Fraternizing with the ... Foreigner

Last week, I received a tweet from a name I didn't recognize, but which completely caught my attention nonetheless.

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Suddenly, I had so many questions: Someone in Brazil started a Spurs blog? Who was this Glauber de Rocha? What did Tiago have to say? Why didn't I take Portuguese in college instead of French?

So I reached out to Glauber, who gladly agreed to translate the interview into English. But while I appreciated it and thanked him profusely, I still had more questions than answers. I decided that I needed to interview the man from the blog that had interviewed Tiago.

What follows, is that email interview.

jollyrogerwilco:

I didn't even know that there was a Brazilian site dedicated to following the Spurs. Where are you based? How long have you been blogging, and what made you a fan?

Glauber:

The "Spurs Brasil" blog is on air since February 2008. Lucas Pastore, who is still blogging, and Leonardo Sacco, who left the blog, started it. They're two San Antonio Spurs fans who live in São Paulo city and studied at the same high school. The other members were added from a San Antonio Spurs fan community at the "Orkut" (a social network that has more Brazilian users than Facebook.) Bruno Pongas also lives in São Paulo. Victor Moraes lives at São Bernardo do Campo, a city near São Paulo. I live in Maringá, at the Paraná state. Robason Kobayashi lives at Cuiabá, at Mato Grosso state. And Juliano Medeiros lives at Fortaleza, at Ceará state. Some of our guys have never met personally. We don't have a base and we don't do Spurs Brasil for a living, only for a hobby, because we really like the team. I started to be a fan during the playoffs of 2006, because of a friend that I met on Orkut. We talked a lot and he convinced me to cheer for Spurs.

jollyrogerwilco:

How were you able to get the interview with Tiago? Have you known him for a while or was this the first time you had met him.

Glauber:

Victor Moraes works at the media staff from the "LNB" (Liga Nacional de Basquete - National Basketball League, in English). So, he was at the routine medical exams of the brazilian national team. We'd done an interview for the blog earlier in this season, via e-mail (http://spursbrasil.wordpress.com/2011/02/03/spurs-brasil-entrevista-tiago-splitter/). But some of our writers already knew him: Bruno Pongas worked at the website "iG" (www.ig.com.br), writing about basketball, and Lucas Pastore worked at "Diario Lance!" (www.lancenet.com.br), the biggest sports newspaper in Brazil, also writing about basketball.

jollyrogerwilco:

This past year in San Antonio, Tiago was one of the rookies, and he definitely carried himself like one -- deferring to the other players both on and off the court. What's he like in his home country and around the guys that he's known for so many years? Is there anything fun or humorous that you could tell us about him and/or the way he's treated by his teammates and fans?

Glauber:

Tiago is very admired in Brazil because he is always playing for the national team. Nenê, for exemple, is a great player, but is never playing for the national team. So, the brazilian fans like more Tiago than Nene. He's always been a discrete guy, but last year, at the FIBA World Championship, the sound sistem captured a brazilian girl screaming "Vai gostoso" (Go on, hot guy) when he was about to hit a free throw. All the players laughed, it was really funny. He's considered too one of the greatest players of the history in his former club, Caja Laboral.

jollyrogerwilco:

That's a great story. There are certainly a number of £ers who have made similar remarks directed toward Mr. Splitter.

Have you ever been to the United States? Have you ever been to an NBA game? One of our writers, LatinD, is from Argentina and he has made two trips to the U.S. to see Spurs play and meet Manu. Do you have any plans to visit Texas in the future?

Glauber:

No, we had never been to an NBA game. This is really a dream for all of us. We hope someday we can travel to San Antonio to see one. And we also hope that someday an NBA team will come to play in our contry. I've even made a joke with my fiancé that we are going to have our honeymoon in San Antonio, just to go on AT&T Center.

jollyrogerwilco:

If you do that, you're sure to start your marriage off on the right foot!

Thanks so much for being willing to help with the translation and taking the time to answer these questions. I hope that as the summer goes on, we can continue to hear from you about Tiago and team Brazil.

Glauber:

Thank you for hearing us! When you need news from the brazilian basketball - or anything about the country - please contact us. You can reach us via Twitter: @spurs_brasil. We will always try to send fresh news from Splitter and Brazilian basjetball to you.

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