Tag Archives: NCAA Basketball Tournament

Battle of the Blue Bloods Goes to UConn Huskies

In an ultra rare match-up between a seven and an eight seed in the National Championship game, it felt more like a battle of two traditional powers who are ranked number one. While both teams have a pedigree of championships, both of these teams are on the way back up form a down turn the last few years.

To read the rest; please continue to Kody’s Sports Korner.

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The Opportunist: Wally Szczerbiak’s NBA Career

szczerbiaAs the Sweet 16 boils down to the Elite Eight, I’d like to turn your attention to a man who turned his knack for striking while the iron’s hot into a decade-plus-long NBA career. It was during the tournament in 1999, when Wally Szczerbiak stormed onto the national scene. His Miami, Ohio RedHawks were the 10 seed, facing the heavily-favored, seventh seeded Washington Huskies.

In a 59-58 win over Washington, Szczerbiak scored a remarkable 43 points. He took 33 shots from the field–the rest of the Red Hawks attempted just 22 shots. He collected 12 boards and shot 5-12 from three-point land. The team advanced to the second round, where they took on the 2-seeded Utah Utes.

It was a showdown featuring Szczerbiak versus Utah’s future NBA sharpshooter Andre Miller. Miller did his best, scoring 20 points and grabbing six rebounds, but it was Miami of Ohio, behind Szczerbiak’s 24-point, 8-rebound effort, continuing their Cinderella run to the Sweet 16. Miami finally lost to Kentucky, but Wally Szczerbiak became a household name (once households learned how to pronounce it).

Wally went sixth overall to the Timberwolves  in that year’s draft. His tourney foe Andre Miller went eighth. After an impressive rookie season, two more solid years followed for Szczerbiak, including his 2002 campaign–his best as a pro. He made his lone All-Star game appearance in 2002 for the T-Wolves. And that off-season, seeing what they had in Szczerbiak, Minnesota decided they NEEDED to keep Wally in the Twin Cities, so they gave him a 6-year, $63 million extension, the structure of which was heavily back-loaded.

Six  years and several teams later, Szczerbiak was one of the richest bench players in the NBA and an annual member of the NBA’s All-Expiring-Contract team, the players of which are constantly on tour throughout the land, and whom are traded mid-season almost every year (See: Raef LaFrentz). He was somewhat famously involved in the trade that sent Ray Allen to the Celtics, as he moved to Seattle before their final season as the SuperSonics in 2007-08.

He now works in broadcasting, as a member of the MSG network post-game crew for Knicks games. In total, Szczerbiak played parts of twelve seasons in the NBA, and was a pretty good player (14.1 PPG). But he always carried the “ridiculously overpaid” moniker. I say he was simply one of the most opportunistic players the game has ever seen. It’s good work, as they say, if ya can get it.

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SBM Exclusive: The BLAST-CAST – Volume 13: How the “Bracket” Has Simultaneously Made and Destroyed College Basketball

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Now that the NCAA Basketball Tournament is down to the Sweet Sixteen,  Ryan Meehan from East End Philadelphia and J-Dub from Dubsism have taken it upon themselves to educate you, the podcast-listening, blog-reading public as to how the cultural phenomenon known as the “Brackets” has been both a boon and a bane to college basketball. It’s a complex conversation, but one that will expose some truths about college basketball you may not have known.

Click here to listen to or download the Blast-Cast (MP3 format)…The Blast-Cast is also available on Itunes; just search “SportsBlogMovement.”

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Yet Another Year Where My Brackets Call For a Disaster Analogy

Dubsism

Obviously, there's a black hole out there that swallows airliners and J-Dub's brakets. Obviously, there’s a black hole out there that swallows airliners and J-Dub’s brackets.

Last year, the analogy I made to the disaster that is my bracket was to a crashing airliner.  Last year was the first in all my years of this basketball-driven self-flagellation where I lost my champion in the first weekend.  This year marks the worst bracket I’ve ever had while still keep all of my Final Four intact.  Somehow, I managed to end up tied for ninth in a sixteen-team pool.

There’s two weird part is that despite the fact that I’ve already lost three of my Elite 8, I am in a perfect position to make up some serious ground next weekend. Not only do I have all of my Final Four, but in the Schadenfreude portion of this blog, it’s time to  look not at how intact my bracket is, but how fucked the…

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Why Coach K’s Trip to the Mercer Locker Room Was Unnecessary

000ck000

By now we all know about Duke getting an early exit in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament. And we probably have also heard about head coach Mike Krzyzewski going in the locker room to congratulate the Mercer players. He told them “If we got beaten, at least we got beaten by a hell of a basketball team.” and then wished them the best of luck.

Now, this is the part where the media hops on Coach K’s back and calls him a class act and slurps him for exhibiting respectable behavior. I’m going to take a little bit different angle here: I thought it was bullshit. Continue reading

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SBM Exclusive: Sports Doppelgangers, Volume 61 – The NCAA Tournament Edition

sim bhullar chief one flew over cuckoos nest

Let’s be honest. Today really marks the start of the NCAA Basketball Tournament. sure, I know we have those “First Four” games on Tuesday and Wednesday night, but those don’t really have the feel. The opener of “March Madness,” needs those “David and Goliath” matchups; your”big conference power team” matched up against South Southern Central Vo-Tech A&M.

Speaking of “Goliaths,” There’s really not a better real-life example of a giant in this tournament that Sim Bhullar, the center for the #13-seeded New Mexico State Aggies. Having said that, we couldn’t help but to notice Bhullar’s simlarity to another giant, the “Chief” from One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest.

Now for the best part…Sim is listed at a gargantuan 7’5″ and 360 pounds, but he also has a “little” brother, Tanveer, who also plays for the Aggies. Of course by little, we mean that Tanveer Bhullar is only 7’3″ and 335 pounds.

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Bracket Mania

Do you have what it takes to win the Bracket challenge?

It is that time of year again; everybody will run around with “March madness” and be talking about, thinking about and focusing solely on how to do their brackets. Yes it is always fun when you are working on and creating each of your brackets, with the dream of just getting lucky on one. You will trash talk your friends, family and even your co-workers to the point of people will hate you because you think you are a “bracket genius”. That is until the first big upset happens and your “lock” for the championship goes down in flames, then comes the depression of losing your bracket and being the joke of the office because you really don’t know what you’re doing.

To read the rest; please continue to Kody’s Sports Korner.

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