Thursday, August 21st, 2008 at 3:32 pm  |  51 responses

Links: The Etymology Of A Redeem

Also, introducing no. 17, Dwight Howard?

by Lang Whitaker

We’re less than 24 hours away from the big USA/Argentina game, with the winner advancing to the gold medal game. (And check back here in the morning to talk about the game live.) Talk about a shot at redemption: It was USA vs. Argentina in the quarterfinals in 2004 when Team USA got knocked out of the tournament.

Reee-wind! Actually, speaking of redemption, we got an email last week with some interesting news…

To whom it may concern,

My name is Rhys Anderton and I am a long time SLAM reader…….I hate it when people boast in Trash Talk but have to mention I have every issue except LJ’s no. 1 and Chamique in the Knicks jersey. Not bad for a 26 year Australian in the most isolated city in the world, Perth.

The reason I am writing is I need confirmation that the term “Redeem Team” was derived from right in little ol’ Perth, Australia.

When I was at college (we call it uni ‘Down Under’), one of the highlights of my day was to read Lang’s links every morning. Lang ran a comp on-line after the US lost in the 2002 World Champs in Indianapolis along the lines of finding a new name for the Dream Team as they could no longer be called that. I submitted Redeem Team and Lang published my name on-line and has used it ever since.

I had originally saved the Links page as a screen shot but my parents upgraded their computer and it was lost into cyberspace forever.

Is there anyway (ANYWAY AT ALL!) that we could find that particular page? If it helps, it was the old school Links page where Lang put all the links on the one page and did a brief recap around the League from the day before. I would say it was late 2002 early 2003.

Your most loyal Australian SLAM subscriber,

Rhys Anderton

Well, I went back and went digging through The Links, and sure enough, look what I found.

This is from The Links on August 6, 2004…

Yesterday I asked you guys to send in any ideas for a new name for the Dream Team, and we got a bunch of responses. Most people suggested The Cream Team, which is what we used in SLAM a few years ago when we did an article about how they should put Iverson and Marbury and those guys on the team. I don’t like that game so much right now because the Wu-Tang is kind of in hibernation, and the name can sound a little bit, uh, perverted. In other ideas…

Tommy Patron writes…
To replace the term “Dream Team”, there are several directions you could go in.
1) Derogatory — Pipe Dream Team, Media Hype Squad, Bling Team, No Shot in Hell, Sleep Team, or simply Bad Dream Team.
2) Accurately Descriptive — The Square Pegs, Same Player-Different Positions, Green Team, Players who will never be in the Three Point Competition, Zoned Out, The Line of Succession.
3) Tangential — The Wean Team, The Second Choices, My (Our) Non-Three Sons.

Rhys writes…
G’day Lang. Just a quick one about what Team USA should be called. Ever since they lost the World Champs, my mate has been calling them the “Redeem Team.” What do ya reckon?

Austin writes…
- Dream Individuals
- Bronze Bombers
- That Dream Where You’re On Stage In Nothing But Your Underwear Team
- Dream (Deferred) Team
- The Eastern Conference All Star team
- All-NBA 5th Team
These suck but I don’t care.

Blake writes…
How about:
- The Second Stringers
- The Third Alternates
- The Carmelo Should Have Been Picked Over Dwyane Wade’ers
- Where’s Shaq?
- Dream Team My Ass!
- The Scream Team
- The We’re Better Than Two Years Ago at the World Championship Team
- We Lost to Italy
- At Least We’re Not Coached by Del Harris
- AI’s nightmare
- Even Oympians Don’t Go to High School
- The Last Year Before Free Agency Squad

So, I’m thinking we’ll go with the Redeem Team. Has a good ring to it, and it’s not as suggestive as the Cream Team.

And so yes, Rhys, it does appear that you (and, in turn, SLAMonline) coined the phrase “Redeem Team.” I am willing to accept, however, that it may have been used elsewhere first. If anyone else can find evidence of Redeem Team being used in the media by anyone else prior to August 6, 2004, please send in the evidence. Otherwise, SLAM wins again. We shoulda trademarked that ish.

• In other Redeem Team news, Ryne and I went by McDonald’s the other day, and I received a commemorative Dwight Howard bag. But at what point did Dwight wear number 17? I don’t think you’re even allowed to wear numbers higher than 15 in International play, are you?

• Khalid passed along this link the other day, which purports that the frozen Bigfoot found in Georgia a few weeks ago was actually just a Halloween costume. But as I told Khalid, that story comes from Fox News, and we all know that means.

As for me, I still believe. I’m not sure why everyone’s so quick to write Bigfoot off a hoax. Why can’t there be 8 foot tall half-man/half-ape creatures running around the mountains just an hour outside of Atlanta?

• Here’s a great interview with the official illustrator of The Links, Joel Kimmel.

• For SI.com today I did my top five television sports theme songs. You can probably guess what’s number one.

• Back to the Olympics…here’s the top 20 Olympic gymnastics falls (via gawker). Number 16 is my fave…

• And finally, shouts out to Sho Nuff!

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  • http://slamonline.com Lang Whitaker


  • http://www.shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    Oh man, I’ve been crying since I hit play on that, Lang. 10, 6 and 1 are fantastic!

  • Pic

    oh boy that dude in number 2 got it bad

  • http://my.nba.com/forum.jspa?forumID=5800006278 John Schuhmann


    Aug. 3, 2006. State Farm Challenge vs. Puerto Rico. Roster hadn’t been trimmed down yet.

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com/ TADOne

    #4 got it bad too. That made my week.

  • http://www.neworleansnation.blogspot.com Toney Blare

    Apparently the hoax mastermind originally announced that, “Everyone who has talked down to us is going to eat their words.” Yeah, he sure showed them.

  • http://myspace.com Bryan

    Damn I can’t watch videos

  • http://www.shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    Shia, I’ll give you a quick heads up…..imagine how awful you look in your basketball videos and multiply that uncoordination by 50%. Yep, there you have it.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Khalid Salaam

    Its funny more than anything. But common sense tells us that biologically and enviromentally speaking there is no way that a primate the size bigfoot is purported to be can exist in present day america or anywhere for that matter. seriously…..gymnastics is the sh*t. Can i give a shout out to the gold medal winning Shawn Johnson. With her, phelps, bolt and the redeem team this has been one helluva olympics.

  • http://www.shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    Khalid, no love for Mist May and Kerry Walsh, the Jordan and Pippen of beach volleyball?

  • http://www.liveddb.com DDB

    Is that Dwight Howard in a US practice uni?? They have all those crazy #’s

  • http://joeloholic.wordpress.com Joel O’s

    #1 was great only that that girl kept getting up. Maybe this was where “fall down seven times, get up eight” came from. Poor kid showed a lot of heart, though it looks like she messed up her back pretty bad.

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com/ TADOne

    I think it’s hilarious how Lang and Khalid go back-and-forth about whether or not Bigfoot exist.

  • H to the Izzo

    #3 is unwatchable.

  • http://joeloholic.wordpress.com Joel O’s

    As for the #2 dude… look at his body language, hah, he looks like he really froze up during the run up to the ramp. I’ve seen that look many times with my mates when they run up to clear the wall obstacle during our standard obstacle course training… it’s priceless.

  • H to the Izzo

    More evidence that Gymnastics is a horrible sport.

  • Pascal

    Khalid, you mean Nastia Liukin, the Olympic champion in the all-around (it’s the most important title for a gymnast) or are you hating on the girl cause she was born in Russia?

  • http://myspace.com Bryan

    Eboy: d*ck. Bigfoot doesn’t exist and he damn sure doesn’t exist in ga.

  • http://www.shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    No obligatory fuc*er? I’m surprised, Shia.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    @DOB: That’s what I thought. But, upon closer inspection of my McDonald’s bag, it was a legit uniform.

  • http://slamonline.com Lang Whitaker

    Bigfoot exists.

  • H to the Izzo

    Bigfoot=unshaven Phil Collins.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Khalid Salaam

    i don’t like nastia liukin. something shady/fake about her..

  • Pascal

    Aw man come on. Sure she doesn’t have Shawn’s smile but girl was amazing…

  • http://www.slamonline.com Khalid Salaam

    yeah but she was either good or bad, while shawn was consistently good. she never played herself. plus i don’t like nastia’s dad

  • http://slamonline.com Lang Whitaker

    I bet Bigfoot would’ve medaled.

  • B. Long

    @Khalid: Something about Nastia’s Dad makes me think her mother drinks alot. Just saying…

  • http://www.alllooksame.com Tarzan Cooper

    bigfoot is indeed real

  • http://myspace.com/bodiebarnett jbn74sb

    Epic gymnastics video. Thankfully, the chinese women’s (er, girls’) team has an average age of about 11, and their bodies are still at least 80% cartilage. So at least they won’t get hurt.

  • http://myspace.com/bodiebarnett jbn74sb

    As for those in the Bigfoot doesn’t exist camp: Have you seen Chris Kaman? (I was going to ask if you’ve seen eboy’s wife, but that just seemed too cruel)

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    The one where the girl flew off the uneven bars and flipped across the mat was hilarious. It was like a cartoon.

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp

    Maybe you don’t like Liukin cause she has a forehead the size of russia. That Shawn Johnson girl has a range rover or land rover at 16. I have to hate on her just off GP.

  • http://www.ravingblacklunatic.blogspot.com Allenp
  • http://www.DreAllDay.com Dre Baldwin

    When will you do another live blog with user comments and such? The gold medal game will be @ 2AM EST… Won’t be overcrowded.

  • Lz – Cphfinest3

    That video was probably the best vid SLAM has ever posted. Also big foot exists, Bill Wennington was a neatly shaven bigfoot.

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com/ RV

    Its difficult to reach out and try to break your fall during gymnastics since they have their arms tucked in sometimes….but some of these gymnasts just said “f*ck no I’m not hurting my hands, I’ll just let my face get smashed in.”

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com/ RV

    and if Ron Artest was stuck in the woods somewhere, would he rather be stuck with Matt Harpring or David Stern?

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com/ RV

    and is anyone else pissed the relay teams can’t hold a damn baton??

  • Pascal

    LIUKIN WAS GOOD OR BAD? 1 GOLD MEDAL, 3 silver Medals, 1 Bronze. It’s way better than Shawn Johnson, Khalid…

  • Jackie Moon

    “Who’s the MASTER???!!!”

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com Hursty

    Not really RV. Its a warped form of Karma for the USA. Win basketball= lose athletics. Blame China.

  • niQ

    #2 was the best.. i literally “laughed out loud” and re-watched it so many times..hahaha

  • Darryl

    I would just like to say that I am the other huge fan of Slam in Perth, Australia. I actually did own ish # 1 at one stage but I’m buggered if i know where it is now.

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com/ RV

    Hursty, finished a piece on Artest yesterday on the blog, look at the video too

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com/ RV

    Today was a bad day all around for the U.S. they got some silver and bronze medals to boost up their total, but the opportunities for gold were all blown, softball, both relays, and taekwondo (twice). Only the women’s soccer team came through.

  • Jackie Moon

    This just in: ESPN’s Chris Sheridan says that he coined the term “Redeem Team” first … I kid.

  • http://my.nba.com/forum.jspa?forumID=5800006278 John Schuhmann

    Poor Theresa Kulikowski, the only one with her name attached to her faceplant.

    I remember the second to last one on Warner Wolf back in the day.

    Look above for answer on Dwight’s uni.

  • http://idunkonthem.blogspot.com/ albie1kenobi

    what channel is the USA/argentina game on? USA or NBC???

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com/ RV

    albie, NBC, its on tape delay, once all the morning news shows are over, which is 10 central i believe

  • Jackie Moon

    Live blog, please

  • J-O

    whatttttttt a link from espn to here ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh