Big contest, little prize and the winner in Argentina
So, does Canada stand a chance?
A puncher’s chance, maybe. But it’d have to be some wild knockout punch to earn them a spot this week in next year’s Olympics.
The FIBA Americas Olympic qualifying tournament starts today – and that’s an unwieldy name, isn’t it? – with two London berths on the line and 10 countries chasing them.
How’s it going to play out?
You know when they won this? They won it the day the country beat out Canada and Brazil for the right to host it.
Sure, they have far and away the best talent but I’m not sure all that talent plays if they’d have to travel this summer. But they don’t, so they win.
But that’s not the race; the real race is to see who gets the other automatic bid and what three countries get to live for another summer with Olympic dreams intact.
Besides, if they don’t win, there’ll be some reason they have to make the results null and void and hold it again until they do.
Veterans, solid players, guys who have been around forever and a rich history of success. Can’t beat Argentina when it counts, though.
Other qualifiers: Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Canada.
Seems kind of obvious, doesn’t it? Three solid teams and a lot of drop off – or so it would seem – to the other five contenders. But, I tell you, Canada is in tough. Venezuela’s good, teams you think of as minnows --- like Uruguay or Cuba or Paraguay – are capable of winning games and if Canada takes anyone lightly, they’re dead.
And if they don’t make it, it is a catastrophe, to put it mildly.
If this program wants to grow, and continue the growth it’s had since about 2008, it has to make it at least to next summer’s last-chance tournament to keep up some momentum, keep awareness at a high level and be seen as some sort of validation for young kids coming up.
There is incredible pressure on the coaching and staff and players to get it done, it’ll be interesting to see how they react.
Okay, we tried this before, last year at the worlds, actually.
We need a name for Canadian basketball teams.
You’ve got the Tall Blacks out of New Zealand, the Boomers out of Australia, I’m sure there are all kinds of nicknames for European teams – I’d say Azzurri for the Italians but I think that’s reserved for the footballers – and every American senior team seems to be named after some kind of riff on Dream Team.
Now, I’m not sure trite and predictable are going to work: No Tall Maples, Mighty Leaves, Canadian Shield (ooh, wait, Canadian Shield isn’t too bad), or something like Prairie Dogs (whatever they are).
Now, we need something that’s adaptable to men and women, doesn’t have to be exact but it should be close. You’ve got the Opals to go with Boomers, for instance, and that’s a bit of a stretch.
I’ll give you a day or two to come up with something; I’ll put my thinking cap on and try to find three or four and by the end of the week, I think we’ll come up with the definitive name.
Now, this is exclusive to the hoops, although if we get something perfect maybe we can make the pucks and the soccer and the rugby and whatever come around to our way of thinking.
What’s the winner get?
Well, nothing, actually. But I promise to use it repeatedly here so that’s worth something, right?
That, plus the knowledge that the provided a service to our country.
Oh, and my thanks for making it easy on me.
I also reserve the right to come up with my own and claim ownership of the whole thing because, when it comes right down to it, it’s all about me.
We’ve got all kinds of reasons to pay attention the Euros, right?
Jonas. Jose. Andrea. Great games.
Well, one more:
Omar Cook plays for Montenegro! With apparently far too much time on my hands, was flipping through EuroBasket stuff yesterday and was astounded to learn a New York-born ex-Rpator somehow got became a citizen of Montenegro and will play at the worlds.
Guess he’s Chris Kaman-lite or something.
Now, all I know about Nancy Grace is that when I see her on TV I change the channel faster than I ever have so I think you know how I’ll feel about her on DWTS.
Hope she falls down.
But on this list of contestants for next year, I don’t see an early favourite.
In fact, there are some people I’ve never heard of.
Who do you like?
You know, over the course of a life, or even a few months, you read about some despicable actions that make you fear for the future of civilization as we know it.
This is the single most absurd thing I’ve heard of in I can’t tell you how long. Two goofy kids of privilege sue their mom – with idiot dad acting as their lawyer – for bad parenting because she sent a birthday card without a cheque and made them put their seatbelts on when they were seven?
Honestly, I know the Americans are a litigious society beyond all acceptable norms – remember the idiot who sued McDonald’s because the coffee he spilled on himself was too hot? – but this takes the cake.
They need to take that father and his two ingrate kids, figure out how much money they wasted in court costs and legal fees, divide it by the absolute minimum hourly wage in that state and make them do that many hours of community service, perhaps picking up garbage in parks or just walking around wearing signboards that say: “I am an idiot and you should mock me until the day I die.”
(Oh, Super Son? If you’re reading this we don’t cotton to this kind of stupidity in Canada too well. In case you were thinking of something, that is)
All right, another day in the Falls, coffee in the morning, a stool at night and I’ll try not to slip into a barrel and go for a ride.