Our business is prone to over-exaggeration: It was the best dunk ever, the worst trade ever, the sickest pair of sneakers ever, etc. We have to grab your attention and we have to get advertisers and, well, that’s just how it goes. But taking away all hyperbole and being totally straight — the NBA TV announcer calling yesterday’s Spain/Lithuania and France/Canada games at the World Championship was the WORST ANNOUNCER IN THE HISTORY OF BASKETBALL … Seriously, what soccer game did they steal this guy from? We would have been better off with Moses Malone and Darryl Dawkins on the mic. Hedo Turkoglu by himself would have been an upgrade. Someday, in Sports Hell, it’s going to be that NBA TV dude calling the games, the “Boom Goes the Dynamite” kid handling the highlights, then Skip Bayless and Jim Rome arguing about it later … Too bad, because Spain/Lithuania was actually a very good game that The Worst Announcer Ever tried his hardest to ruin. Spain was up 11 going into the fourth quarter, but Lithuania’s Jonas Maciulus sparked the comeback with back-to-back steal/dunks, one of which he crammed two-handed on Rudy Fernandez‘s dome. It was tied up with 40 seconds left before Linas Kleiza (17 pts, more grizzled than you may remember) blew past Jorge “The Matador” Garbajosa for a too-easy layup to put Lithuania up two. Marc Gasol (18 pts, 8 rebs) got fouled with 19 seconds left, but he bricked both free throws while Pau sat somewhere shaking his head. Duke alum Marty Pocius split a pair of FT’s for Lithuania, J.C. Navarro (18 pts) made a pair for Spain, and Kleiza converted his to make it a three-point game with six seconds remaining. Raul Lopez ended up with the rock trying to go coast-to-coast, and right when somebody in the Dime office said, “He needs to give it up,” Lopez tried to and had his pass deflected. Game over … Ricky Rubio finished with 3 points on 1-of-7 shooting and 2 assists in 28 minutes … Meanwhile, The Worst Announcer Ever was busy breaking the record for most PAUSE comments in one day. “He totally swallows him up!” “He throws a delicious bounce pass!” “With the softest of touches!” In between dusting off crusty catchphrases like, “Goodness me!” and “He’ll take a heave-and-hope,” he was shouting almost the entire two hours. Once when it was tied at 66-apiece, he shrieked, “It’s Route 66! Sixes everywhere!” There was also the time he hyped one player’s defense with, “He guards people,” and during a tense moment in the fourth quarter: “He’s calling a play!” … Other WC games from Day 4: Renaldo Balkman had 10 points and 13 rebounds to lead Puerto Rico past China; Kirk Penney posted 26 points on Lebanon in New Zealand’s win; Timofey Mozgov (who might start for the Knicks this year) scored 19 in Russia’s win over Ivory Coast; “Turk Nowitzki” dropped 26 points and six threes in Turkey’s win over Greece; and Nic Batum put up 24 points, 7 boards and 3 steals to lead France over Canada, while Boris Diaw made us think France should never wear all-white again. He looked like Rick Ross at the Hamptons … Team USA was off after getting a scare from Brazil, but Kevin Durant and Co. are back today (12 p.m. EST) against Iran. Stay on DimeMag.com, as we’ll be covering it via live blog. You might not wanna miss the first five minutes of this one … Of all the trade/free agency rumors swirling yesterday, the Carmelo-to-Sacramento one actually wasn’t the most ridiculous. Although we doubt the Kings would give up important pieces of their future to get ‘Melo for one year guaranteed (would you trade DeMarcus Cousins for a ‘Melo rental?), they do have the young talent and draft picks Denver covets. And hey, C-Webb grew to like Sacramento, so maybe it wouldn’t be so bad for ‘Melo … No, the craziest rumor was the one where the Spurs might sign Darius Miles. He is headed to San Antonio to work out, but do you really see the Spurs voluntarily adding D-Miles? That’s like Gucci Mane getting a guest appearance on “Family Matters” … We’re out like the heave-and-hope …
Defending world champions lose; Carmelo and Tyreke teammates?
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