Hit by a Pitch

Lithuanian Hoops in the Olympics

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I’m kind of on sports overload right now. There’s been SO MUCH going on — I’ve spent the last few evenings stuck to the couch watching Olympics on two channels, one or two baseball games, and the occasional football.

Because of this madness, it took me a few days to watch the Lithuania/Russia basketball game I recorded. I finished watching it yesterday. Unfortunately, and I know they’re Lithuania’s best chance at Olympic greatness (so far, we have one bronze, won by wrestler Mindaugas Mizgaitis), I just wasn’t that impressed.

The guys just looked messy out there. They have only one NBA player (Linas Kleiza); they were supposed to have two additional NBA players on the roster. However, the Cleveland Cavaliers denied Zydrunas Ilgauskas permission to play, and Darius Songaila is out due to injury.

Here’s the whole roster (with links to each player’s official Olympics page):

Simas Jasaitis (G/F)
Šarūnas Jasikevičius* (PG)
Robertas Javtokas (C)
Rimantas Kaukėnas (PG)
Linas Kleiza (F)
Darjuš Lavrinovič** (C)
Kšyštof Lavrinovič** (F/C)
Mindaugas Lukauskis (SG)
Jonas Mačiulis (SF)
Marijonas Petravičius (F/C)
Marius Prekevičius (G)
Ramūnas Šiškauskas (G/F)
Head Coach: Ramūnas Butautas
Assistant Coaches: Rimas Kurtinaitis, Robertas Kuncaitis, Virginijus Mikalauskas

The team page is here.

On the plus side, I absolutely love the fiery Šarūnas Jasikevičius. He’s always yelling at everybody. Like A.J. Pierzynski, he’s the kind of guy you love if he’s on your team and hate if he isn’t.

I’m not delusional (most of the time), so I’m not going to say that there’s any chance in hell these guys beat the USA. However, even though they didn’t impress me in the game against Russia, I’m an optimist and I think they could medal. They beat Argentina (thanks to some late-game heroics from my guy Linas Kleiza) and they’ve only lost once (a pounding at the hands of Australia, WTF). Their next game is in the wee hours of Wednesday morning, a quarterfinal against China. I think they can win that one. Sėkmės!

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*The thing over the “c” in Jasikevičius is called a caron (sorry if you already knew that — I didn’t). The letter “č” is pronounced like ch. My last name has a č, which means the pronunciation makes sense, although I’ve never seen anybody but a hard-core Lugan use the caron.

**Twins!

Written by Tracy

August 18th, 2008 at 9:53 pm

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  1. http://nbainsidestuff.wordpress.com/2008/08/19/the-olympic-basketball-schedule-medal-round/
    They will beat China. Unless they get upseted by Yao Ming. Otherwise, then they will lose to Spain.

    Zydrunas Ilgauskas didn’t play in the last olympics 04 either. I think Zydrunas Ilgauskas doesn’t want to play for Lithuania anymore. Or maybe hes retired.

    Travis Outlaw

    19 Aug 08 at 12:52 pm

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