Francis Scott Key probably didn’t imagine this cover of ‘The Star-Spangled Banner.’ Metallica’s James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett, now in their 50s, rocked out at Game 3 of the NBA finals!
Imagine the Golden State Warriors and Toronto Raptors players bowing their heads somberly to…Metallica. That’s exactly what happened at Game 3 of the 2019 NBA Finals, which was hosted at Oracle Arena in Oakland on June 5. Metallica members James Hetfield, 55, and Kirk Hammett, 56, rocked out on their guitars to the tune of “The Star-Spangled Banner” before the Warriors and Raptors faced off on the court. While the rock ‘n’ rollers didn’t scream into a mic, we were still transported back to a mosh pit somewhere in the ’90s.
James and Kirk’s fingers still work fast on the electrical guitar, which NBA fans happily pointed out on Twitter. “Metallica playing star spangled banner gave me chills 🇺🇸✨,” one viewer tweeted, and another wrote, “Metallica’s James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett giving us the Star Spangled Banner rendition we all need. 🤘.” A third fan had a hilarious observation: “Want to feel old? Not a single player on the court tonight had been born when Metallica released its debut album.”
Yes, that’s right — Metallica’s debut album, quaintly named Kill ‘Em All, was released in 1983. That’s well before the birthdays of the Warriors’ Stephen Curry (1988) and the Raptors’ Kawhi Leonard (1991). Amazingly, Metallica has yet to disband — in fact, the grunge band is working on its 11th studio album!
Metallica’s rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner ahead of Game 3 of the NBA Finals was very metal. 🤘 https://t.co/2NfA3GKbSP
— Twitter Moments (@TwitterMoments) June 6, 2019
Want to feel old?
Not a single player on the court tonight had been born when Metallica released its debut album.
— Andrew Siciliano (@AndrewSiciliano) June 6, 2019
We’re only on Game 3 of the NBA Finals, and the annual championship series has already produced a number of headlines. Of course, this is largely due to rapper/Toronto Raptors super fan Drake, 32, who has done everything from hug former President Barack Obama at Game 2, to appearing to call Draymond Green “trash” at Game 1.