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    November 19, 2013

    Off the Rim - The Best Ever

    By Hoops

    This week, I would like to open the discussion of who might be the best players to ever play in Manitoba. Although we will never actually know, I wonder how players like Carl Ridd, supposedly one of the best ever, and the first Manitoban to be offered an NBA contract, would do against some of today's best? In addition, how would some of the top teams from our past fare against teams from 2013? I think we would all agree that the game has changed. It is more athletic and played faster that it was in the past. However, are the skills of today's players better also? I'm not so sure.

    The game today seems to often focus more on the individual rather than team play which could be attributed to the 24 second shot clock and the 3-point line, neither of which were a part of the game in much of the past. It also appears that today's players seem to sometimes be more concerned with making the "highlight reel" move rather than learning how to play within a team concept. The media probably plays a role in this as it seems to always focus on the great individual move in their game highlights.

    So who are our best ever? I did some non-scientific polling surveying eight people who have been around a lot longer that I have, including Ross Wedlake, the President of Basketball Manitoba and the Chair of our Manitoba Basketball Hall of Fame who graciously allowed me to mention his name so that I might hopefully increase my admittedly very limited credibility, added my own research, and here it is, in no specific order, my all-time born-in-Manitoba teams.

    Let the debate begin!  Who am I missing?  Add your comments below.  

    • Carl Ridd
    • Martin Riley
    • Todd MacCulloch
    • Ken Opalko
    • Joey Vickery
    Honourable Mention 
    • Fred Ingaldson
    • Bob Town

    • Sandra Carroll
    • Beth Cochran
    • Angie (Johnson) Straub
    • T.L. Johannesson
    • Leslie (Hamerton) Divers
    Honourable Mention
    • Pat (Pisnook) Boland
    • Gail (Winston) Kendall

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    1. I'm not sure we're solving the "highlight reel" mentality of this current generation by including players who didn't care much about defense on these lists of MB all-time teams.

    2. Jeff Foreman deserves mention.
      Also, the best from the last 20 years was Ian Milne for sure

    3. What about Erfan Nasajpour, for a guy his size, dominated the game.

    4. Chris Dyck - who played his best Basketball at UBC and the National team but is from Winnipeg as well as Erfan Nasajpour should be in the discussion

    5. While all three of those guys mentioned above (Foreman, Erf, Dyck) are accomplished players and worthy of mention, they aren't really in the same category as some of the guys mentioned in the article. Foreman has the most impressive resume out of the three and might be worthy of considering for the all-time team. Erfan was always fun to watch and I still think what Chris Dyck accomplished in his senior season at River East was incredible, but their success has been limited to being very good CIS players. Dyck nearly won a national championship (transferring to UBC was probably the best decision he ever made) and he was part of the National Team program, but I believe his participation was limited to being on one of the lower-level teams. Erf had a roller-coaster CIS-career, but he was stuck on a program that never found success.

      Meanwhile, most of the guys mentioned on the list in the article had extended success at the high school, CIS, and national level. There's one name on the list that I think is rather suspect, and I might consider replacing with Foreman or Dyck, but it's tough to argue with the resumes of 3 or 4 of those guys.


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    Item Reviewed: Off the Rim - The Best Ever Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Adam Wedlake
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