Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

The colors of Italy and unity towards the Fiba 3x3 World Cup championship

The colors of Italy and unity towards the Fiba 3x3 World Cup championship
by rick olivares

Remember the slogan of Italian clothing brand, “The United Colors of Benneton”?

Well, this Italian Women’s 3x3 Basketball Team can claim close to the same.

En route to the 2018 Fiba 3x3 World Cup gold medal, the Italian not only painted the town red (largely due to pint-sized dynamo Rae Lin D’Alie’s exciting and “puso” type of play), but they also painted their fingernails with every achievement they made in the tournament.

“It was a sign of unity and a way to have fun,” explained Marcella Filippi who hit the match winning trey, 15-13, over top seed China to enter the finals of the women’s division.

“There’s a lot of pressure in a competition like this,” said the Wisconsin-born D’Alie of the Italian’s unique way of coping with the pressure. “We felt that it was an easy, natural, and fun thing to do which is to paint our fingernails and look good while playing.”

“We’re came in ranked eighth which might seem lofty but it isn’t to be honest,” said the Wisconsin-born D’Alie during the press conference that kicked off the five-day tournament from June 8-12 at the Philippine Arena. “We’ll just go out and give it our best.”

And the best they gave. In nine games in seven days, they won six matches. And with every hurdle, the fingernail paint came on.

“We started with the red (on the pointer finger) for the first day of the competition and we won both games (22-9 over Malaysia and 22-10 over Turkmenistan),” explained Filippi of the process.

On the second day, which was actually a rest day between elimination games, the Italian women put the white color.

By the third day, the color green was painted on the fingernail of the ring finger (Italy crushed Indonesia 19-5 but lost to the Czech Republic 21-20) to signify making the quarterfinals.”

The color blue was painted on the thumbnail after the team made the quarterfinals where they beat erstwhile undefeated USA, 17-14.

Another shade of blue was applied on the pinky after Italy sent China packing in the semi-finals, 15-13, to make the semi-finals.

Any more colors after they defeated defending champions Russia in the finals, 16-12?

“Oh, there’s no need,” summed up Filippi. Then brandishing the medal around her neck, “We got the gold.”

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