Tuesday, June 15, 2010


One of my 18 friends named Nick sent me this link about Chris Paul's "Elite Guard Camp" (somehow, those three words have nothing to do with North Korea). Our hero Seth Curry was in attendance, and he made the best of it.

The player I was most intrigued to see was Seth Curry, the Liberty transfer who was lying in wait on Duke's bench, in dress clothes, during their national title run. Both he and his brother, Stephen, were in the gym on Sunday, and their three-point shooting forms differ: Stephen's shot is now a textbook wrist-flick with perfect rotation, while Seth's is often a knuckleball with little spin. It's a highly accurate knuckleball, though; Seth seemed to knock down as many (or more) threes than anyone in the camp over the course of drills (the camp was probably 85 percent drills) and scrimmaging. He should be a deadly weapon in Duke's backcourt, especially given how much attention defenses will pay to teammates Nolan Smith, Singler and Kyrie Irving. "Seth is going to bring so much to our team with his shooting and playmaking ability," Smith said. (See a few clips of Curry from the camp in the video below.)

The video is massively underwhelming, but here it is anyway:

There was also this, about Nolan's basketball and bowling skills:

Smith, I should mention, looked excellent in the camp. As one NBA scout there said, "He's playing with the confidence of a guy who just won a national championship." Smith had the quickest catch-and-release shooting form of any of the college players there; unlike most of them, he's able to catch high and shoot without bringing the ball down near his waist first. You wonder how many extra threes that translates into him making over the course of a season.

It is worth noting, however, that Smith has questionable bowling form. Paul took the entire camp to a bowling alley just outside of Winston-Salem on Saturday night, and Smith resorted to chest-passing bowling balls down the center of the lane, finishing in a Superman pose. The two highest college scores I saw came from Singler and Curry, who opt for a more traditional throwing method.

If you visit the link, there's video of Nolan chest-pass bowling, and video of Harrison Barnes playing basketball. Gracias, Nick.

From ESPN's John Brewin, I gleaned some important bits of news about the North Korean soccer support system:

I sat next to fifty or so Korean fans. They cheer randomly and use some type of castanets to encourage their team.

There are suggestions of course that North Korea have employed 1,000 Chinese nationals to act as cheerleaders for the side, as so many of the North Korean natives cannot leave the country. Bizarre.

North Korea: always good for a creep-out. Speaking of which, here's Kim Jong-Cat. Thanks to Spike for all North Korea content. It's kind of his thing; we don't talk about it.

Somehow, Brazil still hasn't scored against the "People's Democratic Republic" yet, and they're in the 20th minute. Could this be an upset for the ages??

Probably not. But keep an eye on it. Question: do North Korean players do tv interviews after the game? Seems crazy, right? But maybe they have translators. What if they won the World Cup? Wouldn't the western media be clamoring for some sound bytes? They'd have to speak then, right?

Tonight, Yanks-Phils. The future World Series runner-ups visited Yankee Stadium during the summer last year, and I made two of three games. We lost both. The Philly fans were super obnoxious and loud. On the subway after, they had the swagger of a team that knew they were better, and knew they'd repeat as World Series champs.


Ursa Major is lumbering toward the hill. One World Series ain't good enough for the big bear. Time to take the fight to the national league. Astros are appetizers, but Philadelphia Phillies are filling fodder.

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