Posts Tagged ‘Hang Time Podcast’

Hang Time Road Trip: Hollywood Shuffle

HANGTIME_PASSENGER


VIDEO: Hang Time Day 4

By Lang Whitaker

Los Angeles — It wouldn’t be a road trip without some detours along the way. But hitting that literal detour around midnight? Nobody saw that coming.

Getting from Oakland to Los Angeles should be, in theory at least, a simple proposition. You can take the 101, or the 5, or whatever it takes to head south.

But yesterday on the Hang Time Road Trip 2, after we finished up at 2K Sports and made a brief stop in San Jose, we piled in the bus and pointed south down the 101 to check out some of those scenic views California is so famous for displaying. Once the sun set, we switched over to the 5, for a more direct route.

And then Mother Nature said, Hang Time? Hang on.

Serious mudslides closed off interstate access, meaning we got hit with u-turn and briefly stopped near Bakersfield while we figured out what to do. Luckily, we got plenty of free traffic advice at a McDonald’s from fellow road warriors who were also stuck.

Highway closed. Found a Mickey D's to wait it out. Another adventure. #nbahangtime

A photo posted by Lang Whitaker (@langwhitaker) on

After a few moments that felt like an episode of “The Californians” on “Saturday Night Live” — “What you should do is take the 5 up north to the 46, then cut over to the 101, then…” — we saddled up and reconfigured our route.

We ended up arriving in Los Angeles just as the sun was coming up, and after catching a few minutes of shut eye, showed up in El Segundo at the Los Angeles Lakers practice facility.

Lakers practice #nbahangtime

A photo posted by Lang Whitaker (@langwhitaker) on

It was a homecoming of sorts for our own Rick Fox, who is at least partially responsible for a couple of those championship banners hanging on the walls. And in order to get a grip on what the future holds for this Lakers franchise, coach Byron Scott and rookie sensation D’Angelo Russell hopped on the bus to talk about the future of the Lake Show with us.

#LakerNation @dloading joining us on the Hang Time Road Trip Bus @nba @nbatv

A photo posted by Rick Fox (@imrickafox) on

It’s been a long few days, but we made it. Now if only we knew someone who could show us around Hollywood… oh wait, I think I might know just the guy!

Okay @jessicasteindorff cleaned up halfway – progress not perfection ūüėú

A photo posted by Rick Fox (@imrickafox) on

Hang Time Road Trip: From Oakland to LA!

HANGTIME_PASSENGER

By Sekou Smith

OAKLAND —¬†We finished our business in the Bay Area, talked to the champs and invaded 2K, and now it’s time to head to Los Angeles.

The Hang Time Road Trip is rolling along these California highways, soaking it all in and making sure to get as caught up in the hype of the moment as we can. The Golden State Warriors held an open practice Wednesday night at Oracle Arena that was every bit as entertaining as advertised.

We caught up with the champs before, during and after — general manager Bob Myers came on the bus for a chat before the practice, Draymond Green and Harrison Barnes made some time afterwards and we even got to spend a little quality time with Larry O’Brien — the festivities.

The guys…and Larry. #Repost @langwhitaker

A photo posted by @nbatv on

This morning, however, presented an opportunity for the HT crew to get a bit of a workout at 2K, where our main man Ronnie2K gave us the VIP tour. We hit headquarters for some work 2K16 (Lang whipped Rick) and some on-court action in the motion capture facility.

You haven’t lived until you’ve strapped on the spandex and taken your turn¬†doing mo-cap!

We know we’re going to see both the Lakers and Clippers in LA, so this trips is only going to get more and more interesting as we roll along. Here’s a little view from inside the bus as we made our way to 2K. We talked about the trip, Lamar Odom, what’s to come in SoCal and much more on today’s video podcast.

***


VIDEO: The Hang Time Road Trip crew finishes up in the Bay Arena before heading to LA

***

Keep up with us around the clock on Twitter or Instagram or Facebook (using the hashtag #NBAHangTime):

Hang Time Road Trip: The champs are here!

HANGTIME_PASSENGER

By Sekou Smith

OAKLAND —¬†The fine folks of this city and the entire Bay Area are still basking in the glow.

You don’t end a 40-year title drought in a basketball-mad region and not soak it all in. And the Golden State Warriors are doing exactly that. We noticed as much on our first night of The Hang Time Road Trip, which kicked off with an interview with hip-hop legend and hoops head Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest fame.

Sure, he’s a New York Knicks fan transplanted on the other side of the country. But he made it clear to us that the Warriors own the Bay Area these days. Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Andre Iguodala and the rest of the champion Warriors remain the biggest thing going around here.

We’ll see them tonight at their open practice at Oracle Arena. It promises to be a madhouse, with some of the best fans in sports crowding into the building to celebrate their team.

Hey @imrickafox @sekou3000, I found our ride. #nbahangtime

A video posted by Lang Whitaker (@langwhitaker) on

As far as this notion that the Warriors somehow got lucky last season in the playoffs by not having to face the Los Angeles Clippers or the San Antonio Spurs? Save it. You don’t win titles at any level without a little good fortune falling your way. But these guys earned every bit of that Larry O’Brien Trophy. And they’ve earned the right to swim in the afterglow, had they chosen to do so.

From what we’ve seen so far, they’ve worked their tails off to try to do it again. Their core group returns intact and, from what we’ve seen so far in the preseason, they’re already in midseason form. Steph is playing with the confidence you’d expect of a MVP and champion. Andrew Bogut has reshaped his body (#MUSCLEWATCH) and should be a force inside this season. Even with coach Steve Kerr out indefinitely to take care of his surgically repaired back, the Warriors don’t figure to miss a beat at the start of this season.

Any NBA season comes with surprise twists and turns, of course. So we’re not foolish enough to go making any bold predictions right now. But our track record so far is pretty good. The first day of last season’s Hang Time Road Trip was in Cleveland with LeBron James and the Cavaliers.

And you know where their season ended …

There’s so much going on today before get to Oracle to see the Warriors, so stay tuned on all fronts for updates and surprises.

***

Keep up with us around the clock on Twitter or Instagram or Facebook (using the hashtag #NBAHangTime):

Check back here for our daily (video) podcast recapping our adventures.

***

Of course, this day does come with the somber news that Lamar Odom is fighting for his life in a Nevada hospital. Odom’s plight hit the NBA family hard. Kobe Bryant reportedly made his way to Odom’s bedside to visit his friend and former teammates.

Los Angeles Clippers point guard Chris Paul speaks of many when he speaks of Odom and the intense fight ahead …


VIDEO: Chris Paul sends a message to Lamar Odom

Hang Time Road Trip II: Going back to Cali!

HANGTIME_PASSENGER

By Sekou Smith

OAKLAND —¬†On the road again.

Part II.

The Remix.

California Dreaming.

We considered them all as theme’s for this season’s Hang Time Road Trip, the follow-up to last season’s raucous 3,600-mile trek¬†that took us from Cleveland and through fellow Central Division hot spots in Chicago and Indianapolis and on to Philadelphia, New York and, eventually, Chapel Hill, N.C.

We’re taking a different route this time around. We won’t cover nearly as many miles but we’re going back to California, where we spent tons of quality time during the playoffs and, ultimately, The Finals. It is the state some would say is the epicenter of the NBA universe as we kick off the 2015-16 season.

The champs reside here, after all. Eyes around the league will be on KIA MVP Stephen Curry and his Splash Bros. partner, Klay Thompson, and the rest of the Golden State Warriors as they target on a repeat performance from last season, when they ended a 40-year title drought for the franchise.

Our eight-day sojourn kicks off in Warriors territory, where Luke Walton is filling in for Steve Kerr as interim coach as¬†Kerr continues his indefinite leave of absence while recovering from summer back surgery. Before we finish we’ll have chewed up plenty of highway between the Bay Area and Los Angeles, where we’ll get up close and personal with the Lakers and Clippers.

***


VIDEO: Pacers boss Larry Bird visited on the Hang Time Road Trip bus last year

Kobe Bryant‘s back from injury and for what, as of this moment, is his final season under contract with the only franchise he’s known in his future Hall of Fame career. We’ll find out what he has left in his tank and if his latest supporting cast is up to the task of sending him out the right way, if this is indeed his final campaign in purple and gold. Are youngsters D’Angelo Russell and Julius Randle, as well as veterans Roy Hibbert and Metta World Peace, capable of holding up their part of the deal?

And no one has had a more eventful offseason than Doc Rivers and his crew (no emoji’s from us, fellas), who figure to be one the biggest threats to the Warriors’ parade plans this season. Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and their free-agent contingent did everything they could to make sure DeAndre Jordan didn’t go anywhere, not with reinforcements in the form of Paul Pierce, Josh Smith and Lance Stephenson ready to help with¬†the heavy lifting this season.

You know there will be plenty of craziness along the road — it’s what we do on the Hang Time Podcast¬†—¬†but as always our mission remains¬†hoops. And where better to get things started than the Great State of California, where the storylines are aplenty.

***

Keep up with us around the clock on Twitter or Instagram or Facebook (using the hashtag #NBAHangTime):

Check the Hang Time Blog for our daily (video) podcast recapping our adventures and also Lang’s All Ball Blog for our daily updates.


VIDEO: Knicks boss Phil Jackson visits during the inaugural Hang Time Road Trip

Hang Time Podcast (Episode 212) Featuring Brett Dawson

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS —¬†The pipeline is as star-studded as it is long.¬†Anthony Davis, John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Karl-Anthony Towns, Devin Booker and so many other former Kentucky stars have done their (usually) one-and-done diligence in Lexington under John Calipari and then moved on to the NBA to chase their fortunes and hoop dreams, hoping of course, that they intersect at the corner of championship and max contract.

Mock Calipari’s methods all you want, question his ethics if you will, but there is no disputing his results. When he boasts of changing lives and making millionaires out of the 5-star talents that choose the path through Lexington to get to the NBA, the results have been staggering.¬†¬†Three No. 1 overall picks (Wall, Davis and Towns) have matriculated through the program, a total of 25 players through his first six seasons have crossed the threshold, and there are no doubt more to come.

Calipari, as he said Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell told him, is “creating more millionaires than a Wall Street firm.” Calipari, after all, is the only coach to boast five first-round selections in the same Draft (in 2010) and the only coach to have six players taken in a Draft in the modern (two-round) era, and he’s done it twice (in 2012 and 2015).

And when Davis and Kidd-Gilchrist went off the board at No. 1 and No. 2, respectively, in 2012 Calipari became the first coach to pull off that feat.

It’s a mind-boggling run highlighted by the ascension of Davis, the New Orleans Pelicans superstar who is already considered by many to be one of the top five players in the NBA.

Few people can provide the perspective of the UK-NBA pipeline the way Brett Dawson can. After covering the ‘Cats for years, he’s now turning his focus on Davis and the Pelicans for The Advocate in New Orleans. And he joins us on Episode 212 of The Hang Time Podcast to discuss all things UK-Cal-Pelicans and AD, a conversation we had to have as we get ready for next week’s Hang Time Road Trip,¬†Part II (#NBAHangTime)…

LISTEN HERE:

As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the¬†Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Sekou Smith of NBA.com, ¬†Lang Whitaker of NBA.com’s All-Ball Blog¬†and renaissance man Rick Fox of NBA TV, as well as our new super producer Gregg (just like Popovich)¬†Waigand.

‚Äď To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.


VIDEO: Anthony Davis lit up the scene for the New Orleans Pelicans last season … and promises to do more of the same this season and beyond

Hang Time Podcast (Episode 210) Featuring Matt D’Agostino

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS —¬†Comparing players and eras is always a risky proposition, given that everyone comes to the debate with their own perspective.

That’s why we’re extremely careful around here when it comes to connecting the dots between players with similar profiles but wildly different bodies of work.¬†So just because Larry Johnson and Anthony Bennett were No. 1 overall Draft picks (generations apart, mind you) as undersized power forwards from UNLV, does not make them comparable on any level as NBA players.

Phil Jackson compared prized Knicks rookie Kristaps Porzingis to Shawn Bradley, a rather unfair comparison in the eyes of many. Time will tell if Porzingis is ready to assist Carmelo Anthony in the resurrection of the Knicks or if he’ll struggle as a rookie in the same ways that Bennett did in Cleveland.

But it’s another situation that requires time to resolve, time that Bennett will attest few players have in today’s NBA. We talk all of this and much more on Episode 210 of The Hang Time Podcast featuring NBA.com’s FanDuel guru Matt D’Agostino ...

LISTEN HERE:

As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the¬†Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Sekou Smith of NBA.com, ¬†Lang Whitaker of NBA.com’s All-Ball Blog¬†and renaissance man Rick Fox of NBA TV, as well as our new super producer Gregg (just like Popovich)¬†Waigand.

‚Äď To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.


VIDEO: Will Kristaps Porzingis go the way of Anthony Bennett and struggle in his adjustment to the NBA or be an impact rookie for the New York Knicks this season?

Hang Time Podcast (Episode 209) Rick’s Return

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS —¬†We found him.

Finally.

Rick Fox is back in the fold on The Hang Time Podcast, picking up on Episode 209 where he left off months ago, cracking us up while sharing the details of the wild and crazy roller coaster ride that is his life. From Hollywood to Las Vegas to New York and around the globe, Rick has been busy since he last showed up for his job (one of about 226 different jobs) here.

We should clear up a few things now, before you dig in. No, he is not to blame for Serena Williams missing out on the grand slam (he didn’t even make it to her final match at the U.S. Open), that was Drake‘s fault.

Yes, brilliant¬†comedian and actress Amy Schumer is going to need a restraining order to keep Rick a safe distance away from her now that he’s become her unquestioned No. 1 fan.

And yes, these rumors of a musical twist (he’s searching for a stage name but is leaning towards “DJ Trainwreck” … sorry Amy and LeBron James) in his future are legit.

It’s been a while since we’ve had the pleasure of poking fun at the most hilariously entertaining member of our crew. ¬†But it’s good to have him back to share his insights on the sudden passing of Moses Malone, Kobe Bryant‘s readiness for training camp and what that means for the Los Angeles Lakers, his need to learn Spanish (yesterday) for his latest acting gig, rubbing elbows with Oprah, Gayle King and Roger Goodell, his infatuation with live streaming videos on Facebook, introducing his daughter to Nas and so much more.

That’s just a small sampling of what you’ll get¬†on¬†Episode 209 of the Hang Time Podcast:¬†Rick’s Return¬†…

LISTEN HERE:

As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the¬†Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Sekou Smith of NBA.com, ¬†Lang Whitaker of NBA.com’s All-Ball Blog¬†and renaissance man Rick Fox of NBA TV, as well as our new super producer Gregg (just like Popovich)¬†Waigand.

‚Äď To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.

Hang Time Podcast (Episode 208) featuring Steve Smith

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS —¬†No disrespect to Stephen Curry (the reigning KIA MVP) or LeBron James (a four-time winner of the award), but Kevin Durant (the 2014 winner) believes he’s “still the best player in the world.” And what self-respecting NBA superstar worth his signature kicks wouldn’t say the same? There’s only one answer that question, according to NBA TV’s Steve Smith, who was never short on confidence during a stellar basketball career that saw him star at Detroit’s famed Pershing High School, Michigan State University and in various stops during his 14 seasons in the NBA.

“What’s he supposed to say, ‘I’m No. 2B or No. 3?” Smitty said on Episode 208 of the Hang Time Podcast, where we also go in-depth with one of our favorite members NBA TV/NBA.com family about the changes in “offseason training” when he played and now. Guys workout together now, but Smitty honed his craft in the offseason by going to hoops grad school battling the likes of Hall of Famers Isiah Thomas, Joe Dumars,¬†Magic Johnson and other seasoned pros.

He also shared his delight in seeing his former teammate, great friend and current neighbor Dikembe Mutombo honored, his joy in seeing fellow Detroit Pershing Doughboy Spencer Haywood finally take his place in the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame and other hot topics going on in the basketball world with the start of training camps on the horizon.

He certainly got in a few digs about the trials and tribulations my Michigan Wolverines football program has endured prior to the return of Jim Harbaugh, pointing out (and rightfully so) the rise of his Michigan State Spartans on both the football field and the basketball court.¬†Smitty will be on site this weekend in East Lansing when Michigan State hosts Oregon in college football’s marquee game. He’ll do so while celebrating with his fellow Spartans basketball alums and MSU coach Tom Izzo.¬†He’s even convinced me to show a little Michigan pride this weekend and root for the Spartans against the Ducks.

Crazy … I know!

But that’s how we do it around here when we roll with a NBA champion and Olympic gold medalist, a man who has literally seen and done it all, one the oldest and best friends we have in the basketball business, and just happens to be Green!

As always, we dive in on¬†Episode 208 of the Hang Time Podcast featuring NBA TV’s Steve Smith¬†…

LISTEN HERE:

As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the¬†Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Sekou Smith of NBA.com, ¬†Lang Whitaker of NBA.com’s All-Ball Blog¬†and renaissance man Rick Fox of NBA TV, as well as our new super producer Gregg (just like Popovich)¬†Waigand.

‚Äď To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.


VIDEO: NBA TV’s Steve Smith looks ahead to his Top Five games of the 2015-16 NBA season

Hang Time Podcast (Episode 207) Featuring Brad Turner

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS —¬†The flood¬†of memories that Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant produced in their eight seasons together with the Los Angeles Lakers could fill five or six books, serve as the origin story for nearly as many movies or after school specials and keep your mind twisting and turning about “What might have been?”¬†for a lifetime.

The greatest reality show ever told is how folks describe it now, a daily soap opera with all of the drama (on and off the court) that anyone could ask for. And it was groundbreaking stuff, ahead of its time even, given that this all played out long before social media became a part of our everyday lives.

Broderick (you might know him as Brad or BT) Turner of The Los Angeles Times was there before, during and after every second of it and is still chronicling the daily happenings of what goes on¬†in and around LA’s basketball scene. And that includes keeping a watchful eye on DeAndre Jordan, Doc Rivers, Chris and Cliff Paul, Blake Griffin, Paul Pierce, Lance Stephenson, Josh Smith and the rest of the Los Angeles Clippers, the latest and greatest hoops reality show to hit town.

We dive back into the Shaq-Kobe drama and all the people impacted by it (from Magic Johnson, Jerry West and Dr. Jerry Buss to their teammates and the fans who witnessed it and still discuss to this day), discuss DeAndre’s crazy summer and look ahead at what’s to come in LA and elsewhere around the league after a month-long hiatus from the booth (Lang’s still at the beach and Rick is all over the place, as always).

But with just weeks before teams show up for the start of training camp, it’s also time to start assessing the 2015-16 season and how the pecking order will break down on each side of the conference divide.

As always, we dive in on¬†Episode 207 of the Hang Time Podcast featuring Brad Turner of The Los Angeles Times …

LISTEN HERE:

As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the¬†Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Sekou Smith of NBA.com, ¬†Lang Whitaker of NBA.com’s All-Ball Blog¬†and renaissance man Rick Fox of NBA TV, as well as our new super producer Gregg (just like Popovich)¬†Waigand.

‚Äď To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.


VIDEO: An emoji battle over the services of DeAndre Jordan broke out during free agency, a battle ultimately won by the Clippers

Hang Time Podcast (Episode 206) Summer Wrap

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS —¬†The end of one season and the start of the next used to be well-defined.

We’d go from the NBA regular season to the playoffs, the playoffs to the Draft and from the Draft to free agency and then on to the Summer League season before the league would go dark for at least a month or two. But no more.

The blending of the seasons in the NBA is complete. And it’s all one great big glorious blur of hoops hysteria that feeds the insatiable appetites of the masses. There’s no sense in complaining about it, this non-stop barrage of games, Drafts, free agent fevers, Summer League’s and the like. It’s best to buckle up and just go along for the ride.

Besides, what would your summer have been like without Karl-Anthony Towns, D’Angelo Russell, Jahlil Okafor, Kristap¬†Porzingis and the rest of the incoming rookie class? Or headline makers¬†like¬†DeAndre¬†Jordan, Mark Cuban, Doc Rivers, Blake Griffin, Chandler Parsons¬†and everyone else involved in the Clippers-Mavericks free agent drama?

And that’s just the beginning of the conversation that includes an endless supply of moves and rumored moves (DeMarcus Cousins is still a member of the Sacramento Kings, as of this moment) that have kept our cups running over this summer.

Now we’re debating which comes first, a lady in the Oval Office (perhaps a Clinton …) or one on the bench as a pioneer as the first female head coach (Becky Hammon, anyone …) in the NBA?

How we got from the Golden State Warriors and KIA MVP Steph Curry winning it all for the first time in 40 years to Seth Curry stealing the show in the Las Vegas Summer League in roughly a month’s time is anyone’s guess. But we do our best to sort through it all, and more, on¬†Episode 206 of the Hang Time Podcast … Summer Wrap!

LISTEN HERE:

As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the¬†Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Sekou Smith of NBA.com, ¬†Lang Whitaker of NBA.com’s All-Ball Blog¬†and renaissance man Rick Fox of NBA TV, as well as our new super producer Gregg (just like Popovich)¬†Waigand.

‚Äď To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.


VIDEO: Expectations are soaring for Kristap¬†Porzingis after the New York Knicks’ rookie impressed at the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas