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Tag Archives: Shanghai Dongfang Sharks

Friday Night Chuanr

June 29, 2013



Nighttime links served up proper with a hearty helping of lamb on a stick. The beer is on you, though.


  • The FIBA World U-19 Championship is underway in Prague, Czech Republic. The Chinese, headlined by Zhou Qi and Gao Shang, two guys NiuBBall readers should be familiar with, are participating. Rafael Uehara has a fantastic preview over at The Basketball Post, for those interested.
  • According to Chinese reports, the Beijing Ducks have officially re-signed Randolph Morris for another season. If you haven’t already, check out my reaction on One World Sports.
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NiuBBall Classics: Shanghai Sharks vs. Bayi Rockets, November 2001

June 26, 2013

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If Forrest Gump was Chinese and living in 2013, he’d probably say something like this: Life is kind of like flipping around Chinese television at 3am… You never know what you’re going to get.

So when we came across 重温经曲振兴大球, a late-night program on CCTV-5 that shows classic games from Chinese sports history, we stopped flipping. (Don’t worry, it was on a weekend.) The game? A throwback of throwbacks — the Yao Ming-led Shanghai Sharks vs. the Wang Zhizhi juggernaut Bayi Rockets from 2001. We were so pumped, we decided to live blog it. Enjoy.


We’re immediately greeted by a really crappy intro vid that is quickly followed up by a deep-voiced voice over whose Chinese pronunciation is so perfectly crystal clear my television screen is turning see-through. This guy will be called Brother Voice Over from now on.

As Brother Voice Over informs us, when Yao Ming and Wang Zhizhi first met on a basketball court in 1997, it was perhaps in the most Chinese way possible: At the National Games. Yao, playing in his first senior level competition for his hometown Shanghai squad, scored 13 points, while Wang had 19 for the People’s Liberation Army, who won the game.

Three years later in 2000, Yao had turned into a dominant force in the Chinese Basketball Association for the Sharks, leading his squad all the way to the league finals for the first time in club history. But in his way was the familiar Army team, the Bayi Rockets, and their smooth shooting center, Wang. Yao and the Sharks would lose handily to the Rockets, who were still in the midst of a dominant run of championships.

But on November 18, 2001, Yao would have his chance for revenge as his Sharks travelled to Ningbo, Zhejiang to play the Rockets in the CBA season opener. And that’s where we pick up the action.


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Lost and Found: Shanghai Sharks recover misplaced championship trophy

June 11, 2013



Shanghai does not do logical, particularly its basketball team, the Sharks.  So it will be no surprise then to learn that the Sharks, the hometown team of one of China’s most iconic athletes, Yao Ming, recently lost their 2002 CBA championship trophy and its accompanying net, which was cut down after the decisive game four of the series against the Bayi Rockets.

The discovery was only made a couple of weeks ago as the Sharks’ front office started to move parts of its administration team to a new location. After not finding the trophy anywhere in their office, the team quickly established theft as the most likely cause. Yao, who lead the team to the team’s first and only championship that year, was said to be upset about the disappearance.

However, the panic soon turned out to be a false alarm. The trophy and the net were eventually found and soon afterwards, Larry Zhang, the Sharks’ amiable chief press officer posted a photo of the rediscovered trophy and the net on his Weibo account. Turns out, however, that the trophy and net wasn’t stolen — instead, it was sitting in some random room elsewhere in the city for the last four years.


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Shanghai Sharks announce Wang Qun has head coach; re-sign Max Zhang

May 16, 2013



Things are going to be a lot different in Shanghai next season.

Last Friday, the Sharks held a press conference to announce a combination of decisions that will have a huge impact on the club’s short-term and long-term direction: the appointment of Wang Qun as head coach, and the re-signing of “Max” Zhang Zhaoxu.

Wang, who has had a long history with the Sharks and owner Yao Ming, will become the first official Chinese head coach since Yao took control over the club in 2009. He had been serving in an interim role after American Dan Pannagio was fired mid-season last year.


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Zhang Zhaoxu… CBA’s highest paid Chinese player?

April 22, 2013



How many Subway footlongs could 8 million RMB buy? Depends on if you’re eating the Sub of the Day, but the answer is a lot.

Is “Max” Zhang Zhaoxu on his way to becoming Chinese basketball’s first eight million RMB man?

Could be, according to several recent reports. The Shanghai Sharks 7’3 center is reportedly being offered big money from both the Beijing Ducks and the Xinjiang Flying Tigers.

Last Thursday, Sina Sports, citing an unnamed source, reported that the Ducks are poised to offer a multi-year deal worth CNY 5 million anually (US $808,767) plus a Beijing hukou, while the Tigers will go as high as 8 million ($1,294,027) to get Zhang’s signature.


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The Boston Celtics are building a CBA All-Star Team

March 3, 2013


(Photo: Boston Herald via Red's Army)

(Photo: Boston Herald via Red’s Army)

For NBA fans who have always pined to see the Chinese Basketball Association, but have few if any opportunities to watch it outside of China, you’re in luck: The Boston Celtics have signed most of the league’s foreign player population to their NBA roster over the last week.

China-to-Boston speculation was rife in Celtics-land after Doc Rivers was quoted last month saying the team was looking at signing a player out of the CBA when its season ended. Turns out, they were looking at several players. After signing Terrence Williams to a 10-day contract, who played most of the season with the first-place Guangdong Southern Tigers before being replaced by Donald Sloan just before the post-season, the Celtics have followed up by signing D.J. White (Shanghai Sharks) and Shavlik Randolph (Foshan Long Lions) to two other 10-days.

While it’s a little surprising that one team has signed three players with Chinese experience this season, the fact that teams are looking across the Pacific Ocean for late-season help is a continuing trend that started two years ago.


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iPhones given and taken away, iPads stolen in Round 25

January 21, 2013



Shanghai’s joy was Jiangsu’s pain, as Gilbert Arenas’ game winner with 4.6 seconds took away a win, and an iPhone 5, from the home team. (Photo:

If this comes across as a stereotype and/or if you’re offended by said potential stereotype, sorry. But in our experience, it’s true:

The Chinese love iPhones.

Yeah, iMessage, the high res camera, general ease of use and all the apps are cool. But it’s more than just the practicality of the device that makes it such an important part in China’s modern consumerism culture. The phone (as well as the iPad and all of its other iProduct relatives), which starts at CNY 5,288, or US $680, serves as an indicator of wealth and status, both of which are important inside of a society where some people like compare themselves and their things against one another. Not having an iPhone (or a nice phone in general) results in peer pressure, a phenomenon of which I found to be ridiculous until I heard this a few weeks ago from the man who I occasionally buy fried chicken from: “If I don’t buy my son an iPhone, everyone at school will bully and tease him.”

The same apparently extends to the CBA as well. Take the Qingdao Eagles, for example.


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Panaggio out as Shanghai head coach

January 6, 2013



An already tumultuous season in Shanghai just got even more so after Sharks management announced today that American head coach, Dan Panaggio, has been relieved of his position with the team. He will be replaced by assistant coach, Wang Qun, who is the only Chinese member of Shanghai’s otherwise all American coaching staff.

The Sharks, who are at 4-13 on the season, currently sit in 16th place.

Though the Sharks are parked firmly in the bottom of the standings with little hope for a playoff spot, the move to out Panaggio is surprising given the circumstances. Panaggio, who was hired last season after Bob Donewald Jr. moved to Western China to coach the Xinjiang Flying Tigers, has enjoyed success in his brief tenure, piloting the team back to the playoffs in his debut stint after they finished out of the league’s top eight the year before. Bringing in his triangle offense and a stout defensive approach, the Sharks were known as one of the hardest working and best coached teams in the league.


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Arenas heads back to the States to receive treatment on injured groin

January 2, 2013


Shanghai Sharks guard, Gilbert Arenas, whose injured groin has limited him to just four games this season, has flown back to the United States to receive treatment.

It is unknown when he will return.

Arenas, who first sustained the injury midway through the first quarter of the Sharks’ season opener on the road at Beijing on November 24, missed the next eight games before coming back into the lineup on December 18 against Guangdong. Yet just two games after, Arenas re-injured his groin and has since been out of action since the 23rd. Apparently more comfortable receiving treatment back home in the United States, he has flown to New York where he hopes the recovery process will be faster than it would be in China.

Arenas posted this on his Sina Weibo account on December 31:

Happy New going to New York for a few days to get treatment on my groin..i wasn’t 100 percent when i came back and i pulled another groin muscle..its not really bad just need american meds to speed up the recovery time….

Meanwhile, due to Arenas’ on-the-shelf, off-the-shelf, on-the-shelf status, the Sharks already difficult position has become even more problematic. Looking at the very real possibility of slipping down into the league’s basement with only one import, D.J. White, in the lineup, the Sharks opted to bring in Ryan Forehan-Kelly to temporarily replace Arenas. The stop-gap measure was implemented to keep the Sharks’ record afloat until Arenas was declared healthy enough to play again.

But the decision to bring in Forehan-Kelly for only a few games came with much risk, and it’s quite clear to see why with the way this situation has unfolded. By rule, teams are only allowed to switch import players twice during the regular season. By bringing in Forehan-Kelly, the Sharks used one of their allocated replacements; by bringing back Arenas for Forehan-Kelly, the Sharks had used both.

Now with Arenas hurt again with no exact return in sight, the Sharks are stuck with what they’ve got: A nagging, troublesome groin injury that is struggling to get healthy and White. Until the former is recovered, the Sharks will be forced to play the rest of the season shorthanded with just White.

Last night, the Sharks managed only five points in the first quarter against Liaoning and fell 110-82 to send their record to 4-12, which currently puts them in 16th place.

In four games, Arenas is averaing 9.8 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.8 assists.

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Shanghai officially announces Arenas back in for Forehan-Kelly

December 17, 2012


Gilbert Arenas has been declared as healthy by the Sharks and will return to the lineup this Tuesday against Guangdong. (Photo:

Gilbert Arenas is healthy enough to return to the Shanghai Sharks lineup, according to the team’s official website. He will replace Ryan Forehan-Kelly, who has played the last three games as Arenas’ temporary replacement.

Arenas, who sustained a groin injury midway through the first quarter of the Sharks’ CBA season opener against the Beijing Ducks on November 24th, has missed the last eight games. The Sharks have lost their last five games and currently sit in second-to-last place with a 2-8 record.

They play first-place Guangdong (7-2) on the road tomorrow night.

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Forbes for Thornton in Guangsha one of several mid-season import moves

December 14, 2012


Gary Forbes, who is already in China, has officially replaced the injured Al Thornton in Guangsha.

The Chinese Basketball Association has hit the one-third mark, which means import players are being replaced at a higher rate. Let’s break down the moves that have gone down within the last week.


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Five things to take away from last night’s CBA opener

November 25, 2012


One of many flops from last night’s Beijing-Shanghai CBA regular season opener.

The lights went out, bad music was sung, championship rings were passed out and with that, the 2012-13 Chinese Basketball Association regular season finally got underway with a result that happened frequently last year: A Beijing win.

Playing in their first game since winning the title last year, the Ducks avoided a ring ceremony hangover by running over the visiting Shanghai Sharks, 94-78. Randolph Morris lead the Ducks with 23 points, Ji Zhe had 19 and Stephon Marbury ran the offensive very effectively for 16 points and eight assists.

D.J. White lead all scorers with 24 points and also grabbed 17 rebounds.

In a game rife with storylines, the most hyped-up being the Gilbert Arenas-Marbury individual matchup, the game’s luster was decreased dramatically when Arenas left the game midway through the first quarter with a groin pull. He did not return for the rest of the game and the Sharks were thus forced to play agains the defending champs with one import player.

Yet despite that relative disappointment, we’re keeping it positive in here and giving everybody five observations we took note of while we took in the game last night inside Shougang Gymnasium.

Box Score


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The definitive CBA preview

November 22, 2012


Stephon Marbury and the Beijing Ducks won the title last year… But will they have enough to repeat in 2012-13? (Photo: Osports)

Moreso than ever, the Chinese Basketball Association has become quite difficult to predict pre-season.

It’s hard to predict first of all because we generally stink at predictions, but more importantly that the league is as deep as its ever been top-to-bottom. There’s a more than a few reasons for that — more off-season player movement, more players going abroad to train in the summer, better coaching in-country, a commitment to strength and conditioning programs and better foreign players all round out the top of our list. But the end result of all that should be a very watchable and exciting league this season. Which is a good thing for us fans, of course.

Bad thing for NiuBBall’s annual predictions, however.

By our count, there’s 11 and possibly 12 teams (depending on how well you think Tracy McGrady is going to do in Qingdao) who have a shot at the playoffs. That’s well over half the league. If you think DongGuan is ready to make a jump (we do), then there are now four teams who could sport legitimate Finals cases. Building on Beijing’s buck-the-trend run to a championship last year, there appears to be a level of parody in the league. Pencilling in the top two, top four and top eight is no longer easy.

So as always, take what is about to come with a grain of salt and know that most likely this will all be very wrong.


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Gilbert Arenas officially signs in Shanghai

November 20, 2012


Gilbert Arenas will be donning number 0 for the Shanghai Sharks this season. (Photo: Osports)

Even if he’s getting away from the United States, Gilbert Arenas will be getting back to a familiar nickname.

In what completes an almost month-long journey, Arenas has finally signed in the Chinese Basketball Association with the Shanghai Sharks. The deal is reported to be a one-year deal worth roughly US $700,000 with a mutual team/player option for a second year.

Already registered on the team’s roster, the three-time NBA All-Star will wear the number 0 for the first time since he was known as “Agent Zero” with the Washington Wizards from 2003-10.

Though the deal was expected to go through since he arrived in Shanghai at the beginning of the month, the Yao Ming-owned Sharks’ decision to delay making it official came down to two major points, a source told First was that both team management and the coaching staff wanted to see Arenas in action before making a commitment, a request that Arenas interestingly enough turned down when he was in negotiations with another Chinese team, the Guangdong Southern Tigers, in October.


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Shanghai-Beijing CBA opener at Wukesong in doubt because of… Elton John?

October 11, 2012

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Because of a scheduling conflict, “Crocodile Rock” will likely be played live inside Wukesong Arena instead of Beijing-Shanghai’s CBA season opener.

And just when you were getting all excited to see the Chinese Basketball Association make its triumphant return to Wukesong… Elton John has to come along and potentially ruin everything.

According to the Beijing Evening Post, the rumored end-of-November season opener between Beijing and Shanghai at Wukesong Arena (now officially known as MasterCard Center) is in major doubt because of a scheduling conflict with an Elton John concert booked for the same night.

According to the report, the CBA originally requested the game be played on November 27th and the arena kept the date for the league. But after considering it further, the league opted to change the opener to the 24th, which John’s people had already booked for their show. With John’s show having been on the calendar for quite some time, Beijing-Shanghai is seriously in doubt and unless the league can find another date, “there’s definitely no way for the game to be played at [Wukesong Arena],” according to an anonymous insider who’s quoted in the article.

Our question is: How was this not known by CBA schedule makers before leaking all that to the press? I mean, tickets for the Elton John show are available on… seems like an awfully big thing to miss.

Hey, we enjoy “Tiny Dancer” as much as the next guy — but count us in the group that thinks this officially sucks.

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