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The sport itself is barely a blip on the NBA radar: Within the Pelicans’ first recreation since DeMarcus Cousins was misplaced for the yr, the Blake Griffin-led Clippers beat New Orleans 112-103.
In truth, essentially the most memorable second got here at halftime, when comedian Tony Roberts realized that he was courtside in the very same warm-up gear because the Pelicans. This is a two-minute oral history of the viral second that occurred subsequent.
ROBERTS, COMIC/FRIEND OF DeMARCUS COUSINS: Boogie requested me to do a charity occasion on Jan. 27, and he despatched a field of Pelicans attire. I wore the gear to the Jan. 26 recreation, and I spotted I appeared like a participant. So I stood up at halftime and was messing round to see how far I may get.
LINA REYES, FAN WHO SHOT THE VIRAL VIDEO: Tony caught out like a sore thumb — he is brief, and his physique is, um, how ought to I say this? It is not likely like a basketball participant’s physique. His stretches communicate for themselves.
ROBERTS: I am stretching, and I stroll somewhat farther out on the court. I do one leaping jack, then a excessive knee stretch. Lastly, I simply yell, “Come on, player, give me the ball!”
RAJON RONDO, PELICANS GUARD: Tony’s one of my favourite comedians. I noticed him get on the court and thought it was hysterical. However then somebody handed him the ball.
ROBERTS: That is when my mouth acquired dry, I could not really feel my left knee and my fingers would not cooperate. I used to be like a sea lion on the market.
ANTHONY DAVIS, OVERLY OPTIMISTIC PELICANS STAR: I assumed, “Let him shoot!” However the shot …
ROBERTS: Stevie Marvel had a greater probability of making that shot.
RONDO: It hit the facet of the backboard. I will give him an excuse: Say it was the angle.
REYES: The entire thing was very humorous to look at, so I began filming. Then I noticed a cop stroll towards Tony.
ROBERTS: All of a sudden, somebody grabs my arm, and I flip round, and it is a cop who appears to be like like Moses from the Bible. I instructed him, “Man, I play!” and that solely made him madder as a result of he thought I used to be antagonizing him. He shook his finger at me and mentioned, “If you get up one more time, I gotta kick you out of the arena.”
PLEASANT UNNAMED SECURITY GUARD AT RECENT PELICANS GAME: He isn’t working tonight. However you will not get to speak to him, no, ma’am. We’re not allowed to speak to the media.
LESS PLEASANT UNNAMED SECURITY GUARD AT RECENT PELICANS GAME: I’ll warn him you had been right here.
ADAM MENDELSON, PELICANS LOCKER ROOM ATTENDANT: The subsequent recreation, I seen that they had extra guards than regular all alongside the court.
REYES: Inside a day, the video had gone viral. It has been shared within the thousands and thousands. With all of the negativity on the planet, it is superior to make individuals giggle.
ROBERTS: I name myself the 17th man. However I need to inform the world: I’ve a greater shot than that.
He snuck on the court and warmed up with the Pelicans earlier than he was escorted off. 🤣 pic.twitter.com/f9CclSBHcQ
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) January 29, 2018