Matt Barnes I Want To Run For Office By Age 50 Mayor, Governor, Maybe?!?

Miss Understood with Rachel Uchitel

Governor Matt Barnes?? Perhaps someday -- 'cause the ex-NBA star says he wants to run for political office by the time he turns 50!!

43-year-old Barnes -- who played 16 seasons in the NBA -- shared his political aspirations during an appearance on "Miss Understood with Rachel Uchitel" ... and he's not just talking being the president of his local PTO. He's eyeing some big-time positions.

"I gave myself a goal back in my 30s that by the time I turn 50, I wanted to run for some sort of office," Barnes said. "Whether that be mayor or governor or whatever it may be."

"It would be refreshing," he continued. "It's not something people expect, but I know I can make a difference. I still got seven years before that time is up."

Barnes -- who won a championship with the Warriors in 2017 -- says he'd love to be an example to people that they can make something of themselves and create opportunities for the under-represented members of society.

"I try to use my platform to speak up for those who don't have a platform or don't have a voice," Barnes said.

"I think I've been misunderstood my entire life. I try to give back. I try to motivate. I try to educate. In our communities, you have to see it to believe it. I always want to be a symbol of hope."

Of course, Barnes' transition from pro athlete to politician might be met with skepticism initially, given his reputation as an enforcer during his time in the NBA ... but he's ready to show who he really is in a different role.

Steph Curry Inks Massive Deal W/ Under Armour ... Potential 'Lifetime' Contract

Steph Curry and Under Armour have just entered into a new agreement ... one that could keep the NBA superstar locked in with the apparel company for the rest of his life!!

Curry and UA announced the massive extension on Thursday ... and while dollar figures of the new pact have yet to be released, the deal could reportedly end up being worth more than what he's made in his entire NBA career -- which, to this date, is over $300 MILLION.

As part of the extension, UA named the 35-year-old Warriors point guard the "President of Curry Brand" -- a title that will give Curry a say in how the company produces products related to basketball, golf, women, youth, and "sportstyle."

"What we want to do, is win every single day," UA founder Kevin Plank said of the new contract. "If we do that, this will be a lifetime deal."

Octagon founder Phil de Picciotto, whose agency helped negotiate the new agreement, added, "Done right, this partnership is forever."

"Curry Brand is now cemented into the Under Armour universe," de Picciotto said. "He's not just an ambassador. He's not just an endorser. This isn't just a deal. He will be leading a business."

The deal appears to be similar to the lifetime one that Curry's pal, LeBron James, inked with Nike in 2015.

Curry, who first signed with UA in 2013, said Thursday he was pumped for it all.

"Belief is a big part of who I am on and off the court," Curry said. "I believe in Curry Brand and Under Amour, the team now in place, and what we're doing together."

"We share a vision for a big future ahead."

LeBron James Towel Hangs On For Dear Life ... Nearly Naked Postgame Interview!!!

LeBron James left little to the imagination while speaking with reporters after the Lakers game on Wednesday ... answering questions in a tiny towel!!

The King apparently didn't have time to throw on some street clothes before getting bombarded with questions after L.A.'s road win over the Chicago Bulls ... but he didn't seem to mind, cracking jokes and praising his teammate, Austin Reaves, as he talked about the matchup.

But the interview was overshadowed by the fact 38-year-old Bron was pretty naked -- aside from a towel securely tied at the hip -- and most of his left thigh was clearly visible.

The nearly-nude Q&A has some wondering whether it's necessary for the media to have access to players right after they get out of the showers ... with others loving the clip out of sheer horniness by dropping some pretty NSFW reactions on Twitter.

As for the game, the Lakers beat the Bulls 121-110 ... and Reaves got revenge on Patrick Beverley for hitting LeBron with the "too small" gesture when the two teams met earlier this week.

The Lakers are currently 8th in the Western Conference standings ... and if they continue to win, they might actually be in a position to make a run in the playoffs.

LaVar Ball On Bronny James He Should Skip College ... Play In Australia Instead

Forget playing at Ohio State or USC, Lavar Ball says Bronny James should head to Australia following high school ... and spend the 2023-24 season playing pro Down Under.

The big Baller explained to Sporting News Australia this week that he believes the unconventional move to the NBL would make LeBron James' kid much more NBA ready -- just as he says it did for his own son, LaMelo Ball.

"You playing against grown men and you getting paid," the 55-year-old said. "If you want to play basketball and you really that dude, why am I sitting in class trying to pass a chemistry test? I don’t wanna play no chemistry. I don't wanna practice no Spanish. No!"

"I wanna wake up, go practice, go back to sleep, go practice, have a game, practice. That’s all I wanna do. I don’t wanna be like, ‘Hey, I’ll meet you in the student union for study hall.'"

If Bronny does take the overseas route, LaVar believes it could result in a huge monetary windfall for the 18-year-old too ... explaining the McDonald's All-American could gain a massive following -- and sell out gyms everywhere.

"You can go set your own stage across the water," Ball said. "He already got the name. So people wanna see [him]. He gon' fill the gym up."

LeBron's offspring is still undecided on what he wants to do next season -- but he'll have to make a choice soon ... he graduates from Sierra Canyon in just a couple weeks.

Could bypassing the Big Ten or the Pac-12 for Australia be in the cards? We'll all find out soon enough.

Steve Kerr There's 'Hope' Wiggins Returns ... After Extended Absence

Golden State Warriors

Steve Kerr is optimistic Andrew Wiggins will play again this season ... saying Tuesday night there's "hope" the All-Star forward can rejoin the Warriors in the near future.

Kerr was asked about Wiggins -- who hasn't played an NBA game since Feb.13 due to family reasons -- prior to the Warriors' 120-109 victory over the Pelicans, and he said that the 28-year-old has been "working out every day," but a timeline for his return is still up in the air.

"Beyond that, once he's back, our training staff will be able to get with him and see where he is," Kerr said Tuesday. "He's been training on his own."

Kerr hesitated to label Wiggins' extended absence from the team as "indefinite" ... but said because his status remains uncertain, "it's also appropriate because we don't know."

The Warriors have remained tight-lipped about the specific reason(s) why Wiggins isn't available to play -- but Draymond Green didn't mince words after rumors started circulating online about why his teammate has been MIA.

"I'm not here to say whether it's true or false. I don't know -- not my business!!" Green said on his podcast. "But [the] point being, it's not yours either!!"

"That's insane!! That's nuts!! The fact that people are so nosy and so consumed on what someone else do in their life, not basketball, in their life that THAT is the story ... with no confirmation of nothing?! Sometimes people disgust me."

Meanwhile, Steph Curry said GSW would love to have Wiggins back on the floor, adding, "when he walks in the door, it'll be when it's the right time for him. That's kind of the expectation at this point."

NBA's Andre Drummond Speaks Out On Mental Health Struggle ... Quitting Social Media

NBA player Andre Drummond is going off the grid to improve his mental health ... saying he's quitting social media and changing his phone number to free his mind.

The Chicago Bulls center was open with his struggles to his 840k Twitter followers on Tuesday ... calling on anyone battling similar issues to seek help -- just like he is.

"Deleting all my social apps my Management will take over," Drummond said. "also changing my number .."

"Time to focus on my mental health. If you too are struggling with your mental health, you are not alone 💙 it’s okay to ask for help."

Andre -- who is averaging 6 points and nearly 7 rebounds a game for the Bulls this season --- has spoken out about mental health awareness previously ... and shared his path to wellness in a video with the National Basketball Players Association last year.

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Drummond said at the time he used to focus on the wrong parts of life and allowed his daily experiences to stress him out ... but once he started to take time for himself, he saw positive changes.

Bronny James Jumps Over Bro In McDonald's Dunk Contest ... But Loses To Duke Commit

Bronny James took flight at the McDonald's All-American dunk contest on Monday night ... leaping over his younger bro for a sick slam -- but in the end, it wasn't enough to beat out a Duke commit to win the event.

LeBron's offspring participated in the prestigious skills competition two decades after The King won it all back in 2003 ... and the 18-year-old came thiiiiiiis close to repeating Dad's feat.

Bronny, a 6-foot-3 shooting guard, opened the competition with a self-lob, reverse dunk that scored a 65/70. His second throwdown -- a self-lob, one-handed windmill -- earned him a 57/70 and a place in the finals.

The Sierra Canyon star opened up the championship round by bringing out his younger brother, Bryce -- and dunking all over him ... an impressive accomplishment, considering the 15-year-old is 6-foot-5.

The slam got him a 63/70 ... but when Bronny wasn't able to complete his second dunk in the finals -- Blue Devils signee Sean Stewart took home the event's crown.

Bron was largely impressed with his boy's performance -- the Lakers superstar live-tweeted the whole event, critiquing the judges' scores ... while praising some of Bronny's work. His wife, Savannah, meanwhile, attended it all in-person, and gave Bronny 10s for every dunk.

Despite the loss Monday night, Bronny will have another opportunity to show out in Houston this week ... the actual McDonald's All-American Game tips off at 6 p.m. PT on Tuesday.

Can he follow in Pop's footsteps and win the MVP of it all? Stay tuned!

Ben Affleck & Jennifer Lopez Smiles & Smooches at 'Air' Premiere

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez are like a couple of clams ... looking happy as can be at the premiere and after-party of his brand new flick.

The 2 were having a blast Monday night at the world premiere of Ben's new movie, "Air" ... and, of course, the couple was holding court on their way into L.A.'s Regency Village Theater.


They even gave fans what they came for ... sharing a few kisses and chattin' it up with the photogs snapping pics. They might have been acting like they were the only 2 there, but they weren't -- Ben's costars Jason Bateman and Viola Davis were also there to kick off the film.

J Lo and her man were still giving honeymoon vibes at the after-party where they cozied up on a couch. You can see the meme now, can't ya? "Find someone who looks at you the way Ben looks at Jen."

Ben also delivered a speech at Monday night's event ... giving his buddy and costar Matt Damon top billing as he called him the "biggest joy of my professional life."

Don't worry his wife got some attention too, telling her, "You’re fabulous, you’re amazing, you’re wonderful, good, kind, magnificent and I love you.”

Ben directed "Air," and produced it with Matt ... the movie's about the Nike sales team's efforts to strike a deal with an NBA rookie named Michael Jordan.

Spoiler alert: They eventually get him and create a moderately successful new brand of kicks.

NBA Star Bradley Beal Under Police Investigation ... Over Postgame Incident With Fans


8:59 AM PT -- Bradley Beal's attorney tells us ... "We are cooperating with the investigation and [Bradley's] name will be cleared soon."

Washington Wizards shooting guard Bradley Beal -- a three-time NBA All-Star -- is under police investigation ... after he was involved in a confrontation with some hecklers following a game last week, TMZ Sports has learned.

The complaint against Beal was lodged on March 22, according to the Orlando Police Dept., roughly 24 hours after the basketball player was involved in a spat with two fans following his team's 122-112 loss to the Magic in Florida.

The dispute between Beal and the fans arose right after the 29-year-old hooper was walking down a tunnel to the Wizards' locker room area at Amway Center.

One of the guys in a group yelled at Beal, "You f***ed me [out of] $1,300, you f***!"

Beal then turned, walked toward the fans, and appeared to knock the hat off one of the guys' heads in response to the heckle.

Beal and the fans then jawed back and forth, with Beal calling the comment "disrespectful."

"Keep it a buck," Beal said. "I don't give a f*** about none of your bets or your parlays, bro. That ain't why I play the game."

Things were tense between Beal and the group -- with the men exchanging a flurry of words -- before the Wizards star was ushered into the locker room without further incident.

The jawing back and forth lasted about 50 seconds before Beal was ushered away.

But, the alleged victim contacted police and they met the following day. The fan told police Beal hit him in the head when he swatted the cap. Cops took a report for battery and began investigating.

Police watched cell phone video of the incident. They also went to the Amway Center in an attempt to hunt down surveillance video, but the incident occurred off camera.

The alleged victim told cops he wants to press charges against Beal, and police noted there was enough probable cause to charge Bradley with "simple battery," saying "charges will be filed at large with the State Attorney's Office."

As for the Wizards, they tell us ... “We are aware of the situation regarding Bradley Beal in Orlando but won’t have further comment until we’ve gathered more information.”

The Magic, meanwhile, tell us they are aware of the incident and are letting the OPD handle it.

Beal has had a great year for the Wizards this season despite his team's 33-42 record and the run-in with the fans, averaging 23.2 points per game with 3.9 rebounds and 5.4 assists.

Shaquille O'Neal Hits Gym Days After Hip Surgery ... 'I'm Coming For Yall'


Shaquille O'Neal is living up to his "Superman" moniker ... just days after the NBA legend had his hip replaced, he's already back in the gym working out!

The Hall of Famer shared video of himself walking into a gym using a crutch on Sunday, before sitting down at a machine and pumping out some arm/chest exercises.

"Bout to get my game back," Shaq wrote in the caption. "All you old dudes that hoop in @24hrfitness @lafitness @lifetimefitness I’m coming for yall."

It's pretty impressive when you realize the 51-year-old just went under the knife a week ago. As we previously reported, Shaq had been dealing with hip issues and is on the mend after successful surgery.

Shaq initially caused a bit of a panic when he shared a photo of him lying in a hospital bed, so fans will be happy to see him working out.

It's unclear exactly when The Big Fella will return to his "NBA on TNT" gig, though on his "The Big Podcast With Shaq" he said he planned to return by April 16.

The Big Podcast With Shaq

The 4-time NBA champ also said he's going on a diet to lose weight ... and get an 8-pack.

And, by the look of it, he's off to a great start!

Larry Johnson Knicks Can 'Go Far' This Season ... But No Championship


Larry Johnson loves what he sees with the NY Knicks (granted, we talked to him before the Magic loss) ... and says if they keep hooping like they've been, he sees Jalen Brunson's squad making a run in the playoffs!

"I'm very happy with what we look like this year," the Knicks legend told Babcock on the "TMZ Sports" TV show (airs weeknights on FS1) earlier this week.

"I do believe Jalen is the best player or he's definitely the most valuable, running the team and getting the people to their right spots."

Brunson -- who Johnson calls "nephew" (LJ was teammates with Jalen's dad, Rick Brunson) -- has been playing lights out since signing with New York for $104 million last July. At the time, pundits called him overpaid. Now, it's called one of the most team-friendly contracts in the sport.

Jalen's averaging 23.8 points, 6.2 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game.

During the season, the Knicks traded for Jalen's former Villanova teammate, Josh Hart ... and Johnson loves the move, lauding the former Blazers forward for being "a dog on defense."

"That's that New York mentality," Johnson said.

With Brunson playing like an All-Star, Hart's hustle, and the Knicks in fifth position in the East,  Johnson doesn't believe the Knicks will be a one-and-done playoff team.

But, he doesn't foresee a ticker-tape parade, either.

"Definitely don't see them winning the championship this year. I see them going far," the 54-year-old said. "I can definitely see them winning the first series."


We also asked Larry -- an NCAA champ at UNLV -- about this year's tourney and the endless shocking upsets ... like number-one seeds Purdue and Kansas, amongst other teams, being sent home early.

"I like that," the former #1 overall draft pick said. "I like it being more competitive. I mean it didn't happen as often when I was around."

"I much love this more competitive tournament than like a blowout tournament."

Now, his bracket's another story ... 💣

Luka Doncic I Used to Smile on the Court ... Loss of Joy Blamed on Kyrie

Luka Doncic says he hasn't been happy on the court like he used to be -- and while he's publicly citing personal problems ... Twitter seems to be blaming Kyrie Irving.

The Dallas Mavericks PG talked to the press Friday night after the team's loss to the Charlotte Hornets -- which actually spurred boos from the home crowd ... amounting to a somewhat ugly scene in American Airlines Center. HC Jason Kidd said it was deserved.

There's a lot of criticism about the Mavs' lack of effort in this game ... especially from their two big stars -- Luka and Kyrie -- who haven't been gelling that well since KI came on.

When asked if this is as frustrated as he's been, Luka answered candidly ... saying yes, and then going on to explain that he feels like his attitude toward the game has changed of late -- namely, he's simply not as excited to play and has effectively lost his love of basketball.

Reporters asked him to elaborate -- as that sounds like a clear reference to Kyrie, as he appears to be the one big change in the Mavs organization lately -- and Luka pivoted.

He said he was dealing with stuff off the court, and suggested that's what's causing the issues in his game. The Internet, however, wasn't buying that ... and jumped to the conclusion Luka was, in fact, expressing thinly-veiled frustration about his new teammate.

Kyrie also spoke to the media and was defiant when asked about the fans booing ... saying they're more than welcome to come on down and play if they think they're up for it.

Eventually, he talked about the transition to the Mavs and how bumpy it's been -- the team is currently out of playoff contention -- and he also said it's been rough getting adjusted.

KI was quoted as saying ... "[W]e're still feeling each other out in a way of getting used to each other's efforts and attitudes and temperament. And that's a real thing. That's a human thing. That's a human element. Whether people believe it in basketball or not, there's a very fine line between winning basketball games and everyone being on the same page and losing basketball games and things splintering and pointing fingers."

Tough times in Dallas.

Lamar Odom Hooks Up African Hooper In Need ... Basketballs & Shoes!!!

Lamar Odom played the role of Santa about nine months early this year ... deciding to send a bunch of gifts to a hooper in Africa -- after he was inspired by the way the man was training with beat-up gear.

The baller's name is Nkwain Kennedy, and he's gained hundreds of thousands of followers on social media the past year or so after posting inspirational videos of himself working out with destroyed basketballs and tattered kicks.

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A rep for Odom says the ex-LA Lakers star caught one of Kennedy's vids recently while scrolling through Instagram ... and he was so moved by the footage, he wanted to put together a care package for the guy.


Odom got in touch with Kennedy through social media, found out his shoe size and his Cameroon address and FedExed him a box full of goodies.

We're told the present included two Wilson basketballs, Reebok Allen Iverson and Nike Giannis Antetokounmpo kicks, some Nike socks ... and a handwritten note.

"To Nkwain," Odom wrote on the card. "Love the hustle. God bless."

Odom autographed the note as well.

We're told the gift is currently en route ... awesome stuff, LO!

NYC Mayor Eric Adams I Will Miss Willis Reed's Resiliency ... 'He's New York'


NYC Mayor Eric Adams will always revere Knicks legend Willis Reed for the two championships he brought to the city of New York ... but he tells TMZ Sports that Reed's perseverance in the face of adversity is what makes him an icon in NY.

We spoke to Mayor Adams just days after Reed passed away at 80 years old ... and asked what Reed's legacy means to him now that the NBA legend is no longer with us.

"Willis Reed was my guy," Mayor Adams said. "He showed the resiliency of New York. Everyone remembers that championship game. Walking on one knee. His scoring the points. He's New York."

"We may have lost him physically, but he will always be here spiritually," he added.

Reed -- a seven-time All-Star and two-time NBA champion -- passed away on Tuesday ... and had been reportedly battling congestive heart failure.

Willis -- affectionately known as "The Captain" -- won two titles with the Knicks ... but he's most remembered for playing in Game 7 of the 1970 NBA Finals against the Lakers.

Reed's status for Game 7 was in question ... but the 6-foot-10 center emerged from the tunnel just moments before the deciding game started, walking gingerly onto the court -- and sent the crowd at Madison Square Garden into a frenzy.

The rest was history -- Reed delivered the Knicks their first championship in 1970 and won another chip in 1973. In 1982, Willis was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.


Luka Doncic Fined $35K For Money Gesture ... Toward Referee

How ironic is this -- Luka Doncic just got hit with a $35k fine on Friday ... after the NBA superstar made a money gesture toward a referee during the controversial ending of the Warriors vs. Mavericks game.

ICYMI ... the Mavericks hooper made the gesture after he missed a contested layup with 1.7 seconds left in the game at the American Airlines Center on Wednesday -- when he felt he was fouled, but didn't get a call.

Of course, Doncic's signal was clearly an expression of frustration -- after all, the Warriors got two free points in the third quarter after a questionable officiating decision ... and the Mavs ended up losing, 127-125.

Regardless of how the Mavs feel about the officiating that night, the league penalized the four-time All-Star minutes ago, saying the hand signal was an "inappropriate and unprofessional gesture."

Doncic wasn't the only Maverick pissed off at the refs  ... team owner Mark Cuban is protesting the loss, saying the officiating potentially cost them that game.

"Worst officiating non-call mistake possibly in the history of the NBA."

So yeah ... Cuban can expect a fine to come his way, too.

Mac McClung, Vince Carter Star In New Commercial ... After Dunk Contest Fame

Mac McClung is a full-blown superstar following his incredible performance during All-Star Weekend last month -- the guy has gone from the G League to the big screen ... starring in a commercial with Vince Carter!!

The 24-year-old high-flying baller became a household name after stealing the show at the NBA Slam Dunk Contest and taking home the hardware over Kenyon Martin Jr., Trey Murphy and Jericho Sims ... which breathed life back into the event that, as of recently, lacked excitement.

Mac has been landing a ton of endorsements following his big win ... but the coolest might be his 30-second ad for the upcoming 'Dungeons and Dragons' movie that dropped on Friday -- 'cause Vinsanity himself got involved!!

Of course, Carter was also known for his rim-rattling abilities over the course of his career ... and put together one of the most iconic dunk contest performances when he won in 2000.

Naturally, Mac was nabbed to show off his dunking skills as he jumped over CGI flames in the ad ... and at the end, Vince gives the kid props on his hops -- almost like he was passing the torch to the young hooper.

BTW -- Mac is currently balling out in the G League for the Philadelphia 76ers' Delaware Blue Coats ... averaging 20 points a game this season.

Something tells us we ain't heard the last of Mac!!

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