For complete details and REGISTRATION, click on the red “VIEW” button below, next to the camp that you are interested in.
A Note from Coach Quigley Smith
I am so excited to welcome you all back SIUE! We are looking forward to getting back to a new normal and have you all participate in our summer of basketball camps. Our camps give you an opportunity to work with our student-athletes and the new coaching staff here at SIUE. Our goal is to help you increase your basketball skills in a fun and competitive environment. We look forward to seeing you this summer!
Quick Hitter Info on Camps
June 19, Elite Camp
: For girls entering grades 8th and up. This camp is designed specifically for the competitive player with the goal of playing at the next level.
About SIUE Women’s Basketball Camps
The Cougars are a Division I program located in Southern Illinois, about 20 minutes East of St. Louis, MO in the community of Edwardsville, IL. Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville competes in the Ohio Valley Conference (OVC) under the leadership of Head Coach Samantha Quigley Smith, who recently has acquired the new position as our Head Coach at SIUE!
The SIUE Women’s Basketball Coaching staff and current players will be the instructors and camp counselors for each camp. We strive to have a fun-filled camp experience that focuses on teaching the fundamentals of basketball to each camper. We will provide campers with the instruction, repetition, and competition opportunities to allow them to continue to improve even after camp has concluded.
*SIUE Employee Discount available – please email Angel Whetstone ([email protected]) for details.
CAMP SAFETY MEASURES:
1. All campers and staff will complete Wellness Screening every day of camp
2. Masks will be worn at all times by all campers and camp staff
3. Only camp staff and campers will be allowed in gyms
4. A designated traffic flow will be adhered to for entering and exiting the building for drop off and pick up.
5. Parents will not be allowed into gym spaces to control distancing, we apologize
6. Groups will remain the same for the duration of each camp, including camp coaches
7. Each group will have their own designated ball carts, with no intermixing between courts
8. Balls and any common surfaces will be sanitized before and after every camp and between sessions
9. Sanitization stations will be available at each court
10. Campers will be distanced at all times from other camp groups
11. Each group will have a designated area of distanced spaces for water bottles and personal items
All camps will operate following state COVID protocols for high school and youth sports. This can be found at:
SIUE Sports Camps provide athletes of all ages the opportunity to develop their skills in a fun, sportsman-like atmosphere. Campers receive fundamental instruction, sport-specific strategies and the chance to meet new people. Our goal is to offer sports camps that challenge athletes and promote individual improvement that will lead to athletic success.
The mission and values of the Athletics Department is in alignment and complements the mission of the University with a focus on excellence, opportunity, compliance and increasing and enhancing the University’s visibility and image.
Redhawks Play Host to Southern Illinois in Home-Opener Wednesday
Southern Illinois vs. Southeast Missouri (1-0)
Date: Wednesday, December 2, 2020
Tip-Off: 6:30 p.m., CT
Location: Cape Girardeau, Mo.
Arena: Show Me Center
Series: SIU leads, 71-46
Last Meeting: SIU 64, SEMO 45 (Dec 21, 2019 | Carbondale, Ill.)
Head Coaches: Brad Korn (1-0 overall, 1-0 at SEMO; 0-0 OVC). Bryan Mullins (16-16 overall; 16-16 at SIU).
Follow the Redhawks
Radio: Real Rock 99.3 FM (Erik Sean)
Live Stats: GoSoutheast.com
Game Notes: Southeast Missouri (PDF)
Redhawks Host Southern Illinois Wednesday
Longtime rivals Southeast Missouri (1-0) and Southern Illinois hook up in the Redhawks home-opener Wednesday. Tip-off is set for 6:30 p.m., CT at the Show Me Center.
Follow the Redhawks
Fans can listen live on the radio at Real Rock 99.3 FM with Erik Sean calling the action. Video can be accessed online at ESPN+.Live stats available at GoSoutheast. com and Twitter updates will be provided @SEMOMBB.
Southeast Missouri and Southern Illinois meet for the 118th time on the hardwood Wednesday. SIU leads the all-time series, 71-46, and has won 18 of the previous 22 matchups between these teams. Wednesday’s game is just the second athletic event on SEMO’s campus since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March.
Former Salukis to Head Coaches
Brad Korn (1999-2004) and Bryan Mullins (2006-09) each played at Southern Illinois before reaching their longterm goals of becoming head coaches. Korn was part of three Missouri Valley Conference regular-season championships and three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. Mullins set school records for assists and steals and was point guard for SIU’s NCAA Tournament teams in 2006 and 2007, and NIT team in 2008. He is a member of the Saluki Hall of Fame.
Mullins Will Not Coach Wednesday
Southern Illinois head coach Bryan Mullins tested positive for COVID-19 and is asymptomatic. In accordance with Illinois state and local health guidelines, Mullins is in isolation for 10 days. SIU paused team activities on Nov. 12 and no student-athletes have tested postive for COVID-19 since that time. Brendan Mullins will serve as the Salukis acting head coach in Mullins’ absence.
Korn Gets First Win
Brad Korn picked up his first career win as a head coach when Southeast Missouri hung on to beat Kansas City, 71-66, at the Negro Baseball League Museum Tip-Off Classic on Nov. 28. Korn became the first to win his debut game as a SEMO head coach in the Redhawks NCAA Division I era (since 1991-92). Carroll Williams was the last to win his first game as a SEMO head coach vs. Missouri Baptist (96-65) on Dec. 1, 1976.
Brad Korn was 4-1 against Southeast Missouri when he was a player at Southern Illinois. The only time SEMO beat the Salukis with Korn on their roster was Dec. 5, 2000 (87-84, Cape Girardeau). Korn scored six points and had his first career dunk in a 92-80 win over the Redhawks on Dec. 22, 2001.
Welcome to SEMO
Five players took the court for the first time at Southeast Missouri at Kansas City (Nov. 28). Eric Reed, Jr., Nolan Taylor, Nana Akenten, Nate Johnson and Dylan Branson each made their SEMO debuts. Taylor, Reed, Jr. and returnee Chris Harris all made their first career starts against the Roos.
The Redhawks are 23-6 all-time in home-openers since joining the NCAA Division I ranks in 1991-92. Southeast Missouri opened its home slate with a win in seven of the last eight years and posted victories in 14 of their previous 17 home-opening contests. SEMO has won four-straight home-openers.
Against the MVC
Half of Southeast Missouri’s shortened six-game non-conference slate is made up of Missouri Valley Conference schools. Southern Illinois is the first of the three MVC opponents to face the Redhawks Wednesday. SEMO is scheduled to travel to both Evansville (Dec. 15) and Indiana State (Dec. 22) later this month. The Redhawks are 109-194 all-time against the MVC. Here are SEMO’s records vs. Valley opponents.
vs. Southern Illinois 46-71
vs. Drake 0-2
vs. Evansville 5-10
vs. Bradley 2-9
vs. Illinois State 1-8
vs. Indiana State 0-2
vs. Missouri State 55-92
Russell Seals It
Nygal Russell made two huge 3-pointers in the last 57 seconds and scored the final eight points of the game to nail down Southeast Missouri’s first win of the season over Kansas City (Nov. 28). Russell drained the first of that pair of clutch threes to put the Redhawks ahead, 68-64, after KC made it a one-point game. Then, following two made free throws by the Roos which narrowed SEMO’s lead to 68-66 with 33 seconds remaining, Russell delivered the knockout punch with his long 3-pointer as the shot clock expired. That make gave the Redhawks a 71-66 lead with two seconds left. On the final play of the game, Russell intercepted the inbounds pass to put the win on ice. For the game, he scored 14 points on 3-of-5 from the field and 5-of-8 from the free throw line. He also grabbed seven rebounds, had two blocks and collected two steals.
Harris Nets Career-High
In his first career start and his first basketball game in 384 days, guard Chris Harris put up a game and career-high 18 points at Kansas City (Nov. 28). Harris shot 5-of-9 from the field, knocked down three 3-pointers and made 5-of-11 free throws in his 2020-21 debut. He also dished out four assists and grabbed three rebounds in 35 minutes. Harris last played on Nov. 10, 2019 — vs. Purdue Fort Wayne — a game which he scored 16 points and made the game-winning 3-pointer off the bench. Harris was limited to just two games due to a knee injury in 2019-20. He has scored double figures in all three games he played as a Redhawk.
Nebraska transfer Nana Akenten, who sat out the 2019-20 season due to NCAA Division I transfer regulations, gave Southeast Missouri a huge lift off the bench during his first game in a Redhawk uniform. Akenten scored 16 first-half points, made a game-high four 3-pointers and banked in a beyond halfcourt shot at Kansas City (Nov. 28). He shot 50 percent (6-of-12) from the field, grabbed six rebounds, dished out two assists, collected three steals and had two blocks in 32 minutes. Akenten finished with 17 points for the game.
Season-Opening Road Win
For the first time in its NCAA Division I era, Southeast Missouri won a season-opener outside of Cape Girardeau when it beat Kansas City, 71-66, on Nov. 28. SEMO started a season with a win over an NCAA Division I opponent for the first time in 16 years. The last time that happened was when the Redhawks edged Green Bay, 63-62, on Nov. 21, 2003.
With its win at Kansas City on Nov. 28, Southeast Missouri snapped an 18-game road losing streak. SEMO last won a road game at Eastern Illinois (88-79) on Feb. 16, 2019.
Getting to the Free Throw Line
Southeast Missouri attempted 35 free throws against Kansas City (Nov. 28). That total was one away from tying the Redhawks season-high of 36 free throw attempts in 2019-20 (vs. SIUE, Feb. 15). Seven of the nine Redhawks who played against the Roos went to the free throw line. SEMO shot 21-of-35 for the game.
Taylor Notches Double-Digits
Cal Poly transfer Nolan Taylor put together a nice game underneath the basket in his first start with Southeast Missouri. Taylor scored 10 points and tied a game-high seven rebounds in 25 minutes. He went a perfect 6-of-6 at the free throw line, also a game-high.
Strong from Long Range
After just one game this season, Southeast Missouri leads the Ohio Valley Conference in 3-point field goal percentage. SEMO made 10-of-23 three-pointers at a 43.5 percent clip at Kansas City (Nov. 28). Nana Akenten (4), Chris Harris (3) and Nygal Russell (3) accounted for those makes. The Redhawks already matched their season-high in 3-point field goals made from 2019-20 (10 vs. Drake, Dec. 7, 2019). SEMO last made 10 threes in a season-opener at Illinois (10-of-24) on Nov. 11, 2016.
Redhawks Get Five Blocks in Opener
Southeast Missouri recorded five blocks in its season-opener at Kansas City (Nov. 28). Nana Akenten and Nygal Russell each had two apiece, while Nate Johnson added one. SEMO had at least five blocks on only two occasions in 31 games last season. The Redhawks season-high in blocks during the 2019-20 campaign was six at Morehead State (Jan. 30).
About Us | sichristiancamp
Southern Illinois Christian Service Camp is a Christian campground supported by roughly 40 Independent Christian Churches/Churches of Christ in our region, from Mount Vernon down to the Paducah area. We are located on the edge of West Frankfort, Illinois and have been here since 1951. Our association was founded in the 1930’s, and held camps near the Dixon Springs area until settling in our current location.
Our main purpose is to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ through our summer programs and offer a Christ-focused facility for use in Southern Illinois. Our summer programs begin in June and typically runs through the first week of August. We also look to support the area youth with a few events throughout the year. Additionally we offer our grounds for rental on a building by building basis. We are a Christian organization that centers around the person of Jesus Christ and the truth found in the Bible.
Our website includes all the information necessary for our summer programs including event dates, registration information, camp rules and forms. We offer information about our facilities and rentals for you to consider for your event. We also provide other ways to keep in contact with camp as well and current camp news. And finally, we offer information and ways that you can support the camp physically, financially, and by partnering in prayer with our ministry. Camp is supported primarily by the generous gifts and time of many volunteers. We hope you will visit us soon and become a part of the S.I.C.S.C. family!
The camp includes 17 acres of enclosed property with many pine and maple trees. Some of these pine trees are over 60 years old.
– Dining Hall
-Ten cabins that accommodate twelve to fourteen people each.
– Two staff cabins
Other features we offer:
– Climbing wall
– Swimming pool with bath house
– Open recreation area plus an outside basketball court
– Four shelters
– Two gazebos
Western Kentucky University Athletics Women’s Basketball History vs Southern Illinois University
Women’s Basketball History
Southern Illinois University
Women’s Basketball History vs Southern Illinois University from Jan 5, 1980 -
Nov 20, 2018
Longest Win Streak
2/3/1991 – 11/20/2018
Longest Losing Streak
12/13/1986 – 12/19/1987
Last 10 Matchups
Largest Margin of Victory
Smallest Margin of Victory
November 20, 2018
December 10, 2017
November 23, 2007
February 3, 1991
December 9, 1989
December 4, 1988
December 19, 1987
December 13, 1986
December 6, 1985
December 5, 1984
December 8, 1983
November 30, 1982
January 18, 1982
February 21, 1981
January 5, 1980
Wonders commits to Southern Illinois | News, Sports, Jobs
Ron Deuter | Iron Mountain Daily News
Iron Mountain’s Foster Wonders shoots above Negaunee’s Alex Munson (3) in Iron Mountain on March 5.
IRON MOUNTAIN — High school student athletes with Division I talent are few and far between in the Upper Peninsula. For whatever reason, basketball players from the U.P aren’t heavily recruited by Division I programs.
Iron Mountain’s Foster Wonders is an exception, and the soon to be senior made his much-anticipated college commitment announcement early Monday afternoon, choosing Southern Illinois in Carbondale, Ill. SIU competes in the Missouri Valley Conference.
“I chose Southern Illinois because they play in such a strong basketball conference,” Wonders said in an interview Monday morning. “They have a spot for me right away, and the head coach has expressed a great deal of interest.”
The Mountaineer senior, was named U.P Mr. Basketball by the Upper Peninsula Sportswriters and Sports- casters Association the last two seasons. Wonders had 13 schools to choose from, all offering full-ride scholar- ship offers. Those schools were Western Michigan University, University of Toledo, Rice University,
Central Michigan University, Oakland University, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Miami (Ohio) Uni- versity, University of North Carolina-Wilmington, Wright State University, South Dakota State, and University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.
Nearby Division II Northern Michigan Univer- sity, where his older brother Carson currently plays bas- ketball and his parents Matt and Julie (Heldt) Wonders both played college basketball, offered Carson a scholarship when he was in eighth grade.
Brian Mullens head coach of SIU, was the Salukis’ point guard on the school’s 2007 team that advanced to the Sweet 16. Mullens was associate head coach for fellow Missouri Valley team Loyola-Chicago when they advanced to the NCAA Final Four in 2018.
“I wanted to do what was best for me and SIU had too much to offer to me to pass up the opportunity,” Won- ders added. “I am excited to play for coach Mullens, and he’s excited to have my commitment.”
Wonders’ first Division I offer was from Central Michigan, after attending their basketball camp in Mt. Pleasant after his freshman year.
The last boys player from the area to receive a full Division I scholarship was current Western Michi- gan player Jason Whitens, who graduated from North Central in 2017.
Other former local basketball players to receive and accept full Division I offers include Forest Park star Lexi Gussert, who played at Michigan State on a full scholarship from 2014- 2018. North Dickinson grad and U.P Sports Hall of Famer Todd Lindeman received a full scholarship from Indiana University and played for the legendary Bob Knight from 1991-1996.
Also on Wonders’ recruiting trail was UNC- Wilmington, which has a new coaching staff that had prioritized Wonders.
“Talks with them were very good and their interest in me was high, but I never got the opportunity to visit there,” Wonders said.
Davidson University — the alma mater of Golden State Warriors star Steph Curry — Furman Universi- ty, Wofford College, Bowling Green State University and Colorado State University were other schools with high interest in signing Wonders.
The MVC Tournament Championship, which is broadcast on CBS and is nationally televised each year, sounds exciting to any young person with aspirations to play college athletics. Wonders is no different. “It’s very exciting to think about, definitely,” Wonders said of the possible opportu- nity to play on CBS in front of the whole country.
The MVC Tournament is annually held in St. Louis, Mo.. The other members of the league are University of Northern Iowa, Valparasio, Bradley, Missouri State, Drake, Loyola-Chicago, Indiana State, Evansville and Illinois State.
Wonders has played in 68 varsity basketball games for the Mountaineers. He has scored 1,618 points, which is an average of 23.79 ppg, and Iron Mountain is 64-4 over that time span. He’s second on Iron Mountain’s all time scoring list, and is 560 behind the U.P’s all- time leading score Gage Kreski of St. Ignace who scored 2,178 from 2013-16 in 90 games.
As a freshman in 2017-18, Wonders was named to the All-U.P Dream Team and to the Mid Peninsula Conference first team. As a sophomore in 2018-19, he was named all-state by the Michigan Associated Press, unanimously to the All-U.P Dream Team, co-Player of the Year in the MPC and Player of the Year in the Western Peninsula Athletic Conference.
This past season, he scored 603 points (27.4 ppg), grabbed 171 rebounds (7.8 rpg), dished out 52 assists (2.4 avg.) and blocked 42 shots (1.9 avg.). He was named both MPC and West PAC Player of the Year, along with unanimous All-U.P Dream Team for a second consecutive season.
Wonders was also named AP All-State First Team in 2019-20. The Detroit Free Press has Wonders on a list of “Players To Watch” for next year’s Basketball Coaches of Michigan/Detroit Free Press “Mr. Basketball” award. No U.P boys player has ever won the overall Mr. Basketball award.
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Southern Illinois University Carbondale Women’s Volleyball Elite Camp
The Southern Illinois University Carbondale Women’s Volleyball Elite Camp is a two-day volleyball training program on July 8 and 9. It is inviting all girls entering grade 9 through 12 in any position and skill level. The venue will be at the Southern Illinois University Carbondale campus. Moreover, this high school volleyball camp is ideal for those who want to learn intermediate to advanced technique and strategies. It will provide high repetition drills that will develop and enhance individual and positional skills. In addition, running this training program is the Southern Illinois Salukis women’s volleyball coaching staff. Registration fee includes a free Saluki Volleyball Under Armour camp t-shirt.
Southern Illinois University Carbondale, formerly Southern Illinois Normal University, is a public, coeducational, research university in Carbondale, Illinois. It is the flagship university of the Southern Illinois University system. As a whole, the university has an accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission. Presently, Southern Illinois University Carbondale is serving more or less 12,200 undergraduate students. This undergraduate student population is through a selective enrollment acceptance rate of 77 percent. Correspondingly, the university’s student to faculty ratio is 15:1. Southern Illinois University Carbondale is also a top performing university. In fact, it is 216th in National Universities of the 2018 US News and World Reports rankings. In athletics, the university is a member of the Missouri Valley Conference of NCAA Division I. They are the Salukis and maroon and white are their identity colors.
Southern Illinois University Carbondale Women’s Volleyball Elite Camp Organizers
Kari Thompson, from Amherst, Wisconsin, is the new head coach of the Southern Illinois University Carbondale Salukis women’s volleyball team. She is the 2011 Summit League Coach of the Year awardee. Coach Thompson is also an American Volleyball Coaches Association’s “Thirty Under 30” awardee. Then, the Salukis women’s assistant volleyball coaches are Lea Hartigan and Justin Wells. Both assistant coaches are entering their first season with the staff. Alison Lawler is the volunteer assistant coach. And finally, Josh Nieves is the student manager.
Wildcats host elite basketball camp – the North Wind – North Wind online
NMU Basketball is back, but not in the way you might think. The men’s basketball program and head coach Matt Majkrzak are hosting an elite camp for high school players tomorrow afternoon.
The camp will be made up of a group of decent-sized high school students of different ages and backgrounds, and coming to Marquette from several states in the region, Majkrzak said. There are players who come to the camp that NMU has been involved with on the recruiting trail, and others who are looking to introduce themselves and make a name for themselves.
“It’s always exciting to see kids on campus in our own gymnasium that we’ve seen all summer, and also kids that we don’t know are trying to come here and have the opportunity to win a scholarship. or a place on the team, “said Majkrzak.” We definitely have guys we’ve invited that we already have a relationship with, and we’re definitely a step further to recruit them. “
The Wildcats coaching staff are looking for suitable children for the program. Skill level is something that can be measured on film, Majkrzak said, but having players in a competitive setting is a chance to see the best of them in other aspects of the game.
“Person to person it’s fun to see guys who can be trained and who are tough, who play hard and do all these little things that we’re looking for,” said Majkrzak. It’s great, it’s great to see guys compete from different states because a lot of them don’t know each other. You’re used to competing against the same guys over and over again, and one of the good things about the camp is that it brings together guys who have never seen each other.
This is the first chance to have a basketball camp since the start of the pandemic, and the ‘Cats are looking to recruit quality players in the classes to come. COVID-19 has taken a lot of different things, but the effect of not having camps has not gone unnoticed.
“I have to say that of all that we haven’t been able to do in the past two years, the camp has probably been one of the biggest just because we are not able to reach the community and the community. region as much as us. “I wanted it,” said Majkrzak. “It’s good that we can do this over and over and roll it over. ”
Camps like these could have been an important tool on the recruiting trail for the 2021 Class, but it looks like despite their absence, NMU still came out with a solid group of players in Dylan Kuehl, Brian Parzych, Sam. Privet, Jackson Dudek and Mike Reed.
“Our new freshmen who are here now, we’re really excited. We think they’re probably one of the most, if not the most talented bands in the entire Midwest, ”said Majkrzak. “We’ve got the top four kids from Wisconsin in this group, they all made the state championship game, and we kind of focused on our niche of guys who pick Northern over all the other Division IIs and some from Division I and I think we’ve been able to continue with these upcoming classes.
Majkrzak wants to start organizing camps again every year, including two elite camps, a high school team camp, and other children’s camps. With tomorrow’s camp and basketball around the corner, it feels like some normalcy has arrived.
90,000 “Get it, no matter what. ” How they tried to transport Arvydas Sabonis to the USA | JumpBall
Dale Brown was ready to play a Cold War diplomat just to get a center in his team. Mikhail Gorbachev from Louisiana received, perhaps, the only letter in his life related to basketball recruiting, and this message was dated June 20, 1986. Brown wrote the following to the Soviet leader: “Dear Secretary General Gorbachev, the world is moving faster and faster every day, and sometimes because of this speed people have no chance to just meet and discuss something.With this in mind, I am going to Moscow with the hope that I can meet with you personally about something that I am sure will be a great opportunity to improve relations between the two great powers. ”
This “opportunity” was the exchange program. In a joint statement with Ronald Reagan during their first meeting at the Geneva summit in 1985, they mainly talked about nuclear disarmament, but Gorbachev also asked for such “exchanges”. He and Reagan agreed on the “usefulness of exchange programs” in “a number of scientific, educational, medical and sports projects” and instructed the creation of such programs “to the appropriate institutions in each country. “
Was Dale Brown the “competent institution”? No. He was simply a coach who encourages people to take political action by appealing to their emotions rather than reason. Brown also tended to test the strength of all constraints. He began last season while under investigation by the NCAA (for possible violations in recruiting young players) and the FBI (for possible complicity in an attempt by the sports director of the team to secretly record a conversation with one of the NCAA investigators), and was also close to The Tigers, seeded 11th, advanced to the Final Four.Brown’s feat, acquitted on both counts, was akin to Miracle On Ice. With these actions, he tested how “hot” it can be. It was historically unprecedented, grandiose, and not the fairest plan for a single deal.
Brown proposed to create a joint basketball camp in Baton Rouge and Moscow for young players, as well as to conduct an exhibition tour of the Soviet Union with the University of Louisiana team. And the USSR, in turn, had to provide Louisiana with the services of 21-year-old Lithuanian center Arvydas Sabonis (7 feet 3 inches), who was considered the strongest basketball player in the world at the amateur level, for one season.And since none of the USSR national team players ever played for American teams, Brown did not want this exchange program to go quietly.
Dale also had an idea that he kept secret until he met in person. It consisted in the fact that if Reagan and Gorbachev so wished, then Arvydas could first sign the scholarship documents in the Kremlin, and then in the Statue of Liberty. From his office in Baton Rouge, 78-year-old Brown recalls those events: “I wanted to do a big thing for the world and ‘all that kind of thing.’And to do it staged, theatrically. ”
Brown knew he needed a center after second-year John Williams left, so the opportunistic coach set out like Don Quixote on a trip to Lithuania to get Arvydas Sabonis for Baton Rouge.
Brown had to brainstorm his plan in May ’86 due to the need for Louisiana star John Williams, after his second season at university, decided to enter the draft and surprised the entire coaching staff.It was already too late for the Tigers to add someone else and they had to think outside the box and look for replacements outside the continents. Brown remembered 17-year-old Sabonis, whom he saw on CBS in 1982, when he led the Soviet team to victory in an exhibition match against Indiana Hoosiers.
Sabonis was the real revelation of that 12-match tour of the States, he outplayed future No. 1 draft pick Ralph Sampson of Virginia, and also showed creativity and a vision of the court that is rare for a player of this size.“When it comes to gears, Sabonis was like Bill Walton,” says Brown. At the same time, former UCLA legend – Bigman coach and guru Pete Newell argued that Sabonis in the “post” is a stronger prospect than Patrick Ewing.
Hawks in 1985 chose Sabas in the fourth round, but the NBA overruled that decision because Arvydas was under 21. The Trail Blazers spent the following year on Sabonis’ first-round peak, but could not get him out of Lithuania, a formerly independent republic on the shores of the Baltic Sea, which became part of the USSR in 1940.Arvydas’ interest in the NBA was irrelevant to the determination with which the Soviet Union sought to maintain his amateur status before the 88th Seoul Olympics. Brown offered a workaround: Sabonis could play for Louisiana, retain his right to play in the Olympics, improve his game in the United States and increase the value of his future contracts in the NBA, from which the USSR would surely cut a significant chunk.
Despite the operation on Achilles, Arvydas was included in the Soviet national team and helped lead it to gold at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul.
Dale had no connections with anyone in the apparatus of the USSR Ministry of Sports, and he never even communicated with Arvydas (the coach even from time to time called him Arvadis and considered him a Latvian, not a Lithuanian). What Brown said to the Tigers in 1977 before an exhibition game with the Soviet team came to the public: “Fuck the communists!” He had four months to transport Sabas to America and get approval from the NCAA. This was arguably the most incredible geopolitical recruiting challenge ever.When Brown was asked how he judged his chances, he said: “50-50”.
Gonzaga assistant Tommy Lloyd went overseas in September 2012 and had no other task but to recruit new recruits. He and his boss Mike Few knew they would need a talent injection in 2014, as forwards Sam Dower and Kelly Olynyk would leave the team by then, and point guard Kevin Pangos and attacking guard Gary Bell Jr. become seniors. Lloyd grew up in Kelso, Washington, and his working-class family often hosted exchange students.He had a short professional career in Australia and Germany, dragging his wife Chanel with him around the world, and in the summer before he was hired by Gonzaga, he constantly brought strong foreign players to Spokane, including future NBA players Ronnie. Thuriaf from France and Elias Harris from Germany. On that trip, Lloyd hoped to attend the games of the top five European born 1996 prospectuses, and especially to see in the case of Domantas Sabonis, a powerful 6-10-inch striker who played in Malaga and was the youngest of the three sons of Arvydas and Ingrid.
At 17, Domantas playing for Unicaja became the youngest player to play for them in the Euroleague.
Domantas, who Arvydas once called “my family’s basketball future”, was born on May 3, 1996, right between the fourth and fifth match of the first round series between the Jazz and the Blazers, in which Portland lost and Sabas averaged 23.6 points and 10.2 rebounds per match. The family lived for eight years in Portland, and the brothers Zigmantas (known as Ziggy), Tautvydas (Tuti) and Domantas (Domas) were spinning around the team, so much so that the eccentric Sheedy Wallace addressed them, respectively, as Sabonis Jr., Sabonis Jr.-Jr. and Sabonis Jr.-Jr.-Jr.
Arvydas left the league after the 2002/03 season and decided to move his youngest, as well as his daughter Ausrina, to the coast of Malaga instead of returning to his homeland, where he is still considered the most famous inhabitant, the giant that led the Kaunas Zalgiris in the championships of the USSR and helped the new free Lithuania to win the bronze medals of the 1992 Olympics in the match against the United Team. Tuti says: “He thought it would be difficult for us in Lithuania to grow up with the expectation that you are another Sabonis.”In the 2011/12 season, Domantas played for Unicaja from Malaga, as well as the Lithuanian U-16 team, while attending a British high school. When Lloyd arrived, he was pleased to learn that Domas is fluent in English and Spanish and keeps his satisfactory Lithuanian only for scolding during matches, because often the referees simply cannot understand him.
Lloyd obtained contact information about Domas through former Blazers scout and Arvydas’ agent in Spain, Arutro Ortega, who confirmed to Tommy that Domas was still an amateur.The Gonzaga were the first to try to get him, and Domantas was intrigued. “Until now, I never thought about college,” Domas told Lloyd. “I didn’t know I was ready to play at that level.”
Lloyd made sure he was chasing an elite prospect when he saw a cut from Lithuania versus Poland at the European U-16 Championship, in which Domas scored 15 points and 27 rebounds. And he had a lawyer in the person of 20-year-old Tuti, who actually led the process of getting Domas, while Arvydas was acting president of the Lithuanian Basketball Federation, and Ingrid ran a family hotel in Palanga.Tuti turned down the chance to leave for his brother in the United States at the age of 16, and eventually signed his first professional contract with the Clinicas Rincon team from the second-strongest division of Spanish basketball. He and Domas lived together in a condominium in Malaga, which was located a couple of minutes from the Alboran Sea.
“My biggest regret is that I never went to college and I told Domas about it,” says the active and hypersocial Tooti, who is the opposite of the introverted Arvydas and Domantas.“If you’re not good enough in Europe, then until you’re 22 you’ll sit on the bench”
Lloyd made two more trips to Spain and persuaded Tootie and Domas to make an official visit to Spokane in 2013. Several other schools took part in this recruiting, but the brothers had a strong rapport with the vigorous and lively registry assistant (note – short for Gonzaga), who appeared everywhere in the same blue slip-ons from Converse and to some extent kept with them communication in the text messenger WhatsApp.They told Lloyd that “you shouldn’t be fawning over them all the time,” which US recruits usually get used to, so there is no need to write to the Sabonis every day. Before arriving in America for any visits, the brothers told Lloyd that if Domas went to college, it would be 99 percent Gonzaga.
You couldn’t just meet a guy from Lithuania. Brown decided he needed to work at a higher level to attract Arvydas.He needed an assistant – an American with real influence in the USSR, and he decided that this could be the billionaire Armand Hammer, the head of Occidental Petroleum and a famous philanthropist. Hammer has been doing business in the Union longer than any American, and Reagan and Gorbachev listened to him, to the point that he helped convince the Soviet leader of the importance of the Geneva summit.
The first letter about the Sabonis project, written by Brown on May 23, 1986, was saturated with flattery. First paragraph: “Of course, history recognizes in you who you are – a great man” .Further: “What I am trying to do on a small scale cannot be compared with your fundamental work on uniting our and Soviet peoples” . Conclusion: “I understand that my search for Sabonis is just a dream. Dale Brown lives his dreams. Please help me. ”.
To be faithful, on June 6, the dreamer coach wrote to another American who could whisper in Gorbachev’s ear – Ronald Reagan. In the letter, Brown officially proposed an exchange program from the University of Louisiana: “If Ping Pong Diplomacy works, why can’t basketball be the same?” Exactly the same was the case with the involvement of Sabonis, which Brown considered in a historical context: “I saw Arvydas Sabonis as Jackie Robinson for international diplomacy.”
As a result of lobbying some good friends, Brown began to receive responses, in particular from Norman Vincent Peale, author of The Power of Positive Thinking , who received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1984. Mark Parris, director of the American administration for Soviet affairs, wrote on behalf of Reagan. It was heartening news that they could have helped with the Tigers’ tour of the USSR and the summer exchange program, citing the latter as an example of the activities President Reagan sought to promote at last year’s summit in Geneva during his meeting with Secretary General Mikhail Gorbachev.But there were also disappointing aspects: During tense negotiations over nuclear proliferation, Reagan was unwilling to spend political “capital” on attracting players for the Louisiana State. Parris wrote: “We cannot comment on your interest in recruiting Arvydas Sabonis as you will undoubtedly need to discuss this directly with Mr Sabonis and his trainer.”
Contact with Hammer was more promising. On the eve of the Goodwill Games, in June, he agreed to present Brown in Moscow to officials from the Ministry of Sports.Inspired by these words, Brown booked tickets to Moscow and wrote a letter to Gorbachev. But when Dale reached the capital, he was informed that 88-year-old Hammer was ill and could not leave the United States. It remains questionable whether Hammer could have really helped, as after his death it was revealed that he had been helping Soviet espionage to send money to America since the early 1920s, but without him, Brown ran out of opportunities for meetings. He said: “In Russia I was almost on my own.”
However, he did not really appear anywhere.The recruitment of basketball players was supposed to be partisan. Brown went to the FIBA World Cup Final in Madrid (which was also part of the Goodwill Games basketball tournament), where Sabonis played for the Soviet Union team. For the NCAA, this time was “dead season” and Brown could not somehow communicate with the players, but he contacted someone who, in his opinion, could talk to Sabas directly.
Rimma Janulevicius, who later graduated from the University of Missouri with a degree in journalism, was at her parents’ house in Chicago when Brown called and introduced himself.
“What do you want from me?” She asked.
“I need Sabonis.”
She tried to contain her laughter. “Seriously? And do you think I can get it for you? ”
“So I was told.”
Brown cannot remember who told him about this, or when exactly they first contacted, but Janulevičius was one of the few Lithuanian-American journalists who worked in the media, and the rumor about Lithuanians in the United States was so widespread that, according to She said that others might have learned about her plans for a grant from the Knight Foundation at the Goodwill Games.She met with Sabonis after the Soviet team tour in Indiana in 1982, but did not communicate with him after that.
However, she says she listened to Brown’s suggestion: “Could you ask Sabonis if he wants to play for the University of Louisiana?”
Why did Janulevičius agree to this, although the task was not purely journalistic? His parents, along with his sister Rimma, fled Lithuania during World War II and lived in a displaced persons camp in Germany before immigrating to the United States.Rimma was born in New York in 1957, then moved to Chicago, where a close-knit Lithuanian community lived in the Marquette Park area. Rimma says that as a child she was “brought up to save Lithuania.” This is what she remembers about that time: “It was our mission: to do something or something for someone, in order to be sure that Lithuania will become free. I know it sounds weird, but that’s exactly what it was. ”
You could not have saved Lithuania personally, but maybe you could have saved one Lithuanian.You could go to Madrid, and then to the city of Ferrol on the northwest coast, where the USSR held group stage matches, rent a room in the same hotel with the team, and you could also slip past the guards at the entrance. You could on the night of July 9, after the victory of the USSR over Uruguay 111-62, call Sabas’s number, and persuade him and defender Rimas Kurtinaitis to meet in your room on the floor below. You could arrange a meeting with Arvydas the next day and in a safer environment, on the street, ask him questions.Janulevičius did it all. She was very resourceful.
Janulevičius asked Sabonis if he wanted to play in the USA. He answered yes. Arvydas didn’t even know that the Blazers had been drafted on June 17th. Rimma asked him if he was interested in playing for the university. He smiled and said, “Yes.”
Janulevičius recalls that after that she asked: “How are we going to bring this to life? And he looked at me as if at Cinderella and said he didn’t know. ” Everything is like in a good fairy tale, only you cannot make it come true.Janulevičius recalls: “It was like I had stars in my eyes. He didn’t know what was going to happen. It was the Soviet Union. You couldn’t do anything. And you definitely couldn’t do anything if you were Sabonis. They watched him constantly. ”
Janulevicius had a short meeting with Brown and told him that Arvydas wanted to play in the States and he knew about the Louisiana State. She handed the coach a detailed letter stating that she had brought up the topic of desertion: “In a conversation with me, he emphasized that he would not run away (due to family loyalty), so if the situation is such that he needs go to Seoul and play there, then he will do it, and only then will he risk getting admission to play as a professional … First of all, he focuses on the fact that he wants everything to be done according to the rules and legally.He is afraid of prosecution of his family and friends, so if there is a choice between running away or staying, Arvydas will stay. ”
Janulevičius planned to contact Sabonis in Vilnius in July, where she could convey his written replies to Brown. But when the time came, Sabas simply stopped answering calls. Janulevičius and Brown have lost track of him.
Arvydas did not go with Domas to his official bride in Spokane in August 2013.He said the following to Domas and Tuti: “What am I going to do there? Go and rest. ”
When they checked in at the Davenport Hotel, Lloyd made a reservation for them under the name Chomicius . This was partly a joke, because Valdemaras Chomicius was a longtime partner of Arvydas and point guard of the Soviet and Lithuanian national teams, but for the most part, this is how Domas could be hidden from people who were eager for him. Everyone in basketball knows that those who come to Gonzaga stay at Davenport.Polish center Przhemek Karnowski, one of the first players Lloyd found in Europe, was constantly called to the hotel and discussed with him the possibility of additional meetings during the competition.
In Spokane, the Sabonis were also hosted by the son of a Hall of Famer – Gonzaga point guard David Stockton, whose father John is the NBA record holder for the most assists in history. John told David that Arvydas “was a great passer and a great player even though he could barely move” when he finally made it to the NBA in his 30s.David told the Sabonis that the famous “boiled” T-shirt with the Grateful Dead logo, received as a gift after the semifinals at the 92nd Olympics, was one of his father’s favorites before it completely faded.
The brothers tubed on the Spokane River, played an exhibition match with some of the Gonzaga basketball players, and received an offer from Few and Lloyd, prompted by recent events. Two months earlier, Canadian Kelly Olynyk had been drafted 13th in the NBA Draft, right after his first season as a starter and an All-America token.
This powerful forward, seven feet tall, could play with his back and face in attack, and Domas could try on this role. “Your play will find expression in our style. We will not force you to play number five, ”Lloyd said.
They felt that in the first season, rebounding skills would give Domas at least some minutes in the starting lineup. The main universities of the conference – Oregon, Arizona State, and Texas – also joined in the pursuit of Sabonis, and Duke later tried to break in, but Lloyd still liked his chances of success.“If I was ahead of all the scouts in Europe, then it seemed to me that I could discourage all these universities from Domas. Because we are one of those who can safely say that we have made our stars out of foreign players, ”says Lloyd.
In the season leading up to his trip to Spokane, Domas rose to the top division of Spanish basketball, and at 17 became the youngest Unicaja player ever to play in the Euroleague. On average, he played 9.3 minutes per match and was a backup for experienced players.Domas’ 30-year-old Unicaja partner, former Maryland striker and All-America team member Nick Keiner-Medley said about going to college: “Domas will have a 180 degree adaptation at university from what the other guys are going through. Almost everyone comes in the status of a star of their school team and an AAU star, and then they are “humiliated” on a new level, while Domas is here, through modest game minutes, polishing his game. ”
For Domas, whose game in Spain is based on rebounds and screens, playing in an American college will expand his arsenal and become a full-fledged star.
During the games for Unicaja, Domas did rough work on rebounds and screening, and in training he was a sparring partner for the players of the starting five. Keiner-Medley (6’8 ”) loves Sabonis’ work ethic. He was surprised at how much effort it took to keep the young man on the rebound, and in this struggle, Domas received so many bruises that Nick insisted that the youngest of the Sabonis wear knee pads. The veterans liked him even more – Domas did not boast that he was Sabonis, and it seems that he enjoyed this “bullying” and various jokes over a newcomer like those when he was forced to vacate all his chosen seats on the plane.But when the topic of a university in the United States came up, all the former college players from Unicaja were adamant that such a move would benefit Domas. “It didn’t seem like he had to be persuaded somehow,” says Keiner-Medley. – Thoughts he was already ready.
Arvydas also did not need to be persuaded. Tuti describes it this way: “At first, he was not interested in the idea of going to college, because in the past, Lithuanians had already left for the United States and did not achieve success (for example, the Lithuanian national team player Martynas Pocius languished on the Duke bench since 2005 to 2009).Arvydas believed that playing at a professional level here in Spain would give him more in terms of growth as a player. ” But every time Arvydas asked where Domas would study, the youngest of the Sabas replied: “I will go to the States.” He thought it was the best road to get into the NBA, and Domas also wanted the experience Tuti had taken away from him.
Some doubts arose when Unicaja offered Sabonis a three-year contract worth about 500 thousand euros (about 630 thousand dollars).The families didn’t need money, but Arvydas advised Domas to read the contract carefully, and then Sr. Sabas asked, “So what about Gonzaga being a better place than Spain?”
Arvydas already gave Domas something of his height and something of his skill set, but when the time came for the final decision, Sabonis Sr. provided Domantas with something else that his father did not have in the 80s. “He gave me freedom, a lot of freedom,” says Domas.
Thanks to his overseas travel and the persistence of trainer Gonzaga Lloyd, Domas changed the greens of Unicaja to the blue of Gonzaga.
Domas chose Gonzaga. Arvydas never spoke with the coaches of the registry office, but he signed scholarship documents and on April 15, 2014, at a press conference of the Lithuanian Basketball Federation, announced that his son had left to play for an American university.
Brown always clung to what he thought was extremely important – this “elusive” Lithuanian “big” was interesting, and Dale continued his work. He petitioned the NCAA to enroll Arvydas without passing the ACT or SAT, and constantly fought with xenophobes from the Cold War, who could not understand that Sabonis was not a “red” communist, but a citizen of Lithuania.
After Republican Congressman Mike Thompson learned of the Sabonis plan, during a meeting of the Louisiana State Board of Education, he said, “I believe I will be a heretic and a fighter against prejudice if I say Dale Brown is wrong. But we will quickly kill basketball in the Southeast Conference as soon as we let the Russian win. ” The newspaper “ Baton Rouge State Times ” citizen “.The results were as follows: 62.8 percent of respondents answered “no”, 18.6 percent said “yes” and another 18.6 percent refrained from answering.
Brown has traveled the world a lot and has been recruiting foreign players for the Louisiana State since 1972, so he didn’t suffer from that kind of stereotype. Then Brown said, “My answer to all people with this mindset is check your family tree. I was in Moscow for Thanksgiving, but I watched footage of that gorgeous New York Harbor scene with President Reagan, Kirk Douglas and Angela Landsbury.It is on these foundations that the Statue of Liberty stands. These “scaffolding” are not being erected here to destroy the statue. They are here to keep her. Think about Nureyev and Baryshnikov. Maybe you read in the magazine “ Parade ” about a woman with an IQ of 240. She is an immigrant. Shall we deny her the right to stay in the United States? Sabonis is not a bastard like the Cuban immigrants who landed in Miami. If you are really that smug, then I applaud you. I suggest that you return to North Dakota and return the land to the Sioux Indians, because we just rented them. “
In August, Brown agreed to an offer to help his exchange program from Parris and US-Soviet exchange initiative coordinator Stephen Rhinsmith. In this way, Brown would certainly have achieved a face-to-face meeting with officials in the USSR, and this method worked. Dale came to Washington with Donald Ray Kennard, the academic advisor and representative of the University of Louisiana. On August 20, they discussed their plan for recruiting Sabonis with authorized officials at the Soviet embassy.Brown was shocked that he was allowed this meeting; Kennard told Dale not to wave his hands, because he believed there were hidden cameras on the ceiling. But the coach was alarmed by the reception. Brown told a reporter about that meeting: “They were nice and all, but I knew they were actually obstructing me.”
Brown hoped that the meeting had gone well enough to continue the dialogue in Moscow. In an interview with CNN on August 23rd, he once again asked Gorbachev about Sabonis, but received no response.Time was running out: the fall semester in Louisiana began on September 2, and Brown believed that the last chance to enroll Sabonis would be September 15. So the last attempt to get Sabas will be the Club World Cup in Argentina, which runs from 9th to 14th September.
Janulevicius had already returned to Missouri when Brown called her with a question: “Do you want to go to Argentina? Then you have to leave tomorrow. ”
This was another trip to help a common cause. After receiving the approval of the professors, Rimma flew to Buenos Airas and received accreditation as a reporter from the university magazine “ Tiger Rag ” (Janulevičius cannot remember who paid for her trip then, but it was definitely not her; Brown says he didn’t pay any bills because that would be an NCAA violation).Rimma came there to write an article and understand how far Arvydas is ready to go in order to get to America. She told Brown that she was ready to do whatever was necessary. “I would personally take Sabonis out of the embassy,” Janulevičius says, “and kick anyone in the balls who tried to stop me. But that was impossible for him. ”
Arvydas did not want to speak, and the coach Vladas Garastas told Janulevicius the following: “We decided that for the next two years before the Olympics in Seoul he should stay in the Soviet Union”.There was nothing more to discuss. Janulevičius watched Zalgiris win the cup with Sabonis not playing at full strength. That summer, Arvydas began to experience Achilles problems for the first time, resulting in more serious leg problems, and Rimma informed Brown that Sabas could no longer be recruited.
As Dale said, because of this trip, Louisiana State Rector Jim Wharton was visited by two employees of the US State Department and asked him to stop this pursuit of Arvydas, fearing a possible political situation (Janulevičius, after the marriage of Vidmantas, now lives in Lithuania and works at the American as chief public relations officer).On September 18th, Brown issued a statement announcing that he had “ceased his activities” to obtain Sabonis. The coach said he had no regrets.
In mid-October a letter from the secretary of the USSR Basketball Federation Platonov arrived in Louisiana. It read as follows: “Thank you for your letter and invitation to Arvydas Sabonis to play for the University of Louisiana team. We highly appreciate your interest in the Soviet player playing in the championship NCAA ….Arvydas plans to continue his studies at the Lithuanian Agricultural Academy, to play for Zalgiris and the national team. He really enjoys the support and recognition that basketball fans in the Soviet Union give him. ”
At least they answered.
Lloyd’s last chance to see Domas in the game before he travels to Gonzaga was the U-18 European Championship, which kicked off on 24 July in Konya, Turkey.The first match of Lithuania in the tournament was against France and was held in the training hall of the Municipal Sports Complex. It was early morning on the 27th day of Ramadan in Turkey’s most religious metropolis, so there weren’t many local fans in the stands. There were also few people due to the fact that the only tourist attractions in the city were the tomb of the 13th century poet Jalaladdin Rumi and the dervish dancers who honor their spiritual heritage. Lloyd was there to look at Domas and get him, and Tootie was there because he knew he would soon be leaving his brother and roommate in the condominium.
“I know there is a big difference between them,” Tootie said during the first half. – I have not seen many of my father’s games live, but when I now look at Domas, I see so many similarities between him and my father on old video cuts. They always don’t believe me, but I see it, my mother sees it and Ziggy sees it. It shows in the little things. ”
Domas is a 6ft 10 “left-hander who lacks his father’s jumper or skyhook, while Arvydas is a 7ft 3” right-hander who was one of the greatest players of all time, but they are both quiet off the court and prone to flash. while playing, both show their feelings in furious expressions and yell something incomprehensible to their guardians.Tuti sees what they have in common in one-handed-over-shoulder transmissions from “fasting” and in how they transform the transmissions after selection into a kind of art form.
“Look at him as he rebounds,” Tootie said after Domas picked up a defensive rebound and averaged 12 rebounds per game in the tournament. – They fight for rebounds in the same style – they just shoot the ball into the backboard until they get it. And when Domas took the ball, he does not refuse to give a normal pass.He will roll his hands with the ball a couple of times, or throw it with one hand, or throw it forward from behind – everything my dad did.
Later he was asked if he was doing this on purpose, to which Domas shrugged his shoulders and said, “I had no idea that I was playing this way.”
After all Euro U-18 matches, scouts, coaches and journalists gathered outside Hilton Garden Inn, the only place in Konya where drinks were served during Ramadan. Conversations on the first evening boiled down to the 1986 version of Arvydas, about which everyone spoke with respect and sadness, knowing that in 1987, Sabonis had two Achilles tendon ruptures on the horizon.
“He still occasionally remembers that dunk through David Robinson,” says Tootie of his father, who thinks about one of the most iconic moments of the 1986 World Cup final between the USA and the USSR.
“Some of the things he did were incredible. You really got your mom’s genes, too, ”Lloyd said.
Tootie knew this ’86 finale too well; he literally learned it on YouTube. “The ring is up to Arvydas’s chest, Robinson stands under it, the father screams, and then scores a three-pointer in the next possession.”
“And probably passed the pass in the next rally,” adds the assistant coach for the Pacific Conference team. “It’s too bad he couldn’t get to the States earlier.”
“But he’s not worried about it, is he?” Lloyd asked Tootie.
To which Tuti replies: “Sometimes the father says that he likes everything he has done. But sometimes, if I and Domas ask him about this, then he may ask the question “What if I could have come earlier?”, But he has no regrets. “
In April 1988, the USSR allowed Arvydas to come, but not play. His Achilles tendon surgery in Lithuania was performed late, and the Sabas Trail Blazers, who own the rights to the Sabas Trail Blazers, offered the services of their medical and coaching staff for rehabilitation.
In the long term, the best plan to keep Sabonis healthy would have been to give him rest, but the Soviet team forced him to compete at the 1988 Olympics (the USSR national team took gold there).When Sabas was allowed to play professionally in 1989, Arvydas felt physically unprepared for the NBA, and that was until he arrived in Portland in 1995. Sabonis called it “last chance”. This is what Arvydas recalls about this: “If I had not arrived then, no one would have wanted to deal with me.”
Although Arvydas was drafted by the Blazers in 1986, he had to wait almost ten years to get into the NBA. Although he passed his peak and was hampered by injuries, but Sabonis has established himself as one of the best “big” in the history of the game.
Domas was born that season. While he was growing up, he heard only a little about the prohibitions from the USSR in the life of Arvydas. “He just told us that he had to follow the rules because you couldn’t risk anything,” says Domas. Until the Louisiana State story made headlines in American newspapers, it remained barely noticed for Arvydas. In an interview with “ Sports Illustrated ” 2011, he said this: “I never thought much of those things because the implementation was incredible.”This summer, responding to requests for an interview, Arvydas only conveyed through Tuti that he did not know anything about Brown’s letter or his visit to the embassy, because “such things were strictly controlled in the Soviet Union.”
Brown never spoke to Arvydas. The Tigers never did a tour of the USSR, and Dale never managed to implement his young player exchange program. He stopped trying to get Soviet players and left the Tigers after the 1996/97 season. That same year, Louisiana State acquired an exchange student from post-Soviet Russia, Irina Slitsan.She came to Baton Rouge from St. Petersburg Polytechnic University at the age of 20, earned a degree in Information Systems Management and later got a job at “ Chevron ”. She married American Kane Prestwood and is now raising a little five-year-old daughter, living near Houston. After Katie was born, she also brought her mother, Antonina, to America.
Irina found the university through an American pen pal when he asked her what she would be interested in studying in the States, and then he was so generous that he helped her get a scholarship and paid her living expenses.This friend was not a fan of bureaucracy and was disappointed, because the US Consulate in St. Petersburg in 1992 denied Irina the right to enter when he brought her there, but in the end he was able to help Irina correctly draw up all the documents.
That friend first wrote to Irina in 1986, but it took her four years to answer. Antonina threw away the first letter, believing that communicating with someone in the United States could be dangerous. “She grew up during Stalin’s time,” says Irina, “when one day your neighbor could suddenly disappear and end up in a prison camp, which is why she was afraid of the KGB.”Antonina and her daughter met that pen friend in July 1986 when they were in Moscow during the Goodwill Games. Irina played with a new toy – a plastic horse with a carriage, and since their family was poor, it was the most expensive toy in the girl’s life. Then in Gorky Park, one man tried to start a conversation with them.
Irina was a precocious child who was featured on Russian television during the Geneva summit last winter. The girl believed in the usual things for that era – that the Americans are nuclear militarists, whom Gorbachev is trying to reason with.That American did not speak Russian. Both Slitsans knew very little of English. Irina drew a dove in the sand, which helped her ask a particularly difficult question for a 10-year-old girl: “Are you here in peace or in war?” The man’s reply was sincere and diplomatically correct, so they agreed to exchange addresses. She received a business card that read “Dale Brown, Basketball, University of Louisiana.” He was just a coach killing time on a seemingly completely wasted trip.
Photo: RIA Novosti / Yuri Abramochkin; Gettyimages.ru/Susan Allen Sigmon; RIA Novosti / Dmitry Donskoy; unicajabaloncesto.com; instagram.com/tsabonis22; RIA Novosti / Ulozyavichyus Audrius, A. Bochinin; instagram.com/dsabonis11; Gettyimages.ru/William Mancebo; RIA Novosti / Vladimir Rodionov; Gettyimages.ru/Jonathan Ferrey
90,000 Best photos of the week: “Love in the Trash Bin” and the Other Side of the Moon
Best Photos of the Week: “Love in the Trash Bin” and the Other Side of the Moon
Best Photos of the week: “Love in the trash can” and the far side of the moon – RIA Novosti, 08.02.2019
Best Photos of the Week: “Love in the Trash Bin” and the Other Side of the Moon
Ria.ru offers readers the brightest and most emotional photos taken by correspondents of world agencies during the outgoing week. RIA Novosti, 08.02.2019
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Ria.ru offers readers the brightest and most emotional photos taken by the correspondents of world agencies during the outgoing week.
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|Lim Keith Xiang, opposition leader in parliament.|
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|These schools receive more than 80% of their funding from the Ministry of Education, but have long queues, according to MP Sylvia Lim.|
|In his dream, Dagan blamed Zimri-Lim for not being able to subjugate the Yaminite king, and Zimri-Lim did not bring Dagan a report of his deeds.|
|In the Philippines, Alfredo Lim popularized this tactic during his tenure as Mayor of Manila.|
|If Lim is convicted of the initial charge of creating an electronic record containing incitement to violence, he could be sentenced to up to five years in prison.|
|Siu Lim Tau Wing Chun is one long form incorporating movements that are comparable to the combination of Siu Lim Tau, Cham KIU and Biu Ji from other families.|
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|Samboy Lim Personalized Training Basketball Camp.|
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|It was directed by Mr. Manuel B. Lim Sr., son of Mrs. Lim.|
|Anita Javison Mandolado Lim from Bugasong Antique.|
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|With the help of Tobias Fornier and Diodata Lim Bandohi, they founded the Taro – Lim, a memorial ancient school of fishing.|
|In 1981, Manuel M. Lim Jr. was elected the city’s youngest mayor at the age of 26.Grandson of the former mayor of Diodata Taro Lim Bandohi.|
|On June 24, 1982, Diodata Taro Lim Bandoha touched the life of the Tibiohanons.|
|In 1992, Manuel B. Lim Sr. inaugurated a new municipal building built during the reign of Manuel M. Lim Jr.|
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90,000 5 stories explaining why the NBA dropped out of high school students
13 October 2016
In 2005, the NBA banned clubs from drafting players directly from school.
Based on Boys Among Men: How the High School Generation Changed the NBA by Jonathan Abrams.
Draft : was selected in 98th under the 40th peak
Team : Detroit
NBA career : 3 games, 4.3 points, 1.3 rebounds
History : Corleone Young grew up in a humble home on 24th Street and Lorraine Avenue in Wichita.His mother Kim Young, shortly before the birth of her only child, read The Godfather and named him Santino Corleone Young in honor of the eldest son.
Young knew his father was Juan Johnson, a former high school athletics star. From time to time he ran into Johnson in Wichita, but he never recognized him.
Young was constantly involved in fights – with a relative Antoine or with the neighboring boys, who endlessly teased him because he stuttered. Kim Young didn’t think her son was attracted to problems.On the contrary, she saw in him an active boy and was looking for ways for him to curb this energy. She enrolled Corleone in various circles – “to keep him busy,” as she said. So Young began to dance. I tried to play football. But it was basketball that gradually turned into the sport that completely absorbed it.
He made himself a ring from a bicycle wheel – removed all the spokes. The more modest the bike, the smaller the wheel, the better the throw should be. His grandfather Charles Young, who played for the Harlem Globtrotters in the 60s, later made a real ring for Corleone.
Young grew up very quickly and overtook the rest of the children. When he was 10 years old, he started playing for the Wichita Blazers. This program was considered elite and quite tough – the players attended church services every Sunday and had to do well in school. Young quickly developed into a leader and placed himself on top for the first time in sixth grade.
His success was recognized, and in 1992 Young joined an amateur team from Kansas City, led by John Walker.Several future NBA players played for her, but the best in the team was Jaron Rush, a nimble forward who attracted attention from a young age. Rush found a sponsor – Tom Grant, a local millionaire who runs LabOne Inc. – he paid for Rush’s studies at a private school and funded his teams.
During a summer training session in ’95, Grant introduced the players to a new coach – Myron Piggy, a former drug dealer who spent a year in prison after shooting a police officer in ’89.Grant was aware of Jaron Rush’s close relationship with Piggy and tried to take advantage of this to keep a prominent player.
“We’re like,“ What? Which Myron is the coach? Young recalled. – Please note that he did not train us. We had trainers. He just wanted to control everything. All Piggy did was look brutal, sit at the front of the bench and scare the rest of the coaches in the amateur league. ”
Piggy’s rise coincided with Nike’s rise to high school basketball.To eliminate the competition from Adidas, Nike brought in Piggy as a consultant – very soon the team became a team of stars, which would be chased by potential NCAA Division 1 players. They traveled all over the country in first class and stayed in 5-star hotels.
“We made a noise,” Young says. “Damn, this has turned into a real war. We started a war between Nike and Adidas. Me, Corey Maggetti, Jaron, Al Harrington and Rashard Lewis.
Both Grant and Nike ended up raising Piggy’s salary.
“We finished with Nike and it was magical,” Young recalled. – In 1996, my mother and I took a ’96 Altima. I had an ’82 Impala. I only wore Nike. All new equipment was constantly sent to us, bags with things came every couple of months. Nike’s influence comes first. Why do you think all kids wear Jordans? ”
Piggy divided the money between the top players on the team.
During the summer, Young’s life revolved around the amateur leagues. During the school season, he was subordinate to trainer Ron Allen at the Wichita East School.Old school Allen has heard of Young’s talents since he dominated sixth grade. The next year, he took him to the school team and tried to slowly bring him to the base. The plan collapsed after the 14-year-old striker left the bench for the first time: Young made a lasting impression with 27 points.
Allen referred to Young as the young Charles Barkley, a player who could do more on the court than his physical abilities allowed. He tried to keep his star in check.He himself played for the University of Arizona in the early 70s and adhered to the old-regime rules: he refused to lisp with the player and punished him when he began to be capricious. He regularly kicked Young out of training for educational purposes.
“Today you came in the wrong mood,” he said. “Try again tomorrow.”
But Allen didn’t realize how powerful Piggy’s influence was. When he came to an amateur league game ahead of Young’s second season, he was amazed at the sheer scale of the program: sneakers, jerseys, the crowd, the sheer scale of the project.
“It was like I discovered another world,” he says.
Young disappeared from Kansas that summer. In August 1997, a USA Today journalist called Allen and asked him to confirm that Young had transferred to Hargrave, a private school in Chatham, Virginia.
Allen was startled by the news. He called Young’s mother.
“Coach, didn’t Corleone tell you?”
Allen realized that Young did not want to admit that he was planning to transfer to another school. But Kim made her son pick up the phone.
“What’s going on?”
“I’m just going to finish my studies here.”
Why? For what reason?”
Young was silent.
“Listen, if this is what you want, if this is your decision, I will support him. But if you do it for the sake of someone else, for the sake of someone’s interests, then I will have problems with it. When you come to Wichita with your amateur team, we’ll sit down and discuss it again. ”
At the meeting, Young said that he did not intend to change his mind.He said that this city has outgrown. He said he was forced into this by media harassment after being caught drunk with other players. Said that at Hargrave, he will go to the site with future stars.
Allen asked to change his mind. Young remained adamant.
“I haven’t lost my love for the guy,” Allen says. – I was still worried about him. He has a good heart. He would do anything for you. But he was too young to be left alone.In the end, it played a cruel joke on him. ”
The transition was not easy for Young. In Wichita, he did whatever he wanted to do. There, university coaches called him so often that his mother had to draw another line. Young kept her busy with the girls. But Hargrave majored in discipline: the headmaster of the school was Colonel John Ripley, an award-winning retired Marine. Young was not allowed to have a telephone or television. He got up at 6 am and had to go to bed at 10 pm.For the first few weeks, he kept calling his mom to cry whenever he could get to the phone.
Yet the school, prestigious and nationally recognized, had advantages. Young got the opportunity to choose between elite universities: he almost went to the University of Kansas, almost joined Jaron Rush at UCLA, and Georgetown coach John Thompson really wanted to see him. But there was never any talk of the NBA: unexpectedly for everyone, Young decided to follow his traditional rival friends Rashard Lewis and Al Harrington and entered the NBA draft.
The problem is, Young didn’t have the stability that Lewis and Harrington had. He was surrounded by people who more often expressed the wrong judgments and gave the wrong advice. All his life he was cherished as a future star, and he was completely unprepared for adulthood.
The Pistons were not interested in Young’s development as much as the Sonics and Pacers at Lewis and Harrington. He signed a one-year contract that includes the team’s option for a second season. Kim Young stayed in Wichita and continued to work for the Cessna Aircraft Company.
Young’s professional career began in a very suspicious manner. He parted ways with agent Jerome Stanley immediately after the draft. Stanley agreed with Nike on a contract for half a million dollars, but the lockout was approaching and Myron Piggy was counting on completely different amounts.
“I turned it down,” Young recalls. – My people advised me to give up half a million dollars. This is true. And so it was. Nike in the first season offered me half a million, just like that. ”
After Stanley, brothers Karl and Kevin Postons began to represent Young’s interests, working with NFL players.“We signed up with larger agents. It was the worst decision in my life. ”
Young still had to prove himself on the court.
Joe Dumars recalled that Young spoke at one of the first training sessions:
“When he walked out onto the floor, you could see that he was talented. But you knew that the process would be very difficult, since he was too young for the league. He gave the impression of a schoolboy who suddenly found himself in the NBA world. ”
Detroit’s coaching staff hoped that Young’s size and skills would help him be useful to the team, but there were doubts.Young dominated the paint in school. Although he was strong enough, his height of 2 meters did not allow him to do the same in the NBA – here he needed to develop a game on the perimeter. “I thought he had a lot to work on,” says then-Detroit head coach Alvin Gentry. – To work on leading, to retrain from “big” to extreme. Work on protection. ”
Young, according to Gentry, is still fortunate to have encountered extraordinary sympathy in a pity-free business.”We kept it for the season, simply because we felt sorry for the guy.”
Gradually, Young’s role in the team became more and more vague. Several times the club sent him to various social events – the team was training at this time. He asked himself the question: am I in the team at all or not? At the same time, the combination of money, free time and familiarity with the Detroit nightlife made it known about its destructive properties: Young began to travel to strip clubs and nightclubs. Although he was only 19 years old, he was allowed in if he was accompanied by any of the partners.
He played only three games – a total of 15 minutes on the court. Detroit did not renew the contract for another year.
The next fall, he tried to make his way to the Philadelphia squad through training camp. In the morning, when he was leaving the arena, two robbers ran up to him and took away his money and jewelry.
“Breaking the contract with Detroit had a huge impact on me as I didn’t want to leave. I would be in a childish mood – I thought that now this is my new home. I didn’t feel like I could move from place to place.I lost heart that summer. But I had 300 thousand dollars in the bank. Up to a fig of money. I could do anything. So that summer I bought $ 120,000 worth of jewelry, and then I got robbed in Philadelphia in the middle of the city. I only got 30 thousand on insurance. ”
“76th” expelled him, but he was only 20 years old and he saw himself in the NBA.
Then the past finally caught up with Myron Piggy, Young and the rest of the amateur league players who were receiving money. In April 2000, Piggy was charged with paying players (including $ 14,000 for Young) and sentenced to 37 months in prison.
Young had mixed feelings about Piggy. Yes, Piggy capitalized on his talent. But at the same time, Piggy was interested in Young succeeding. Piggy didn’t just hand him bags full of cash. He gave $ 50 to register for a tournament or school supplies. Piggy became Young’s father, whom he never had. “He was my consigliere,” explains Young. – If he told me that something needs to be done, I did it. It would be wrong to pin the blame on him for all the wrong decisions I’ve made.But when you are a child, other people influence you. ”
Young has been dusting in the lower leagues for many years. He first took refuge in the Continental Basketball Association, where he played under Stacy King and averaged 18.3 points and 7.3 rebounds. Stacy King used a triangular attack, so Young’s familiarity with the system led him to the Lakers in 2001, where he was able to run in the summer league. He did not make it and spent that autumn in Australia. From that moment everything went awry.
In the first match of the championship, Young tore an Achilles. The next year, in January, he had an accident in Canberra.
He was in a club where he had a good drink. A friend offered to take him and teammate Emmanuel DiCress home. But Young replied, “Friend, it’s okay.” In the haze, he drove as if he was in the States, and not in Australia – at an intersection he drove into the oncoming lane, dodged a car flying at him, but eventually lost control, his Holden was in a ditch. The airbag went off and Young passed out.When he came to, he pulled the unconscious DiCress out of the car and carried him several kilometers in his arms. DiCress had a broken cervical vertebrae – later doctors told Young that if he carried him a little more, he would never be able to walk.
After the accident, Cannons and Young agreed to terminate the contract.
He thought about retirement and devoted himself to self-destruction.
Interest in him from foreign clubs remained, but Young finally lost his form.He perceived invitations from foreign teams as a free vacation. From 1999 to 2006, he visited Australia, Russia, China and Israel. The more he traveled, the more he moved away from the dream of returning to the NBA. He saw himself as a victim. He drank. He smoked. He was having fun at parties. He struggled with depression and tormented himself because of the mistakes he made.
“Shit, how dumb I was,” Young says. – Then I rented everything. I had a Ford Explorer. I had a Chevy Corvette.I had several mopeds. I behaved like a big child. They were all toys. Toys are only for children. ”
At the same time, Young hired himself a financial advisor. And he began to deceive himself – he told the adviser that he planned to go to Houston for a couple of weeks, and when he received the money, he limited himself to a couple of days in Houston, and spent the rest of the money on clubs and cars. He gave more and more money to a wider circle of friends and an ever-growing family. From time to time even his father asked for money.
The circle was closed when Young was no longer invited to audition in foreign clubs. In Wichita in 2009, he was arrested after failing to appear in court due to child support debts.
Agent Stanley hasn’t seen Young since 98:
“The league does not draft ready players. She develops them. They are looking for potential: do you want to work with me? Are you showing enough so that I can see what the final result will be. Young had everything but the desire to grow. I don’t care who says what.If there was a father next to Corleone, and he himself was a mature man, then he could play basketball at a professional level for 14-15 years. There is no doubt about it. Even with how things turned out, I would bet everything on that. ”
“Me, he and Al Harrington played against each other all the time,” says Rashard Lewis. – Al has had a successful career. But that season, Corleone Young was the best drafted player ever to come from high school. He was the dominant player of our era. After Detroit, I don’t even know what happened to him.It seems like he just disappeared. ”
Where Now : Lives in Wichita and works as a children’s coach. In parallel, he fights depression and goes to church.
Draft: selected 29th in the 99th draft San Antonio, traded to Dallas
Team: Dallas, Atlanta, Seattle
NBA career : Dropped February 2000 Mavericks, 14 Hawks 2001/02, 1 Sonics 2003/04
History: Leon Smith had never seen such clean, cozy rooms – he didn’t want to leave the police station with its shiny benches and revolving doors.He was five years old, he got into the police together with his younger brother Jerry.
The brothers lived in Chicago and very often found themselves on their own: sometimes they looked for food in the garbage, sometimes they stole candy from supermarkets. Since they were rarely fed at home, they mastered the skill of theft perfectly, but this time they were still caught. The officer asked them where their mother was. They said: we do not know. That was enough for him. They fell under the care of the state, their mother was deprived of their rights, they had not had a father for a long time – so they were sent to the Lydia Home Association orphanage.
Dorick Bauer, director of the orphanage, remembered the expressions on the brothers’ faces upon arrival: it was the same mixture of caution and confusion that she had seen in other children. The boys were surprised that now they can eat whenever they want and sleep in their own clean beds.
Leon Smith still suffered from a lack of love. He needed it badly. But all his other needs were met, and this was already a completely different level in his young life.
Once a woman approached him and Jerry in the park and asked if the boys knew who she was.They said they didn’t know – the woman turned out to be their mother.
The reunion was not delayed. After eighth grade, Smith returned to an orphanage and prepared for adulthood. He missed his brother and felt like a stranger. From time to time he tried to return to the Lydia orphanage, but was sent back. Sometimes he preferred to sleep on park benches.
After some time, Smith asked to be transferred to King College Prep, one of the best basketball schools in Chicago.
Smith did not play basketball until one summer before eighth grade he grew 13 centimeters and began to make serious progress in the game.At the same time, he continued to visit psychiatrists. They saw his problems – anyone could see the root of his pain in the fact that he never felt loved. But he didn’t like taking drugs.
At King College Prep, Smith became the perfect player under coach Landon “Sonny” Cox. Cox headed the program in 81st, graduated 15 top-ranked players and won over 500 wins. But his success was questioned. Opponents complained that he was luring players in dishonest ways, and the Illinois Schools Association was constantly investigating any incident related either to the coach himself or to the program.
Many Cox players received scholarships and went to colleges, but only a few were able to get an education. “I can’t control their lives outside of school,” Cox once explained. “They get the experience of the university, and then they already live on their own.”
Smith did not even get this experience. It seemed to Doris Bauer that Smith was often in a relaxed, half-asleep state. But when he stepped out onto the floor, he radiated unprecedented energy. It seemed that nothing else bothers him, that the playground is the only refuge where he can abstract from all the troubles of life and express repressed frustrations.At school, it took him over a year to feel comfortable enough to start dining in the cafeteria with his classmates. He often ate with the assistant coach in his office.
His basketball development was slow at first, but by the second season his potential seemed limitless. Smith didn’t just learn to push opponents in attack. He also cleverly blocked shots, jumping out at the right moment, and discouraged opponents from going under the shield.
Very soon, Mc Irwin, a coach from the Chicago amateur league, became interested in Smith. Irwin was representing Adidas, so Smith was invited to attend ABCD Camp, where he won the MVP. Soon, in another Adidas camp, Smith met Sonny Vaccaro – the most famous sports marketer in the world at that time represented the interests of Adidas and helped the company to single out future stars already at the school level. Vaccaro and Smith spent two hours together, and Vaccaro was greatly impressed: Smith literally reproduced definitions from dictionaries and quoted the poems of Langston Hughes.
Vaccaro asked how Smith sees his future. He replied: “I want to become a professional player.”
Vaccaro asked if he was studying for college entrance exams. Smith said he wasn’t even sure about his grades in school.
Still, Vaccaro liked him: “I’ll help you. I’ll make sure you get drafted. ”
In November 1998, Smith disappeared from the school and orphanage where he lived.
It was then reported that Smith had transferred to Centennial School in Compton.In the summer, he befriended George Bortwell, the coach at Centennial, during basketball camp in Las Vegas. Borthwell watched Smith crack down on Tyson Chandler, one of California’s most promising players at the time.
Someone from the management of the Sullivan House shelter has filed a report to the police about the disappearance of Smith. He had just turned 18, but he still had to submit an official request to move. A few years later, discussing Smith, Bortwell almost burst into tears, recalling this situation: “The child had no one to talk to.Nobody gave a damn about him. Nobody gave a shit about him. Everyone. They just used the guy. ”
Borthwell promised Smith that he can play in a team and get an education. But the season before, six players of the team could not get the point required for admission to the university at once. Borthwell disagrees with the accusations that he tried to lure Smith. “The newspapers portray me as if I kidnapped a guy. It’s like I met him on a tip from the amateur league and kidnapped him. I told them: “Why the devil ?! The guy is seven feet tall, 125 kilograms of weight, I have 170 centimeters, 80 kilograms.Who kidnapped whom? The only problem was that I did not understand the legal nuances back then. We were waiting for him to receive adult status, but it takes a certain amount of time, and we wrote a request with a delay ”.
Smith returned to King College Prep and averaged 25 points, 15 rebounds and 8 blocks in his senior season.
He left the orphanage and lived in various places, until he finally settled with his friend Steve Brown, a representative of agents Karl and Kevin Poston.As a result, Smith and Brown quarreled, and then Doris Bauer had to find Smith a temporary home. “We put the mattress on the floor, put some chairs, there was nothing else,” Bauer recalled. – He had no money, of course, so I gave him $ 20 every week. A month later, he signed a million dollar contract. ”
In the end, despite the persuasion of agents, well-wishers and other comrades, Smith decided that he would go straight to the NBA. All his life he felt that others were making decisions for him.And very rarely, according to his calculations, they really helped. “I’m young enough to make a mistake,” Smith said. – I do not want to wait until I turn 21 or 22, and I will understand what I want to do in life. I already know that. Now people do not want to admit who they are and what their role in life is. This is my role. ”
“I hear all this foolish thing on the radio and in the papers saying he’s making a mistake,” Landon Cox said. – Look, if the NBA clubs give him money, he should take the money.Until you find yourself in his skin, it is a good idea to close the slicer. A guy’s whole life is an endless horror movie. ”
Besides, Smith would not have been accepted into college. Due to low academic performance, university programs were practically not interested in him. At King College Prep, he was not particularly pressured and was given a certificate of maturity.
No one expected Smith to be taken in the first round. But the Mavericks decided to trade two of the second round picks for a San Antonio pick at the end of the first round and use it on Smith.Neither Don Nelson nor his son Donnie saw Smith in action. But they heard about his size and potential and feared that their rivals, the Lakers, would take him at the beginning of the second round and thus become taller, stronger and deeper.
The Mavericks asked Smith to play overseas for a year to develop. But he refused. It seemed to him that anyone who invites him to play anywhere but in the NBA is trying to take away his dream. Since he was selected in the first round, his contract was guaranteed.Dallas signed him for three years and $ 1.45 million. Doris Bauer went to the bank with him and helped him open his first account. Smith arrived in Dallas with only a bag full of dirty clothes.
The problems started from the very beginning. In one of the first training sessions, Don Nelson ordered the team to run a series of shuttles again, as one of the players did not meet the standard. “Run yourself,” Smith yelled back, took off his shirt and headed to the locker room.
Smith returned to Chicago.There, his girlfriend, also an aspiring basketball player, broke up with him. The next day he was arrested for throwing a cobblestone into the windshield of the girl’s mother’s car – the car he gave her.
Bill Peterson, the coach that Dallas had hired to work with the young talent, soon realized that Smith was struggling with the pressure. Negativity accumulated inside him, and then burst out in an unpredictable explosion. He understood that Smith was trying to do his best, but poorly understood that only efforts and meticulous work can bring him to the goal.
The pace of life in the NBA is too high. Here you cannot be overly happy about victories or worry about failures. You have to play and forget, not letting bad moments affect the rest. Peterson saw that Smith was not capable of this. A bad moment led to a bad game, a bad game to a bad mood the next day, one mistake resulted in a bad week.
Peterson tried to help Smith change everyday life. “You have to eat right,” he said. – You need to go downstairs to the restaurant or order room service.You can’t just go to the supermarket and buy all kinds of nonsense and eat it. ”
Peterson is a religious person. Everyone makes mistakes, he thought. He prayed that Smith would succeed. But he couldn’t be with him around the clock. “He’s not a child. He makes decisions on his own anyway. ”
The Mavericks felt that Smith was not ready for the NBA. When asked to play in the lower leagues, he refused. The parties came to a stalemate, and then Smith was asked to stay away from the team – he trained on his own with Peterson and other coaches.He was sent to the injured list for inventing a back injury.
The pressure was increasing in the meantime. Doris Bauer’s children visited Smith in Dallas and were amazed how many people call him from Chicago asking for money. Bauer thought she could help him keep his fortune. “Leon, I have known you since childhood,” she said. – You can trust me. Give me some of the money – I’ll save it for you. When you finish your career, you will have the money to buy yourself a house or apartment. ” But Smith refused.
Bauer ended up in Dallas in 1999 when Smith attempted suicide and swallowed 250 aspirin. She drove him his car from Chicago to Dallas – when she left the apartment, he began to behave strange, even by his standards – painted his face and was even more detached than usual. Bauer arrived at the hospital and was not allowed in for a long time. Only by showing the social worker’s card, she was able to break into his ward. Smith was crying. He underwent gastric lavage.
Everyone, even people he did not know, demanded something from him.Previously, it seemed to him that he did not have a family. Now he has too many relatives, too many people with outstretched hands. He saw that he was not allowed to play in the NBA. When the girl also left him, it was too much. “I tried to get rid of this pain,” Smith later said. “There are many ways to commit suicide, but it seemed to me that this would be the least painful, since I already hurt inside.”
Smith left two notes, one for an ex-girlfriend and one for the Nelsons.
Soon, Doris Baeur found herself prevented from seeing Smith. She says the NBA and the Mavericks have decided to shield him from outside influence. She herself saw her role exclusively in an altruistic light: “They knew that I was white. I was asked: “What do you care about this person? Why do you need him “I said:” He is one of my children. I love him from the moment I saw him as 5 years old. ” Of course, everyone believed that we were getting rich at his expense. But we didn’t get a dime. We just wanted to do what was in our power. “
Smith was admitted to a mental institution in Atlanta by the union, but he soon got into trouble again when he threatened his ex-girlfriend.
Don Nelson said Smith needs help.
Landon Cox said he was treated like trash by the Mavericks.
Nobody took responsibility.
Smith and Doris Bauer eventually rebuilt their relationship.
Smith played in the minor leagues in St. Louis, Sioux Falls and Gary. In 2002, he played 14 games for Atlanta, and in 2004 – one match for Seattle.
Jack Sikma, then assistant coach for the Sonics, says Smith showed talent but was out of touch with reality. “I’m not sure Leon felt comfortable after getting burned with people he trusted,” Sikma recalls. “At some point he just gave up.”
Smith constantly moved, finding himself in one place, then in another. Bauer occasionally heard that he was landing on the couch of one of her daughters. She last heard from Smith at Christmas a few years ago.”Since then, it has seemed to disappear,” says Bauer. “I heard that even his brother doesn’t know where he went. This is a very sad story, in my opinion. How many people get the opportunity to fulfill their dreams and get the opportunity to play in the NBA? I always asked myself: how do you feel when you huddle on a mattress today, and tomorrow you find yourself in an elite apartment? It breaks my heart that he hasn’t been successful in life. And I don’t mean that he didn’t become a millionaire. He was not reconciled with himself.
Even today, no one takes the blame for what happened to Smith.
“Dallas did nothing wrong,” explains Sonny Vaccaro. – They took him because of his abilities. No one, including me, knew that he had psychological problems. Except for his school and his coaches in Chicago, no one is responsible. This is whose fault it is. They allowed it to happen. It’s not that he went professional. This is not the point. He was allowed to play basketball at the school level … Everyone should have seen it.But nobody wanted to see it because they just wanted him to play. Don’t blame Leon Smith and say he screwed up. He did the best he could. He just shouldn’t have been in this position. He needed medical attention long before he got to camp or Dallas.
Where is now : unknown
Draft : not selected in the 2002 Draft
Team : auditioned for Seattle and Boston
NBA career: no
History: The first time Debbie Bortner met Lenny Cook, he was wearing a light jacket, although their meeting took place in the middle of winter.With gusts of wind, the already short sleeves rose to the very shoulders. Bortner soon learned other sad details of Cook’s life.
He grew up in Atlantic City and then moved with his family to a forgotten corner of Brooklyn. There, in Bashvik, his family huddled on the second floor of a wooden house not far from the cemetery. The house was heated by a stove and served as a refuge for rats. A few years later, the authorities declared it uninhabitable. Sometimes Cook was awakened by the sound of gunshots. He had to walk past prostitutes and drug dealers every day on his way to school or, more often, on his way to the park where he hung out with friends.Despite all this, Bortner liked him and seemed quite positive.
Bortner’s husband founded a successful newspaper, which was eventually bought by Rupert Murdoch. They had money and free time, so she devoted herself to children – including helping to coach her son Brian Raimondi, who played for the team in the amateur league. For amateur basketball, this was a rather unusual sight: a blonde with a ponytail ran back and forth along the side.
One day someone noticed Cook on the street and invited him to try out for the team.In training, Lenny Cook impressed everyone, although he played in boots, and soon became the leader of the team. Cook very soon became friends with Raimondi – they became inseparable, and Cook left the school, which he still did not attend, and transferred to LaSalle Academy, a private school in Manhattan. Very soon he became a star.
In the summer of 2000, Cook came to the ADCD camp as one of the best students in the country. He walked out onto the landing as if they belonged to him. He was 18 years old, more than the others, due to his study problems.He played stronger, more athletic, more powerful than his opponents. He could attack the opponent as he wanted – throw with a deflection, go into the pass, deceive and leave in the first step. Cook dominated the camp among future NBA players, including Amare Staudemire, Carmelo Anthony and his friend Joaquim Noah. They all looked into his mouth and wanted to be like him. Kobe Bryant came to that camp to take a special look at Cook. He talked to the schoolchildren – and at that moment received an offer from Cook to play one-on-one.“When you get into the league, I will cut you in every way possible,” Bryant replied.
Cook enjoyed all the preferences of a star. Whatever time of day. New York never slept, and neither did Lenny Cook. He always found a party or club where he was welcomed, opened the doors for him and let him into the world of temptations. He interacted with athletes and rappers on equal terms, as if their bank accounts were no different. “All those things that men do, I did when I was 16, 17, 18,” Cook recalls.- I stayed at the club until four or five in the morning, while everyone else was getting ready to go to school in the morning. I thought it would never end. ” The more he hung out, the less he paid attention to school – his already not brilliant grades even worsened. Cook often slept on a desk during lessons on those rare days when he attended school.
Cook says he played for amateur teams that paid him more. He considered himself a basketball hireling. Amateurs are not allowed to pay, but he was offered money, so he did not consider it necessary to refuse.“Whoever gave more, I played for those,” Cook said years later. “Riverside, Panthers, Gauchos — it doesn’t matter. They all paid me. I know that I have made mistakes, but these are also their mistakes. They didn’t have to pay the students money and give me what they gave me. All the guys – LeBron, Carmelo, Amare – had someone to help them: a coach who led them from the age of six, or a father who knew sports or played basketball. I didn’t have that. I made all the decisions with Debbie – and nine times out of ten I didn’t listen to her.It’s just bad luck. ”
“Everyone lined up to give him sneakers, clothes. Everyone did that, ”says Bortner. She believes that Cook could have succeeded if he concentrated on achieving his goal. New York can dazzle anyone, especially an impressionable teenager who hasn’t had anything until recently. Cooke, feeling the same, asked her to allow her to move to New Jersey and attend Old Tappan School. Cook’s parents were going to Virginia with their children at that time – he was worried that if he left New York, he would cease to be quoted so high.
He also needed education. Before entering high school, Cook was transferred easily every year. But at some point, the lafa ended: twice in four seasons, he remained in the second year. He himself believed that he was learning something, despite the constant absences, and only then realized that he did not come close to going to college. He thought that someday he would become a millionaire, something like Magic Johnson. At the same time, I could hardly read.
Bortner agreed.The plan was to free Cook from the city’s malign influence. Cook and Raimondi transferred to school in New Jersey. Every time Cook went to the site, he attracted so many university scouts that Bortner hoped they would notice her son too.
Tom Cachel, the sporting director of Old Tappan School, refused to believe in the transition until the moment Cook and Bortner showed up at his office. All this made the same stunning impression on Cook himself – he had talked with whites before, but never in such quantities.In the entire school, except for him, there were only five African Americans.
Cook went to school, but not often – being surrounded by students aimed at entering universities, he finally realized how hopelessly he was behind. His future was basketball. “Publicity stunt” – so he later responded from the transfer.
Bortner’s plan to have her son and Cook play together on the same team never worked. A few days after Cook was allowed to play, Raimondi broke his wrist. Cook first entered the set at the end of January 2001.Five seconds later, he scored an alley-up, and in the end he scored more points than the entire opposing team – 37:35. Cachel watched him closely. He once coached the baseball team at Rutgers University and instantly saw a real athlete. Cook was an athlete. He was so gifted that it seemed as if the defenders came across his path solely by chance. True, he was surprised when he learned that Cook had already become a father.
Attendance has doubled: the school used to sell 400 tickets for a match, now – 900.Together, 2 guards took 10 – some helped to avoid congestion on the road, others made sure that they did not get into the hall through the back door.
The party ended after 8 matches. The team was supposed to play in the playoffs, but Kevin Brentnall, the young coach, could not find Cook anywhere. Brentnall asked Cachell what to do.
“You have to keep his ass on the bench for at least a quarter, if not half, of the match,” Cachell told him. “I don’t care that the game is in a state tournament.You already understood who you are dealing with. You know how unreliable he is. You can’t sacrifice the whole team. You need to stick to your principles. ”
Cook was late for the game. Brentnall kept him on the bench in the first quarter and the team lost in overtime (63:69). On this, Cook’s school career ended – he was 19 years old, although he was just moving to the last grade.
Raimondi went to college. Cook stayed for another year. Almost every day he began to come to Brooklyn, visiting hot spots and old friends.Cook didn’t like being called “Old Tappan Lenny.” He wanted to be called “Lenny from Brooklyn.” His friends mocked him, saying that Bortner was trying to make him white. Cook listened to them. Nobody helped him honestly in life. They all had some ulterior motive. He began to think that Bortner had sheltered him solely so that he would pay her later. “Lenny, the only thing I’m worried about is green,” she told him. – Not black. Not white. Money, you need money.The Lord gave you the opportunity to play basketball, and that’s what you do. You are doing well. This is a gift. Everyone has something, you have this gift. ” Only she already had enough money. She really worried about Cook, just insisted that he follow the rules she established: which meant that you had to go to school and rarely visit the city.
Bortner returned from vacation when Cook announced to her that he would not go to school. Instead, he said, he was moving to Michigan with his friend Damani Eastman – there he would concentrate on basketball and graduate from high school.Bortner understood that this was not without the influence of the agent – Cook could not himself make such a radical decision.
Cook himself believed that by doing so he helped the family. He knew that the fact that he wasn’t playing, that he wasn’t seen, did not affect his place in the draft. Cook met an agent from Immortal Sports & Entertainment named Terrence Green at a party in New York. “I met him at the club and he asked me if I wanted him to represent me,” Cook says. “He said,“ You just have to go to the hotel tomorrow and sign a contract with us, and you’ll get a lot of money. ”And so it all passed. ”
Cook says he received $ 350,000. “This was enough for me for about a year and a half.”
Greene, a former University of Michigan coach, denies it. “When Lenny announced that he intends to become a professional, he received a loan for 30 thousand. He wanted more, but I didn’t allow it. ”
Cook was worried about leaving Bortner’s home. “It was a difficult period … I left and signed with an agent I knew nothing about,” Cook says. – I’ve been used throughout my career.He was one of those guys that was with me in Michigan. One of those guys who explained to me that this is just a business. Here you can be cheated, because that is what they did. ”
Cook tried to go to school in Flint, Michigan to get his degree. Green once worked there as a coach. Cook was refused because the school year had already begun.
“I never let anyone in my house,” Green recalls. – Never. It does not matter who it is or what his circumstances are.But Lenny wanted to start life anew – go to school, train, especially since he could no longer play basketball. And that’s what we tried to focus on: basketball and books. First of all, get a certificate, and only then think about the NBA. Greene says he hoped Cook could concentrate away from home. Instead, he looked even more absent-minded during training. “He played really bad then. And then he returned to New York. It seems to me that Lenny was very influenced by the NBA lifestyle: he hadn’t got there yet, but everyone already made it clear to him that he was already an NBA player … I fought with him because he hung out in clubs non-stop. “
In May 2002, Cook held a press conference in Brooklyn and announced that he was running for the NBA Draft.
Cook says his agent Mike Harrison assured him that he would be selected in the first round. During pre-draft camp, he suffered a right toe injury and was unable to compete in screenings. But he hoped that the team had already seen enough of him in action.
To everyone’s surprise, Cook was never taken. He played in the summer league for Boston and Seattle but was dropped.Then he went to the lower leagues. Traveled to the Philippines and China.
In 2004, Cook played for Jam at the American Basketball Association. He was riding in the passenger seat next to partner Nick Sheppard and forgot to buckle up. On the wet road, the car skidded, and they crashed into a post: the strapped-on Sheppard escaped with scratches, Cook found himself in a coma with fractures of his hip and leg. The doctors feared that the leg would have to be amputated. He underwent two hours of surgery and remained in the chair for four months.During this time, his weight has grown to 125 kilograms.
Although the doctors said that his career was over, Cook did not listen. He worked out his leg, then began to run and work on himself. As a result, he got himself in sufficient shape to return to the Philippine Championship and play there. But he no longer resembled himself. Cook could no longer walk past the defenders and instead pushed them.
His body was not adapted to play with such a weight: he soon tore his Achilles. He recovered from this injury and returned to the court again, now at the Continental Basketball Association – and tore Achilles again, now different.His career is over.
He had everything before he could appreciate it. He could appreciate it only when he lost everything. At one point, Cook was better known in New York than any Knicks or Nets player. No high school student, with the exception of Kobe Bryant, has achieved superstar status at such a young age.
Where is it now : out of work, plans to create an organization to help young athletes
Draft: picked under 26th pick in 2003 draft
NBA career: 90,020 19 games over two years, 4.5 minutes, 2.1 points
History : Eby was tall and athletic and looked like the new Kevin Garnett.Kevin McHale made the decision to pick the forward mainly after seeing how aggressively Eby defended against LeBron James in the Best School Student Game.
“I thought we could take a chance,” McHale explains. “But it turned out that he was not ready.”
Ebi rarely went to the court for two years and did not agree to play in the D-League. “You can quote me: I’m not a player who needs development,” he said in 2005. – I’ve played against NBA guys since I was 15.I don’t need development. Point”.
Since then, he has not played a single game in the NBA.
McHale originally planned to bring Eby slowly into the lineup and nurture him, just as he did with young Garnett. McHale was convinced that he had taken on a hard-working guy, but people who were close to Eby noticed that he had changed a lot after getting into the NBA.
Greg Glenn worked with Eby at school. Ebi was born in London, raised in Nigeria and came to the States as a teenager.Then, recalls Glenn, he always tried to work on himself. After training, he went to the gym, although Glenn begged him to give his body a chance to recover. Ebi carried with him a notebook in which he wrote down motivating quotes – he re-read them for inspiration. He developed very quickly as a basketball player. He agreed to continue his studies at the University of Arizona, but then changed his mind and started thinking about the NBA.
When Eby announced that he would be drafted, reporters asked Glenn for his opinion.Glenn honestly said he didn’t think Eby was ready for this. This response destroyed their relationship. “My agent told me that there will always be haters like you,” Glenn recalls Abby’s words. “I put so much time and energy into him, even love, and now I turned into a bad guy.”
Ebi was never revealed. In attack, he seemed lost, in defense he did not show any interest in what was happening. He sat on the bench with a gloomy look.
After a short stint in the NBA, Ebi played in Italy, Israel and China.
During a conversation with journalists in 2013, he was torn to pieces – on the one hand, he said that he had nothing to tell, on the other, he expressed a desire to write a book. Finally, he formulated the thoughts: “What have I learned over the years in the NBA? Do you know what I’ll tell you? The best nachos are served at the Staples Center. ”
Ebi became an example of what can happen to a player after the draft and the money that falls on him.
Flip Saunders worked with Garnett and Eby at Minnesota: “That was the difference between Garnett and Ndudi Ebi.In the desire to learn. When Garnett was young, he kept a special diary, where he wrote down everything about his rivals. Ndudi had nothing of the kind. In part, this stemmed from the fact that Kevin never believed that he had achieved something, while Ndudi Ebi, like many others, felt that someone owed them something. ”
Where now: plays in Bahrain
Draft: Picked 48th by New Orleans in 2003 Draft
Team : Washington
90,002 90,019 NBA career 90,020: 11 games in 2006/07, 5 minutes, 1.0 points, 1.0 average rebounds
History: Dr. Levan Parker first saw about half of James Lang: Lang approached the double door and tried to enter the classroom where he was conducting Bible analysis with students at Birmingham’s Central Park Christian School.We’ll have to open both halves for such a giant, he thought. But Lang opened one door and dragged his massive body inside.
Lang wasn’t just big. A huge one. Probably the biggest child Parker has ever met in her life. With a height of 2.08 cm, he weighed about 180 kilograms. He had already shown that he could excel in basketball in two years at another school, but he had problems with his studies. Wanda Harris wanted Lang to do well in school and basketball.She understood that a basketball future awaits her son. But she also understood that a sports career does not last very long. She was recommended to the Parker school by acquaintances: Parker was both the director, and the basketball coach, and the referee, and Harris decided that he would take care of her child both on the court and in the classroom.
She allowed Lang to change schools and live with someone else’s family while studying. Before leaving, she warned Parker: “Sir, I want to tell you that he needs to be closely monitored.We need to check his shoes, because he often hides candy there. ” This request caught Parker by surprise. He liked fast basketball and liked to use pressure all over the court. He tried to see if Lang could adapt to his style. He also had no intention of checking his shoes.
“You can call me Big Baby,” Lang told Parker.
“You really don’t think I’m going to call you that, do you?”
“Of course I do,” Lang replied. – I was given this nickname in kindergarten, and I am proud of it to this day.My mom says that I am a big child, and it really is. ”
Parker soon discovered that Lang was one of the nicest guys he had ever worked with. He was calm and completely innocent. Under the huge body was a child who was much younger than his age. To please his mother, Lang lost 30 kilograms over the summer before his graduation year. He still remained quite massive, sometimes it was hard for him to run, but he gave all the best in jerks. He had soft hands and could maneuver in traffic.For opponents, this turned into a disaster. University coaches began to attend Lang’s matches. Tabby Smith came from Kentucky. Then Rick Pittino from Louisville. They were followed by representatives of the NBA. Lange found out that he had the opportunity to directly enter the NBA and began to seriously think about it. He decided that this was the purpose of his life. If he could reach it faster, why put it off.
Lang knew that he had a lot of work to do on fitness, diet, basketball. If he had been picked in the first round, he would have received a three-year guaranteed contract – enough time to fully formalize.Instead, he retired in the second round to the Hornets, where they did not see him in the squad.
Lange spent half of the season on the injured list and was expelled before Christmas. He played in the minor leagues, traveled to Spain, Canada, all over the world. The Hawks and Raptors signed 10-day contracts with him, although he never showed up on the court. He was always hampered by fatigue and poor physical shape.
Players always say how important it is to keep working to the limit when it seems that you have no strength at all.Lang stopped when he felt this limit.
In November 2006 – three years after the draft – Lange made his debut for Washington. Prior to that, he missed 13 matches and appeared in the club uniform only in the annual photo. Lang hadn’t expected to be released that night against the Hawks. He was eating on the press team when someone from the coaching staff broke the news to him. Lang stopped eating and put on his uniform. He played very little – less than a minute. But his dream, although not quite in that form, came true.In the next match, Lange played almost 20 minutes, this remained a record in his career. He was expelled by the Wizards in January. Later, he admitted that he ruined his career himself – by regularly gorging on fast food before and after matches.
Lang had ghostly hopes back in 2009 when he signed with the Utah Flash of the D-League. The contract was soon terminated, according to a press release, for “medical reasons.” He weighed not so much – only 120 kilograms – but he was constantly tired.Several runs from ring to ring were exhausting him. Brad Jones, coach of The Flash, said Lang had heart problems and high blood pressure.
In November, while celebrating Thanksgiving at his grandmother’s house, Lang suffered a massive heart attack.
Where now: suffered a heart attack in 2009, paralyzed
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90,000 Members of the Spirit Lake Tribe stood up for a team with the Indian name: World: Lenta.Common crawl en
The Sioux Indians have asked not to take the Native American name from the student ice hockey team of the University of North Dakota, according to The New York Times. Team Fighting Sioux was soon threatened with renaming in the wake of the rejection of “politically incorrect” names, but representatives of the Spirit Lake Tribe – one of two Sioux associations in the state – announced that the naming of the team is highly positive.
“When you hear this name being announced before the start of a hockey game, goosebumps run on your skin,” admitted one of the enterprising Indians, Frank Black Cloud (Frank Black Cloud).“We are being glorified in this way.” Native American themes in sports team symbols and names were previously declared offensive to the indigenous peoples of the continent, and there have been many renames throughout the country. Association, NCAA)
The situation in North Dakota is now developing in the reverse standard way: Black Cloud and his associates in court demanded that the state authorities retain the old name for the university team.The process begins on Wednesday, December 9th. In addition to the name, the Indians, who claim that the planned “rebranding” will lead them to complete oblivion, are demanding that the team’s logo be preserved: an Indian head with a headdress made of feathers. In addition to hockey players, Sioux are also referred to as college football, basketball, and other sports teams.
Some judgments of the plaintiffs are considered by critics to be absurd: representatives of the Lake of Spirit, in particular, claim that representatives of outside Indian peoples and tribes envious of the Sioux are seeking to rename the team.In turn, supporters of the renaming blame Black Cloud’s comrades for self-interest: allegedly the real initiators of the lawsuit are the owners of the new hockey stadium Ralph Engelstad Arena, rebuilt for the “Fighting Sioux” with abundant use of appropriate symbols. And eight Indians who are listed as plaintiffs and hockey administrators categorically deny the validity of such assumptions.