Episode 1: "Specifics on the General Idea"

Welcome to our first episode of Ninth Seed!

Here is our fact-checking section in all its glory. It will be direct and at times tangential.  Whenever we include and audio clip in our podcast we’ll link our source here.. We’ll also throw in some extra clips and links for you to dive down the rabbit hole with.

DETROIT PISTONS 2018 EASTERN CONFERENCE NINTH SEED

Former (he was let go after this was filmed) Detroit Pistons, President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach Stan Van Gundy breaks it down for us. Finishing as an 8th Seed in the East isn't much different than finishing in 9th place in your conference.  Signing up for a first-round ass-whooping by the 1 seed is rarely a good look. However, Stan was one of the first to hold the autonomous roles of President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach. He swung-for-the-fences with the Blake Griffin trade, but ultimately it wasn't enough to save the season or his job. As their roster is currently constructed and as they head into the office season, I don't see much hope for them jumping into Eastern playoffs next year.  But!!!!! Who would have seen the 2016/17 Miami Heat climb from 9th in the East to the 2017/18 5th seed in the East, much less Dwyane Wade coming home to HEAT NATION?  

DENVER NUGGETS 2018 WESTERN CONFERENCE NINTH SEED

What a heartbreaker of a season for the Denver Nuggets.  Last year they were 9th in the West with signs of a youth reckoning coming.   As the basketball gods would have it, Denver and Minnesota faced off in a winner-take-8th-seed matchup against each other for their last game of the season.  It felt like March Madness in the NBA. A single game win or go home. Denver ultimately lost to Minnesota in overtime, and it was a result of Tom Thibodeau bringing in some veterans from his Chicago days. The game summed up in one play was Taj Gibson getting the steal from the Serbian Powerhouse Nikola "The Joker" Jokic.   Denver has a lot of pressure to make it into the playoffs next year, because you can only use the youth excuse while they are young.

THE 2003 NBA DRAFT

A great documentary on the 2003 NBA draft. Although Darko Milicic doesn’t help the advocacy of drafting European players.

DONOVAN MITCHELL - THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY

And adding insult to injury, the Denver Nuggets traded their 13th pick Donovan Mitchell to the Utah Jazz.  Mitchell led the injured Jazz into the second-round of the Western Playoffs, won the Slam Dunk contest and finished 2nd in a controversial Rookie of the Year campaign.  Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons was re-classified as a rookie since he was injured during the 2016/17 pre-season and did not suit up for a regular season game.

 

BUILT TO SPILL: CAR / DOUG MARTSCH

The title of this episode is inspired by the Built to Spill song "Car" from the 1994 album "There's nothing wrong with love."   Doug Martsch is an NBA fan, and I always loved the contradictory references made in the song.  We'll analyze the song in our next episode.

Here's the full SXSW interview, and apparently Doug loves Kitties, but I would have dived into NBA nerd talk.  I've also included a quote regarding his love of hoops. Included below is a quote to back it up.

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TURKISH AIRLINES EUROLEAGUE

The premise for this video is that some of the EuroLeague’s top players are gathered at a cocktail party.  Since they are basketball obsessed they start daydreaming about the season ahead and bust out into a rap. I assume it was filmed in or near Barcelona, because that is where the EuroLeague office is located.  The name of the campaign and song is GAME ON! Turkish Airlines EuroLeague 2017/18 promotional video.  We'd like to think that it is intentionally bad, but maybe something got lost in cultural translation. (Lip my stockings!)

And if you're still left wanting more here's a link to the behind the scenes footage.  

Here is a list of the players featured in the video. The link on their name is to their Wikipedia page where you can see their Basketball CV (what they call a resume in Europe) and the link over their team's name will take you directly to their website.

Sergio Rodriguez - Point Guard / CSKA Moscow

Edgaras Ulanovas - Small Forward / Žalgiris Kaunas

Norris Cole - Point Guard / Maccabi Tel Aviv

Vassilis Spanoulis - Combo Guard / Olympiacos

Luka Dončić - Shooting Guard / Real Madrid

Bryant Dunston - Center / Anadolu Efes

Adam Hanga - Shooting Guard / FC Barcelona

Andrew Goudelock - Shooting Guard / Olimpia Milano 

Jayson Granger - Combo Guard / Baskonia

Gigi Datome - Power Forward / Fenerbahçe

Chris Singleton - Center / Panathinaikos

  

Top 3 Players Currently in the NBA from Europe.

GIANNIS ANTETOKOUNMPO - THE GREEK FREAK

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Giannis Antetokounmpo- he Greek Freak of the Milwaukee Bucks.  He was drafted #15 in the 2013 draft. He wasn't even invited into the cool kids zone on the main floor, but now he's a legitimate MVP candidate. If you haven’t seen the 60 minutes special on Giannis, do yourself a favor and watch it.  They did an amazing job.

 KRISTAPS PORZINGIS - THE LATVIAN UNICORN

And then there is this. Kristaps Porzingis says it all.  "For those people who don't know me they may think I'm a soft European that likes basketball, there's been busts before but I'm different...."

 LUKA DONCIC - THE SLOVENIAN WONDER BOY

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Luka Doncic lit it up for Real Madrid this season. Winning the EuroLeague honors of rising star, league MVP, finals MVP, and EuroLeague champion.  Would you rather live in Madrid, Spain or Dallas, Texas? He was technically drafted by the Atlanta Hawks and then traded to the Dallas Mavericks. That why I say drafted “for” and not “by” in the episode.

Here are the highlights of the EuroLeague final back in May.  Luka lead his team to a title and cleaned house on EuroLeague awards.  The only thing he really could have done better would have been to win the defensive player of the year award.

EL CLASICO - PALAU BLAUGRANA, BARCELONA

Here are highlights of the Clasico I attended in 2016.  See if you can spot the 17-year-old Luka on the court. There’s a myriad of former NBA players.

So the title of this guy’s video is “AMAZING Tapas, and Antoni Gaudi attractions”.  This is not our guide to Barcelona, but we went to a lot of the same places. Give it a watch, and then you can compare and contrast our take on Barcelona in Episode 3.

 
Moose Huerta