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Toronto Craptors lose to Israeli team

By Daniel Strickland on October 22, 2005.

This is an old story already, but I have to say a few words about what some have seen as an apocalyptic defeat for the NBA.


The Craptors played a preseason game against Maccabi Tel Aviv, an Israeli team that has historically been dominant in the Euroleague – the second-best basketball league in the world. They have won, for example, three of the past five Euroleague championships.

Their win over the Craptors says nothing about the state of the NBA, which is still by far the best basketball league in the world. Why?

1. Losing to the Euroleague champion is not like losing to a middle-school team from Tajikistan.

2. Describing Maccabi as an “Israeli” team is an easy way for the media to hype this up to an ignorant American audience – as if the Craptors lost to a bunch of long-haired, bearded, Orthodox guys in yarmulkes. In fact, one of the stars of the team, the guy who made the winning shot, is American (as are other players on the team.)

3. The Craptors are hardly representative of the true level of play in the NBA. Hell, if it weren’t for Stern’s desire to tap into that all-important Canadian market, they would be demoted to the developmental league. If anything, the fact that the final score was so close suggests that a REAL NBA team would have destroyed them. I know the Spurs would have.

4. The NBA has almost ALL of the best international players. (A few of the better holdouts, like the Spurs’ Oh, Boy! Oberto and Sarunas Jasikevicius, joined the NBA this year.)

5. The 1978 NBA champion Washington Bullets lost to Maccabi that year. ‘Nuff said.

Having said all this, I still think the NBA champions should be called just that, and not the “world champions.” The NBA champion would have to prove it on the court to lay claim to that title.

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  1. Dingo October 23, 2005

    Stephen Colbert had a great take on this story during the premier episode of the Colbert Report. The story was #4 in his Threat (Count) Down:

    Apparently the NBA’s Toronto Raptors were beaten last night by an Israeli basketball team. So, where’s the threat?

    Well, the last time I checked, Toronto was in Canada. What’s a Canadian team doing in ourNational Basketball Association?

    I can’t believe no one has noticed this before. Shouldn’t they be playing Edmonton or Moosejaw?

    I say, let the Canadians get out of the NBA before they sully our round ball dominance, just like they did to hockey.

    Canada, you’re on notice!

  2. Bramlet Abercrombie October 23, 2005

    That was a great bit. Stephen Motherfucking Colbert is the man. Along with Jon Stewart, of course.

    And yeah, Canada, you’re on notice. One more dirty look from you moose-eating, “eh”-spouting, peace-loving wannabe-Americans, and I’ll show you what I’m all ABOOT.

    Just kidding. Canadians rock.


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