Happy new year wishes go out to everyone in online basketball land this evening from BallinEurope and BiE’ll even throw in a gift as bonus: 2013’s first episode in the “Taking the Charge” podcast series hosted over at heinnews.com.

This week, host David Hein and yours truly sit for interviews with Sonny Weems in a return bid to the show. Naturally, Sonny talks lots of CSKA Moscow basketball and why not? BiE increasingly likes the Red Army’s chances at a Euroleague Final Four bid in 2012-13, if not necessarily the triple crown result apparently demanded by very high sources indeed…

(Incidentally, how much did CSKA fans dig their side’s smoking of Anadolu Efes last week. And yes, that’s an excuse to run a highlight clip…)

Chasing Weems is Steve McPherson, a guy with quite an impressive CV compiled through years of covering NBA hoops in general and Minnesota basketball specifically; most recently, he’s writing for the ESPN TrueHoop Network blogs A Wolf Among Wolves and Hardwood Paroxysm among others. McPherson nicely and concisely sums up the Wolves’ woes, assesses their chances for making the playoffs, gives us impressions of each of our Eurowolves (Andrei Kirilenko, Nikola Pekovic, Ricky Rubio) including great reasons to keep watching Alexey Shved.

Then, there’s the “Taking the Charge” weekly sports movie review; this time, the sport is lacrosse, and “Crooked Arrows” is perhaps – a bit surprisingly – the top fiction film of 2012 in the subgenre.

The banter on European and NBA basketball is kept to something of a minimum for this episode, we promise. Check out the entire podcast here. Thanks for listening and talk to you next week.

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