Ballin' Out Podcast: NBA Legend George 'The Iceman' Gervin Talks 2017 All-Star Game, 2 Chainz Comparison & 'Good Friend' Marvin Gaye

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George Gervin

NBA and ABA legend George Gervin may be the man behind the finger roll, but the former San Antonio Spur also had a great ear for music.

On episode 16 of Billboard's Ballin' Out podcast, The Iceman recalled living through the rise of Motown in Detroit. "I'm a Motown guy," says Gervin, who grew up on Martha ReevesDiana Ross and Stevie Wonder and frequently tunes into the Pandora Motown station. "Marvin Gaye was a good friend of mine." He adds, "I was with him two weeks at his house before he got shot. It was an unfortunate situation, but I was a close to him and he's missed but not forgotten. The music he made is transcending and it still works today. The things he talked about, obviously he talked about relationships and today's events, way back then. I still listen to him all the time ... because of what he stood for." 

When asked about his possible influence on hip-hop stage names like Ice Cube and Ice-T, Gervin recalled Chuck D telling him in the past, "'You know, these guys became Ice because of you' ... If it's true, it's nothing but a compliment because I'm comfortable with who I am and what I represent." He also spoke on his game being compared to 2 Chainz's basketball style. "I ain't seen him play and I haven't met him neither, but I heard he was a basketball junkie. That was good to hear. I listen to some of his stuff too." 

The 12-time All-Star also campaigned for the NBA's forthcoming All-Star Game voting, presented by Verizon, which ends Monday, Jan. 16 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Fans can cast their votes via NBA.com/vote, the NBA app, Google Search, or Twitter and Facebook by using the hashtag #NBAVOTE. Players and media are also helping fans select starters for All-Star 2017 in New Orleans for the first time ever.

"The fans' participation has always been special," he says. "I think that's a big part of what we, as a league, promote ... I'm a product of the system so I know it works." The Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James and the Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry are currently taking the lead in the All-Star voting in their respective conferences. Gervin's personal picks from the West include Oklahoma City Thunder's Russell Westbrook, Houston Rockets' James Harden and fellow Spur Kawhi Leonard, while he co-signs James, Cavaliers' Kyrie Irving and Boston Celtics' Isaiah Thomas. 

Before the sit-down with Gervin, Natalie and Adelle also discuss the rumored Chris Brown versus Soulja Boy boxing match and the New York Giants' yacht party with Trey Songz and offer up the year's first #DrakeUpdate.

Listen to the full interview below and tune into the 66th NBA All-Star Game on Sunday (Feb. 19). Subscribe to Ballin' Out on iTunes


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