It's easy, and not necessarily incorrect, to see the America's Cup as an unwitting self-satire on its vain, wealthy participants and the Bay Area they've made. But everything looks different from the water.
Antonio Gramsci can tell us more about the slippery, difficult business of building a basketball team than you might expect. Although most of it is about what we -- and NBA general managers -- don't know.
Cycling has been a defiantly, narrowly European sport for a long time. That's changing, as of course it would and should, thanks to a crop of promising new riders from South America and Africa. It's not at all clear how ready cycling is for that, but change is coming all the same.
Nairo Quintana is the second-youngest rider and only South American in the peloton at the Tour de France. He's also the race's most fascinating unknown, and the closest thing cycling has to the paradigm-smashing multidimensional weirdness of Russell Westbrook.
All basketball players work in the same medium, with something like the same tools. This doesn't mean they're all the same type of artist, though. We know the greatest players not just by the new things they create, but by how they create them.