Tag: Shawn Kemp


Video: Shawn Kemp performs Shakespeare. Yes, we’re serious.


When you woke up this morning, undoubtedly your first thought was “I wonder what it would be like to hear Shawn Kemp perform Shakespeare’s St. Crispin’s Day speech?” Sorry, we can’t bring that to you.

But how about Shawn Kemp and Seattle Times columnist Steve Kelly doing some “Taming of the Shrew.” As interpreted like The Odd Couple. Don’t get to see that every day. This is from a charity event for the Seattle Shakespeare Company, and we can only hope they did well with this. It’s clever.

Hat tip to SLAM.

Blake Griffin reminds George Karl of Shawn Kemp


Reign Man II?

It’s hard to come up with a good historic comparison for Blake Griffin, because that combination of size and athleticism just do not come along very often. If ever.

But Nuggets coach George Karl had one that I liked — Shawn Kemp. Here’s his quote via the Los Angeles Times.

“I’ve talked to a couple of guys who’ve said, ‘Was Shawn as powerful?'” said Denver Nuggets Coach George Karl, who coached Kemp in Seattle, before Thursday’s game. “I think that’s the guy who’s closest….

“This kid, he gets so high above the rim. It reminds me of when I was an athlete and I could jump and we got the 8-foot hoops,” Karl said. “He does things that we used to do on 8, maybe 7-foot [hoops]. You know, throwing it down from three feet away.”

I’m not sure I could do what Griffin does on the little Nerf hoop hanging off the top of a door in my house.

For those of you younger readers who hear Kemp’s name and think of the bloated post-lockout version of the man, or joke about his personal life, do remember that he was also a force on the court. Watch the video above. You’ll see why this may be the best Griffin comparison there is. And it’s still not perfect.

Spencer Hawes worked out with Shawn Kemp this summer


Stop laughing. This is not a joke.

There was a time when everybody was a Shawn Kemp fan. Back in the days of his high-top fade he was as ferocious a dunker as the league has ever seen and force in the paint, a guy with the skills to grab the rebound and go coast-to-coast. Watch the highlights. You turned on the Sonics to watch Kemp (and Gary Payton).

Spencer Hawes was one of those who grew up in Seattle a Kemp fan. While we can be guilty of the weight and children jokes that accompanied the demise of his career, Kemp has turned his life around — he is down to his playing weight, he is a respected restaurant owner and sports talk radio host now.

And he worked out with Hawes this summer. Pushed him, really, according to CSNPhilly.com.

“He’s got a lot of upside to his game,” Kemp said. “I’ve been barking at him for a while. I thought it was time to step up and show he could play a little better.”

Hawes said it was more of a mutual decision to get together.

“When I came into the league I had higher expectations than what I produced – especially last year, statistically, individually,” he said, adding that the summer afforded him the opportunity to “really reflect on it and say ‘OK, this year, something’s going to change, and I’ve got to start making myself head in the right direction.’ ”

Kemp’s focus was to get Hawes — all 7’1” of him — off the perimeter and closer to the basket. The result is Hawes is in the post a little more (19.4 percent of his possessions this year compared to 18 percent last year, according to Synergy Sports) but what is gone are the spot up looks from the outside. Last season 19.2 percent of his shots came on spot up jumpers (and he shot 40 percent on them), this season it is down to 17 percent of his shots and he is shooting 56 percent on them. He’s getting more looks on cuts, moving toward the basket (23.7 percent of his chances this year.

The bottom line — Hawes is shooting 62.7 percent this year, up from 46.5 percent last year. He’s scoring five more points per game while using less of the offense.

Kemp probably shouldn’t get all the credit for that, there have been a number of changes with the Sixers offense. But we’re giving the lion’s share to Kemp anyway. He deserves something other than a joke.