From the Twittosphere – SO to Monilogue and Tumblr poster F***YeahTimberwolves – BallinEurope passes on this sad tale of an egregious oversight on the part of a Minnesota-based newspaper with regard to BiE fave Ricky Rubio. It what is certainly a shoo-in for the Letter To The Editor of 2013, any category, reader David Holmes of Minnetonka sticks up for La Pistola; let’s hope such an infraction of sports journalism ethics doesn’t happen again…
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.
BiE likes to write up this particular roundup at year’s end for a couple of reasons: Firstly as a thank you to the readers who check out BallinEurope however frequently; like they say in sports, this website wouldn’t exist without the audience.
Secondly, a look back at which BallinEurope stories drew the most attention provides a nice microcosm of what was most of the minds of European basketball. Yes, national heroes playing in the NBA still reign supreme, but international tournaments happily still get ample due here on The Continent.
So without further ado, here are the stories that you, the readers, decided were the true headline-grabbers in 2012.
1. Splitter opines Adelman key to Rubio’s success; Ginobili says “impressive”
When Ricky Rubio finally eked his way into the Timberwolves’ starting lineup, the results were immediate and positive. Of course, those of us who’ve been following The Human YouTube Highlight Clip since his days as the youngest-ever player for Barcelona could sit back and say “I told you so” – like Tiago Splitter and Manu Ginobili did.
What say we close out 2012 with a whole bunch of highlight clips? BiE knew you’d be willing. Tomorrow, a list of the most popular BallinEurope stories of the calendar year will be running, but today comes an attempt to encapsulate the past 365 days in European hoops, YouTube style.
From Ibaka’s blocks to the return of Ricky Rubio, from a stunner in Istanbul to a double miracle in Italy, from the US to the Continent and back again, BallinEurope’s got your highlights right here… Continue Reading…
BallinEurope would like to wish a very merry Christmas to the readers out there, with hopes that your holiday season is loaded with food, drink, love – and basketball!
While the NBA is making this last item a reality with a swell slate of five games and a special Christmas-themed episode of the “Taking the Charge” podcast series will be posted later today, BiE brings even more season’s greetings from throughout the basketball universe. Among those sitting on BiE’s virtual mantelpiece are the following.
Among some great stuff for the holidays, BiE’s favorite must be “The 12 Dunks of Christmas,” a production from The NOC featuring streetballer Special FX.
Hein and yours truly go on to fill the aural space by chatting with the incomparable Euroleague Adventures’ Nick Gibson; about either website or man, BiE can say nothing negative. Gibson naturally shares about a zillion of his insights into the Eurobasket 2013 draw as well as happenings in the big ‘league, all done up in a mutated three-person version of Pardon the Interruption’s “Fact or Fiction.”
(Incidentally, the entire trio had some difficulties in categorizing this things – separating fact from fiction, one might say. All BiE can say is that this week’s podcast is the result of draw-breaking to late night coffees; a modicum of sympathy, if you will…)
Other topics of discussion include Nikola Vucevic’s fantastic start with the Orlando Magic; the Minnesota Timberwolves and the waiting game (at least half-finished now!); the Los Angeles Lakers; events in German Bundesliga basketball; the preeminence of Arvydas Sabonis in BallinEurope’s new logo poll; and way too much other stuff.
Our movie review of the week is “Phoenix in die Asche” (English title “No Phoenix, No Ashes”), a 2010/11 documentary capturing the trials and tribulations of Phoenix Hagen in its first Bundesliga season, particularly those involving an American player named Michael Jordan…
Welcome to phase two of BallinEurope’s new logo project – yes, it’s officially a project now. Thanks to everyone for weighing in with some really excellent suggestions and critiques.
As culled from the feedback, BiE has decided to give consideration to a few good tips. Firstly, the suggestion that perhaps both players in the logo should be reworked gained some ground among the commentators and BiE liked it as well. To this end, this week’s poll will focus on a European player currently in the NBA; keeping the traditional Bearded Man, a.k.a. “Pau” is also an option.
In noodling around on the ESPN Trade Machine vis-à-vis the possibility of the Los Angeles Lakers moving Pau Gasol at all, BallinEurope again noted the amazing bank-per-buck BiE’s NBA home team Minnesota Timberwolves are getting early into 2012-13 … and BiE can’t believe team general manager gets props for a surprising 5-4 start by a team he designed plus a bright future.
As BallinEurope understands it, the thinking goes something like this: Pau has not performed brilliantly early on this season. He’s at his peak trade value. Literally the only tradable assets beyond Gasol are Metta World Peace and Steve Blake – unless taking a flyer on Chris Duhon or Earl Clark proves irresistible to someone. Dwight Howard should exploit a pick-and-roll game enough so that the Spaniard’s specialized skills aren’t missed too much. And hey, let’s face it, they’ve been trying to deal this guy for quite some time.
Nice choice, BallinEurope readers. The Minnesota Timberwolves, selected as BiE’s NBA home team for the 2012-13 season, are early darlings in the big league, managing to get off to a respectable 4-2 start (“Their best start in 11 years!” went the hype after the Wolves’ win over the Indiana Pacers) while Kevin Love, Ricky Rubio and at present J.J. Barea are down to injury.
BallinEurope checks in this morning with those fantastic Eurowolves, bullet-style with video and an Official Fearless Prediction™ or two below.