U.S. Men's Basketball gets ass handed to them by Puerto Rico. How cool is that?

Yeah, yeah, i’ll probably be eating my words in a week or so.

The US team will probably go undefeated from here on, and win the gold medal.

But, fuck it was sweet seeing those guys get eaten up by the Puerto Ricans. And it was even sweeter seeing Iverson and Co. getting all pissy as the game drew to a close. Suck it up fellas. I hope it happens again.

See now, this is why you guys invented those other sports that no-one else wants to play, so that you could call yourselves World Champions. Probably best stick to those :stuck_out_tongue:

I don’t watch basketball and don’t have the slightest interest in it but I now love the Puerto Ricans for beating our team. Schadenfreud never felt so good.

Americans have been moving away from good basketball fundamentals for years. In the USA, a slam-dunk is far more important to master than a good screen. And so as the NBA has been “more exciting” for the average knucklehead fan, it’s been boring me to tears.

Want to go playground, boyz? Well, fine. But now it’s time to pay the piper.

Maybe someday soon the NBA starz will learn how to pass (at least as well as the international squads).

Do they call travelling at the Olympics? I could see that causing problems for the US…

The Olympics always give me a chance to feel bad about my piss-poor knowledge of world geography. However, I’m fairly sure that Puerto Rico is still a territory of the US, which is why I was surprised that they, of all people, were the ones to hand our team its ass.

On Googling, it seems that Puerto Rico, as a “self-governing commonwealth”, is independent enough to have its own Olympic team. Learn something new every day.

I find it weird that Puerto Rica has a team separate from the US. Aren’t their athletes eligible for US teams? I guess the fact that they have their own teams means they aren’t.

If you saw the exhibition games we played, you know that we got traveling calls every other possession. What was funny was hearing Bill Walton complain about the quality of the FIBA refs when it was the NBA refs’ fault for not having called a walk since Jordan was drafted.

I still think that Bill “The Sports Guy” Simmons had the right idea. Replace the international players on the Pistons’ roster with a couple of top players (Duncan for Darko comes to mind) and send the NBA champs. We don’t send teams any more, we send all-stars. The thing to do is put an actual team together, or send an NBA team.

And my question is answered before I even finish posting. Thanks DoctorJ!

Yep, they called a few of those in the second half of the game, but both teams incurred on it.

I originally posted this in my LJ, but I thought it might get a wider discussion here.

It’s never going to end, is it?
Last night I went out to the local bar for a beer or two. It’s a place I frequent to get some “me” time. I am not really into the bar scene, but I am something of a regular. I’m the weird guy who sits down the end of the bar and keeps to himself. I am likely to be quietly reading a book or watching the Os on TV, keeping to myself while drinking a Rolling Rock or two. I am certainly not anti-social, but when I go out it’s to unwind, to just relax and be myself, by myself. I have little interest in impressing people with how much I can drink or how boisterous or tough I am, as I said, it’s “me” time.

I was talking to another of the regulars; I’ll call him “Bill”, mainly because it’s his name. I’ve talked to Bill a bit before, and if I had to hazard a guess, I’d say he likes me. Certainly I have found him to be congenial before. He’s starting his own business, and I like to think I’ve given him a tip or two, because that’s what I do for work, I help small businesses.

Anyway, someone who was drunk loudly talked about “shooting poolies”, referring to pool, of course. It was picked up by the bar and bandied back and forth with amusement. I joked to the guy down the bar “I love Poolie season. Me and my buddies, we take a couple of coolers full of beer and some rifles and have a good time.” He responded “Yea, it’s like shooting niggers up against a wall. It doesn’t count if you hit them below the waist.”

I have no idea what he meant by that last part, but Bill bantered back with him. For me, it was like being doused with a bucket of cold water. I immediately withdrew from the conversation and picked up my book and started reading again. I noticed that Bill didn’t come out with anything like the other guy had said, but he conversed in general terms about hunting with the other guy. At one point he turned aside to me and said “Jesus, I’m talking about shooting niggers” to me under his breath. The impression I got was that he knew it was wrong, but had been sucked in by the conversation.

I am so sick of this shit. I realize that drinking in a Dundalk bar is not the place to find enlightened attitudes, but I am so sick of the fact that just because I am white, racist people assume that I will share their views. I am sick of the fact that racism, while still not a spot on what it was 30 or 40 years ago, has learned to go underground and only rears it’s ugly head in circumstances it thinks are “safe” (because we’re all white here, doncha know?)

Do I think it’s better than it was before? Yes, absolutely. My parents raised me to be color blind and I am teaching my son the same thing, and I’ll teach my unborn child that way as well. Those attitudes are growing, and will continue to grow with each generation. The next generation, and the next after that, and the one following, they will all find this kind of prejudice more and more foreign to their experiences. Good for them. I am disgusted because it’s not that way now. It’s like someone denying that gravity makes things fall. It’s stupid and it’s WRONG.

Actually, I don’t think we humans will ever escape it entirely. It is my fervent belief that one day, it will be confined to the types of people who today belong to the Flat Earth Society. You know, lunatics. Meanwhile, I will seethe and nash my teeth at the stupid, ignorant, IDIOTS with whom I have to share this Earth.

Coda:

What could I have done? Challenged him on it? I don’t think so, that would have only lead to a fight and wouldn’t have changed his mind a wit. It was a classic damned if you do and damned if you don’t situation. I chose don’t, and have to deal with my bitterness and cowardice here on the SDMB. I honestly can’t think of a single thing I could have accomplished if I had been vocal to a drunk racist, and I am somehow ashamed of that fact. It gets even more ridiculous when you consider what happened at the end of the night. I was coming out of the bathroom, and Racist Asshole was going in. The song playing on the jukebox was “Sweet Home Alabama”. He was singing along with the song under his breath. As I passed him he happily sang “Does your conscience bother you?” The irony almost made me physically sick.

Life In These United States: 2004. We have along way to go, don’t we?

Well, almost any athlete is able to compete for any country they desire, as long as they follow certain guidelines.

Yes, our athletes can play for the US teams, but then they wouldn’t be able to compete for Puerto Rico. Mark Ruiz (diving) could have easily competed for Puerto Rico, as well as Gigi Fernández (tennis player who, IIRC, did win a medal at an Olympics game). I’m sure there are others who could have played for the US, as well as athletes born in other countries who play for Puerto Rico.

What is it that makes the US men’s basketball team pit worthy? Just curious as I know nothing about the sport.

:smack: :smack: :smack: This was supposed to be it’s own thread. Sorry to interupt, roundball fans.

For the most part, they play like a team of individuals rather than a team, like other nations. Also, fundamentals are severely lacking in this day and age. No one on the team has a real jump shot, and there’s no passing to speak of.

The whole team had rather play one-on-one instead of team ball. It’s because the NBA has degenerated into “posterizing” the opponent with “moves” rather than playing team ball and running an actual offense. It’s why I watch college ball so much. At least the NCAA still has some coaches who believe in the team concept, like here at Kentucky, where Tubby Smith doesn’t recruit individual all-stars, but team players who can dribble, pass and shoot.

Go neighbors! :slight_smile:

Hey, what can I say? The rest of the world is catching up, and my hometown team has been pretty damn good by rest-of-the-world standards for a while now (OK, we have had some recent periods of general suckitude… we’re pulling ourselves together). We’ve been pretty high up in World Championships, Friendship Games, etc.

But hey, by the 4th Quarter it briefly looked like Team USA had stopped being distracted with whatever else it was they were really paying attention to, but by then it was too late. They just need to wake up in time for the rest of the tournament… Maybe, if anyone cared, they could get into the habit of assembling something more like a real Team-USA. A selection of motivated NBA-ers and NCAA seniors who DO play as a team since well before major tournaments. After all, USA’s where the sport was born and its greatest stars play, but (look out, InvidiousCourgette, here’s the slam on USA Basketball) they have a custom of sending to international competition a hastily kludged-together team of whoever did not think it was a better day for golf or waxing the Ferraris. (And it’s not like Team-PR have no lives: they still have to show up to play as per their contracts in the NBA or the European Leagues or the NCAA or the Puerto Rican league. But they also actively seek to qualify to participate in Team-PR, and which gets assembled every year and plays as such in multiple venues every year.)

We’ll savor this one while we hold our breath awaiting likely stompings by Serbia, Argentina, etc.

May I say that after the close of the game, Team-USA and Team-PUR holding up each other’s hands was a class gesture of olympianism.
As to the sports-nationality question: yes, PR athletes can compete as part of Team-USA, but IOC then places you in a moratorium as to how long before you can then go on to compete under a different flag. The vice-versa (USA-ers playing for PUR) works a little different since the sports federations will realistically impose some extra requirements of time-of-residence and the such in order to avoid carpetbagging or the use of “ringers”. Non-sovereign territories ARE allowed separate olympic committees (realistically, as long as the metropolitan power does not raise a stink), it does not have anything to do with PR’s specific “commonwealth” condition: American Samoa, Guam and the USVI, which are not “commonwealths”, are also in the competition.

And we have won in those competitions, but in those games, the USA usually does not send a team composed of NBA all-stars. Puerto Rico has won gold in the Friendship Games (St. Petersburg, 1996), and perhaps also in the Panamericans at Mexico in the early 90s (can’t remember, I was a kiddo). But in both of those occassions, the US team was not NBA-composed.

We’ve beaten Argentina before, we can do it again. And I don’t care anymore if we don’t get a medal, we did something no one else had done before at the Olympics. And we’re amongst the best, and I’m happy.

Yea, I liked that part as well. They were good sports, for the most part.

Our B-Ball guys have had (that I can account for) one Pan-Am Games gold (1991, at Havana) and no less than 2 silvers; multiple golds in Central-Am Games and Centrobasket (the Central American Basketball-only tournament) (in the latter 2 tournaments, of late the big threat is from Mighty Girl’s Dominican Republic); and various also-ran rankings in the Olympics and World Championships.

I see that the rest of our first-round group is made up of Greece, Angola, Australia and Lithuania, so should we acquit ourselves well here (Australia gave us one nasty surprise before) we may run into Team-USA again next week. And hey, now that the monkey’s off our backs :wink: , it would be nice to be like everyone else and look to get as far up in the standing as possible.

A little humble pie never killed anybody.

Hats off to Puerto Rico.