By: PJ Guippone
In the internet age, gifs and memes often rule subcultures of basketball conversation. They are a lot of fun, and making them relevant even when they seemingly aren’t can make for some A+ sports comedy. Here is a non-basketball gif to sum up each NBA franchise in their current state.
I kinda feel like if the Hawks were an actor, they would be Matthew McConaughey. They are consistently good and beloved by all, but rarely the best of the best.
I bet you didn’t know Game of Thrones was actually about Danny Ainge and his impressive throne of assets. He loves his draft picks because they give him so many options. He can make a surprise pick that no one expects like Jaylen Brown at 3 in the 2016 draft, he can hold on to probable number one picks in 2017 and 2018 instead of trading them to get another superstar, or he can decide to maybe one day trade them, but that would make his throne a little bit less cool.
This is a simple one. See that pillow right there? That is the Nets. Oh and the dog? Well his name is Danny Ainge and he has been fucking the Nets since he made the trade the gutted their franchise in 2013. He will continue to hump in the same fashion until after the 2018 draft, the last first round pick Ainge got from the Nets.
The Hornets were 20-16. They were having a steady season, walking along, making their way to a middle seed in the Eastern Conference. Now, they are 25-34. They are bad. Their season is in free fall. All of the bones in their limbs are being broken and they really don’t seem like they are going to turn it around at all.
Check out this awesome gif of the Bulls locker room, point guard depth, front office, coaching staff, and three-point shooting!
The Cavs have done the same thing every year since LeBron has returned. Some time around this part of the season, they hit a wall. They lose some games to make it interesting and also because the whole team isn’t playing 100% because they can do that and still get the one seed. But then, just when everyone is at the peak amount of saying the Cavs aren’t that good, they do this. It’s right around now, and then in the playoffs the punch strikes the wall and it all goes down.
Mark Cuban really will have none of your internet banter. The always-witty, only sometimes-funny Bleacher Report Twitter page recently tweeted Dirk’s air ball, just as is always done when a professional athlete does something on a normal human level. After his initial response, which I assume was very much like the above gif, Cuban wrote an email to Bleacher Report and asked them to take down the post. Bleacher Report did and then proceeded to apologize. Never has so much bitchiness been shown in one exchange.
I do not know if it is disrespectful to give the unicorn gif to Jokic instead of Porzingis, but I don’t care because if I gave a positive gif to the Knicks, I would be doing you, my beloved reader, a disservice. Jokic is making waves across the league for his unbelievable playmaking ability, and I imagine this little unicorn would have a similar vertical leap to him, so I couldn’t resist.
I couldn’t think of anything for the Pistons. I really think they are the most irrelevant team in basketball. They define mediocre and Andre Drummond getting 1500 rebounds per game is the only interesting thing that ever happens there.
Golden State Warriors
I think this was an adequate description of the Warriors’ offensive capabilities. At first I looked up a tidal wave, but there was something missing from those gifs of a wall of water destroying entire cities. This seemed more fitting. The steadiness of the train shows the Warriors’ consistency, the water is a metaphor for how wet their shots are, and the people on the ground are hopeless defenders.
It’s hard to quantify the amount of three-point shots the Rockets make. Literally, it isn’t that hard. Literally, they make about fifteen per game and almost 900 so far this season. Figuratively, though, those numbers seem astronomical. So imagine this meteor shower as giant basketballs raining down into hoops throughout the NBA.
I thought this is a perfectly accurate representation of the Pacers throughout the last 5+ years. They really haven’t moved from the exact same spot in a while, so this year they tried. They made the Jeff Teague splash in the offseason in an attempt to give Paul George some help. All they really did was move to the top of the rat wheel, though. They’re still in the same spot.
Los Angeles Clippers
Look at that beautiful Range Rover. All shiny and promising, ready to look really good on a long road trip. That Range Rover is the Clippers expectation of their season. Yes, it is destroyed. The culprit? The Chris Paul injury and the subsequent lack of cohesion that the Clips are still struggling with.
Los Angeles Lakers
The Sixers have gotten a bit of a bad rap throughout the league due to “The Process.” Say what you will about the process, but it seems like it’s beginning to work out and the franchise is taking steps in the right direction. There was a point in the Lakers’ abysmal season where rookie head coach Luke Walton said, “I don’t believe in [tanking].” He neglected to realize something: he is currently the captain of the biggest tankfest in the association, officially proven by the Lou Will trade. So this is him, lying his ass off.
The Grizzlies really aren’t that spectacular. They’re another one of those teams that have been in the exact same spot for quite some time, but there is one level they are consistently far-above average: defense. Look at how good it is! It can stop speeding bullets!
This is Dion Waiters. He is a shooter. Shooters shoot.
Wow! Check out this most recent dunk from Giannis Antetokounmpo. This guy is really something. Is there anything he can’t do?
How are the Timberwolves not good yet? In the past few years they have had seemingly endless amounts of high draft picks that have turned into pretty good players (Don Glover’s pizzas). Then the season comes and they are a dumpster fire again. “Just one more piece” has become the motto.
New Orleans Pelicans
This is a bit of a prospective one. After the Boogie Cousins trade, the Pelicans seem to be very excited for the rest of the season. They believe they are a lock for the Western Conference 8 seed, and many people (including myself, in all honesty) agree. Just to play devil’s advocate here, maybe Boogie’s personality doesn’t change and he does start to bring the team down. It will look like the above gif, with all of the destruction starting in the front court.
New York Knicks
Live look at literally everything Phil Jackson has done in the front office.
Oklahoma City Thunder
Meet Thunder point guard and transcendent NBA talent Russell Westbrook. He lulls you to sleep with shocking fashion and witty TV commercials off the court only to turn into a molten lava fireball and dominate you with freakish speed and ferocious intensity.
This was supposed to be the Magic’s year. They went all in in the offseason, trading Oladipo for Serge Ibaka and signing Bismack Biyombo. They were finally going to make that last step and not be a total joke. So the trick was all set up. The front office was excited, there was a buzz in the locker room, and the season began with a positivity that didn’t reside in Orlando since Dwight. Then they pulled the chair out, and gave their volunteer brain damage.
The 2016 draft was a very interesting one for the Suns. Entering, they needed a stretch four. Afterwards, they had two stretch fours. The front office is driving this car, and they see the guys they want amongst the trees. Swerving quickly, they make a rapid decision that backfires entirely. Maybe it is just because these guys are young, but that did not seem to be a step towards success for the Suns.
Portland Trail Blazers
Look at how fast these cars are moving. Look at how free and unimpeded they are. There is nothing in their way except for the open road, and they are taking as much of it as they can get. These cars are NBA offenses. The lack of traffic or stoplights is the Portland Trail Blazers’ defense.
Ah the life of a Kings fan. With more bad trades than you can count, a buffoon in the front office, perennial losing, and now no franchise centerpiece, they know life is pain.
San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs will never brag for themselves. The national media will never brag for the Spurs (other than Beadle, who is awesome) because if you don’t play in Cleveland or Golden State in the current NBA, then you are irrelevant. But I am going to take this time to brag for the Spurs. They are a fucking fantastic franchise, by far the best in the NBA. Pop pisses excellence, Kawhi does, too, so does LA and Patty Mills and Danny Green and Manu and even the last guy on the bench. This is an excellent, model franchise in pro sports.
This is a life look at the Raptors’ backcourt of Kyle Lowry and Demar DeRozan. The All-Star backcourt combination consistently gives the Raptors a chance to be in almost any game they play. I imagine DeRozan as Batman and Lowry as Robin just because of their sizes, but you can think of it how you want.
This is Rudy Gobert, Center for the Utah Jazz. For anyone attempting to score when he is in the lane, good luck. His 7’9″ wingspan is overwhelming for the best of scorers. He is one of the best rim protectors in the league and one of the frontrunners for defensive player of the year.
This is in honor of Marcin Gortat, the Polish Hammer, because has a top-5 all-time nickname (and he got a tattoo to match).