From heartfelt moments and historical accomplishments, to breaking news and some unfiltered drama, the NBA snapped yesterday. For all NBA fans, April 9, 2019, was one of the more unique days in the league’s history. Sportscenter, First Take, and all other NBA talk/radio shows have plenty to discuss Wednesday. Here is a run down of the main events of yesterday’s escapades:
- Dwyane Wade dropped 30 points at his final home game in Miami
- Dirk Nowitzki dropped 30 points at his final home game in Dallas
- Jamal Crawford became the first player in NBA history to score 50 points with four different teams
- Magic Johnson resigned publicly as the President of the Los Angeles Lakers Basketball Operations, before telling Jeanie Buss, the owner and president of the Lakers.
- Anthony Davis rocked a “That’s all folks” shirt before the final game of the New Orleans Pelicans season
With all five of those events happening, it’s an absolute field day for sports journalists to blog, report, and discuss. Here are some quick notes from each event.
Dwyane Wade: 15 seasons with the Miami Heat, 21,531 career points, 22.7 PPG, three-time NBA Champion, 13x All-Star, 8x All-NBA, 3x All-Defensive, and the 2005-06 Finals MVP.
Even when LeBron James and Chris Bosh joined Wade through the 2010-11 and 2013-14 seasons, it was the “Flash’s” team. The embodiment of winning, memorability, and above all, class, is what Wade brought to the organization. With zero negative press of the court, Wade showed professionalism and a work ethic imprinted in all Heat fan’s hearts. From buzzer beaters, to running up and jumping onto the scorer’s table yelling, “This is my house,” the NBA bids farewell to the future Hall of Fame shooting guard. Let me emphasize, Wade’s impact is greater off the court.
Dirk Nowitzki: 21 seasons with the Dallas Mavericks, 1521 games, 31,540 points (sixth all-time), 20.7 PPG, 12x All-NBA, 2010-11 NBA Champion and Finals MVP, and the 2006-07 NBA MVP.
The 20-year old, 7-0 foot string-bean German center debuted on February 5, 1999, a time when Luka Doncic, his current teammate, wasn’t even born yet and Spongebob Squarepants was in its first season. 20 years later, Nowitzki is the greatest European NBA player of all-time and a future Hall of Famer. With class, a famous fade-away shot, and the most seasons all-time with a single franchise, Nowitzki became emotional last night as his heroes were present: Larry Bird and Charles Barkley to name a couple. Nowitzki is Dallas, and Dallas will always be a part of Nowitzki.
Jamal Crawford: Over a 19-year career and at the age of 39, Crawford became the first player in NBA history to have four 50 point games with four different franchises. Also, he passed a decent player in Michael Jordan as the oldest player in NBA history to score over 50 points in a game. Honestly, that has to be one of the most impressive accomplishments, considering it’s been 15 years from his first 50 point game with the Chicago Bulls. The man does not age, his crossovers are memorable, and to make this feat more impressive, yesterday’s 51 point explosion was off the bench, the first time accomplished since Nick Anderson on the Orlando Magic in 1993. Too bad his show was overshadowed since it was against the Mavericks yesterday.
Magic Johnson: This came out of nowhere and left the league agape. On February 21, 2017, Johnson took the role as the president of basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers replacing Jim Buss and abruptly resigned yesterday without notifying Jeanie Buss. A complete shock to the NBA world, his press surprise press conference was emotion ridden, filled with joy and love for the organization. There are speculations about his resignation, whether it regards tampering, disputes over not firing head coach Luke Walton, or his failure to produce a playoff team with James. Nevertheless, with love and respect, Johnson quoted: “It’s hard when you love an organization the way I love this organization. It’s hard when you love a person like I love Jeanie. I don’t want to hurt her. And I love Luke.” Below is an interview with Rachel Nichols post-press conference.
Anthony Davis: In one of the more savage ways to reiterate his distaste for his seven-year tenure with the Pelicans, Davis thought it would be sharp to wear a “That’s all folks” shirt in the final game of the Pelicans season.
Now, after his petty move yesterday, Andrew Lopez, the New Orleans Pelicans beat writer for The Times-Picayune, sent out a tweet early Wednesday morning:
Davis, we get it, you’re a disgruntled superstar on a lousy team. Setting that aside, this is a classless act, especially to state the next day this wasn’t intentional. Come on now “Uni-brow,” this was unnecessary.
Well, there you have it folks, quite the episode of reality TV’s oldest program, “The NBA.” Also, hear are a couple honorable mentions from a bizarre day in the NBA:
- Utah Jazz shooting guard Donovan Mitchell scored 46 points in a win against the Western Conference second place Denver Nuggets
- Oklahoma City Thunder All-Star small forward Paul George hits a game-winning shot against the Western Conference third place Houston Rockets
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