Noah Holsters Six-Shooters For Good

CHICAGO – The city with some of the nation’s toughest, if ineffective, gun-control laws got a little more legislation Tuesday night at United Center.

Joakim Noah‘s six-shooters have been holstered for good.

Noah, the Chicago Bulls center who posted the second triple-double of his career Tuesday in a 100-89 victory over the Boston Celtics, never flashed the imaginary pistols that he’d been using the past few seasons to celebrate successful jump shots. He scored 11 points, grabbed 13 rebounds and passed out 10 assists, but even as he hit four of his seven field-goal attempts, Noah avoided the pantomime that had become something a trademark.

An unacceptable trademark after Friday’s events in Newtown, Conn.

“You can’t joke around with things like that,” Noah said after the game. “Too many people are dying because of guns. We have a problem here with guns. So just trying to be a little bit compassionate about what’s going on.”

The gesture began in practice back in 2010-11, Noah explained, and eventually turned into a habit. “I hit a jump shot in Keith Bogans‘ face and I started doing the guns and kept doing it,” he said. “It was kind of like a funny, comical thing. But I guess we’re in a situation right now where it’s not funny.”

Like most people across America, Noah was horrified by the elementary school shootings that left 20 children and six adults dead Friday. But the 6-foot-11 center had participated in September in a “Peace Tournament” on Chicago’s South Side, a community effort that brought together warring gang members for a day of basketball. The Windy City tops the U.S. in shootings and gun homicides despite carrying some of the strictest anti-gun regulations on its books.

Naismith Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas and several Bulls players participated as coaches and talked about gun violence and conflict resolution with the gang members that day.

Noah never has owned a gun, he said Tuesday. And he reacted instinctively on Twitter after learning of the Newtown tragedy.

“It’s what happened in Connecticut. That was shocking to a lot of people,” Noah said Tuesday. “But things like this have been going on. We have a serious problem with that in Chicago. It’s crazy, man.

“You just hear about this summer, a movie theater. It’s just happening all the time. It’s horrible. … This gun thing in this country is no joke.”

Noah made four of his 12 shots against Brooklyn on Saturday but none of them came on his sidewinding, “toronado” jump shot that elicited the pistol moves. At Memphis on Monday, it  looked as if he flashed his “guns” momentarily after one jumper, then caught himself.

Noah said he got few complaints over the past few seasons from fans and no requests from NBA headquarters in New York to abandon the practice. “I had never really thought about it,” he said.

An emotional player who earned Boston coach Doc Rivers‘ praise as the Bulls’ “point guard” in Derrick Rose‘s absence – hey, he finished with two more assists than Rajon Rondo – Noah said he would find some other way to express his excitement on the court. He likes to think of himself as a “point center” but the days of pointing and holstering those index fingers are over.

18 Comments

  1. the point is he should have stopped when his fans complained couple years ago & on top of that did the Chitown peace tourney in september-just gotta look lil deeper in our behavior sometimes, exp when in the limelight. now the game, i’ll give him that, he put up a good one, it’s ok, come playoffs, u know, GREENALLDAY, nuff said!! peace yall :)

  2. Matthew says:

    If more nba players thought like this than the league would be so much better. It is not the ridiculous celebration that is the issue, whether it is insensitive or not but the thought of putting someone (sympathy, empathy) above yourself for whatever reason. He stopped doing it for the sake of other people. So many stars in all facets really put on the me-me selfish lifestyle or attitude and it is easy to see why with the media and fans turning a normal person who can shoot a jumpshot into godhood?

  3. The shot clock says:

    Just leave our video games alone! Video games don’t kill people. MASTER CHIEF does.

  4. Bill says:

    Only insensitive if those involved in the tragedy felt Noah was mocking them or making light of their situation…which obviously there is no tie whatsoever. Noah is just grand-standing here.

    • Matt says:

      Have to disagree with you about the grandstanding thing. I think he’s merely expressing a point of view on an issue, being mindful of the fact that he’s in the public eye and being considerate of the impact his actions might have on others. Pretty darn cool of him I reckon.

  5. Bulls2012 says:

    Good for you Joakim…Great respect to the people who lost their lives…Noah with his 2nd trible double wow..HE FINALLY MADE HIS STATEMENT THAT HE IS THE BEST CENTER IN THE EAST and top 5 center in the NBA…LETS GO BULLS

  6. Manu says:

    Thank god for that – he’s a good player, but he looked completely ridiculous and stupid with that celebration.

  7. […] the Florida alum is putting away his guns for good, and he’s saying he now realizes that it’s insensitive, especially given recent […]

  8. Hil says:

    It was funny-ish back when it was rare he hit his shots, but now that he hits a lot more of his shots the guns were coming out a lot. Anyway, I hope he continues to work with programs that curb violence in Chicago. That’s probably more important than having a signature move.

  9. Fefe (Nets) says:

    Joakim Noah is an All-Star for sure this year!!!!!!

  10. terry says:

    i think joakim noah is what the young teens in chicago need keep up the good work.

  11. BBexpert says:

    Now that is something I like to see. Thumbs up for my man JOAKIM NOAH!!!

  12. That’s cool that he stopped doing it-like he said it wasn’t funny after friday (no coment). it never was funny, but he looked reeeaal funny doing it!! NOW let’s keep it real forreal-he copied Ray Allen last year or year before during game against my Celts; Ray of course did it a lot smoother after hitting a 3, then later in the game noah hit a lucky jumper or layup & started copying Ray but noah stupidley started doing it vigorously lokking all angry & foolish & yes it had me laughing cause he looked stupid. Ohh even more copycat proof for yall, past year or so noah’s been banging his chest-LMAO-Now eveybody knows that’s been THE MAN KG’s trademark for like 18 years & RAY doing his for like 16 years. Also Ray did it pointing @ the floor & noah pointing @ opposing team, not too smart.LMAO noah there’s nothing wrong w/ a trademark gesture,LMAO just be original LMAO & come up with your own one PLEASE,LMAO you looked like a kid copying people!!!!LMAO