Cohen: Ranking All-Time Funny NBA Interviews

By Josh Cohen

ORLANDO -- During the NBA offseason, I tend to enjoy watching and analyzing viral videos on the Internet. Some of the best are sports-themed, and in the NBA, there are several hilarious interviews that have been documented on film.

A while back I had ranked some of my favorites and now I figured I would add to it and list my top 15.

After viewing each and reading about each one, vote on the interview that you think was the most funny to watch.


RANK
INTERVIEW
ANALYSIS
1

"Practice"
There have been innumerable comedy skits, remix melodies and imitations of the notorious Allen Iverson “practice” rant from the 2002 NBA season. Besides this press conference being hilarious because of the vast number of times A.I. stated the word “practice,” this tirade is largely so humorous because the entire interview is a paradox.

He basically says that practice can’t help make his teammates better. Although this unforgettable press conference wouldn’t be ranked No. 1 if he didn’t say “practice” more than 20 times, the point of his outburst is amusing in of itself.

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2

"Ball"
It was very apparent that Hedo Turkoglu had very little desire in his half-hour stay in Toronto.

Noticeably delirious and lacking the yearning to methodically answer a question, Hedo opted to provide a mysterious one-word reaction, “Ball.”

Rather than dissect Turk’s uncanny answer to a seemingly normal query, the television reporter elected to take matters into his own hands and further analyze the meaning behind “Ball.” All in all, the Turkish superstar clearly “had nothing else to say.”

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3

"Game 7!"
If I was a public speaking teacher and I was evaluating Zaza Pachulia’s final exam after Game 6 of the Hawks’ 2008 First Round series against the Celtics, here would be my assessment:

Zaza earns an A for eye contact, an A for enthusiasm and an A for capturing the crowd’s attention. He looked like a politician in the making. Pachulia for President!!

Whoever decided to hand the microphone to Zaza, though, should be his vice president.

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4

"Fumigation"
The entire insect community assembled recently and concluded that it is not safe to parade around an NBA press conference room when Dirk Nowitzki is at the podium.

After Game 1 of the 2006 NBA Finals, Dirk had no patience to deal with some irritating, niggling gnat. Compelled to be worry-free while answering questions from the media, the former MVP decided it was time to obliterate this unwarranted creature.

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5

"Tooth"
All of Hollywood is still trying to figure out what character Steve Nash was playing during a halftime interview after chipping his tooth during the 2007-08 season.

Although it remains a mystery, everyone seems to be in consensus that Nash’s acting performance deserves serious consideration for an academy award.

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6

"Parade"
It’s hard to say what was more amusing during the 2001 L.A. Lakers championship parade: Mark Madsen’s untamed speech or his feral dancing to Shaquille O’Neal’s rapping.

Maybe Madsen is the type of guy every championship team needs on their roster: An eccentric individual that has no limitations when given the chance to show off his talents (or lack their of).

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7

"My Fault"
It’s not exactly known if Tracy McGrady was trying to emulate Allen Iverson’s epic performance for most times saying the same thing during an interview. But either way, if we accuse him of replication, it’s probably his fault.

The seven-time All-Star wanted to make sure everyone knew that he is responsible for all the problems in the world.

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8

"Imitation"
It’s a toss-up as to what’s more funny about the Houston Rockets trying to imitate Dikembe Mutombo’s incomprehensible, yet endearing babble: The team’s surprising ability to capture all of Deke’s expressions or Yao Ming’s one-word replication, “Finger.”

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9

"Confirmation"
It’s no secret that LeBron James skipped college to play professional basketball, but in case there was still some uncertainty about it, LBJ confirmed his original “decision” before “The Decision.”

WATCH
10

"Bizarre"
Besides adoring the style of play from most of the European players in the NBA, I also revere the way they articulate their opinions during interviews. Kyrylo Fesenko confirmed this judgment of mine a few seasons ago.

WATCH
11

"Played Hard"
When an NBA player is too aggravated, distracted or exhausted (remember, games end late and often they have to rush to catch a flight to their next city), there is generally one phrase that is effective in answering any question from the media.

“Both teams played hard.”

During his days with the Blazers, Rasheed Wallace opted to utilize this axiom to riposte any question the media had for him.

Let’s face it, with this response, you can’t go wrong.

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12

"Celebration"
It’s only natural to be exultant after reaching the pinnacle of your professional career.

But in Metta World Peace’s case, achieving the zenith of success means going from being somewhat out of the ordinary to just flat out unearthly. He even got the whole family involved.

For some reason, I respect his form of celebration.

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13

"Language"
Kevin Garnett is a future Hall of Famer because he incorporated extraordinary talent with an unremitting desire to win. But, KG may also be admitted into the Hall of Fame because he created a whole new language for kids to learn.

Garnett's "Anything is Possible" declaration deserves to be on this list as well.

WATCH
14

"Motivational"
If you are seeking some advice on how to be successful in life, there is no better person to turn to than Adam Morrison. If you are looking for a motivational speaker, you probably should reach out to Morrison before he is completely booked (sarcastic).

This interview demonstrates that he delivers powerful words without much time spent.

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15

"Impersonation"
There is probably nobody in professional sports better at doing impersonations than Dwight Howard. We all know he loved to imitate Stan Van Gundy during his time in Orlando and television personality Charles Barkley, but perhaps his best was when he decided to mimic an NFL quarterback after a notorious rant.

After all, sports are all about having fun, right?

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