Slate’s Sports Podcast on MLB Network’s Bizarre New Knuckleball Reality Show

Slate's sports podcast.
Feb. 11 2013 5:51 PM

Hang Up and Listen: The How To Rig a Soccer Match Edition

Slate’s sports podcast on the greatness of LeBron James and Kevin Durant, soccer match-fixing, and the reality show The Next Knuckler.

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Listen to "Hang Up and Listen" with Stefan Fatsis, Josh Levin, and Mike Pesca by clicking the arrow on the audio player below:

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Hang Up and Listen is also brought to you by Audible. Get a 30-day free trial by signing up at audiblepodcast.com/hangup. Our pick of the week is  Horse Heavenby Jane Smiley.

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 hangup@slate.com.

Stefan Fatsis is the author of Word Freak and A Few Seconds of Panic, a regular guest on NPR's All Things Considered, and a panelist on Slate's sports podcast Hang Up and Listen. Email him at sfatsis9@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter.

Josh Levin is Slate's executive editor. You can email him at sportsnut@slate.com, visit his website, and follow him on Twitter.

Mike Pesca is the host of Slate’s upcoming daily podcast. He also contributes reports and commentary to NPR.