In The News: August 27, 2007

Team USA finished the preliminary round of the FIBA Americas Tournament with a perfect, never in doubt, 4-0 record. Led by 21 points each from Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James and 20 points, and what is now becoming his trademark suffocating defense, from Kobe Bryant, Team USA beat the Brazilian National Team by a final score of 113-76. In reality, the game wasn’t nearly that close, as the US Senior National Team pulled away in the late second and third quarters. Extensive fourth quarter garbage-time against the Team USA second team produced the final relatively respectable tally. We could go on here and discuss the talent laden Brazilian team and the fact that they will likely pose the greatest challenge to Team USA during the FIBA tournament, but that in-depth discussion isn't really necessary. This version of Team USA looks good, really good. They’re starting to develop the type of swagger where Brazil could be replaced with any number of teams, from Germany to Argentina, and it wouldn’t really matter – the result would likely be the same. Team USA hasn’t had that type of sway since the original 1992 Dream Team, or 1996 Olympic team.

Leave My Sister Out of This!

If you follow soccer, or perhaps even if you don’t, you’ll likely remember French legend Zinedine Zidane treating Marco Materazzi of the Italian National team like a soccer ball at the World Cup last year with the infamous head-butt. At the time, both Zidane and Materazzi refused to discuss the exchange of words leading up to the surreal incident. But, with a new book on the episode coming out soon, Materazzi went into full publicity mode to let the world know exactly what he said to his French counterpart. We’re still not sure if Zidane should have resorted to an ejection inducing head-butt particularly during such an important game for his team, but you can certainly understand his anger. Materazzi’s lewd comments were entirely too harsh, as retaliation to the relatively tame trash-talk by Zidane that preceded the remarks.

Denilson Adds MLS Paycheck to Social Security Earnings

FC Dallas announced late last week that it had signed former Brazillian midfielder Denilson to a contract. Terms of the agreement were not announced, and the team said that Denilson would play as soon as he is able to secure a Visa. Denilson is a significant name in the world of soccer, having won the World Cup in 2002 following an illustrious career with the Brazilian national team and league teams like San Paolo FC and Flamenco, but he is also well past his prime. Not surprisingly, Denilson’s signing with the MLS produced barely a blip in the American sports landscape. Once again this goes to show that although David Bekham’s signing and subsequent games with the Los Angeles Galaxy has and continue to receive considerable attention, the cat-like curiosity toward Bekham, and his Spice Girl wife Victoria, is almost entirely celebrity driven. We don’t expect the same type of attention even if the MLS were to sign other legendary, yet past their prime, players like former Brazilian star Ronaldo or the aforementioned Zidane. For soccer to really take off in America, the MLS will need to spend the millions, which it incidentally doesn’t have at this point, to sign a few of the current stars like Ronaldinho, Christian Ronaldo, Messi, John Terry, Kaka and others -- not has-beens looking to make a few extra millions before riding off into the sunset.

myPhone, yourPhone, Everyone Gets a iPhone

A 17-year old kid in New Jersey, named George Hotz, has figured out a way to “unlock” the iPhone. It’s a relatively complicated process for sure, but Hotz, having worked with other “hackers” in the US and in Russia, was able to unlock his own iPhone and use it on the T-Mobile network, instead of the requisite AT&T service. Apple and AT&T haven’t commented yet on the developments, but we’re sure T-Mobile is already planning the company-wide happy hour in celebration. You can read more on Hotz’s blog. Hotz, incidentally, recently sold the first-ever “unlocked” iPhone for enough money to buy himself a Nissan 350Z and 3 new iPhones for his online partners who helped with the project.


Anonymous said...

yeah, that's pretty interesting that somebody was able to unlock the iPhone...something inevitable Its quite absurd that people would be so naive enough to pay so much for these iPhones.

b4hoops said...

I agree, the iPhones are definitely over-priced, but Apple seems to be selling quite a lot of them. As you probably know, they sold 270,000 iPhones in its first weekend of availability, and since then the company has sold approximately another 730,000. This should put it just around 1 million units sold, which is pretty impressive given the high price.