Best NBA YouTube Clips of the Past Decade
The NBA's YouTube channel has reached over one billion views since it joined the video-sharing service back in 2005, compiling thousands of clips that are free to watch at any time from almost any place, visually chronicling the history of the league in the past decade.
How has this all been possible? Well, quite frankly, David Stern is a genius.
Rather than having a team of Internet ninjas roaming around ripping down any and all videos of their copyrighted content like I'm assuming the MLB does, Stern completely embraced the Internet revolution, creating a huge interest in the league worldwide.
Just think about it. If you want to see what's happening in a certain game, you can certainly follow along with one of a handful of apps, plus by halftime, you can go and see the highlights from the first half already posted on YouTube.
It creates interest, and it keeps people coming back to see what their favorite player did the night before if they didn't have a chance to catch it live.
What makes it all even better is that NBA.com's video player is so unequivocally terrible that if I were to have to constantly go there for highlights I might end up putting a fist through my computer screen.
So, in honor of Stern's brilliance (which is possible folks, don't get completely down on the guy), it only seems right to roll out a dedication to the past decade of professional basketball through YouTube with the best clips floating around.
Sure, we'll disagree on a few, and I'll forget a few, so let's all be friends and have a blast through the comments by laying down whatever I might have left out.
20. LeBron's Move
The 2012 Olympics brought out the best in viral basketball marketing, even though the players had no idea they were doing it.
All throughout the Olympics, players were tweeting pictures, video clips and little snippets of what's going on with the team in its training and exploits overseas.
My absolute favorite was this clip of LeBron James' "unstoppable move." Not only is it hilarious, but I'm pretty sure it's legal unless some referee decides to call carrying for the first time since 1948.
19. Gettin' Griff'd
We can't go a complete highlight slideshow without somehow mentioning Blake Griffin dunking on the entire league in the past season.
Of course, the most famous of them all is his throwdown over Kendrick Perkins when he absolutely demoralizes the big man.
Sure, it's not technically a dunk, but neither was Dwight Howard's "Superman" dunk from the 2008 Slam Dunk Contest, but everybody still seems to enjoy that just fine.
I've got to knock off a few points, however, because it's not the original Blake Griffin facial dunk, but it's awesome nonetheless.
18. Shaq Practices His Bowling
It's always fun to get a look at what goes on inside an NBA locker room, especially when Shaq and the Phoenix Suns are involved.
Not only do we get to see the Suns practicing their pre-game routine, fine tuning it for the real deal, but there's a pants-less Lou Amundson, so there's that.
Really any clip involving Shaq is watchable; some are just more entertaining than others.
17. Davis Slams on AK47
Until Blake Griffin came along, there were few people who would serve up a facial on a regular basis, and we had to go days, sometimes weeks, in between huge dunks on people's heads.
This I remember as my favorite dunk of the 2000s that wasn't a part of an All-Star Game, a dunk contest or the Olympics.
Baron Davis, pre-busted knees, skies up and absolutely throws the hammer down on Adrei Kirilenko with the terrific decibel meter going off at 107 afterwards.
16. One Jump Is Enough
The NBA's "Where Amazing Happens" has to be the league's best marketing campaign, making every playoff commercial both entertaining and seemingly legendary.
It utilized slow motion and crazy close-ups, which of course led to everybody on the Internet making their own variations of those advertisements.
A lot of them had overtly hilarious connotations, like a super slow-mo of a flop or somebody completely throwing the ball out of bounds, but this has to be my favorite one.
Pau Pierce had just nailed a shot for the Celtics, and Nate Robinson comes on a little to excited. The second time he jumps, Pierce shrugs him off, and Nate goes flipping over Pierce as he continues to celebrate.
15. The Double-Flop
The best negative aspect about the NBA on YouTube has to be the fact that we can go back and look at every single thing that's happened after the fact, dissecting every single potential bad call and, of course, bad flop.
There are a lot of them out there, and quite a few surrounding Raja Bell, but his flop-off with J.R. Smith has to be tops.
Both of them are fighting for position, Smith playing somewhat over-aggressively, but no real harm is done until they both decide to throw themselves on the floor at the same time.
A big part of the NBA on YouTube has to be dunk contest videos and just hilarious happenings in the NBA.
One of the most famous dunks over the past decade, and in probably one of the most classic dunk contests, has to be Nate Robinson bringing out the green Knicks jersey and dunking over Dwight Howard.
There's just something about a little dude getting up that high that's intoxicating to watch.
13. Just JaVale
Normally, I would be against putting compilations up there with the best "clips" on the web, but I can't just pick one JaVale McGee moment to define what he's done over the past few years.
This one has it all, from simple missed dunks and inexplicably throwing the ball out of bounds, to the classic moment when JaVale completely turns around and runs back to play defense while his team still has the ball.
Never change, JaVale; never change.
12. Brent Barry Gets Gangsta
In his time in the NBA, Brent Barry was little more than a great shooter, but he was also one of the coolest white dudes around.
Oh, you don't believe me? Just check out Barry whipping out his C-Walk after finishing the first round of the three-point contest.
Barry isn't going to be remembered for much, but as long as this clip exists, he'll be remembered for a long time.
11. The All-Star Dance-off
It makes sense that this is the most-watched video on the NBA's YouTube channel. It's just downright hilarious.
There's absolutely no basketball involved, but it's got Shaq, Dwight Howard and LeBron James dancing before the All-Star game, and really, that's all you need.
Like I said before, Shaq doing anything is entertaining.
10. Game Linner
If there was one clip to sum up the Jeremy Lin phenomenon of last season, this is the one I'm going to.
It didn't last long, but it's an important time in NBA history nonetheless, and it has to be documented at some point.
My favorite part about this particular clip of Jeremy Lin's game-winning shot against the Raptors is that it's just a video from the floor. No commentary, no television graphics, just a dude hitting a three-pointer and the world going insane.
9. Dikembe Mutombo Impressions
For the longest time, I thought somebody had deleted this clip, and I fell into a pit of depression, but it didn't last long.
It's got nothing to do with basketball, but I could watch an hour-long show about basketball players doing Dikembe Mutombo impersonations.
The best impersonation in the entire clip probably has to be Steve Novak, but Bobby Jackson's verbiage has to be the most accurate.
8. A Wheelchair, Paul? Really?
It has to be the most pointlessly polarizing clip in the history of the NBA, as one side has an argument that this proves that Paul Pierce is a total wimp, while the other, more ridiculous side argues that it proves Pierce is a tough guy.
I'm not going to choose sides (even though it seems pretty obvious what's going on here), but I'm going to deem the entire thing hilarious.
From the team carrying him off the floor like a rag doll to the guy trying to block out the camera and his "Willis Reed" moment.
7. Ball Don't Lie
There are so many versions of Rasheed Wallace's famous shouts floating around the Internet, but this has to be my absolute favorite.
Not only is it Rasheed on the Pistons, which has to be the best incarnation (although not the angriest, that has to go to Blazers Sheed), but he's so incredibly upset that it puts it a notch above the others.
He freaks out about the first free throw that Andrew Bogut misses, but once the second goes off the front of the rim, all bets are off.
There aren't any other titles needed to get the point across with this video. Timofey Mozgov is known for one highlight, and one highlight only.
It's the first time we were really introduced to what Blake Griffin is capable of doing, and boy, is he capable of quite a bit.
Griffin gets so high up and throws down with so much power that he nearly grinds Mozgov into a fine dust.
5. Game 5
If ever there was something that summed up early LeBron James, it's the highlights of him tearing apart the Detroit Pistons in 2007.
He scores 29 of Cleveland's final 30 points to bring the Cavaliers over the team that gave them so much trouble throughout the early part of LeBron's career.
The Cavs went on to win by two in overtime, win the series and, of course, get swept in the NBA FInals by the San Antonio Spurs.
4. Anything Is Possibbbbbbbbllllllleeeeeeeeeeee!
This is the all-time awkward emotional moment caught on tape following a championship performance, and of course, it has to come from Kevin Garnett.
It's not as outwardly hilarious as Metta World Peace thanking his therapist after winning a championship with the Lakers in 2010, but there's nothing that quite compares to it.
Garnett's howl is the most memorable championship interviews in the past decade, and definitely up there in terms of all-time emotional sports moments.
3. Horry's Game-Winner
Yeah, it happened in 2002, so technically, it's more than a decade ago, but shut up, this is one of the greatest clips in the history of basketball.
I can remember watching this over and over again with my brother, as we waited what seemed like a half hour for the video to load on our old Compaq PC, arguing about whether or not he had got the shot off or not because of the terrible video quality.
For the record, he totally did.
Oh, and I'm very sorry to Kings fans for opening up old wounds.
2. Kobe's 81
The definitive star of the past decade happens to have the most definitive individual performance, possibly of all-time.
Once again, I'm not one for calling compilations "clips," but I can't go without a nod to Kobe's 81 points against the Raptors if we're talking about the most intriguing Internet videos of the past decade.
Kobe shot over 60 percent in this game, an amazing number when you think about it in the grand scheme of things. Even crazier, Smush Paker scored in double figures.
1. 3 Game-Winners
It definitely seems I'm going a bit Laker-heavy in the final spots here, but that's the reality of the past decade of the NBA. They've constantly been at the forefront.
Very vividly do I remember watching this happen live, and there was never a time when I had so much emotion coming from 20 seconds of basketball.
With what seemed like three game-winning shots coming in the most unorthodox fashion, this is easily the most exciting, historic moment of the past decade, and because of that, it's the best clip bopping around YouTube in that time span.