With the off-season officially underway, the Shoot or Pass podcast crew name the soundtracks that best describe each NBA team’s 2019-20 season.
In their latest episode (OUT NOW), they name the NBA Team soundtracks for the Golden State Warriors, Cleveland Cavaliers, and the Atlanta Hawks.
GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS
“Here I Go Again” – Whitesnake
Off the top of my head, here’s what I came up with for the first of my NBA team soundtracks. I am taking it back to the year 1982 with “Here I Go Again” by Whitesnake. I feel like Golden State may have felt a little slighted before Kevin Durant arrived and more so now that he is gone. Was it all just a flash in the pan for the Warriors?
“And here I go again on my own,
Goin’ down the only road I’ve ever known,
Like a drifter, I was born to walk alone,
And I’ve made up my mind,
I ain’t wasting no more time,
But here I go again.”
The Golden State team returning next season will be playing with a chip on their shoulders, fighting to get back to the top of the West again the only way they know how. The lyrics in the chorus describe just that (in this context). In reality, this song is actually about the breakdown of Whitesnake’s lead singer David Cordell’s marriage.
“Bounce Back” – Big Sean
The Golden State Warriors took a BIG L this season after losing Kevin Durant in a sign-and-trade deal with the Brooklyn Nets. Not to mention, they lost Klay Thompson for the season to a torn ACL, which he suffered in Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals. To add insult to injury, Steph Curry was also out for a while after breaking his hand. An aging Andre Iguodala was sent to Memphis, where he didn’t stick around for too long before bolting to paradise in Miami. Needless to say, the 2019-20 season was a wash for the Warriors. However, with the return of their star players and the second pick in the upcoming NBA Draft, the boys from the Bay are expected to “bounce back”.
“Last night took an L but tonight I bounce back”
First verse –
“Clique star-studded like the Paramount mountain,
Everything I do is righteous,
Betting on me is the right risk, even in a fucking crisis..”
Second verse –
“N**** I’m takin’ back control,
The under dog just turned into the wolf and the hunger steady grows,
Yeah, I call shots while you call off,
Never takin’ summer or fall off,
When you stay that committed to it, you just fall down and never fall off..”
The Warriors are looking to regain control of Western Conference, now as underdogs, to the Lakers. I think we can all agree that there will be many jumping on the bandwagon next season because that is the team they are betting on to dethrone LeBron James and the Lakers out West. Assuming they achieve this, then we can say that their 2019-20 season was just them falling down, but not falling off.
“California Love” – Tupac
The Golden State Warriors are in need of some “California Love” after a long (and unexpected) losing season due to trades and injuries. Honestly, who the hell was starting for this team aside from Draymond Green? I don’t know.
I think the Warriors are getting a lot of love right now. For one, Stephen A. Smith decided to jump on TV right after the Lakers won the NBA Finals to warn the newly-crowned champs about this team next season. This song represents a state that is stacked with three competitive NBA teams with the Lakers, Clippers, and the team from the Bay who love to win and love to party. I mean, look at the last 5-6 seasons, all of whose NBA champions came from the state of California!
“1st of Tha Month” – Bone Thugs N Harmony
I’m sorry, but I am going to have hit you with Bone Thugs’ “1st of Tha Month” here. That was best I could come up with as far as NBA Team soundtracks for the Cleveland Cavaliers are concerned. The only thing I can correlate this to are three words: first-round picks. They are going to have to hit the jackpot with them to win again.
“Brand New Day” – Sting
Obviously, since the departure of LeBron James (again), the Cavaliers were expected to be in full rebuild mode for a while. They ended this season with a 19-46 record which is TECHNICALLY an improvement over the 19-63 record they had in the previous season (as they got to those 19 wins in 17 fewer games). Another positive for this season – Collin Sexton, who really progressed in his second year, averaging 20.8 ppg (up from 16.7 in his rookie season). Who knows? Maybe he and Darius Garland are the backcourt of the future for the Cavs!
They also got rid of John Beilein and replaced him with J.B. Bickerstaff for head coach, whose record stood at 5-6 before the hiatus. That record may not be a vast improvement, but it appears that the players are happier playing under him, so far at least. Andre Drummond has also been a good addition to this team. Perhaps, this will be enough for Kevin Love to stick around, as this team has some pieces that look promising.
First verse –
“How many of you people out there been hurt in some kind of love affair?
And how many times do you swear that you’ll never love again?
How many lonely, sleepless nights?
How many lies, how many fights?“
“How could it be that what you need the most,
Can leave you feeling just like a ghost?”
“Why don’t we turn the clock to zero, honey?
I’ll sell the stock, we’ll spend all the money,
We’re starting up a brand new day,
Turn the clock all the way back.
A lot of the lyrics in this song point to heartbreak from a loved one hurting and leaving one “feeling like a ghost” (thanks, LeBron). However, the chorus makes it clear – “We’re starting up a brand new day”. Cavaliers fans should look ahead, for there is hope.
“Memories” – Maroon 5
Hear me out, guys. This song right here gets me every time, I can only imagine what it does for Cavaliers fans (in this context)! I bet it brings back a lot of nostalgic memories. In case you missed it, there’s a man out there who just raised his fourth Larry O’ Brien trophy in one arm and his fourth NBA Finals MVP trophy in the other just four years after he left you for the second time! All the while, your team has done nothing more than sit around and watch. Undoubtedly so, LeBron James is sorely missed. MEMORIES are all the city of Cleveland has left.
“Welcome to Atlanta” – Ludacris featuring Jermaine Dupri
Once again, another lazy choice from me. I promise to do better in the next round. But hey, “if the shoe fits,” right?
“Welcome to Atlanta, where the players play,
And we going for that dub like every day,
Big beats, hit streets, see gangsters roaming,
And parties don’t stop ’til eight in the morning..”
Let’s pretend for a moment that instead of rapping about the Falcons, Luda and J.D. are rapping about the Hawks. Trae Young is the guy leading this team to these “dubs like every day” with BIG plays and BIG shots, always striving for more. Maybe the “gangsters roaming” here can refer to the other teams making waves in the Eastern Conference (like, you know, those Goons from Dade-County, perhaps?)
“Glowed Up” – KAYTRANADA featuring Anderson .Paak
This was one was tough. I have to admit, I did not follow the Hawks much other than when they played against my HEAT this season. In my research for NBA team soundtracks, I just kept coming back to one name – Trae Young. This season, it was all about the leap he made to becoming an All-Star starter.
With the suspension of John Collins early on (and even after his return), the Hawks were relying heavily on Young to get them over the hump each night. Being the team’s biggest and most consistent weapon (offensively at least), it was easy for opponents to shut the team down. This was even more apparent when closing out games, as the Hawks struggled the most down the stretch.
Second Verse –
“Full power until we reach the maximum,
Gone are all my worries, I’m looney, absolutely out my dome,
Stackin’ my capital, while carving my legacy,
Now tell me, is you with me, with me, with me? Chaperone.”
That verse right there, is Trae putting his teammates, his peers, and the NBA world on notice!
“We Are Young” – F.U.N.
I also took the “Atlanta Hawks 2019-20 season was all about Trae Young” angle, choosing F.U.N.’s “We Are Young”. This is simple. The Hawks have a young core of Trae Young and John Collins leading the way. Maybe in this context, we can correlate the song title “We are (Trae) Young” to how this team should be describing themselves.
Honestly, I don’t really to watch anything Hawks-related unless it is involving him. I mean, they were figuratively “carried home” when the NBA season went on hiatus and didn’t even get an invitation to play in the NBA Bubble. Perhaps, that has them angry enough to “set the world on fire”? I guess we will find out next season!