#PSBSportsChop: Kobe Bryant – “All Access” – Nov. 13, 2017

It’s hard to mention future first ballot NBA Hall of Famer Kobe Bryant‘s name without mentioning Michael Jordan and these days LeBron James in the same sentence. Like most of the greats, Bryant made a living off of out preparing his competition. Add that to his superior skill set and it’s easy to see why Kobe dropped a cool 60 in his last NBA game 18 months ago.

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCultureBC

THE BREAKDOWN:

I ran across an ESPN True Hoop article on Bryant during his final season in the league. He talks in great detail about the recovery it takes for him to play at a high level 20 years in. I immediately thought about the same principles for a player in the infant stages of their career such as a Ben Simmons or Jayson Tatum in this year’s rookie class and what Bryant’s regimen could do for their game.

FULL ARTICLE:

KOBE BRYANT ALL DAY PROCESS

Brandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.

#PSBSportsChop: Chris Paul – “Chapter 3” – Nov. 13, 2017

Since high school, Chris Paul was destined to be a star in the NBA. The former McDonald’s All-American has won the NBA Rookie of the Year Award, an NBA All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award, two Olympic gold medals, and led the NBA in assists four times and steals six times. He has also been selected to nine NBA All-Star teams, eight All-NBA teams, and nine NBA All-Defensive teams. The one thing Paul lacks from his resume is an NBA championship.

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCultureBC

THE BREAKDOWN:

ESPN collaborated with Paul to give us a three-part series on his decision to leave the Los Angeles Clippers during free agency last summer for the Houston Rockets. This is another example of players taking their business models into their own hands. For a guy who doesn’t possess the pop culture following of a Steph Curry, LeBron James or Russell Westbrook, Paul has crafted himself a nice niche amongst the league’s elite discussion as he enters the backside of his playing career.

My favorite part of the documentary was his conversation with rap and business mogul, Jay-Z. As usual, Jay dropped a MEAN jewel on Paul early in the series regarding his decision to leave saying “if you aren’t going to be happy playing basketball, I don’t care how much money they give you. 150 million, 200 million that’s essentially that same payout. You’ll take the same (private) planes, wear the same sneakers.”

WATCH:

Brandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.

#PSBSportsChop: The Most Expensive Pickup Run in 2017? – August 16, 2017

NBA superstar Carmelo Anthony has been on one this offseason. From his late night training to sparking a trend while wearing a hoodie during his shooting workouts, Anthony has been the league’s most visible figure since the season came to a close. He might have pulled off the most expensive pickup run in recent memory bringing in Kevin Durant and LeBron James this week. Both took private jet trips costing five figures a piece for the action at the Lifetime Fitness that has served as Anthony’s workout hub this summer.

My group message was buzzing this morning about the run. After seeing a clip of Anthony get by LeBron off of the dribble drive, Donte Grant and Jermale Wilkerson both chimed in with, “Melo can still score that basketball.”

The NBA should let Anthony rock the hoodie all season. He might post all-time career high numbers.

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCulture

WATCH CLIPS:

Brandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.

#PSBSportsChop: How Good is Devin Booker? – July 1, 2017

Devin Booker has proven himself as the face of a struggling Phoenix Suns franchise looking to get back to being an annual contender like they were when Steve Nash and Amare Stoudamire led the way. Just finishing his NBA second season, Booker has established himself as a capable scorer even hanging a 70-point barrage late in the season against the Boston Celtics. At just 20 years old, Booker is the youngest player in NBA history to score 60 or more in a game.

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCulture

The Breakdown:

Coming out of Kentucky, Booker was known as a shooting specialist but had multiple question marks from draft pundits and general managers alike about his skill level to be consistent in other areas.

BrandonClayScouting.com Director of Domestic Scouting, Jonathan Hemingway said this about Booker as a high school prospect, “Booker is a silky smooth guard who projects to an impact wing next year at Kentucky. This evening, in front of his future coach John Calipari, he put up 40 points vs. Ballard HS. He did it in an array of ways by hitting the long range 3, getting to the rim to finish and tallied a number of points at the free throw line. He showed his athleticism on a tremendous tip-dunk where he had to hang in the air to control the ball & then brought the ball up to dunk it. His slender frame may be cause for worry, since he is not ready for the physicality of college ball at this moment. After a year of consistent training in a weight program, that concern will be alleviated.”

Booker’s NBA stats backup Hemingway’s claim that Booker can score the basketball with the best of them while displaying the athleticism needed to be an elite perimeter option in the league for years to come.

Brandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.

#PSBSportsChop: “Mind Over Body: Playing in the N.F.L. at 38” – Terence Newman – Mar. 10, 2017

It’s rare for a cornerback to survive a decade in the N.F.L. let alone 15 seasons. That’s exactly what Terence Newman of the Minnesota Vikings is in the process of doing. Most guys get moved from cornerback to safety as they age but Newman is defying the odds. He gives us a look at how he’s managed to beat the numbers:

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCulture

The Breakdown:

Newman provides a fairly in-depth breakdown of what he does to prepare all year long. He’s the oldest cornerback in the league by five years and made 1.65 million last season so I’m definitely paying attention to how he’s making it happen. It was a good read even for me as I continue to change my way of living (exercise and food intake).

READ THE ARTICLE: Mind Over Body: Playing in the N.F.L. at 38 | The New York Times

PSBPCBC100Brandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.

#PSBSportsChop: “The Tree” – Jeff Capel – Mar. 10, 2017

Duke associate head basketball coach Jeff Capel III has long been a favorite of mine dating back to his playing days at Duke. Capel was so talented that legendary hip-hop artist Tupac Shakur wore his Blue Devil jersey at one point. Like us all, Capel III has a family. His father, Jeff II, was diagnosed with ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease). Capel III took time to document the highs, lows and the stories that have defined his relationship with his father over the years in this article.

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCulture

The Breakdown:

This article almost brought me to tears. At one point, Capel is complaining about Duke wanting sympathy while starting on the No. 2 team in the country as a freshman.

Capel’s dad tells him “Man, SHUT THE F*** UP. Stop calling home and complaining. And just play.”

READ THE ARTICLE: The Tree | The Players’ Tribune

PSBPCBC100Brandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.

#PSBSportsChop: Top 10 NBA Point Guards – Opening Week 2016 – Oct. 27, 2016

With another NBA season upon us, I’ll rank the top players at each position in the league. Arguably the most important position in the game, point guards lead the discussion.

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCulture

The Breakdown

1) Russell Westbrook (OKC): Westbrook put up monster numbers with 23.5 points, 10.4 assists, 7.8 rebounds per game last season. Without Kevin Durant, he’ll have an even larger chip on his shoulder than normal. Best of luck to opposing defenses. And yeah, Westbrook also leads the league off the floor in the fashion department too.

2) Stephen Curry (GSW): Don’t let LeBron’s block diminish the player Curry has become. We talked about Curry’s unique rise last winter. His numbers are staggering and warranted the second straight MVP selection last season: 30 points, 6.7 assists, 5.4 rebounds per. The scariest part of his output were the FIVE made 3-pointers a night. Even if his stats dip a little with the addition of Durant, Curry is still at the top of this discussion.

3) James Harden (HOU): ESPN analyst and former NBA champion Chauncey Billups said it best, “to whom much is given, much is expected.” That describes the sentiment in the public towards Harden who has become a pop culture icon of sorts. On the floor, he’s leaned out and had a quietly productive 2015-16 season: 29 points, 7.5 assists and 6.1 rebounds per. He’s the best in the league at getting to the free throw line shooting 86 percent from there.

4) Damien Lillard (Portland): Lillard turned heads with his debut rap album, “The Letter O,” last week. But his 140 million guaranteed contract came from his domination on the hardwood. Dame dropped 25 points, 6.8 assists and 4 rebounds per in 2015-16.

5) Chris Paul (LA Clippers): Paul is the consummate floor general. Even as he starts to enter the latter years of his elite prime, his numbers held as steady as ever. Paul dropped 19.5 points, 10 assists and 4.2 rebounds per. He doesn’t shoot the 3-pointer at the same clip as Lillard, Curry or Harden but averages more assists than any of those three.

6) Kyrie Irving (Cleveland): Irving’s ability and willingness to score the ball from the position makes him unique. He found a way to coexist with ball dominant guard option in LeBron and win an NBA title in the process. In a shorter season recovering from a kneecap injury that ended his 2014-15 campaign, Irving posted 19.6 points, 4.7 assists and 3 rebounds per. His assist numbers will always project to hover lower than the other guys on this list as long as King James is playing at his current level so don’t be swayed. Irving is a goon in late-game situations.

7) Kyle Lowry (Toronto): Lowry made a believer of most in last year’s playoff run. He was fantastic all year north of the border averaging 21.2 points, 6.4 assists, 4.7 rebounds while making close to three 3-pointers a game too.

8) John Wall (Washington): Wall’s showing signs of the prospect who warranted a first overall selection in the 2010 NBA Draft. He might not ascend past Lillard, Curry into the elite discussion of NBA point guards but Wall is a nightmare on any given gameday for opposing defenses. He dropped 19.9 points, 10.2 assists and 4.9 rebounds in 2015-16 so he’s headed in that Chris Paul direction as a player.

9) Isaiah Thomas (Boston): After leaving Phoenix, Thomas saw his playing time and role increase. The diminutive guard took full advantage averaging 22.2 points, 6.2 assists and 3 rebounds per. Thomas is one to keep an eye on this season to possibly move up the ladder.

10) Kemba Walker (Charlotte): The moving on up radar watch same goes for Walker as Thomas. Walker was fantastic last season posting 20.8 points, 4.3 assists, 3.2 rebounds per. His assist to turnover ratio is hovering under 2 which is not an elite stat in the NBA. Harden’s is 1.64 but his numbers justify the dip while Walker has yet to post Harden like stats in his career.

Honorable Mention: Eric Bledsoe (Phoenix), Mike Conley (Memphis), Goran Dragic (Phoenix), Rajon Rondo (Chicago), Jeff Teague (Indiana)

PSBPCBC100Brandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.

#PSBSportsChop: #DewNBA3x – May 23, 2016

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCulture

Mountain Dew is putting a twist on one of the timeless traditions of the game with a unique series of 3-on-3 outdoor basketball tournaments. The initial stop, held at The Gulch in downtown Atlanta, provided an atmosphere and execution that was first class.

I want to give a special thanks to everyone who assisted us in getting out for the stop: Jason Brown, Kimberly Hogg, Jared Leake, Jah Rawlings and John Shumate.

The 2016 tour will run on the following schedule:

DewNBA3x Schedule

Here’s a look at the Atlanta stop via social media:

Welcome to Atlanta. #DewNBA3X

A photo posted by @dewnba3x on

RISE UP! #DewNBA3X

A video posted by @dewnba3x on

@posterchildj1 is out here at The Gulch spinning all day at 77 Forsyth! #DewNBA3X

A photo posted by @dewnba3x on

Legends are out here at The Gulch in Atlanta, Georgia! #DewNBA3X

A photo posted by @dewnba3x on

PSBPCMayDayBrandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.

#PSBSportsChop: #MambaDay Recap – April 19, 2016

We talked last week about Los Angeles Laker guard Kobe Bryant bidding farewell to the NBA after 20 seasons. Nike even created a special week-long advertising campaign with activation from athletes across multiple sport platforms to document Bryant’s legacy. What a farewell game it turned out to be as the 18 time NBA All-Star torched the Utah Jazz for 60 points in a home win at the Staples Center. David Beckham, Jay-Z, Kanye West and the legendary Jack Nicholson were amongst the celebrities court side for Kobe’s final game. Hip-Hop artist Fabolous even documented Bryant’s night with a freestyle titled “Black Mamba” that he released the following day.

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCulture

Brandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.

#PSBSportsChop: #MambaDay – April 13, 2016

Los Angeles Laker guard Kobe Bryant is one of the best to ever lace them up and a surefire first ballot Hall of Fame inductee. Tonight, he bids farewell to the NBA after 20 seasons. Nike even created a special week-long advertising campaign with activation from athletes across multiple sport platforms to document Bryant’s legacy.

By: Brandon Clay @PSBPopCulture

Brandon Clay serves as the publisher of PSBPopCulture.com. A self-professed entertainment, music and sports junkie, Clay has been on his game since picking up his first Nintendo and Sony Walkman in the early 90’s. Adding in a SLAM (Basketball) Magazine subscription in the late-90’s had him setup up for lifelong success. Clay is also a founding member of the “Luxury Boys Club” designed to stay on top of whatever is next in the world of PopCulture. You can follow him on Twitter @psbpopculture.