Souhan: Olympic basketball has Minnesota flavor

  • Article by: JIM SOUHAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 30, 2012 - 7:32 AM

New Timberwolves Andrei Kirilenko and Alexey Shved starred in a Russian victory and Kevin Love had a strong game for the U.S.

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tearinmybeerJul. 29, 12 9:35 PM

At least the T-Wolves have made themselves relevant again. It will be interesting to see if this squad can get into the playoffs and make some noise. The Wild and Wolves may make the long Minnesota winter tolerable.

bhdanielsJul. 29, 1210:29 PM

It was great fun to watch Shved toss all those alley-oops to Kirilenko. Glad to hear that K-Love is going to work to build camaraderie; it's going to be very important to help this group become a team. I've read some comments saying that the whole has potential to be more than the sum of its parts!

manoliveJul. 29, 1210:39 PM

What a game today! I was cheering for the Russians as if they were my team. Kirilenko had a fantastic game. He lived at the rim. Wes Johnson would have been standing behind the line the whole game, waiting to jack up another clanker. What a difference! Those who questioned the wisdom of the Wes Johnson trade now have nothing to question. Spectacular signing. I'm so glad the Blazers saved Kahn from himself, and kept Batum. And Shved! The Russian Rubio! The only difference is that Shved can shoot. He was equally spectaluar. The NBA and basketball fans around the world are in for a treat next season, and I for one cannot wait for winter! When is Russia's next game?

goldengoph3rJul. 29, 1210:48 PM

"Those who questioned the wisdom of the Wes Johnson trade now have nothing to question. Spectacular signing."..........Yes, the Russians just beat Great Britain. Anyone ever seen a basketball hoop in the UK? I haven't.

manoliveJul. 30, 1212:10 AM

goldengoph3r, this wasn't about beating an easy team. It was about playing the game the way it's supposed to be played. That means sharing the ball, that mean taking high percentage shots, that means playing defense and getting steals, and not turning the ball over. In other words, the anti Johnson in every way. If you're happy with the way things were, you can keep complaining. Maybe you can become a Suns fan so you can follow the exploits of Beasley and Johnson. I for one couldn't be happier with our off season results so far, and nothing you pessimists say can rain on my parade. I count 3 Timberwolves in the olympics. That means we have 3 of the best players in the world on our team. How can you complain about that?

comment229Jul. 30, 12 4:51 AM

I agree with the comment about sharing the ball and playing the game the way it was supposed to be played. However, that may have happened on other country's teams, and it may be the way the new look T-wolves will play, but the USA olympic team has/had no concept of team play and sharing the ball meant that "it is your turn to play one on one." I quit watching the game after the third quarter out of disgust for the foul prone game, one on one ball hogging by especially Kobe "shoot the ball no matter what" Bryant, and laughed when one player gave a quizzical look at the ref for actually calling "traveling"..... something almost unheard of in the NBA these days. Let's just say, so far, I am not impressed with the American team; which should probably be named the American roster, because so far, the team concept has not been there.

goldengoph3rJul. 30, 1210:17 AM

Actually, Manolive, this IS about beating an easy team, and a wee bit of hyperbole stating: "Those who questioned the wisdom of the Wes Johnson trade now have nothing to question. Spectacular signing." I'd guess the English were a little surprised to find five Britons who knew how to dribble a basketball. Russia beating England has absolutely no bearing on the wisdom of the Johnson trade. I could have probably dropped 10 on England in a basketball game.

snyde043Jul. 30, 1211:09 AM

Um, Great Britain's basketball team may not be on par with Russia or the United States, but it did feature NBA All-Star Luol Deng and former NBA player Pops Mensah-Bonsu. They're not exactly a bunch of pick-up scrubs. Russia still has China, Brazil, Spain and Australia to face in group play. I'm looking forward to seeing more of the Kirilenko-Shved connection.

griffinmythJul. 30, 1211:59 AM

goldengoph3r writes, "I could have probably dropped 10 on England in a basketball game." Probably a few in-your-face slams over Deng, right?

MinfidelJul. 30, 1212:17 PM

Great international showing for the Wolves. Where were Shane Heel and Gundars Ventra?


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