Tag:Roscoe Smith
Posted on: August 11, 2008 3:25 pm
 

Dear Gary (on Nike Global Challenge scuffle)

BEAVERTON, Ore. -- Here's Monday's Dear Gary ...

Dear Gary: If you find any video of the scuffle at the Nike Global Challenge, please post it. I would love to see that.

-- Martin

Alas, I still haven't seen a video.

But I do have more details.

A source close to the situation (really close; like right there) said Sunday morning that he saw the whole thing go down, and that Hamilton -- contrary to his quote -- might've, well, actually started it. I'll try to explain. But the first thing you need to know is that the Serbian team was feisty and rough and unafraid of contact. I like those dudes. But Hamilton didn't enjoy their enthusiasm nearly as much, and after finding himself on the floor alongside a similarly tripped-up Serbian for the second time in a short span he -- again, according to a source close to the incident -- pushed the Serbian's face down into the court as he was getting up, like tried to shove the guy's nose straight through the wood.

That's when the other Serbian charged Hamilton and took a swing.

Then Roscoe Smith grabbed the ball and threw it at him.

And I sure hope the Olympics are this interesting.

Posted on: August 10, 2008 11:53 am
Edited on: August 10, 2008 10:27 pm
 

International incident avoided, barely

BEAVERTON, Ore. -- We nearly had an international incident Saturday night.

"I didn't start it," said Jordan Hamilton.

And that's true, by the way.

But everything happened so fast it was hard for anybody watching courtside to make out what exactly happened. That said, the result was that something led to a Serbian player charging Hamilton and taking a swing before Roscoe Smith, Hamilton's teammate, grabbed the ball, hurled it at him like a minor league pitcher from Peoria and nearly set off a full-fledged brawl during the second semifinal of the Nike Global Challenge.

It was bananas, I tell you. And it got crazier when, after a questionable call a few minutes later, the Serbian coach pulled his team off the court to protest and threatened to walk, forcing Nike's Raphael Chillious to step in.

"He said he was pulling his team," Chillious explained. "I said 'OK, but you'll lose.'"

Faced with this simple reality, the Serbian coach decided to send his team back onto the court after a seven-minute delay, proving the idea of losing is terrible in any language. "Diplomacy," Chillious said with a smile. And even the public address announcer chimed in when the third quarter finally ended.

"At the end of a spirited third quarter," he said, "USA 59, Serbia 56."

(Interesting side note: This is the Nike Global Challenge and practically everybody within a 30-mile radius is decorated in swooshes, which is why it's hilarious to see the Serbian team wearing Adidas gear. I know this might not sound like much. But try to imagine a kid showing up at a New York Yankees Camp wearing a Boston Red Sox jersey, and then imagine him nearly starting a fight. The scenarios are similar. It's good stuff.)

Anyway, the United States team -- minus Hamilton, who was ejected -- went on to win behind stellar performances from Abdul Gaddy and Avery Bradley. That set-up Sunday's championship game between them and another United States team (featuring Tommy Mason-Griffin, Harrison Barnes and Mason Plumlee) that is scheduled to tip at 11 p.m. ET.

With any luck, both coaches will keep their teams on the court the entire time.

If not, Chillious should be available to broker peace.

 
 
 
 
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