The 2013-14 NBA season is finally upon us and it’s hard to recall any in recent memory that have so many sub-plots and stories gestating from coast to coast. Usually the spotlight shines on a few teams who are deemed favorites at this time of year, but this season is different.
It seems that everywhere you look, there’s a team (or player) with a point to prove in the 2013-14 campaign:
In South Beach LeBron James and company want to prove they can join the all-time greats by winning a third straight title for the Miami Heat. After all, when you say three-peat, you think of the Shaq/Kobe LA Lakers and the Jordan/Pippen Chicago Bulls. Make no mistake that James is yearning to join that elite list and seems to have the team to deliver. FULL POST
There aren’t many four-time Formula One world champions to speak of. In terms of scarcity they’re up there with hen’s teeth, tires that last a whole race and single-dollar bills in Bernie Ecclestone’s wallet.
Of the hundreds of drivers who have pitted their wits in one of the world’s top motorsport divisions since 1950, only four have sealed a quadruple of titles: Juan Manuel Fangio, Michael Schumacher, Alain Prost and Sebastian Vettel.
Vettel entered this elite club with his win in India on Sunday and, for once, topped the podium to cheers rather than the boos that have become all too regular for the young German this season.
Speaking to reporters after the race the man from Heppenheim said: "It's very difficult for me personally, to receive boos, even though you haven't done anything wrong.
The hoardings are up, circuit lines freshly painted and the desert dust wiped off the greenery and grandstands.
The Buddh International Circuit in the outskirts of New Delhi is all set for the third Indian Grand Prix this weekend when the country will play host to a flashy mix of marketing glitz, technological wizardry and glamor.
But this year, the excitement is being eclipsed by speculation this could be the last grand prix in India, at least for now.
They say that "time waits for no man" – except perhaps if you’re a fan of American sports. The United States is the land of opportunity, and on the basketball courts and the playing fields here it represents an opportunity to freeze the clock and make the action last quite a bit longer.
I love most sports, and the ballgames across the pond from my native Britain are no different. But I do so wish they’d hurry up. Football – the one they play with their hands – lasts exactly 60 minutes on the clock but it takes over three hours from start to finish. Basketball is a game of four equal quarters and it should take just 48 minutes, but an average NBA contest lasts three times that – two hours and a quarter. FULL POST
In 1947, Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in American sport when he took the field for the Brooklyn Dodgers as the first African American to play in the formerly all-white baseball league.
Seven decades later, even though the racial tensions are nowhere near what they were when Robinson made history, one of the United States’ most storied sporting franchises still clings to a term many critics argue supports racial intolerance.
The NFL’s Washington Redskins have carried their name since 1933, when they were the Boston Redskins. When the football team moved to the capital four years later, they brought the name with them and have held it ever since. FULL POST
While Italian football club Internazionale acquired new owners last week, there were also profound changes going on at city rival AC Milan.
The club that has won the Italian league 18 times and the European Champions League seven times is rethinking its youth structure’s organization - in future, Milan officials hope to tap in to the power of the brain.
For cerebral help, they have turned to a couple of Belgians - former Standard Liege coach Jose Riga and pioneering youth coach Michel Bruyninckx - to help influence the way the club develops its young players.
Milan has long had a reputation as a club that leaves nothing to chance in the pursuit of excellence. This after all is the team with its very own science establishment - the MilanLab - which it describes as a “high tech interdisciplinary scientific research center” to provide “the best possible management of individual well being and health” for its players. FULL POST
Derided, mocked and supposedly needing life resuscitation, reports of the Women’s Basketball Association’s demise have been greatly exaggerated.
Far from it - the WBNA's is marketing its upcoming season with the slogan "Expect Great." It's a campaign that reflects the WBNA's growing confidence despite some of the jokes about the league: "Expect Great...Seats to Be Available."
Founded in 1996, all too often people have associated the WBNA with the "Family Guy" clip in which they show a game, and then cut to a sole fan in the stands rooting on his team. FULL POST
Trust the English to be level-headed and rational in their response to qualifying for the 2014 World Cup. Well, not quite ...
Known for its population of the stiff upper-lipped and emotionally aloof, England’s green and pleasant land is also home to a gaggle of hacks who seemingly lead the world in their habit for hyperbole.
Ok, so the football team are perennial underachievers; glory on the pitch has not been in abundance. In fact, the side of the self-dubbed 'Home of football' has a track record for success that would give IBM a run for it’s money.
Having invented the damn thing the nation has since endured every competitor under the sun reshaping the product into a new form that betters the original: the Spanish, with their Apple-like aesthetic, the Germans, who produce consistent year-on-year success growth like Hewlett Packard, and then there’s Lenovo ... (add further PC-based metaphors here). FULL POST