Warriors Get Moon-Sized Boost From Legendary ‘Semi-Pro’ Baller

Will Ferrell Lakers-Nuggets

Getty Actor Will Ferrell attends a game between the Denver Nuggets and the Los Angeles Lakers.

When the Golden State Warriors hit the court at Chase Center for their pre-game warm-up on Tuesday, they were joined by a new player. A former singer and one-hit-wonder turned baller, team owner and bear-wrestler who some might refer to as Old School.

Namely, Jackie Moon, the owner-player-coach of the ABA’s Flint Tropics. Or, rather, actor/comedian Will Ferrell, who played the character in the 2008 comedy Semi-Pro.

As Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and the rest of the Bay Area crew did their stretches and fired off jumpers ahead of Golden State’s bout with the LA Clippers, Ferrell joined them on the hardwood in full Moon garb; afro, signature headband and all.

He was in rare form, too, running drills, closing out on Klay, shooting free throws with Steph; at one point, he even banked in a shot from near halfcourt.

“I’m under contract,” Ferrell later claimed. “So this is the very first tryout with the team, let’s see what happens.”


Coach Kerr Brought Moon to the Building

Ferrell’s appearance was special for Thompson, who famously dressed up as Moon for Halloween three years ago. After the game — which the Warriors won 112-97 — the five-time All-Star revealed that watching Semi-Pro helped him get through his lengthy rehab as well.

“When I had some dark days I would put that movie on and it would make me smile,” Thompson said. “I’m very thankful for that film.”

Turns out, the added levity was exactly what Warriors coach Steve Kerr was hoping to bring to his struggling ball club when he and Ferrell put the visit together.

“He actually emailed me a while back and I didn’t believe it was him,” Kerr revealed during his postgame presser.

“So, we exchanged a couple of emails and then concocted the plan. He’s a huge Klay Thompson fan and he knows how much Klay loves dressing up as Jackie Moon, so it was just kind of a natural fit and it felt like a good time to do it just to make everybody laugh in a tough stretch of the season.

“He was great. He came into our locker room, made the guys laugh. Everybody loved seeing him and hearing from him. He was hilarious.”

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Dubs Right the Ship

Whether it was the Jackie Moon effect, the will of the basketball gods or simply their time, the Warriors snapped a five-game losing streak with the victory.

Although the team got big-time offensive performances off the bench from rookie Jonathan Kuminga (21 points on 7-of-12 shooting) and Jordan Poole (20 points on 8-of-13), the most encouraging thing about the win may have been the defensive effort in the halfcourt.

The Warriors held the Clippers to just 35.5% shooting and 30.8% from three-point range. Meanwhile, Los Angeles scored just 28 points in the paint, which was way down from the 56 the team racked up when it beat Golden State on February 14.

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