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Group Blog talking about the NBA 2009 Eastern Conference Champions. Due to the amazing success of the 2009 playoff run comments are now frequently deleted to kill offensive comments, incoherence, or asininity. Comments can no longer be anonymous and require either a Blogger or OpenID account.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Upset special: Greece stuns U.S. in FIBA semis

Co-captains King James, Melo, and Wade are apart of the newly assembled program for U.S. Basketball. The end results were pretty much the same as the disappointment continues for United States Basketball.

14 Comments:

  • At 12:33 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    Call me a jerk, but I can't help but laugh when a team, with 3 guys that people will argue are 3 of the best players in the world, can't beat a team that doesn't have a single star.

    This is a perfect example why I’m not worried about the Magic having 2 players that people around the country consider "superstars".

     
  • At 12:48 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    I was ambivalent about Team USA and enjoyed most of this tournament from the angle of following Dwight, Darko and Carlos perform. Hard to get too excited about an off-season tournament that plays with different rules and a different court. And I have to admit to being put off by LeBron's ego in particular.

    I haven't watched the game yet, but comments indicate that the Greek TEAM beat the U.S. individuals. Not a shock there. Team USA is less than 60 days old. Outside of Howard, Battier, & Miller they had no role players and definitely not enough outside shooters. I would be shocked if a Miami, Phoenix, or even the Magic would lose to the Greek team. But the court is so different that who could predict even that outcome.

    I'm not worried about a future with the Magic depending on 2 superstars. The GM regularly speaks about putting the proper team role players around Darko & Dwight and not destroying team chemistry.

    A 60 day wonder of NBA superstars is hardly ever going to have good true chemistry.

    Now we wait 60 days for the real games to begin.

     
  • At 8:19 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Yes, this was a bunch of stars who were not playing as a team against Greece... and I just shake my head at Team USA's woeful 3 pt shooting pct. and FT pct.

     
  • At 10:29 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    The NBA 3 point line is 23 feet 9 inches from the basket except for the sidelines where it's 22 feet. The international 3 point line is the same as the WNBA!! This jumper is 20 feet 6 inches from the basket.

    SO CAN ANYONE TELL ME WHY THESE GUYS DON'T HAVE A 20 FOOT 6 INCH SHOT IN THEIR GAMES?????

    How can any guard or forward be considered "great" if they can't drop a 20 footer consistently?

    It wasn't just this game. They've been chucking and bricking 3's in prior games, especially against Germany which was painful to watch. This was just the first time the other team hit a few shots. There is no excuse for a team like this losing. It's really just pathetic.

    Although, maybe the difference is that David Stern and the NBA wasn't involved. Maybe if he was involved Team USA would have shot 50 FTS(not that they could make any), and they would have been bailed out like NBA Superstars usually are.

     
  • At 10:57 AM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    It won't happen but the team is in dire need of Ray Allen and JJ Redick. Maybe even dust off Reggie Miller. Team USA needs guys who can make baskets, not D.Wade, Bron Bron & Joe Johnson chucking and missing.

    The international game with a wide lane, zone defenses, no 3 second rules and short 3 point line requires different skills than the NBA.

    Put Miller and Howard in the middle plus Carmelo Anthony. Add D.Wade and Chris Paul as slashers and always keep a shooter like Allen or Redick on the floor and the team could compete. The problem was guys like Wade and Paul were getting into the paint, getting the defense to collapse and no one could hit the 3.

    None of our superstars play perimeter defense either unless they are covering Dirk Nowitski. They just wave as the player goes buy, forcing the bigs to help out high and get burned by Greek bigs going to the hoop.

    Unfortunately too, Howards high school education didn't do much to teach him how to play the pick and roll. But that will improve with experience.

     
  • At 1:38 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    Perfectly said, WeR. The team was not constructed properly for the world basketball, and we never learnt from the Olympic's debacle. Teams sag in and defend getting too close to the rim, and players like James and Wade become ineffective. We needed shooters with absolute confidence not a shooter from lowly Atlanta.

     
  • At 2:08 PM, Anonymous Max said…

    A week or 2 ago Joe Johnson was asked if he thought anyone could beat them(Team USA) if they were "on their game". His reply was "Even if we were off our game no one can beat us". You might think I have a problem with his arrogance or overconfidence, but no my problem is this.....WHAT THE HELL IS JOE JOHNSON DOING ON TEAM USA? Seriously, Joe Johnson is one of the 12 best players in the USA? When did this happen?

    Nice job Team USA, you guys made some sweet dunks and totally spanked Senegal, Dirk and some random German guys, oh and a bunch of Chinese scrubs. Why are media types and other basketball "insiders" still saying that we need to learn to play the "international" game better. As far as I can tell the "international game" consists of passing, consistent outside shooting, making free throws, and good ball movement. That also goes by another name, I think it is called BASKETBALL!!! There is no damn difference, but unfortunately the NBA moved away from good team basketball because it didn't bring in high enough ratings or sell jerseys so none of these kids know how to play fundamental basketball. Big shock that teams that play together as a team are embarrassing all these one-on-one-slashers who can't hit a jumper to save their lives. I wish that this would open the eyes of David Stern but I know it won't because it didn't after the 2004 Olympics, back when team ball was making a comeback in the NBA(Pistons, Spurs, and Mavs). Instead he spent the next 2 years fixing games to make the teams with "the next great generation of superstars" Lebron, Wade, Etc. look legit.

    Seriously the NBA is really making me sick to my stomach lately and this Team USA shit actually pisses me off. It totally exposes the fact that the NBA is becoming a joke if these guys are the future of the league. But of course no one cares and the media continues to pimp the so called "great" players like Wade and the rest of the guys on team USA who can't shoot and rely on the officials to bail them out with a trip to the free throw line when they miss shots. These guys actually lost to GREECE, a team with ZERO NBA PLAYERS.

     
  • At 5:31 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    It wasn't Dwight out on the floor in the 2nd half that Greece was making a fool of. It was laughable how they keep running the same play, and USA could do nothing, not even slow them down. Why Bosh and Howard didn't play in the 2nd half is beyond me. At least they could have changed or blocked a few shots.

    USA; both ends of the floor, especially the defensive end, looked like they had never played a game of fundamental basketball in their lives, oh wait, they haven't. Seriously, I watch the NBA because I want to watch basketball. If I wanted to watch one on one crap and random highlights, I'd watch AND 1.

    Melo was almost right with a comment he said post game: "We're still on top," he said, "We still have the best players in the world and we're going to prove that next summer." He was right, the NBA does have the best players in the world. To bad the games didn't feature a dunk contest, 1 on 1, or 21, then we could have destroyed the rest of the world. Why players now a days can't grasp the team concept is beyond me.

     
  • At 5:49 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    I wouldn't take this too far out of the context. It is true that there is so much emphasis on individuality in NBA, but that is part of our culture to appreciate and reward individual achievements. That, however, is not an excuse when we enter arenas where teamwork is rewarded; we have to be prepared for it. For years and years, our teams comprised of college players beat the hell out of the world, but the world is catching up, as basketball is becoming more popular (partly thanks to NBA), thus more profitable all over the world. These non-U.S. players are not making chump changes and that is why goofs like Fran Vasquez decide to stay in Europe. Final word, if we are going to commit and go to world basketball events, where the rules and conditions are so different than NBA, we need to make adjustments which we didn't, once again, this time around.

     
  • At 10:26 AM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    I was thinking about the lack of players who can hit a 20'6" shot and it got me thinking about DeShawn Stevenson. Last year he kept catching the ball and taking a step or two inside the 3 point line to take his shot.

    Where did that get him?

    The NBA doesn't exactly reward guys who like the 20' shot. If the U.S. wants to dominate these tournaments again they'll have to change the court and the rules towards the FIBA rules. Fiba basketball seems to limit the impact of dominant tall guys inside and the athletic slashers on the perimeter. It promotes rugby scrums in the middle and mid-range shooters on the outside. It's a great game for 6'8" (mostly) white guys who can pass and shoot.

    I prefer the NCAA and NBA games we have here.

     
  • At 3:36 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    I'm puzzled.

    If these "NBA Stars", actually had NBA 3 point range, then maybe a 20 footer wouldn't be a problem. Hell, they could even step back and shoot 3 feet behind the international line then couldn't they? But wait, they don't have NBA 3 point range, or NBA mid range either I guess. I guess there is a benefit for being an un-athletic white boy.

    Dwight Howard didn't have any problem dominating the games when he was on the court. There was no answer for him. If he actually played more than 15 minutes a game, he would have put up BIG numbers. I guess FIBA just doesn’t favor guards and forwards that are slashers who have no range beyond 15 feet.

    The whole point is, there is no excuse for these guys not to be able to play fundamental basketball. If they are the best in the world, they should be able to PLAY BASKETBALL. How can you be considered "the best" if some random "un-athletic rugby scrub white boys" can beat you? This isn't rocket science, and as far as I know, none of these guys are special-ED'. It should be pretty simple for these guys. I’m sure some of you guys have played the game at different levels. I mean really, why make excuses for these guys? They are highly paid, because they are "the best". If you're the best, you make a little adjustment, or you make others adjust to you, and there should be no excuses. Just think about what beat them. The lost because they couldn't defend. It's not like Greece was throwing some special foreign offense at them. They ran the most simplistic play in basketball history, the pick and roll. If I recall, every NBA team has used the same play, and had to defend it. Stockon and Malone did that for about 15 years. So it's not like Team USA was having to defend something they haven't seen in the NBA. I'm "American", I could careless about any foreign players or teams, but I'm not going to defend the American players for not being able to play FUNDEMENTAL BASKETBALL.

    Here's a thought. Take a look at our Magic team, and how we play. Next year we'll probably have 2 foreign players in our starting lineup with Hedo and Darko. Dwight plays like a traditional big man. Arroyo, a traditional point guard... Jameer is an undersized playmaking/scoring point guard. Redick is a pure shooter. Bogans, Dooling, Battie, and others are all role players. All of our guys understand fundamental basketball. Ariza is probably the only one who doesn't. Our Orlando Magic are not built around what the NBA promotes. Expect to be treated like the Spurs or Pistons of recent years. Even if our record says we’re the best, teams with Wade, James, and what the NBA promotes will always get the attention. The only thing that might save us is Dwight Howard and the monster dunking part of his game.

    Looking forward to training camp!

     
  • At 4:27 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    I don't think that any of us intends to make excuses for the U.S. players. To me the question is whether or not we care enough about these international games to change our NBA rules of the game? and my honest answer is: HELL NO! However, if we care to win these kind of tournaments, we need to adjust by putting enough shooters on the team alongside some players who could defend. Why would we cut a Bruce Bowen to open a space for a Joe Johnson, is beyond me. It doesn't have to be un-athletic white boys; it could be a Ray Allen or Rashard Lewis type players that we need. Look at the two point-guard on the team; none were known for their shooting prowess, although Heinrich did OK.

    We can certainly win these tournaments if we send in a decent NBA or college TEAM, and I underscore TEAM. Magic, for example, could have won this tournament.

     
  • At 9:36 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    I thought that Coach K, known for his solid coaching and teaching, could help these guys adjust to the internatonal style better; obviously he couldn't and that was disappointing also.

    If J.J. Redick can prove this season for the Magic that he can consistently drain the long jumper, he should be seriously considered for the 2008 Olympic team.

     
  • At 4:04 AM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    We shouldn't have to change any rules to beat these teams. If Wade, James, Melo, etc are as great as everyone says they are, they should be able to handle it.

    I completely agree with you. You send a TEAM over there, and they'll win. Hell, like you said, if you send the Magic over there, they'll win. I guess I'm just pissed because NBA analysts say players like Wade, James, and Melo are the best in the world, if so, there is no reason they shouldn't be able to adjust and beat anyone in the world.

    I'll agree, Coach K did a very poor job.

     

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