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In this week’s episode of Slate’s sports podcast Hang Up and Listen, Stefan Fatsis, Josh Levin, and Mike Pesca discuss LeBron James’ and Kevin Durant’s historic seasons and how the NBA’s best two players keep getting better. Next, they examine soccer’s wide-ranging match-fixing scandal and the masterminds behind the complex scheme. Finally, they review MLB Network’s new reality TV series The Next Knuckler.
Here are links to some of the articles and other items mentioned on the show:
LeBron James scored 32 points on 18 field goal attempts in the Heat’s victory over the Lakers on Sunday.
Grantland’s Zach Lowe says Kevin Durant is having “one of the greatest offensive seasons in the history of basketball.”
ESPN’s Tom Haberstroh breaks down James’ last 65 shots.
Durant struggled with shot selection in his first two seasons as a pro.
Kirk Goldsberry’s Grantland story on the evolution of Durant’s offensive game.
The infamous “Boom Goes the Dynamite” video.
A massive international match-fixing scandal has shaken the soccer world.
Grantland’s Brian Phillips on why soccer is in trouble.
Stefan discusses the scandal’s implications on NPR’s All Things Considered.
Brett Forrest’s 2011 ESPN the Magazine story on “a globe-trotting fixer” named Wilson Raj Perumal and Forrest’s follow-up from Friday.
The Guardian’s Jonathan Wilson writes about the scandal’s impact on soccer in South Africa.
Excerpts from Declan Hill’s 2008 book, The Fix: Soccer and Organized Crime.
A trailer for MLB Network’s reality series The Next Knuckler.
The Arizona Diamondbacks will invite the winner of the reality show to spring training.
The Wikipedia entry for the Indian reality show Million Dollar Arm.
Hang Up and Listen’s weekly Phelans:
Mike’s Phelan: If Joe Flacco came off the sidelines to tackle Ted Ginn Jr. on the final play of the Super Bowl, he would have committed a “palpably unfair act.”
Stefan’s Phelan: On the death of Chargers guard Walt Sweeney, and how the NFL is taking the same stance with concussions as it did with “speed” in the 1970s.
Josh’s Phelan: Rick Barry’s son Canyon is carrying on the family’s underhand free-throw tradition. There’s only one problem: his baggy shorts.
Podcast production and edit by Mike Vuolo. Our intern is Eric Goldwein.
You can e-mail us at email@example.com.