New NBA Documentaries You Have To Watch This Summer

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The Finals are over and it’s officially the off-season—we’ll give it another week before our basketball dependency has us jonesing for some quality court time. Keep the NBA hype train going strong all summer long with these five new NBA documentaries.

Iverson
This eponymous documentary sheds new light on the story of NBA legend Allen Iverson, mostly through interviews with the 14-season veteran himself. The film takes viewers from Iverson’s impoverished youth to his NBA days, during which he was no stranger to controversy—and it does an excellent job of giving a context to moments such as his infamous “we’re talking about practice” rant. The film doubles as Zatella Beaty’s directorial debut, and originally aired on May 16 on Showtime.

Nowitzki: The Perfect Shot
“The Perfect Shot” celebrates the career of 13-time NBA All-Star, champion and Hall of Famer Dirk Nowitzki. It includes interviews with Kobe Bryant, Yao Ming, Steve Nash, Jason Kidd, Mark Cuban and other greats who talk about some of the challenges Nowitzki faced throughout his 17 seasons in the NBA, including the prejudice that Europeans can’t hack it in American ball. You can watch Dirk prove his critics wrong (again) in theatres on July 10.

 
 

The Drew: No Excuse, Just Produce
After a 15-season stint playing in the NBA, former basketball star Baron Davis makes his directorial debut with this new documentary centred on the association’s development league in Compton. “No Excuse, Just Produce” covers how The Drew went from a place for youth to escape the gritty street of South Central to a time-honoured rite of passage for many of today’s elite basketball players. Davis filmed interviews with the likes of Drew League legends DeMar DeRozan, Dorell Wright, Nick Young and Byron Scott over the course of three years. The piece debuted on June 15 at the 2015 Los Angeles Film Festival.

Clutch City
“Clutch City” tells the story of the Houston Rockets during their successful 1993-94 and 1994-95 NBA Championship runs. Coach Rudy Tomjanovich, superstar Hakeem Olajuwon and practically every player on both teams’ rosters provide the title’s main voices as the 90-minute spot highlights never-before-seen footage of workouts and other candid moments. The doc debuted on NBA TV on June 8.

Son of the Congo

Unlike most documentaries, “Son of the Congo” takes a long, hard look at the off-court life of basketball players and humanitarian Serge Ibaka. In it, Ibaka talks about dealing with adversity during his journey from Africa, to playing professionally in Europe, to playing in the NBA in America—then back again to improve the lives of Congolese youth. Produced by Grantland and ESPN Films, it received a red carpet premiere on April 17 (Russell Westbrook was among the many guests in attendance), and is available for free on Grantland.com if you’re in need of some inspiration.

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