New machine, same old stuff
Man, this sleeping until 7:30 or 8 a.m. is getting to be a habit. And that means getting this finished later than usual is getting to be a habit, one that's going to have to change, I fear, once the season gets started and people go looking for their early-morning information. Not sure what timing changes we may make for post-game and off-day stuff later on this month, got any suggestions?
But, first, a disclaimer.
I got this newfangled computer yesterday, some kind of MacBook Pro thingy that’s got the latest in video gadgetry I’m sure you’ll be the beneficiaries of once we get going.
Right now? Right now I keep losing stuff and deleting stuff by accident (I know I lost one comment yesterday, can’t remember from who and I apologize for it) and there were periods of huge frustration last night. Like when I kind of disappeared the icon to get me internet access; luckily Super Son was able to help me out.
Anyway, if you see more than the usual number of typos, or something vanishes you know you sent, sorry. It’s the price we’ll pay momentarily for getting in the 2000s, computer-wise.
|Pops doing his thing for Britain vs. Slovenia earlier this week.|
Not too much excitement over in Poland yesterday, I guess Great Britain extending Spain into the fourth quarter was a mild surprise but it just goes to show that talent always wins out.
Oh, and it also goes to show that the first round is also very much a warmup for the big games that come in the second-round robin and then the quarter-finals.
It reminds of me the 2002 worlds in Indy where a pretty stacked Yugoslavia team struggled out of the gate, losing – if memory serves – their first two or three games.
Put a wee bit of pressure on and we were standing around talking to Peja Stojakovic one day and asked him if his team – a big medal favourite – was finally going to get things turned around.
(I may have told this story before, but what the heck, some of you might not have heard it.)
“We’re taking it so seriously, Vlade quit smoking.”
And Yugoslavia went on to win the gold medal.
Moral of the story: Nothing really happens until the next round.
So, we’ve got the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies this week, with Michael Jordan, David Robinson, John Stockton, Jerry Sloan and C. Vivian Stringer going in during Friday night’s gala.
That’s a helluva class, no?
We’ll get into more of this tomorrow and the next day or two about how good they all were but for now, here are the two endearing memories I have of David Robinson, who is one of the classiest individuals I’ve ever run across in 30 years in this business.
The first is the fact that before every game he played—every single game, according to people who saw him – he stood at military attention for every national anthem.
Considering he played in 1,100 games in his career, that’s a lifetime of good posture.
The second was a bleary-eyed June morning after the Spurs won an NBA title – I’m not sure which one it was, perhaps the win over the Nets? – and we’re all gathered at the airport, tired, a bit cranky, with sore heads and worn out bodies.
And there’s David Robinson, standing in line like the rest of us schmoes, with his son, getting his seat assignment, looking all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, heading off to some appearance he probably could have bailed out of quite easily.
Good guy, that David Robinson.
Heckuva player, too.
Hey, as I get ready to post this, it’s the ninth hour of the ninth day of the ninth month of the ninth year.
Speaking of Poland, perhaps the one result that did jump out a little was Greece beating Croatia.
Again, it’s not a hugely significant game – both teams are going to advance to the second round – but it does remind one of just how pesky that Greece team always is.
It’s a bunch of guys many of you have never heard of, nary an NBA regular among them, yet they always – always – make noise in the big international events.
Our local hero, Georgis Printezis, did very little yesterday (three points and a rebound in six minutes). His other, equally-unheralded teammates, however, kept doing what they do – win games.
Bet you thought with the national men’s team having qualified for the worlds that we’d be done with Canada on the international stage for the summer, right?
Wrong, Turnover Breath.
As we speak, the women are about to begin their final preparation for their world qualification that begins later this month somewhere in northern Brazil.
We’ll catch up with them a little later – they’re doing their final work at Rim Park in Waterloo and it’ll be worth a road trip some day – but suffice it to say they’ve got a far better chance going in to qualify than the men did going into their event.
You know that I think women’s basketball here gets short shrift too often and I wonder just how much detailed information we’ll get from FIBA Americas from this qualification event but we’ll do our best to bring as much timely news to you as we can.
This, I’m told by people who know these sorts of things, is a very good team stocked with a solid combination of youth and experience. It’s worth you paying attention to.
Oh yeah, the Raptors.
Speaking of Steve Nash, I hear he’s going to be in town for a bit soon so if you see a smallish fellow in some kind of bad disguise getting in a run at some public court or working out in some weed-littered soccer patch, take a closer second look, it could be Captain Canada.
After all, during a recent trip to China he donned goofy clothes, weird glasses and everything but a fake mustache and beard to go and join a pickup game in a public Beijing park.
Okay, now I’ve got to figure out how to post stuff on this wacky new machine. Hope it works easily.