddeningly delayed is tucked between Gates 25 and 26 in Terminal 2 at Oakland International Airport.