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Monday, April 20, 2009

TNT Playoff Introduction: Game of Kings

TNT opened their coverage of the 2009 NBA playoffs with a great chess-themed video featuring top NBA stars, culminating with a showdown between the sport's top grandmasters, LeBron James and Kobe Bryant:



In the middle of last season I expressed the hope that the two players who are the The Best the Game Offers would face each other in the NBA Finals; at that time, I felt that Bryant had a slight edge over James as the NBA's best player, whereas this season I believe that James demonstrated a slight edge over Bryant. There could be nothing better for a true basketball fan or a true student of the history of the game than to see these two special players battle for the championship while they are both at the height of their powers.

I have explored various connections between chess and basketball in several articles:

Basketball, Chess and Boxing

Basketball, Chess and Boxing, Part II

Chess and Basketball

Sadly, some people in the basketball writing world lack the necessary talent to come up with original thoughts and the character to properly attribute ideas to their creators--Hoop Magazine liked my take about basketball and chess so much that editor Ming Wong blatantly and shamelessly ripped off my work, as I pointed out in this post:

Hoop Magazine "Discovers" Connections Between Basketball and Chess

In contrast to Hoop Magazine's pathetic move, TNT's video is a nice concept that is very well executed and can really be thought about/perceived at many different levels, so I tip my hat to whoever at TNT came up with the idea.

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posted by David Friedman @ 6:02 AM

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