Blogger gets 30-months in prison on trumped-up tax evasion charge

first_img News Receive email alerts Quan, 41, was arrested in December 2012, one day after posting an article criticizing article 4 of the constitution, which assigns the Communist Party a leading role in managing the country’s affairs.Although charged with tax evasion, it was clear that the real reason for his arrest was his blogging and his calls for political pluralism, religious freedom and civil rights. His trial was originally scheduled to take place on 9 July, but was postponed at the last minute.Similar tax evasion charges were brought in 2008 against Nguyen Van Hai, a dissident who blogged under the pseudonym of Dieu Cay. He was given an initial sentence of 30 months in prison but, before he was due to be released, he was given an additional 12-year jail sentence on a charge of anti-government propaganda.Vietnam is ranked 172nd out of 179 countries in the 2013 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index and figures in the 2013 “Enemies of the Internet” special report on surveillance.During a visit to Paris last week, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung refused to meet with Reporters Without Borders, which wanted to hand him a petition for the release of 35 Vietnamese bloggers that has been signed by 25,000 people.Support independent news providers in Vietnam by signing the petition here.Read the latest report on Vietnam entitled “Programmed death of freedom of information” here. Vietnam sentences journalist Tran Thi Tuyet Dieu to eight years in prison RSF_en News April 22, 2021 Find out more VietnamAsia – Pacific Reporters Without Borders condemns the 30-month prison sentence and fine of 59,000 dollars that a Hanoi court passed today on dissident lawyer and blogger Le Quoc Quan on a trumped-up charge of tax evasion. The court also ordered the seizure of Quan’s assets, worth 27,000 dollars.“This clearly politically-motivated sentence is designed to gag and punish a dissident and is part of a strategy orchestrated by the Communist Party to persecute all independent news and information providers in Vietnam,” Reporters Without Borders said.“We deplore the way this trial was conducted, including the fact that the defendant’s relatives were not allowed into the courtroom and the way the authorities again manipulated the media. Quan is the victim of a judicial system that takes its orders from authoritarian party officials. He must be released.”Insisting on his innocence, Quan said he was the victim of political decisions. “I will continue my fight against corruption, attacking bureaucracy and stagnancy that are undermining our country,” he told an Agence France-Presse reporter who was allowed to follow the trial from a room adjoining the courtroom.Neither his brother, Le Quoc Quyet, nor his sister was allowed into the courtroom, while foreign news agency reporters were ordered not to bring any recording equipment into the courthouse.The trial prompted unprecedented demonstrations. Many activists and ordinary citizens gathered in Hanoi to show their support for Quan and protest against the persecution of bloggers, with demonstrators managing to block traffic on one of the capital’s main arteries.Large numbers of police were deployed to prevent protesters from getting to the courthouse. A bus taking members of Quan’s family to Hanoi was intercepted by police, who searched their bags and then sent them home. In Hanoi, the authorities prevented two bloggers, Phuong Bich and Nguyen Huu Vinh, and the dissident Pham Hong Son from leaving their homes. Follow the news on Vietnam RSF laureates support jailed Vietnamese journalist Pham Doan Trang Help by sharing this information April 27, 2021 Find out more VietnamAsia – Pacific News to go further April 7, 2021 Find out more News October 2, 2013 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Blogger gets 30-months in prison on trumped-up tax evasion charge Organisation Three more independent reporters arrested in Vietnamlast_img read more

Learning through doing

first_imgLearning through doingOn 1 May 2002 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article Corporate social responsibility forms an integral part of Co-operativeInsurance Society’s HR strategy.  PatAshworth, CIS training manager, explains how everybody benefitsThe values and principles of an organisation are increasingly important inattracting the right candidates for job vacancies. How a company deals with itsenvironmental impact, community involvement and work-life balance are somethinga discerning jobseeker will take into account when deciding which organisationsto apply to. How are the values put into practice once new staff are recruited? One wayis via training and development and volunteering opportunities, which canimprove staff retention and be used to harness the values of the business. CIS has a strong set of values, rooted in the Co-operative movement, whichdrive its commitment to being a socially responsible business. CIS’ communityinvolvement programme is a core element of its HR training and personaldevelopment scheme. Social awareness One specific objective is to develop social awareness via communityinvolvement opportunities. Not only does this enable staff to give somethingback to the community but it also offers an alternative method of team buildingand skill development. Its graduate training course highlights some of the practical skills neededwithin the workplace (giving presentations, time-management) and introducesCIS’ Social Accountability Programme. Graduates complete community challengesas a group, creating a nature trail in a playground or a stimulatingenvironment for a children’s centre, for example. The graduates are required toplan exactly how they will tackle the project and who will undertake whichtasks. The local Manchester and Salford Family Service Unit provides facilities forpre-school children, after-school groups and social groups for older people.Graduate trainees have been involved in brightening the place up. Practical challenges are not limited to graduates. One of the social accountabilityobjectives for last year was for each CIS department to complete a challenge.This included acquiring materials including paints, spades and protectiveclothing, creating enthusiasm within the teams and making arrangements forhealth and safety checks, refreshments and publicity. For those relatively new in a department, it provides an opportunity to takecontrol of a project and to get to know colleagues. For an employee who hasbeen there for years, it is a welcome change from an office environment andgives managers a chance to work as a real part of the team. Staff are able to take time out of the working day to read with children –particularly inner city schools. CIS encourages employees to become schoolgovernors through the One-Stop-Shop scheme, aimed at recruiting those withtransferable management skills to get involved in inner city schools. CIS staff are also involved in mentoring at schools throughout Manchesterand in environmental projects with schools through Global Action Plan. All ofthese initiatives help to build a number of skills, such as leadership, teamworking, organisation and improve self-confidence. Another prime example was CIS’ disability awareness and training programmefor all its 10,000 staff, which concentrated on raising awareness of the issuesfacing disabled people. In conjunction with the North West Disability Service, CIS has alsodeveloped a work preparation programme entitled Return to Work. The three-dayprogramme develops interview skills, confidence and general business awareness.Candidates selected for the course are guaranteed an interview with CIS andsuccessful candidates are placed into a range of permanent positions. So far,10 people have been placed into permanent jobs. These community initiatives complement other forms of development, such asthe introduction of the CIS Training and Development Guide, which outlines therange of learning opportunities. Details for staff are available online,printed or through department representatives. Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

First Consultation on Child Diversion Policy Set for August 19

first_img The first of four islandwide consultations is to be held at the St. Andrew High School for Girls, in Kingston, on Monday, August 19. Story Highlights The policy seeks to establish a formal framework for dealing with children in conflict with the law The first of four islandwide consultations on the Draft National Child Diversion Policy is to be held at the St. Andrew High School for Girls, in Kingston, on Monday, August 19.Being conducted by the Ministry of Justice, the exercise aims to educate and sensitize the Jamaican public and gain feedback on the policy, which seeks to establish a formal framework for dealing with children in conflict with the law throughout the criminal justice process, with a view to ensuring that detention or institutionalisation is a measure of last resort.Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Justice, Carol Palmer, is inviting members of the public, especially those who work directly with children or those interested in their welfare to attend these sessions, which will run from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. each day.“Anyone who feels they have an interest in justice as meted out to children, can come to those sessions and give us their input which will be considered,” Mrs. Palmer said, while addressing the opening of a consultation for Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) on the draft policy framework, at the Jamaica Conference Centre in Kingston, today (August 15).She noted that while the process to develop this policy on child diversion has been “in gestation for a long time…we are at the point now where we need the insight, the input, and the significant collaboration of stakeholders.”The Kingston session will cater to the parishes of St. Catherine, Kingston and St. Andrew and St. Thomas. The next session will be held on Tuesday, August 20, at the St. Mary High School and will cater to residents of St. Mary, Portland and St. Ann.The West Jamaica Conference Centre in Mount Salem, Montego Bay, will be the venue for the next consultation on Wednesday (August 21). This will cater to the parishes of Trelawny, St. James and Hanover. The final session, scheduled for Thursday(August 22) will be hosted at the St. Elizabeth Technical High School, 90 Main Street, Santa Cruz and will accommodate residents of Westmoreland, St. Elizabeth, Manchester and Clarendon. The exercise aims to educate and sensitize the Jamaican public and gain feedback on the policylast_img read more

Stars Support Montblancs Signature For Good

first_imgSaturday, February 23, 2013 marked the official launch of Montblanc’s Signature For Good Collection with UNICEF, whereby Montblanc hopes to provide children access to quality education.This collection reinforces Montblanc’s long-term commitment to children’s education and UNICEF.To celebrate the launch of the collection, Montblanc hosted a pre-Oscar charity brunch with UNICEF at the Hotel Bel-Air. Academy award winner Hilary Swank made a special appearance to speak about the importance of the initiative and shed light on her recent visit to Ethiopia with Montblanc and UNICEF.For every piece in the Signature For Good Collection sold between March 1, 2013 and March 1, 2014 Montblanc will donate part of its proceeds to raise at least $1.5 million to support the UNICEF education programs worldwide.Additional celebrities who lent their support to the cause and attended the brunch were Emmy Rossum, Rosario Dawson (actress), UNICEF Ambassador Alyssa Milano, Louise Roe, Alan Arkin, Billy Zane, Jesse Metcalfe, Peter Fonda, Jesse Williams, Jane Seymour, Clemens Schick, Rachel Griffiths and many more.Montblanc Signature For Good Collection includes a special edition of writing instruments, jewelry and leather accessories, all of which feature a unique brick design symbolizing the joint effort of building a better future for all children and their communities by improving access to quality education, including the construction of schools – brick by brick. For every piece in the “Signature for Good” Collection sold between 1 March 2013 and 31 March 2014, Montblanc will donate part of its proceeds to raise at least $1.5 million dollars to UNICEF’s education programmes, focusing on the most vulnerable children, through the Schools for Africa and Asia initiatives, and programmes in Latin America.With a heritage deeply rooted in the culture of writing, Montblanc has always been committed to the support of education and literacy. For nearly a decade, Montblanc has taken an active role in supporting UNICEF’s efforts to enable more children to learn how to read and write, with several global initiatives together raising over $5 million dollars to date. With the new “Signature For Good” Collection, Montblanc is building on the success of the first “Signature For Good” initiative launched in 2009 and pledging to raise in 2013 at least $1.5 million dollars.For this special Montblanc “Signature For Good” Collection, the design of the Meisterstuck has been revisited with unique detailing. Available as a Classique Fountain Pen, Rollerball, and Ballpoint Pen and in the bolder LeGrand size, the black precious resin writing instrument features a cap top ring designed with the symbolic rectangular brick pattern. The blue sapphire set in this ring is inspired by UNICEF’s blue colour and the work it accomplishes to improve children’s lives. Other pieces in the collection include handcrafted leather wallets, cardholders, a pen pouch and notebook with blue lining decorated with the symbolic brick design. The leather used by Montblanc for the Signature For Good Collection is Italian full-grain printed calfskin. The distinctive pattern on the leather is a series of diagonal lines. Cuff links with reversible surfaces of onyx and stainless steel, bracelets and key rings, all embellished with a sapphire, make up the jewellery selection.Each writing instrument, leather item and jewellery piece features an individual serial number associated with a “brick,” a reference to the building and running of schools: indicating that the owner of the product has a symbolic share in the programme and is contributing to building better and brighter futures one brick at a time. By registering the number on the product at www.montblanc.com/signatureforgood, the owner of the piece can monitor the progress of the initiative and find out the many ways in which UNICEF is improving educational opportunities for children. Not just by building schools but also by transforming them into a safe and protective place where children can learn and play.Lutz Bethge, CEO Montblanc International explains, “With 61 million children in the world not yet enrolled in school, it is our duty to take the necessary steps to empower these children with an education so they have the knowledge, skills and confidence to shape a better future for themselves and their communities. Our aim was to create a collection that not only appeals through its design, style and fine craftsmanship, but that has a greater purpose by enabling real change.”For UNICEF, the ongoing relationship with Montblanc is a meaningful and important one. As Caryl M. Stern, President and CEO of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF says, “Thanks to our partnership with Montblanc and the vital contribution to UNICEF’s work, UNICEF has provided more children a quality education that will significantly better their chances in life. The impact of their investment is truly noticeable and we are grateful for the contribution they make in raising global awareness for UNICEF’s work with vulnerable children around the world.”last_img read more

USW begins rotating strikes at Conifer mills

first_imgLocal 1-2017 president Brian O’Rourke said that CONIFER continues to demand concessions from the union on a new collective agreement, including longer probationary periods, lower starting wages, and extra costs for health and welfare benefits.The union said that as part of the rotating strike action, all other CONIFER operations are under an overtime ban, which will continue as the bargaining committee evaluates the next operation, or operations, for strike action.As of right now, it is not clear if and/or when picket lines will go up at the Canfor mill in Fort St. John. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The union representing workers at 13 sawmills in Northern B.C., including the Canfor mill in Fort St. John says it has begun rotating strikes at those mills after giving 72-hour strike notice at the beginning of the month.According to an update posted on the United Steelworkers Local 1-2017 website, the union’s began rotating strikes last Wednesday, when picket lines went up at the Tolko’s Lakeview mill in Williams Lake.On October 4th, the union issued 72-hour strike notice after talks between it and the Council of Northern Interior Forest Industry Relations or CONIFER, broke down in late September.last_img read more

PMs museum CPWD penalised for rejection of bid to build

first_imgNew Delhi: The Delhi High Court has directed CPWD to pay Rs 1.5 lakh to an architectural firm for unjustifiably rejecting its bid for constructing a museum for India’s Prime Ministers on the premises of Nehru Memorial at Teen Murti Bhawan.The court, however, did not quash the contract citing the substantial outlay of expenditure, which has already occurred pursuant to the award of tender, and the work progress at the site. “We do not consider it to be in the larger public interest to quash the award of the project and direct further processing of the petitioner’s (firm) bid, or to mandate that a de novo exercise be carried out in the present case by calling for fresh tenders,” said a bench of Justices S Ravindra Bhat and Prateek Jalan. The court directed the Central Public Works Department (CPWD) to refund to Bangalore-based Flying Elephant Studio the amounts incurred on tender documents and fee. “…the present petition is disposed of without granting any relief to the petitioner… However, in the peculiar facts and circumstances, the respondent No.1 (CPWD) will pay the costs of these proceedings to the petitioner. The costs are assessed at Rs 1,50,000 to be paid within two weeks,” it said in a recent order. The petition concerned a ‘Notice Inviting Tender’ (NIT) issued by the CPWD for a Prime Ministers museum on the premises of Nehru Memorial Museum and Library at Teen Murti Bhawan here. The firm’s grievance was that its bid for the museum was rejected by the CPWD. The authorities told the court that they rejected the bid on the ground that the firm did not satisfy the eligibility criteria and that the previous projects executed by it do not fall within the categories of buildings enumerated in the definition of ‘Similar Comprehensive Consultancy Work’ contained in the NIT. The firm’s counsel submitted that it fulfilled all the eligibility criteria set out in the ‘Initial Eligibility Criteria’ provided by CPWD in the tender notice.last_img read more

IT Dept searches premises of kin of JK exMin Imran Ansari

first_imgSrinagar: The Income Tax Department Thursday carried out searches at five places here, including at the premises of a kin of Imran Reza Ansari, a former minister in the PDP-BJP coalition, for alleged tax evasion, sources said.The searches were carried out against a group which is a “monopolistic wholesale distributer” of pharmaceuticals in the Kashmir Valley, a released issued by the I-T Department said. It was gathered that the group charged huge premium on life saving drugs which were exclusively sourced through it in the Valley and the extra normal profits earned by this modus operandi were used for investment in real estate in Srinagar, as well as for unaccounted expenditure by the promoter’s family not disclosed in their income tax returns, the release said. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’Sources said Ansari’s sister is married into the family whose premises have been searched. However, the tax officials maintained that searches were carried out on a business family and were in no way connected to Ansari, a politician who switched over to People’s Conference led by Sajad Lone. The I-T department release said the search action has yielded incriminating documents and digital evidence that suggest huge concealment of income by the promoter and his family members. Apparently, Rs 3.08 crore in transactions of two pieces of land in Srinagar has been earned by the group, which has not been disclosed in the returns of income. The digital evidence in the form of hard disc that has been seized, indicates that a part of the sales proceeds, approximating nearly 10 per cent of the turnover are kept outside the books of accounts to suppress profits, it said.last_img read more

John Isner Is All Alone at Wimbledon

At a major international tournament, American men had a very bad day.Yes, the U.S. men’s soccer team did just fine Thursday, losing 0-1 to Germany but advancing to the knockout stage of the World Cup. But at Wimbledon, all but one of the four remaining American men exited the singles draw without winning a set. That leaves just John Isner to play in the third round. Isner is by far the highest-ranked American, but he’s often vulnerable to upsets at events outside the U.S.“I guess it’s better than last year. We didn’t have anybody past the second round,” Isner said of the American men’s success at Wimbledon, at a press conference Thursday. “At least there’s one guy past the second round.”Here’s a sign of how bad things have gotten for American men’s singles tennis: Even with all the early exits, Isner has to win just one more match for this tournament to count as a good Grand Slam by recent low standards. He’d be the lone American man in the fourth round for a second consecutive major, after five consecutive Grand Slams without any American man to make it to the Round of 16. The U.S. hasn’t had a male quarterfinalist at a Grand Slam since Isner and Andy Roddick reached that stage at the 2011 U.S. Open, nor a semifinalist in the five years since Roddick lost in the final at Wimbledon. No American man has won a major since Roddick did at the U.S. Open in 2003, and after every disappointing Grand Slam, the prospect of an American major champ seems farther away than it did at the one before.The situation is very different for the American women. They’re led by world No. 1 and five-time Wimbledon champ Serena Williams, who will be joined in the third round this year by her sister, Venus Williams, who also has won Wimbledon five times. Even more American women are outperforming their male counterparts. Three others have made the third round at Wimbledon, with one more, Victoria Duval — the 18-year-old who got into the tournament the hard way, by qualifying — still to play her second-round match.Isner isn’t an ideal American No. 1. He has a booming serve and one of the worst return games in the top 50. But without him, things would be truly bleak. For the third consecutive major, Isner is the only American man ranked high enough to get one of the 32 seeds. No other American man even ranks in the top 50.Sixteen countries have a No. 2 player ranked higher than the second-best American, No. 67 Sam Querrey, one of the players who lost on Thursday. Among the countries with a higher-ranked No. 2 player are Switzerland, Croatia and Austria, which have a combined population under 21 million — roughly the population of Texas. Three other countries with a population under 20 million have a No. 2 player ranked higher than Querrey. (It’s worth noting that tennis has become more popular globally since the 1980s, hence more countries are competing and leaving fewer spots for the traditional powers.) The strength of the No. 2 player matters, as a proxy for depth of talent and for the Davis Cup, the international team competitions with two singles slots.To Denis Kudla, a 21-year-old American who lost his second-round match here Thursday, international comparisons aren’t fair because of tennis’s relatively slight stature among U.S. sports. “Tennis is our fifth or sixth sport,” he said in an interview last week. “People just have to be patient.”American women fare better in the equivalent international comparison, perhaps partly because female athletes have fewer professional options and tennis is one of the most lucrative. Just two countries have higher-ranked No. 2 players than Sloane Stephens of the U.S.: Serbia and Italy.Strong prior American male generations — John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors; Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras — cast a long shadow over Roddick and his peers, former top-10 members James Blake and Mardy Fish. But the Roddick generation was far stronger than the current one, as demonstrated by the decline in the number of American players in the majors’ draws, of seeded American players and of American players who reach the third round. “I think what happened is, maybe we missed a generation,” Kudla said. “The generation behind Roddick maybe didn’t pan out like it was supposed to.”“Every country goes through a slump,” Benjamin Becker, a German player who played for Baylor University, said in an interview this week. “It’s not easy to always have these prodigies like Agassi, Sampras, McEnroe, [Jim] Courier and Connors. A lot of times, countries take generations off.” He added, “I’m very confident that an American player will be soon at the top level.”Two young Americans who hope to fulfill Becker’s prediction had modest success last week, qualifying for Wimbledon by winning matches on adjacent courts at the Bank of England Sports Centre while monitoring each other’s progress. Ryan Harrison, who was watching Kudla’s match during changeovers of his own contest, said in an interview that in an individual sport, national rankings don’t matter much. “The U.S. is always concerned about how many top players they have,” Harrison said. “The only thing I’m concerned about is my own development, my own career.”He added: “The U.S. has to really understand that we’re working. We’re doing what we can here.” read more

The DAntoni Basketball Revolution Goes To College

Marshall basketball coach Dan D’Antoni was angry. His team had been down 20 points at halftime during a late December non-conference game against Pittsburgh (“We looked like we were running in mud,” he said), had exploded in the second half, scoring 1.45 points per possession on a variety of back-breaking 3-pointers and half-court cuts that led to easy layups, and still lost. Any team that can drop 68 points in 20 minutes should win the game, but the final score was 112-106 in favor of Pittsburgh. “We booted it,” he said. When a reporter questioned whether the team’s high number of 3-point attempts might explain the loss, he got testy.Decked out in his customary Marshall basketball t-shirt and a dark blazer, D’Antoni unspooled what he referred to as his “daggone analytics story”: “The last two championships have been Cleveland and Golden State,” he said, talking about the NBA. “What did they do? You don’t see anybody post up. They just spread that thing out and go.”D’Antoni became an overnight exemplar of analytics. But can an NBA blueprint remake a mid-major team with subpar talent in the NCAA?When I asked D’Antoni about his quote, he said that he didn’t mean to embarrass the reporter but, “I could’ve said, ‘Of all those five players on the floor, how many of them do you think we had rated higher for college play than [Pittsburgh] had?’ And we’re within a few points of them. That’s like going to the playground and giving the other team the first five picks, saying, ‘Let’s play,’ and then when they win, saying they outcoached us. Give me a break.”This is D’Antoni’s third season at Marshall, after roughly a decade as an NBA assistant, where he coached alongside his younger brother, Mike, in Phoenix, New York and Los Angeles. Thus far, his tenure has mostly been a success. Before he arrived in Huntington, Marshall had been known more as a stepping stone for rising coaches, such as Billy Donovan and Donnie Jones, than for any on-court successes: the team had finished under .500 nine times since 2001-02. The Herd won 17 games in 2016 (the record marked Marshall’s fifth-highest win total in the 2000s) and quickly notched 14 wins this season before a three-game losing streak the past two weeks sapped some of the squad’s momentum. Now tied for fifth in Conference USA, the Herd have an uphill climb to make it to the NCAA tournament. They face arguably the conference’s toughest February slate — UAB, Old Dominion, and Middle Tennessee all loom during this next week; they’ll likely need a run through the CUSA tournament to make it to the dance.D’Antoni isn’t your usual coach. As I prepped for our interview, I read an article about D’Antoni that mentioned he once said he hugged a tree in his front yard each morning. When I asked D’Antoni about it, he said, “I believe there is a connection between here and somewhere else, and since the tree is a living thing, I connect through it and thank it for everything I have been fortunate to have.” But perhaps even more compelling is his attempt to transform Marshall, a team composed of borderline DI players, a walk-on, and an ex-DII player, into one of the nation’s most analytically efficient offenses.“If you do just the ordinary, you’ll lose, so you have to do something unusual to beat people more athletically gifted than you,” D’Antoni said.For the Marshall coach, that means streamlining an offense so that his players are executing each possession with the intent of taking the most efficient shot possible. And D’Antoni knows all of the percentages. “I’ve told our players the numbers forever,” D’Antoni said. “When you look at offense, it’s not about the overall scheme — it’s about the actions within an offense, and you have to know the best odds for scoring.” Using data culled from the NBA, which D’Antoni contended still applies to the college game, a corner 3, which is worth 1.27 points per shot, is the best shot in basketball. The next best shot? “Any other three,” he said. A lay-up — “a clean lay-up,” D’Antoni stresses — is even better: 1.8 points per shot.1According to the NBA’s most recent data, a shot in the restricted area is worth 1.21 points per shot, while a 3-pointer above the break — that is, an attempt either atop the perimeter or on the wing — is 1.06 points and a corner 3 is 1.21 points.Which is why Marshall never stops shooting. Roughly 43 percent of the team’s attempts are from beyond the arc, squaring Marshall within Division I’s top 50 (per Ken Pomeroy), and according to Synergy Sports, Marshall scores 1.08 points per spot up (1.17 points per catch and shoot), which is bested by only 23 other DI squads. “I don’t know if there is another team in the country that does as many shooting drills as we do,” said Austin Loop, a junior guard with the third-best overall offensive rating in Division I and who has converted 49 percent of his 3’s. Perhaps not coincidentally, Marshall scores at one of the country’s most efficient clips, dropping 1.11 points per possession, which is the highest ever for a D’Antoni-coached team (and good for the top 60 nationally).“We go over every stat that the coaches keep,” Ryan Taylor, Marshall’s senior stretch-4, said. That includes game-by-game plus/minus reports, which are presented to the Herd via a white board in their locker room, as well as intensive film sessions and Synergy analysis (provided by D’Antoni and the rest of the coaching staff). “Coach D’Antoni wants us to make at least 36 percent of our 3’s, which equates to 52 percent on 2’s,” Taylor elaborated.2If Marshall were to connect on 36 percent from deep, it would actually equate to 54 percent of their 2’s. “Taking 3’s is easier for us — since it is farther away from the basket, it isn’t contested, and then it opens up our offense even more.”D’Antoni didn’t naturally warm to this style of play. During his initial years as a high school coach in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, he coached conservatively: “My teams were constantly posting up and taking contested 2’s, which are essentially worthless. Those shots only count for .78 points and are the worst shot in basketball.”His thinking didn’t change until a late-1980s conversation with Mike, then playing in Europe, who relayed the revolutionary impact of the 3-point shot overseas. Dan began to eliminate post ups and mid-range jumpers, and he emphasized 3-point attempts and pick-and-rolls. He continued to fine-tune his offensive approach after he ditched the high school ranks and followed his brother to Phoenix as an assistant, where the two coined the phrase “athletic ball,” a concept D’Antoni brought with him to Marshall: “Instead of a player creating a scoring opportunity, you move the ball quickly so that the ball creates the opportunity. That way, a player who isn’t as athletic but is skilled can play against anybody. As long as the ball is free flowing, it’ll get to the place where that guy is capable of making that shot.”As Mike explains, “Something has to be athletic enough on the floor if your players aren’t, and the ball zipping around accomplishes that.”That’s being put to the test at Marshall. D’Antoni arrived at the college game at a fitting moment. Since 2002, DI’s 3-point field goal attempts rate — the percentage of shots taken beyond the arc — has jumped from 32.1 to 36.2 percent, the highest it has ever been. What works for Cleveland, Golden State and the majority of the NBA — spacing the floor through the 3-pointer — has finally begun to saturate the DI level, and thanks to the years D’Antoni spent on the NBA sidelines, Marshall has been a leader in this strategic shift (the Herd’s 3-point attempts rate jumped from 34 to 42 percent in his first season).As the team’s 14-11 record makes clear, though, change takes time. What D’Antoni is preaching clearly works at the NBA level, but his players are not of that caliber, and the learning curve — even 90 games into his tenure — is still much steeper.During Marshall’s recent losing streak, the Herd made just 30 percent of its 3’s and scored an anemic 1 point per possession. D’Antoni spends each practice teaching his players what constitutes a good shot from a bad shot in his free-flowing and fast-paced offense, but the line separating the two is still very much open for interpretation when the players take the court.“If you watch us play, we still take a lot of bad shots,” said former assistant coach Chris Duhon, who spoke with FiveThirtyEight before he resigned in January after an arrest for driving with a license revoked stemming from a DUI. “We haven’t mastered that process yet.”“Obviously they take some bad 3’s, but heck, if I coached any other way, they’d take some bad 2’s,” D’Antoni said. “But I don’t want players looking over their shoulders to see what is a good shot or not. Our offense gives them a freedom to play the game and use their own smarts to create good shots. Let them choose.”This is the only way D’Antoni knows how to coach, and as a self-described “gunslinger,” the only way he believes Marshall will succeed is through what he calls his ‘organized chaos’ offense. “There is more to it than just saying, ‘Here’s an analytic game plan, let’s do it,’” he said. “I may have opened up how the game is played, but I never want to stand pat.”He continued, “I am a big believer in risk. You have to know how to bet, know the odds, and have a feel for everything. How far along I am with my coaching and whether it’ll work, I don’t know. I tried to figure out the odds, and I just know what I’m coaching at Marshall presents us the best odds for winning.” read more