international ball part 1: let's get stank-y

game 1: angola vs. russia

those pointy chin motherfuckers brought their junior team, aka no AK47. once i found that out, there was no doubt these men in need of some sunlight were gonna get burned by the olympic, and very black, angolan nationals (real comment from some mainlanders behind me: "how do you see these people at night?"). size, speed, and strength (though they are lacking in the height department) overcame 1 huge guy and a bunch of perimeter players (though i guess that's what you need in international play). angola relied on about 3 scorers for the heavy hitting, but they played some great, incredibly active defense (think crazy hands + spirit fingers) all around. they just kept reminding me of pshs star abdullah lawal (except without henry writing school papers for them).

second row action:

89-70, angola

game 2: china vs. serbia

another junior team brought to compete against an olympic team. still fun to watch and get to familiarize myself with the chinese team before they get demolished by the big names in group play (USA, angola, germany, spain, greece). your leading scorer? yao? NO. yi? NO. that's right, wang zhizhi led the way with 18 points and a surprising arsenal of post-up moves and (mostly) three-pointers.

your chinese nationals and their respective hos (cheerleaders).

in yao's first (i think) public game back from injury, he had limited time, playing about 1 and half quarters (kind of disappointing). national hero that he was, of course he got the most cheering during intro's (they were introduced to...THE FINAL COUNTDOWN. no joke.), and just about every time the crowd thought he might have the rock coming his way. it actually got pretty loud in an overwhelmingly small stadium (which also meant better seats though).

halftime: went to go get some popcorn...and jesus what is this dense fog in the hallways? my mistake, it's literally about half the stadium taking a smoke break. it was hilarious:

notice all the hands raised to faces, and the guy in black on the left covering his mouth. the smoke was that thick.

fine, it was against a junior team, but i saw some encouraging things. this team is actually pretty well-balanced, and though they will still most-likely be yao oriented, they can switch him out with outside shooting with wang, or let yi do his "i will eventually be better than pau gasol" thing (saw a few flashes of nba-style brilliance during the game, but he's still got quite a few rough patches), or go with incredibly speedy and quick chen jianghua (he's got nba written all over...his legs), or even the lesser known swingman zhu fangyu who at times reminded me of a late mavs/pre-spurs michael finley (except you know, not as good). again, i'm gonna try to not get too high on this team cause they're gonna have a tough time getting out of group play, even if 4 out of 6 make it out.

96-72, china

china ends up losing to angola by one point the next day, and finishes second at the stankovic cup.

part 2 after the weekend: team USA vs. the real Russia in Shanghai. pretty pumped for this one.


Justin said...

if USA doesnt demolish the competition, they should all just kill themselves.

i watched part of usa vs turkey or some shit and it was boring as hell. death to the 35 sec shot clock.

Sam said...

sweet pics, andrew. glad you're still alive!