AIR055: Todd Spehr – Drazen: The Remarkable Life and Legacy of the Mozart of Basketball | Podcast

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Todd Spehr - Drazen Petrovic biographer

Drazen Petrovic biographer, Todd Spehr.

Personally, this is an extra-special episode. My great friend of almost fifteen years, Todd Spehr, just released a biography on the life and times of Drazen Petrovic. I invited another great mate of mine (and NB85 co-host), Aaron, to also chat with Todd, earlier this week.

For more than three years, Todd has been consumed with the life of Drazen Petrovic. Thanks to exhaustive research – he interviewed over 70 people – the resulting book offers comprehensive coverage of Drazen’s incredible rise from Europe to the NBA. It is a book of stories, told by those who knew Petrovic best. Drazen blazed a trail (no pun intended) and was a pioneer for Europeans in the NBA, including Sarunas MarciulionisArvydas SabonisStojko Vrankovic, Vlade Divac, Toni Kukoc, Dino Radja & Peja Stojakovic, to name just a few.

We discuss behind-the-scenes details of the book, including the interview process, the depths of Todd’s research and countless hours of game film (some, never seen before) he studied, giving him a unique insight on a player who was already a legend in his native country, before he set foot in the United States of America.

To borrow a quote from the book’s promotional materials, ‘Drazen is a tribute to the determination and spirit Petrovic brought to every aspect of his short, brilliant life’.

Watch the Google Hangout below – recorded live on April 6, 2015 – or, should you prefer the audio-only version (above, or via your podcast app of choice), you’ll hear an edited version of the conversation.

 

 

Links to topics discussed:

Amazon: Drazen – The Remarkable Life & Legacy of the Mozart of Basketball

Excerpts of ‘Drazen': Sports Illustrated | Yahoo’s Ball Don’t Lie: Part I / Part II

Website: Book of Drazen | Facebook: Todd’s FB Page | CreateSpace

 

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AIR031: Kenny Anderson – New York City royalty, NCAA legend and NBA All-Star | Podcast

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New York City royalty, NCAA legend and NBA All-Star, Kenny Anderson.

We talk about his childhood, playing basketball and how he handled the intense media spotlight in HS and college. He chats about his key role with Team USA, between his freshman and sophomore seasons at Georgia Tech. We delve into his NBA career, including the 1991 Draft, held in his native New York. Kenny talks about European legend and former teammate, Drazen Petrovic. We discuss his battles against Michael Jordan and Kenny provides ‘The Answer’, to a fan-submitted question. In 2014, Kenny is releasing a book – we chat about that, too.

Thanks to my friend and former guest on this podcast, Talani Goodson – he was instrumental in helping me connect with Kenny. Sincere thanks, Talani.

 

Links to topics discussed:

Statistics courtesy of Basketball Reference | Profile

1990 (NCAA): Anderson v HurleySE Regional Final | Georgia Tech v UNLV

1990 (FIBA World Championship): Bronze medal battle

1991 (NCAA): Kenny drops 50 | 1991: NBA Draft

1994: NBA All-Star Game | 1996: OT game-winner

2002: Celtics v Nets (ECF, Game 3)

Follow Kenny on Twitter

 

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AIR027: Reggie Lewis – The Life and Times (Retrospective) | Podcast

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Adam and Todd discuss the life of Reggie Lewis. July 27, 2013, marked the 20th anniversary of his shocking death. We talk about a life lost far too soon, plus, his lasting impact on and off the basketball court.

 

Links to topics discussed:

Statistics courtesy of Basketball Reference | Profile

Len Bias: NBA Draft | Had he lived…

Reggie Lewis: NBA Draft | 1992 Playoffs

Celtics v Hornets – 1993 NBA Playoffs (Game 1 / Game 4) | News of Lewis’ death

#35: Retirement ceremony (part 1 / part 2)

 

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AIR024: Drazen Petrovic – The Life and Times (Retrospective) | Podcast

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Adam and Todd discuss the life of Drazen Petrovic. June 7, 2013, marked the 20th anniversary of his tragic death. Todd has written a soon-to-be released book, on Drazen’s amazing life. This conversation also gives you an inside look at fascinating, untold, Petrovic stories.

 

Links to topics discussed:

Statistics courtesy of Basketball Reference | [select YT links, via Daniel]

Drazen Petrovic: Sibenka (1979-1983) | Cibona (1984-1988) | vs. Michael Jordan | Tribute

ESPN 30 for 30: Once Brothers

 

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AIR023: Retro GM 1987-1993 – Assembling our best NBA teams | Podcast

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Retro GM: NBA Draft

Adam and Todd go head-to-head, in the debut of Retro GM. We assume the role of General Manager, to assemble the best team of players from 1987-1993. We discuss our memories of each player, plus, offer up stats and NBA chatter associated with the era.

Retro GM: Guidelines (draft order, subject to change)

Once you have listened to the episode, please vote. We’d love your feedback.

 

Links to topics discussed:

Statistics courtesy of Basketball Reference

Fat Lever’s (near) quadruple-double (1988) | Tom Chambers’ huge dunk (1989)

Joe Dumars and Michael Jordan (1989)Karl Malone vs. Isiah Thomas (1991)

 

I appreciate all feedback, FB Page ‘Likes’ and iTunes ratings / reviews.

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AIR010: 1993 NBA season – complete recap | Podcast

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Chicago Bulls

Adam and Aaron recap the 1993 NBA season.

Our conversation covers the whole season – we discuss best / worst team records, all major award winners and notable retirees – plus, two tragic deaths that rocked the NBA. We also chat unique jersey numbers, fake player nicknames (for possibly the first and last time) and of course, the 1993 Playoffs – culminating with Jordan v Barkley in the 1993 NBA Finals.

 

Links to topics discussed:

1993 NBA Season Summary | Johnny ‘Red’ Kerr / Adam Howes (curator)

Retirees: Bernard King / Kevin McHale | Deaths: Drazen Petrovic / Reggie Lewis

 

I appreciate all feedback, FB Page ‘Likes’ and iTunes ratings / reviews.

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Feedback: e-mail (audio welcome) | Voicemail