In 2022, the NBA will be celebrating its 76th anniversary. While we anticipate the outcome of the NBA draft for this year, let’s take a look back at some of the top players NBA players supporting football, more accurately, Arsenal FC. These players have shown their support in various ways, whether it’s attending games, wearing Arsenal gear, or simply praising the team. Here are some of the best NBA players who love Arsenal!
Stephen Curry – Golden State Warriors
Stephen Curry is one of the most popular players in the NBA today. A two-time MVP, he is known for his shooting prowess and his dribbling skills. He plays for the Golden State Warriors, and he is a big Gunners fan. Arsenal is one of the most popular soccer teams in the world, and they play in the English Premier League. Curry grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina, and he played college basketball at Davidson College. He was drafted by the Warriors in 2009, and he has been with the team ever since. In 2015, he helped lead the team to an NBA Championship, and he was named the Finals MVP. Curry is now considered one of the best players in the NBA, and he is one of Arsenal’s biggest fans.
James Harden – Houston Rockets
James Harden is an American professional basketball player who plays for the Houston Rockets of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He was born in Los Angeles, California, and played college basketball for Arizona State University before being drafted by the Oklahoma City Thunder with the third overall pick in the 2009 NBA draft. Harden was traded to the Houston Rockets in 2012 and quickly emerged as one of the league’s most prolific scorers. He has been named an All-Star eight times, and he was named MVP of the 2019 NBA All-Star Game. In addition to his on-court accomplishments, Harden is also a diehard Arsenal supporter. He often posts about the team on social media, and he even attended a match at Emirates Stadium in 2018. Given his passion for Arsenal, it’s no surprise that Harden chose to wear the number 13 jersey with the Rockets – the same number worn by Arsenal legend Thierry Henry.
Klay Thompson – Golden State Warriors
Klay Thompson is an American professional basketball player who plays for the Golden State Warriors in the National Basketball Association. He is a three-time NBA champion, a five-time NBA All-Star, and has been named to the All-NBA Third Team twice. Thompson was born in Los Angeles and played college basketball for three years at Washington State University before being drafted by the Warriors in 2011. He helped lead the Warriors to back-to-back NBA championships in 2015 and 2016 and was a key member of their dynasty that won three titles in four years from 2015 to 2018. In 2019, he suffered a season-ending injury but bounced back strong the following year, helping the Warriors win another championship. Off the court, Thompson is an avid Arsenal fan and has even visited the Emirates Stadium.
Russell Westbrook – Oklahoma City Thunder
Arsenal supporter Russell Westbrook is an American professional basketball player for the Oklahoma City Thunder of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He is a nine-time NBA All-Star and was awarded the NBA Most Valuable Player Award for the 2016–17 season. Westbrook played college basketball for the UCLA Bruins, where he was selected fourth overall in the 2008 NBA draft by the Seattle SuperSonics before moving to Oklahoma City. He’s one of just two NBA players to accomplish the feat, along with Oscar Robertson in 1962.. Westbrook has led the league in scoring three times and assists four times. He is also a two-time NBA All-Star Game Most Valuable Player, winning back-to-back honors in 2015 and 2016. In 2017, he was named the NBA MVP after becoming only the second player in NBA history to average a triple-double for a season. Westbrook has also been selected to nine consecutive All-Star teams, and he was named one of the 30-player finalists for the 2020 U.S. Olympic team. Spurs’ Gregg Popovich once described Westbrook as “a superstar on steroids,” lauding his work ethic, physicality, and competitiveness.
Carmelo Anthony – Oklahoma City Thunder
Carmelo Anthony is an American professional basketball player who plays for the Oklahoma City Thunder of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He has also played for the Denver Nuggets, New York Knicks, and Houston Rockets. Anthony is a ten-time NBA All-Star and has won three Olympic gold medals. He is also an Arsenal supporter. In February 2019, Anthony signed with the Thunder after being traded by the Rockets. He struggled during his first season with the Thunder, averaging career lows in points, rebounds, and assists. However, he rebounded in the 2019-20 season, averaging 18.5 points per game. Anthony is one of just four people in NBA history to have won an NCAA championship, an NBA title, and an Olympic gold medal.
Arsenal loanee keeps his 4th clean sheet
Arthur Okonkwo saving a penalty for Arsenal against Plymouth Argyle (Photo via Arete on Twitter)Crewe Alexandra came out on top against Kevin Betsy’s Crawley Town on Saturday, with the former Arsenal academy coach unable to find a way past his old goalkeeper, Arthur Okonkwo.
Okonkwo kept his fourth clean sheet of the season in Saturday’s 1-0 win, making it nine goals conceded in nine games.
It’s a very solid start for the young Gunner, who celebrated his 21st birthday earlier this month.
Just as encouraging as his performances is the fact Okonkwo has been featuring so consistently so far. The goalkeeper is yet to miss a minute of his side’s League Two campaign.
Arsenal goalkeeper Arthur Okonkwo warming up before the UEFA Europa League match at Estadio de la Ceramica, Villarreal. Copyright: Focus ImagesGoalkeeper loans can be a bit hit and miss, as it’s often hard to break in if you don’t make the starting lineup immediately.
Conversely, if you can nail down your place in the early stages of the loan, it sets you up well to play regularly all year.
So far, it doesn’t appear that Okonkwo is going to have much trouble earning minutes with Crewe.
Referee gets life ban for holding VAR review on fan’s mobile phone
Serbian referee Stefan Lazovic who used footage on a fan’s mobile phone for VAR review to overturn an offside decision has been banned for life.
Lazovic went viral after pictures emerged of his VAR check in one of Serbia’s lower-tier competitions earlier this week.
He had originally ruled out a goal for offside before studying the spectator’s video, eventually deciding that the player was in fact onside.
And the Sun reports that Serbian chiefs were not impressed by the decision and have since stripped Lazovic of his duties.
Lazovic’s alleged dismissal sparked outrage on social media, as fans stood in support of the referee.
Former Manchester United and Chelsea star Nemanja Matic commented on an Instagram post supporting Lazovic with a two raised hands emoji.
The original comment written by ftbl.serbia read: “Support for Stefan Lazovic! Why should only he suffer, why such a rigorous sentence, why a lifetime ban from trial?
“How is it possible that there is no penalty for the delegate and all other authorities from the responsible FS of that district?
“How could the match be allowed to be played without one assistant referee?! Who is responsible here? Why does Stefan’s spear break?
“At the end of the day, the fact that he watched the video and changed the decision, just shows that he wanted everything to be FAIR!
“He talks about the fact that he was not a slave to his vanity, but he admitted and corrected his mistake.
“Well, this video went around the world and now millions of people have heard about the ‘over there’ football clubs Popovic and Apollon, as well as the village of Vrnjci!
“In short, we appeal to the judges’ organisation and the competent authorities – now you CHANGE the decision! Let the VAR system work for you too and cancel the penalty. Correct the ERROR!
“SUPPORT FOR STEFAN LAZOVIC!”
Dani Alves claims European football ‘full of racists’ after Vinicius Jnr slur
Dani Alves has claimed that the European football is “full of racists” as he responded to the racist abuse Vinicius Jnr was targeted with in Spain.
Real Madrid’s 22-year-old forward was targeted with a racist slur by agent Pedro Bravo, who said during an El Chiringuito discussion of the Brazil international that “in Spain, you have to respect rivals and stop playing the monkey”.
Following a backlash alleging that this was a racist stereotype, Bravo has subsequently apologised on social media by claiming that he misused a metaphor. It has opened a discussion across Spain and further afield of the language and attitude applied towards footballers with racial undertones.
Vinicius Junior has vowed to keep his goal dancing celebrations as they show “the happiness of a black Brazilian in Europe”, with his celebrations similar to those of his fellow Brazilian stars over the years – including international teammate Neymar.
Indeed, the Paris Saint-Germain star took to Twitter to defend his Vinicius: “Dribble, dance and be you! Happy just the way you are. Go for it my boy, next goal we dance.” Meanwhile, Brazil legend Pele added: “Football is joy. It’s a dance. It’s a real party. Although racism still exists, we will not allow that to stop us from continuing to smile.”
However, Alves has now gone further in his reaction to the fallout from Bravo’s comments in Spain by hitting out at the culture within European football. The right-back – who is currently playing for Mexican club Pumas having joined from Barcelona earlier this year – has stated that he experienced elements of racism everywhere he went on the continent.
Alves wrote on Twitter: “It is serious that there are idiots who continue to think that the dances are the problem. Gentlemen, the real problem is that Europe is full of RACISTs and they do not accept that other nationalities stand out in their country more than they do. I experienced that in almost every place there.”
A statement from Real Madrid added that they condemned “regrettable and unfortunate comments made against our player” and would take legal action against anyone making racist comments towards members of their squad. The Brazilian Football Federation called for “dancing, dribbling and above all respect” in a statement of solidarity.
Brazil’s legendary striker Ronaldo, formerly of Real Madrid, joined in the condemnation of the abuse directed at Vinicius: “Your dances do not disrespect anyone, racism does: it disrespects, excludes, hurts and kills.”
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