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Paul George Didn't Want to Play In Kobe's Shadow ... Says YG

7/5/2018 11:43 AM PDT

They've partied together ... they're fans of each other ... and now rapper YG says he knows why Paul George ultimately decided NOT to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers -- Kobe Bryant

It's not a personal thing ... YG says PG knows the Lakers are (and always will be) Kobe's team and Paul would rather create his own legacy in Oklahoma City, which is why he re-signed with the Thunder. 

"Make your own legacy, my n****," YG said.

"That's Kobe Bryant's team right there. The Lakers are Kobe's team. [Russell Westbrook] and Paul George got a chance to make the f*cking Thunder their team."

There's more ... YG added, "Paul George ain't trying to be up under the curse of the Lakers."

As for if Russ and Paul are enough to take down the Warriors' super team -- YG told us it all comes down to a lyric from an Ice Cube song. 

Paul George Chad Ochocinco Ain't The FIFA King ... 'He Can't Beat Me!'

6/16/2018 12:05 AM PDT

Chad Ochocinco is more FIFA Prince than FIFA King ... 'cause Paul George OWNS the ex-NFL superstar in the video game -- so says the Thunder stud himself.

Chad -- who's dubbed himself the "FIFA King" many times over the years -- has been obsessed with the soccer game ... and is a legend in the gaming community for showing up to random people's houses to pick up the sticks.

But PG-13 says the ex-NFL star is all talk ... and he NEVER wins when the two play.

"There's one person that can't beat me ... Ochocinco," Paul told TMZ Sports at the Fortnite Pro-Am on Wednesday.

It's huge if true ... 'cause just the other day Chad said he was in the FIFA lab for EIGHT STRAIGHT HOURS.

So ... forget the Fortnite tourneys -- let's see THIS matchup ASAP!!

Russell Westbrook Fashion Tribute to Michael Jordan

5/25/2018 12:10 AM PDT
Breaking News

Screw the Jumpman logo, Russell Westbrook went FULL FACE to honor Michael Jordan

The OKC Thunder star was spotted out in NYC during a late-night shopping spree this week wearing a special hoodie that's a collaboration between Jordan Brand and NY-based fashion line Public School. 

The back says, "We Need Leaders."

True that. 

Jordan and Russ are fans of each other -- not only is Russ signed to Jordan Brand, but MJ sent him a personalized note last year to congratulate him on his first NBA MVP award. 

Game respects game. 

OKC Thunder Suspend Announcer For 'Cotton-Picking' Comment

4/13/2018 11:43 AM PDT
Breaking News

The OKC Thunder commentator who said Russell Westbrook was "out of his cotton-picking mind" is being punished for his terrible choice of words ... the team just announced.

Brian Davis, the play-by-play guy for Fox Sports Oklahoma, has been suspended for Game 1 of the Thunder-Jazz playoff series ... after making the racially insensitive call in OKC's regular-season finale.

Davis maintains he didn't mean to offend anyone -- but says he's cool with the suspension 'cause it was a pretty stupid thing to say.

“It is with great remorse and humility that I accept this suspension for the insensitive words I used during Wednesday’s broadcast. While unintentional, I understand and acknowledge the gravity of the situation."

"I offer my sincere apology and realize that, while I committed a lapse in judgement, such mistakes come with consequences. This is an appropriate consequence for my actions.”

Larry King Chill On 'Cotton-Picking' 'Take It As Compliment'

4/13/2018 6:06 AM PDT

Larry King says the whole "cotton-picking" controversy surrounding an OKC Thunder announcer is being overblown -- in fact, Larry says he'd take the expression as a compliment. 

"That statement's been around forever," King told us on his way out of Craig's in West Hollywood ... "'Cotton-picking mind' was probably an adjective."

King -- a huge sports fan -- then showered praise on Russell Westbrook (who was at the center of the controversy) for being a beast on the court and said, "I would take it as a compliment."

"That's like saying 'You're crazy,'" ... "What about people with mental health problems?"

"So, if you say to someone 'You're crazy,' you're offending every mental health patient in America."

Larry does say there is one popular term that IS offensive that he would like to see be changed ASAP. 

OKC Blasts Announcer Who Said Westbrook ... 'Out Of His Cotton-Picking Mind'

4/12/2018 6:19 AM PDT
Exclusive Details

8:28 AM PT -- The OKC Thunder has issued a statement condemning the comments ... 

"We find the term used by Brian Davis on our broadcast last night to be highly inappropriate and offensive."

"We’ve discussed it with the announcer and let him know that. He assures us it was not meant in any sort of offensive or derogatory manner and he apologizes."

"Nonetheless, he’s been told the use of that term in any manner is unacceptable."

An NBA game announcer is in hot water after saying Russell Westbrook was playing so well Wednesday night ... he was "out of his cotton-picking mind."

Dude. Bad. 

We get it ... FOX Sports Oklahoma play-by-play guy Brian Davis (white dude) was trying to say Westbrook was playing on another level (he became the first player in NBA history to average a triple double 2 years in a row). 

But, when you make a cotton reference about a black guy's not usually well received. 

That's exactly what happened Wednesday night -- people are losing their minds about the comment. Some people are even suggesting Davis should be fired. 

There's been a long debate about the origin of the expression -- some people say it was used as a slur plantation owners used toward slaves. 

We're reaching out to the Thunder for comment. 

Russell Westbrook Hit Up Miami Nightclub ... 1 AM on Game Day

4/9/2018 2:47 PM PDT

Russell Westbrook rolled into LIV nightclub in Miami at 1:30 AM on Monday morning ... hours before the OKC Thunder are set to play the Miami Heat. 

So ... the question -- big deal or nah?

Some people think it's a problem when pro athletes party on game day (remember when Jason Kidd got pissed at the Bucks for hitting the strip club before losing to the last place Lakers?). 

Others like Magic Johnson don't care as long as the players perform on the court or the field (he gave Yasiel Puig a party pass back in 2013). 

The issue here ... it's a crucial time for the Thunder. They're currently 7th in the Western Conference, but haven't clinched a playoff berth yet.

Guessing this is how it'll play out -- beat the Heat and no one cares if he hit the club. Lose? Well, that could be a problem ... 

OKC Thunder Player Knocked Out Cold! ... By His Teammate!!

3/9/2018 6:42 AM PST
Breaking News

OKC Thunder star Steven Adams knocked his teammate OUT COLD in a game last night ... but they weren't fighting -- Adams was literally standing still!

The bizarre play went down at the Chesapeake Energy Arena ... when Thunder rookie Terrance Ferguson tried to stay with his man on D. 

Unfortunately, standing in his way was 7 feet, 255 pounds of chiseled Jason Momoa-looking muscle (Adams) ... and Ferguson's svelte 6'7'', 184-pound frame couldn't handle the business. 

The 2 collided heads -- and DOWN WENT FERGY. Adams was totally fine, BTW.

Steven, being the good dude that he is, quickly got the rook some medical attention ... and it looks like Terrance is gonna be OK outside of a possible concussion.

But damn, lesson learned -- don't tango with Steven Adams.

OKC Thunder's Steven Adams Twitter Girl Still Wants a Date Better Late Than Never!

2/20/2018 10:43 AM PST

The chick who missed her shot at Steven Adams on Twitter 3 YEARS AGO says she's pumped the NBA star finally got back to her ... and she's still VERY down to go on a date!! 

Social media has been blowing up after Adams went DEEP into his Twitter history to respond to a 2015 tweet from Lauren Myers -- who asked him to be her date to her law school prom.

On Monday, February 19, 2018 ... Adams wrote back, "Absolutely."

Better late than never right?! Well, that's how Myers feels. 

In fact, the 28-year-old lawyer (she's since graduated law school and passed the bar) tells TMZ Sports she's down for a basketball game, dinner, bowling ... "anything would be fun!" 

Myers says she initially hit Adams up because he was a young, unknown player at the time and she thought there was a good chance she'd get a response. She never imagined hearing back now!

Steven ... HIT THIS GIRL UP!!!

Nick Young Science by Swaggy: Dinosaur Attacked OKC Thunder Plane!

10/31/2017 4:35 PM PDT

It's a bird! It's a plane!! It's ... a dinosaur??? 

We asked Warriors baller Nick Young what the hell coulda smacked into the OKC Thunder airplane on Friday night -- making a HUGE crater on the nose of the Boeing 757.

Swaggy P's scientific deduction -- "A dinosaur ... or something."

FYI, a Delta spokesperson said it was probably a bird ... but Young ain't buyin' it. 

Swaggy -- who we got at Poppy in West Hollywood -- also gave us physical proof of something he says is just as crazy as a prehistoric attack.

OKC Thunder Dented Plane's Been Repaired ... Ready to Fly

10/30/2017 1:45 PM PDT
Exclusive Details

The plane that was carrying the OKC Thunder during a scary in-fight incident that crushed the nose of the plane has been repaired ... and it's ready to get back in the air, TMZ Sports has learned.  

The incident took place Saturday morning -- Delta, which was operating the team's chartered flight from Minnesota to Chicago -- says initial reports suggest a possible bird strike smashed the front of the plane. 

But Delta works fast ... a rep for the company tells us, "The aircraft, a Boeing 757-200, has since been inspected and its nose cone replaced."

Impressive since the plane was repaired roughly 48 hours after the incident. 

"The damaged nose cone has been sent to a maintenance facility to undergo additional evaluation," Delta adds. 

Question is ... will Carmelo, Russ and the rest of the team ever get back on that plane? We'll see. 

Caron Butler D-Wade Considered OKC, Lakers ... Before Signing w/ Cavs

10/15/2017 12:15 AM PDT

Dwyane Wade was REALLY close to heading west instead of reuniting with his bestie LeBron James this off-season ... so says ex-NBA star Caron Butler.

TMZ Sports spoke with Tuff Juice about his convo with Wade before he made his decision to join the Cavs ... and he says Wade was seriously considering Miami, OKC and the L.A. Lakers.

Butler breaks it down -- L.A. made sense considering Wade's movie star wife Gabrielle Union, OKC would've been a good basketball move, and Miami's his first NBA home.

Butler thinks Wade made the right move by teaming up with LBJ again ... and says he expects the Cavs to land right back in the Finals again this season.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich Disses Carmelo OKC 'Better Have 2 Basketballs'

9/26/2017 1:05 PM PDT

Ohio Gov. John Kasich says OKC adding Carmelo Anthony ain't enough to win a title ... saying the Thunder needs to make one more acquisition to compete, another basketball.

FYI -- 'Melo shoots a lot.

We got Kasich -- a huge hoops fan -- out in NYC and asked him what he thought about the Thunder adding Anthony to a team that already has Russell Westbrook and Paul George.

Turns out he doesn't think much of it, telling our guy there's just not gonna be enough Spalding available to make everyone on that stacked team happy.

It wasn't all doom & gloom with Kasich though, the Cavs fanatic did something most Cleveland fans aren't doing right now ... said some really nice things about Kyrie Irving.

Watch, and be amazed.

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