New Orleans Pelicans guard Josh Hart and his brother Matt Hillman recently started the LightHarted Podcast. He uses the podcast to interact with fan questions, talks with other professionals, and speaks on life events.
Over the past few years, podcasts have become a highly-consumed form of media, with podcasts like the Joe Rogan Experience and Serial getting millions upon millions of downloads. New Orleans Pelicans guard Josh Hart has joined JJ Redick in the podcasting industry.
Hart’s podcast was first announced last month and the first episode dropped on June 21. Hart is joined on the podcast by Matt Hillman, who explains throughout the podcast that the venture has played an indispensable role in his life to this point. They speak on their relationship in the first episode, and it’s easy to see why they make a good team on the show.
While Hart is obviously a player in the NBA, The LightHarted Podcast isn’t just about basketball. The New Orleans Pelicans’ newest podcaster has non-hoops related guests on the show often.
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“We’re going to bring professionals from all walks of life,” Hart explains in the podcast’s trailer. This is where Hart’s podcast reaches beyond other notable athletes’, such as Danny Green’s Inside the Green and The JJ Redick Podcast. No disrespect on those other shows, but Hart explores what he’s interested in without remaining solely focused on basketball.
This was displayed by his very first guest, Todd Gurley, who came on and talked about his upbringing, wine (a frequent topic of conversation on the podcast), and his journey to becoming one of the best running backs in the NFL. In the episode, Hart obviously discusses basketball as it’s part of his life, but he doesn’t let it overshadow his podcast.
One of the biggest cliches people use about professional athletes is: “They’re not human.” Often, this is how they actually are perceived by the public, not as humans but as icons, someone bigger and more important. New Orleans Pelicans players are no different, small market or not.
Hart’s podcast achieves something we see a lot of athletes try to do, prove they’re still just human like the rest of us.
Hart has explored topics such as hip hop with Dreamville President Ibrahim Hamad and photography with basketball photographer Cassy Athena. He has shown his ability to speak about topics he may not know about fully with curiosity and respect for the experts he interviews.
The main bonus for Hart and other athletes potentially looking to start a podcast is he gets to control the narrative about him. We all saw mainstream sports media reporting Zion wanted to go back to Duke and that Lonzo didn’t want to play in New Orleans, but those stories were false.
Soon after his trade to New Orleans, Hart was able to get on his podcast and talk about his feelings on it and the city of New Orleans. “I’m a New Orleans Pelican. I’m all in to that,” he said on his podcast just four days after the trade was announced.
“I’m focused and excited to help build a great winning culture there.” Hart got his say in on the trade before anyone could say otherwise.
Hart’s podcast shows his intelligence about the game of basketball, but also just as a person overall. He speaks about those who have helped him along the way highly and he is always ready to listen to his guest’s stories.
If anything, The LightHarted Podcast has proven that Josh Hart will not only be a great addition to the New Orleans Pelican’s locker room but also to the city of New Orleans as a whole.