Obama Hoops It Up, NBA Style

The slam-dunking commander-in-chief will air a PSA at the NBA All-Star Game

Barack Obama is a serious baller.

The new commander-in-chief and basketball fanatic filmed a speech this week that will air during halftime of Sunday's NBA All-Star Game, to be played in Phoenix, Arizona.  

In the pre-recorded speech, President Obama asks Americans to help in their communities by fixing up basketball courts or parks, writing to troops or doing other local service projects.

President Obama is famous for his love of the game, which he played all through his school years at Punahou High School in Hawaii.

The 6-foot-1 former forward brought his lifelong hoop dreams to the White House after he slam-dunked a win in the 2008 election.

Spokesman Robert Gibbs said playing ball gives Obama exercise and helps him relieve stress - and rarely a day goes by when the president doesn't pick up a ball, the AP reported.

Obama wrote in his 1995 memoir "Dreams From My Father" that dribbling down the court taught him "an attitude that didn't just have to do with the sport. That respect came from what you did, not who your daddy was."

David Axelrod, one of Obama's top advisors during the 2008 campaign, told Sports Illustrated earlier this year that basketball eased the president's nerves all through the election.

"I'm a little nervous, but it's a good nervous," Obama told Axelrod before the first debate with Senator John McCain.

"Give me the ball," Obama said to the advisor. "Let's play the game."

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