international ball part 2: the reality team

short recap on the USA-russia game, since the olympics have already started and i'm late on analysis that's probably already been said. here's the stadium "in shanghai." yeah it's "in shanghai," but, unbeknown to me, it was an hour drive outside of the actual city.

-most interesting thing i noticed were the different line-ups. i dont know much about international ball, but there was nothing traditional about the 5 players coach k put on the floor. sometimes 2 pgs (paul and williams...i still like williams better than paul, and i also believe it's too early to say paul is the better overall pg), sometimes going with a bunch of sg's around one big man, sometimes going really small ball with boozer and center with 4 guards matching up with whoever was most similar on the opposing team. no traditional roles, just match ups. it makes for pretty interesting basketball. i'm sure all of the players will be better for this learning experience.

-chinese people love kobe more than anyone. every time he touched the ball, it was "mvp! mvp!" there were ooh's and ahh's every time a shot went up. general amazement all around.

-the difference maker on this team? sorry to lebron (no consistent and/or real outside shot), kobe (too much black mamba for international play), and melo (though, a close second place), but as much as i hate to admit it, dwyane wade is the difference. boy scouts honor, this was my main thought leaving the game in shanghai, even before wade tore up angola and china. it's already been said before by many writers, but actually getting to see his importance in person was pretty...amazing (god dammit...). he's not the best player on this team for sure (kobe), but he's the most well-rounded. he can do it all on both ends of the floor, and he's got the right size, height, and agility for stardom in international play. ...i think he is the unsung leader (not kobe, kidd, lebron, or anyone) coming off the bench as the 6th man, and i think he's doing it with an incredible quiet confidence (i get the feeling that maybe the last two nba seasons have humbled him a quite a bit). and i'll never fawn like this over dwyane wade ever again.

gotta balance this out somehow:

-i never noticed this, but this observation was courtesy of my cousin (and i really wish i took some video evidence of this). maybe it was the long baggy shorts that made it look like he was wearing a skirt (though everyone was wearing the same shorts and didn't look like that), which wasn't helped by the fact that he's pretty skinny, tall, and lanky, but chris bosh runs like a "sissy." you probably haven't heard that word in a while, but it's absolutely true. he runs with his knees in and legs going out, making a V shape. kind of looks like an nonathletic girl/gay dude running, no joke. just watch him play sometime, i promise. john amaechi part deux?

he ran kind of like this:

of course, i wouldn't ever say it to his face, but i'm pretty sure this is fact.

-chinese people love the wave. i'm guessing maybe the concept is new to them, because the announcer encouraged the crowd to give themselves a hand after a successful 2 minute wave.

-willis reed, dominique wilkins, and sam perkins were at the game. something about youth basketball in china. i dunno, ask sam perkins' son, he goes to UT now, and lives in plano too.

-89-68, US. didn't really expect anything too exciting since it was just a warm-up and it's international ball (zone defense limits dunking, for the most part, to just on break aways; though kobe had a pretty sweet 360 that drove the crowd wild. and then right afterwards michael redd pulled a "hey, me too guys!" and started cherry-picking on the next 3 possessions. which, if i remember correctly, resulted in an offensive foul, a turnover, and a missed shot. in other words, 0 points. rein it in a little michael (and team USA)). that said, it was still a pretty interesting game from an educational stand point; that'll happen when you know you're not waiting for the next spectacular play/dunk. great stuff, i enjoyed the game, and i'm happy i got to see the best american (or i guess i could just say black) players from the nba (tayshaun prince? uh...) on their way to hopefully redeeming themselves. btw, "redeem team" is a fucking lame name.

-it was pouring outside after the game. no umbrella, so i did the smart thing and covered up with packaging used for the game programs. trust me, the idea way outweighed the goofiness. and yes, i wore my jason terry (team USA reserve #57) shirt to the game. i probably confused a lot of people.

-these people had a better idea than i did.

enjoy the rest of the olympics (btw, i missed the 4x100 everyone's talking about. someone wanna link me to some video?). and yes i had a big WTF moment when taiwan was introduced as "chinese taipei" and carried some fake ass olympics/KMT flag to represent the country. but watch out for the taiwanese in men's singles badminton. just upset malaysia's supposed "king of badminton." if you haven't watched competitive badminton, trust me, it's awesome, and it's pretty intense. no lie, seriously check it out, and at the least, watch the finals. guaranteed good time. also guaranteed: an all asian final.


Justin said...

taiwan got owned like they will for the foreseeable future. LOL.

chinese people like the US team so much not just cause theyre the best in the world. its also cause theyre all black. chinese people, while racist against blacks, also understand blacks got it arguably worse from white people than the chinese.

if for some god forbidden reason the US team was a bunch of cracka ass crackas, then chinese people would hate on them no matter what. i know i probably would.

Albert said...

Go to the nbc website. They have vids for everything.