NBA Playoffs: The Ferrell Way

Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports /

NBA Playoffs: The Ferrell Way

My favorite thing to do when I’m blessed with a full bag of Ruffles and a large box of pepperoni pizza from Pizza Hut (shout out to the inventors of stuffed-crust pizza’s, don’t know where I’d be without you guys) is to binge watch Will Ferrell movies on Netflix. I do this because when the funniest curly headed man walking the earth makes movies, you watch them. It’s one of life’s unwritten rules.

You’re probably wondering what does Will Ferrell movies have to do with the NBA, and the answer to that is – absolutely nothing. Though it has nothing to do with the NBA, I have a tendency to relate TV and movie personnel to NBA players or teams. Like for example, the other day while I was watching Superman vs. Batman: Dawn of Justice, I immediately thought of Dwight Howard as Superman. Not because of the 2008 dunk contest, but because they both possess Godlike strength, but are paradoxically as soft as Charmin.

So with the NBA playoffs coming up and me coming across various Ferrell clips on YouTube, I asked myself, “If you had to name a Will Ferrell movie for each match up, what would they be?”

Cavaliers vs. Pistons – Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (2013)

In Anchorman 2, Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell) leaves his family after losing to his wife as the lead anchor for New York City’s top news network. Upon leaving, Burgundy’s life goes to shambles after suffering through depression, to the point of going blind. Burgundy’s departure reminded me of Lebron James leaving Cleveland to go workout in Miami with Dwyane Wade during one of his off days. Though Lebron taking a day trip to South Beach wasn’t as crucial as Burgundy leaving his family to work at Seaworld, the point is that both “Lebum” and Burgundy left the ship which may have inadvertently hindered their current situations.

As for Detroit, the ending fight scene in Anchorman 2 (best scene in movie history) brought back memories of the “brawl in the Palace of Auburn Hills” where a bunch of crazy, “holy s*** that just happened” moments were flying all over the place.

Raptors vs Pacers – Elf (2003)

If you haven’t seen Elf than I’m just going to assume that you don’t celebrate holidays. It’s almost impossible not to have seen Elf, the movie is literally on every channel, every other hour during the month of December. I remember not being able to finish an NBA game I was watching on ESPN last December because it was cut off by a mandatory showing of Elf during halftime. But I also don’t have that great of a memory so that may or may not have happened. Did that happen? Why am I writing about Elf again? Oh right.

By no means am I comparing Kyle Lowry, Demar Derozan and Paul George to Buddy (the main character in Elf). Buddy is a a grown man, probably in his early 40’s late 30’s who walks around New York City in yellow tights wrecking havoc on the world without any intentions of doing so. Although Lowry, Derozan and George have been murdering the league this season, I don’t recall watching a game where they did so in yellow tights. Which sadly, wouldn’t surprise me if they did bust out in some yellow tights come Saturday. If Russel Westbrook can get away with this crime, then I’m ready for anything these NBA players throw at me. (See what you’ve done Kanye?)

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I picked Elf for this match up because the movie is primarily centered around a man who was raised as an elf finding his true identity in the city of New York. The Raptors have finally found their identity as a top dog in the NBA behind the leadership of Lowry, Derozan and Bismack Biyombo. I throw Biyombo in there because if my house were on fire I’d trust him to run in and save my family more than I would with some firefighters. The dude is awesome. Biyombo is mega dope and you should like him to.

On the other hand, the Pacers have struggled all season long to find a true identity. Marching into the season, the organization was all “gung-ho” behind playing small with Paul George as a play making four. For a while the move was brilliant as the Pacers got off to a hot start and George was in legit MVP conversations. As the season progressed, teams caught on, forcing the Pacers to implement some of their bigger lineups which depending on who they played, failed or didn’t.

So the underlying message in this section of the article? Find your identity. Oh and also, watch Elf, the greatest holiday movie of all time.

Heat vs Hornets – Old School (2003)

Alright, Old School is a classic. I hope to never meet anyone who doesn’t like the movie because that day would for real be sad. It’d be sad and depressing because I’d be sad for the person that didn’t enjoy Old School. That person must’ve been through some crap to not enjoy Old School and no person should ever have to go through such tragedy.

The movie is about three old dudes who start a frat near their Alma mater to re-live their college days. I’m not much of a movie critic, but if that doesn’t scream “WATCH ME!” more than “A seventeen-year-old aristocrat falls in love with a kind, but poor artist aboard the luxurious, ill-fated R.M.S. Titanic” (the IMDb summary for Titanic) then I don’t know what to tell you. If you’ve been keeping up with the Miami Heat all season long then it doesn’t take much to get the reference.

This team is the perfect cocktail of seasoned veterans and young guns who seem to enjoy each other more so than the average NBA team does. Wade, Chris Bosh and Udonis Haslem (or Amare Stoudemire) are the three old dudes who bring in other old dudes like Joe Johnson, Josh McRoberts and Luol Deng. These old dudes mentor and party with promising rookies such as Justice Winslow and Josh Richardson while Pat Riley is the dean who thinks this whole thing is bad ass and wishes he can join in at times but knows its well past his bed time to do so.

As for the the Hornets, the clip below is everything I imagined Frank Kaminsky to be during his tenure at Wisconsin. FRANK THE TANK! (I just realized that Timo Cruz from the movie “Coach Carter” is in that clip. Why is that important? Timo Cruz is only second to Martin Luther King in the “Damn, That Touched My Soul” speeches of all time.)

Hawks vs Celtics – Kicking and Screaming (2005)

This one can be a little confusing at first but I promise, the more you think about it, the more it’ll make sense. In “Kicking and Screaming” Will Ferrell plays the role of a soccer coach. Safe to say that some of Ferrell’s coaching antics throughout the movie are a stroke of genius. So genius, that I’d willingly bet my life that if he were to coach the Rockets this past season, they’d probably be a 2 or 3 seed. No joke. Actually I take that back, a 1 seed for sure. Who are the Warriors?

Anyways, the scene below is exactly how the Celtic’s first team meeting went. With Brad Stevens getting to know the players and Kelly Olynyk cracking jokes. Or at least I think that’s how it went.

Every “soccer dad” moment in this movie just screams Brad Stevens to me. From the camp fire, to the coffee shop, to the occasional “tornado’s of anger” ,  it’s “Kicking and Screaming” starring, Brad Stevens.

The movie also ends with Ferrell’s team winning the final game crowning them as champions against a way more talented team. In a nut shell, that’s the Hawks and Celtics. By no means am I predicting either team to win the NBA finals. Both ball clubs aren’t oozing with talent, but behind the mastermind coaching of Mike Budenholzer and Stevens, the Celts and Hawks seem to always find a way to get it done down the stretch.

Warriors vs Rockets – Anchorman (2004)

Alright for this comparison we’re strictly referring to one scene. The fight scene.

Much like the fight scene in the sequel, theirs a lot going on and not much of it makes sense, but I still find myself re-watching both scenes at least twice a week.

Right off the bat you probably already guessed that Draymond Green is Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell) minus the flawless hair do and stache. In the scene Burgundy is anchoring the fight much like how Draymond anchors Warriors games. Screaming a bunch of nonsense but oddly important things while fending off blows to the throat and being the primary target for the other news teams while leaving the battle totally composed. Totally Draymond (alright well composed most of the time).

Dwight Howard is for sure, Arturo Mendes (Ben Stiller). The dude gives himself the most threatening intro ever, “Cómo están, b******? Spanish-language news is here. Tonight’s top story: The sewers run red with Burgundy’s blood.” Yet is nowhere to be seen the whole fight until the end where he screams “POLICIA!”. That’s definitely a Dwight move.

Patrick Beverley is the man running across the battle field on fire. That’s self explanatory.

Steph Curry is without a doubt, Brick (Steve Carell). The man pulls out a grenade and has no explanation as to how he got it, much like how the human race has no explanation for what Curry does on a nightly basis. Brick also displays Hawk-Eye like accuracy in the middle of the fight by launching a trident directly at a man’s chest, who by the way happens to be moving on a horse. I’ve only been more impressed two times in my life – Tracy McGrady scoring 13 in 35 seconds and the time a buddy of mine was able to finish 120 “blazin” wings from Buffalo Wild Wings within 30 minutes.

Spurs vs Grizzlies – Get Hard (2015)

This is probably my least favorite Ferrell movie because of the fact that I don’t think Kevin Hart is all that funny. This series feels as though the classy Spurs are spending a week in jail visiting a former colleague before moving on to the next opponent. I expect the Spurs to get roughened up a bit but not too a large degree, maybe a scratch or two.

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Thunder vs Mavericks – Step Brothers (2008)

This seems almost too fitting. Two steph brothers who are forced to live together through marriage occasionally throughout the movie, don’t get along, which lead to some intense fight scenes.

Eventually the two figure it out to form a successful entertainment company that does karaoke events. Kevin Durant and Russy don’t get along all the time, we see it. KD might not agree with some of the Russy things that Russy does but hey, the two have worked it out sorta kinda and are entering the playoffs fully healthy for once. I’m not rooting for these two to successfully run a karaoke company because that would probably go down as a top 4 depressing moments of my sports life. Instead, before this ship explodes, I’d like to see this cheat code combo win a ring even if it means ruining the Warrior’s dream season.

As for the Mavericks, I’ll be honest with you, I can’t place my finger on this team. This team is pretty much The Walking Dead. The show is about zombies roaming the earth but has ran for a full 6 seasons. The Mavericks are a team full of veteran zombies but are somehow the 6th seed. Where am I again? How did I get here?

Clippers vs Blazers – Night at The Roxbury (1998)

Two dudes who’s fulfillment in life is to party at a famous club called The Roxbury. What’s keeping them from doing so? Rejection.

Sound familiar?

Same story, different year for the Clippers. Outstanding regular season only to never advance past the second round. Eventually, the two dudes from the movie were able to get in towards the end of the movie so the Clippers have hope.

As for the Blazers, this season in my eyes has been a success for them even if they were to get bounced in the first round. Literally NO ONE saw this squad finishing 5th in the Western Conference after letting go of pretty much 80 percent of their starting line up. The roster is full of underdog stories. Their two headlining players are from two colleges you won’t ever hear a kid mutter “That’s my dream school” and yet both Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum continue to quietly light up the league under the shadows of back court sensation of Curry and Thompson.

Next: Houston Rockets Daily Rocket Science: Playoff - Bound

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