The date was March 13, 2001, when the Celtics took the floor of the Staples Center to face the defending champion Lakers. Shaquille O’Neal first heard of Paul Pierce when the Celtics’ up-and-coming star was in high school. But he didn’t really know how good he was until that night—a night that changed Pierce’s persona forever. After he scored a game-high 42 points, O’Neal called Pierce, who was
If you think Marcin Gortat’s current life is busy in the playoffs, setting dozens of screens every night for John Wall, and scoring and rebounding as a double-double threat, wait until you hear what happens after he touches down in Poland every summer. Hosting youth programs, meeting government heads, visiting with members of the military, being an ambassador of Porsche, tending to a giraffe and his two
Devin Booker and D’Angelo Russell first met as teenagers at the Nike Elite 100 camp in St. Louis for the top high school players in the country. Now in the NBA, they’re with the same agency (CAA), team up at NBA events (like All-Star Weekend this year) and travel together every offseason (like this past weekend to the popular Coachella music festival). The close friends also have
Tim Hardaway Jr. had a basketball routine before he even had a full set of teeth. Three months after NBA great Tim Hardaway had Junior in 1992, while he was playing for the Warriors, he would regularly take him to the practice center when he was still sucking a bottle. As Hardaway remembers it, crying turned to calmness when his infant son heard the sound of a bouncing ball.
For Bucks guard Malcolm Brogdon, a Rookie of the Year candidate who will be competing in the playoffs, it took only one rule and a trip to Ghana during his adolescence to figure out his life’s purpose beyond basketball: utilizing his education in public policy by assisting countries most in need. While he didn’t know it then, his quest for figuring out what he wanted to do