Kalev (2022) Movie Script

I repeat, otherwise
we enter ourselves!
If you want to avoid confrontation,
open the doors and let people in.
I urge you once again!
Don't give in to any argument
and let's raise our own flag!
We are here,
on Freedom Square,
to say once again that
Estonia cannot be divided,
it belongs to us and to
all who want freedom...
Hello! May I?
- Hello.
They write such bullshit!
So where the hell should you play,
the European League?
They won't let anyone out
of the USSR! - Let it be.
Someone woke up!
- Such a hero of the hour!
Congressmen should declare
a republic once and for all!
Our boys are in top form right now.
We may have to wait
another ten years for freedom.
What did Soonik say?
Let's talk later.
So what are we going to do?
- I don't know...
But... your aunt's flat?
It's just a one-room dump,
I don't want that...
Please talk to her!
I'm too tired for that today.
You know,
I have training tomorrow...
Whenever there's something
unpleasant, you have training.
That's not true.
Whenever there's anything
at all, I have training.
All right, I'll talk to her.
Estonia, Estonia...
That's it then!
Hello! Gert?
- Yes.
Riho. Hello!
Put your things away
and then straight to the track.
Is there another
training starting here?
No, he's one of us.
- On a bike?
New guy, his first day.
How will he get home?
How naive...
Last season isn't over yet and
we have to train for the next one!
What for?
- We played in America, didn't we?
Yes, but...
- You got out!
And what was the use?
Agents look at us, make offers,
but a Soviet athlete will
never get out of this dump.
We sell foreign cigarettes we brought
with us to make any money at all.
Why does the season have
to start with your crap?
What crap?
Hello! Gert.
Are you on the team
or just practicing with us?
Just practicing for now.
- How's the form?
Couldn't be better.
- Hey!
Did you see who Soonik is with?
Pranas is going to coach us.
We got the test results.
And what do we see?
Your average oxygen consumption
is the same as the flower
sellers on Viru Street.
Not bad, as they say.
Why do our damn trainings
have to start so early?
Remember our last game
against CSKA? And Spartak?
You were like kids among men.
Okay, nature hasn't
blessed us with height,
but our dwarfs should
at least be physically fit.
That's why Pranas is here.
In one month you'll be the
toughest bunch in the Soviet Union.
Since Comrade Saksakulm
can't keep his commitments,
everyone gets a double
dessert at the end of training.
Riho! Did you get the flat?
No, I didn't.
You know how things are.
We can't even get toilet paper!
Give it to me!
Say start.
- Start!
Back here!
What do you make of Kullame?
Depends on what's in him.
Latvia and Lithuania have
already declared independence...
...strong steps to
leave the Soviet Union.
Many athletes and cyclists
have already given up
representing the Soviet Union team.
Mister Salumets!
I had to chase you
around the world!
Still don't want to
give us your answer?
For 30 years Estonian
coaches have been taught
how and what to do
and where to compete.
And now some smartasses appear
who say we shouldn't compete at all.
But think about it -
what competition is this?
We're so close to becoming
a free country.
Blue-black-white is
our flag again since May.
You want to compete under
the red flag? - No, we don't!
Kalev is the Estonian national
team, do you understand?
It's my team.
I strongly recommend
not to participate!
...eight, nine...
Go up, jump!
Pehka, dammit!
You play like an A-student
in the front row, ready to answer.
Surprise your opponent,
enjoy the game, dammit!
It's impossible to
enjoy this shouting!
Let's go, the blue ones attack.
- Cross!
Metstak! Dammit, it's practice!
Call Jalak, let him fix the boy.
That's enough for today!
Don't you want to go home?
We did it for the coach,
now it's for me.
Throwing is just
the art of thinking right.
Tammiste taught me that
every throw is like a girlfriend.
She wants you to think only of her.
You hold her hand
and send her all the way home.
And in return, her stockings sizzle.
Oh, we have a real Casanova here!
I'll keep it short!
As you know, we sent Reigam home.
I offer you his
place in the main team.
Thank you!
- You know what that means?
With those men.
Come here.
This is 1/6 of the planet.
We are here.
- Soonik here!
And this is the biggest
championship in the world.
What the hell!
I see.
Five years ago,
Kalev was in the mud league.
We had no support,
we had nothing.
Now nobody in Estonia
wants us to participate.
We're being threatened.
We're called communist collaborators.
Formally, we separated from Russia.
But the nationalists think
that if we participate,
it will look like we're still
part of the USSR.
For example, Lithuania
does not participate.
What will the Latvians do?
No idea, they're still thinking.
And if we don't play,
we don't get paid?
I'm a basketball player,
that's my job.
We're not diplomats,
I couldn't care less about politics.
Tell that to the reporters,
they'll crucify you.
We've been training
for the championship all this time.
So what do you say?
Do we participate or not?
You just made the team,
what do you say?
Do we participate
or go our separate ways?
Of course we participate.
And let the communists continue
to occupy the Baltic states?
We are not a tank unit,
we play basketball.
So that's that then?
Tomorrow you will
move here to Pirita.
Forget your personal life!
See you then!
For how long?
Two-three weeks. I have no idea.
We have to train.
I don't understand -
you all live in Tallinn?
Yes, but Salumets wants to know
how much we eat,
how long we sleep and with whom.
But why does he have to lock you up?
You all have families!
You know very well,
when we're training,
we can't even have
our own thoughts.
We have to build team spirit.
There are all kinds of people
in this building.
Wrestlers, swimmers,
athletes. Whoever.
Of course, nightlife cannot
interfere with training.
So it must be under strict control.
Remember, you're
on the top team now.
The salary is what it is.
Those who play get a hefty bonus.
But only if we win.
- Hi!
This is your bed.
Here are our combinations.
Outbound balls from the endline and
sideline, systems of combinations.
Fifty years of wisdom
from our ancestors.
Cherish it like your mother's heart.
Memorize it.
You need to lower it gently,
but lift it with energy.
For Sabonis,
it's like lifting a matchstick.
Hey, why don't we add
ten more on each side?
Can you lift more?
You can't?
But we had to carry
stuff out with the guys?
I managed it,
it took a little longer but...
I even went looking
for a fridge today.
I was going to get everything
we need in the kitchen.
You can help with more
important things at home.
We're off then.
- Yes.
See you.
- Good bye!
I'll check if the baby
is still sleeping.
Hello, lo!
Okay boys, let's go!
Sokk got a fantastic
offer from Finland.
In the spring, he was offered
a million bucks a year in America.
It wasn't that much,
it was 400,000.
Still unbelievable!
You can't talk to Salumets
about this. He loses it immediately!
You want to leave,
but he kicks you in the head.
What? Is he violent?
Not exactly, but...
When he's pissed off, we're all
tossed around like sacks of flour.
After he stopped playing basketball,
he was a three-time
national champion in karate.
So don't talk back to him.
Well, boys!
Here, especially for you!
I thought we had a meeting.
- Absolutely, it's a meeting.
- None for me!
Dear boy, do you know
how hard it was to get this stuff?
Damn speculator!
They'll put you behind bars soon!
Cheers to Kalev!
- Cheers!
Hello, daddy!
- Hey, baby!
- Hi!
You have a visitor there.
Sergey! What a surprise!
What brings you to Tallinn?
Are you here on vacation?
Take a seat.
Are you serious?
You want to leave
the best team of the USSR?
They don't need me at Spartak.
They can't give me
any treatment there,
only more tension.
I heard you have the best
doctors here in Tallinn.
You even have a
laser from Hungary.
It's unreal!
Let me join the team.
With new legs,
I can play for 3-4 years.
Sergey, it's not that easy...
Is it about the money?
We can handle it.
This hole back in Leningrad
can't even be called an apartment.
You'll find a place for me.
I can move my family here.
They love Tallinn.
And you don't have a center player.
I already have Karavayev.
- I'm better than him.
You have good players.
And I'm great, let me prove it!
Together we could beat Spartak.
Oh, Jaak!
They're threatening you.
They call you a deporter.
And you want to add
another Russian to your team.
Are you sure?
He doesn't even have
a place to stay here.
Soonik just got us a flat.
Wasn't it for Kuusmaa?
I don't know.
The championship of the USSR
Premier Basketball League begins.
Despite the opposition at home,
Kalev will start the tournament
in its subgroup in Saratov.
Only two of the four teams
remain in the Premier League
and continue to the championship.
Kalev is confident.
The first opponent is Impuls
Krasnodar from Super League 1.
Olympic champion Tiit Sokk
is also among Kalev players.
Moving on from the subgroup is
just a formality for our guys.
Okay guys, let's do it!
What is going on, guys?
I hope no one ever has to see
that kind of crap I had to watch
from the sidelines today.
Total amateurs! Damn dilettantes!
You get crushed
by a Super League 1 team!
By Impuls Krasnodar,
Avtodorozhnik Saratov.
We're in such deep shit that no
ladder is long enough, dammit!
We need a crane to
drag you out of this shit.
They don't play fair!
The referees won't let us play.
We had no chance of winning.
When we play like that,
we can't win anywhere!
The Russians are
laughing at us now!
At home, our people
sharpen knives, as they say.
Are we so bad now that we can't even
get past the qualification round?
I send the men straight to the
endline, but the tall
guys won't come.
He's the one who
lets his man through,
then slaps his arms from behind
and keeps babbling across the court.
I had four steals,
how many did you have?
How many rebounds did you take?
It only shows that even
the opponents couldn't guess
that you stand in such a
stupid place in defense.
If you could see your
game from the sidelines,
you'd voluntarily
hang up your sneakers!
What's so funny, dammit?
You don't like to fight!
How many free throws
did you miss today?
Dammit, do I have to buy you cognac
to keep your shots straight?
If we keep this up, we'll
drop back to Super League 1!
And to be honest,
guys like you belong there!
In fact, everything
is still possible.
Dynamo won today.
If we beat them tomorrow, we'll
qualify and everything will be OK.
Try to get some rest.
Tomorrow is an important day.
Maybe we overdid it with training?
The guys are physically exhausted.
- And so they should be.
If we had Babenko with us,
it would be a different story.
Very good that we didn't have him,
we had to lose today.
Do you think I yelled
at them for nothing?
I know them.
They have pride, they won't
let me do it to them twice.
Mark my words, tomorrow there will be
totally different guys on the court.
If we lose again tomorrow,
we're screwed.
Back to Super League 1.
And we'll lose the last of our money.
We won't have any
sponsors, nothing.
Then I'll become a
taxi driver, dammit.
As if Dynamo was crap.
The top guys on Impuls wouldn't
even make it to Dynamo's bench.
Right, but Dynamo is already
sure to qualify.
What's so important now?
You saw how the refs
call the game here,
we have no chance of winning.
Others play dirty,
the referees whistle us for fouls.
What are you saying?
Dynamo is sure to qualify.
They have nothing to lose.
Each guy gets 250 roubles for a win.
But they're willing to lose.
If we give our bonus money to them.
Three thousand roubles.
So this is what you came up with?
What the hell do you mean by we?
I told you it's bullshit.
We don't have that
kind of money. - I do.
Well? Tomorrow you'll win the game.
You pay me back the
bonus money and we're even.
All right, Baltic sprats,
you want to win tomorrow?
Don't fool around.
Kalev is empty handed so far.
No joy of victory yet.
Worries cloud everything and their
chances of qualifying
hang by a thread.
They must win this
crucial game against Dynamo!
Bloody hell!
Dynamo attacks, the ball
is passed under the basket
and they score an easy two points.
Saks, Saks!
Kuusmaa, dammit,
where are you passing the ball?!
Keep your eyes open, it went
straight to the opponent's hands!
If you lose the ball,
run after it, dammit!
Drop out the damn tournament then!
Is that what you want?
Very good!
Sokk! Four!
Number 4. First a pass to the corner,
Marka puts on a screen...
Sokk cuts in, Ivo gets the ball...
easy basket.
Basket, it was a basket!
Dammit! It was a basket! A basket!
Well, Kalev won't get
another basket here.
There is certainly reason to
doubt the referee's decision.
And Dynamo ends the first
half with the score 54:43.
The suspense is huge. Dynamo's
pressure is extremely strong.
Let's wait and see what
the second half brings.
Hey! Are you blind?
That was a foul! Foul!
Back off, dammit!
You'll be hit with a
technical, back off!
Kuusmaa, dammit!
Why do you need it?
Why are you acting offended,
damn pubescent!
Go to hell!
Enough of fast breaks, let's play
through all the main combinations!
We'll fool everyone with number one!
- Be more discreet.
Don't be an idiot, they don't
understand Estonian anyway.
Kuusmaa holds a finger up.
Kalev is dominating!
Kuusmaa executes a screen himself.
Brings it through on 45...
and a three-point ball
on the way and it scores!
I told you, it's working.
Dammit! Very good!
What violation?
Fuck you!
Dynamo reeks of vodka so much
it makes me dizzy.
And two more points from Metstak.
Kalev is finally up to speed.
Everything works, they score
baskets both in the
back and front lines.
What a victory for Kalev - 104:82!
Very good, thanks!
Well done, guys, dammit!
We need more of such commitment!
If you play like
this, no whistle can
stop us from winning
the championship!
There is hope, but now
the real challenge begins.
Kuusmaa 40 points, not bad!
You could have let
the boy play at the end.
He could have gotten his feet wet.
His time will come.
Why such grim faces?
This bonus will help
you do great things!
I understand your paper
is printed in the morning,
but no, no more comments.
I don't know.
Write about the victory today.
Yes. It was a good game.
All right, yes.
What's going on here?
- Business.
With those who got the bonus?
The boys were in debt a bit.
Only those who were playing?
Do you think I'm stupid?
Hello! Journalists have come
to congratulate us on our victory.
Is it true that Sergey
Babenko has joined Kalev?
I am happy to admit he has.
We have enough Estonian guys
waiting for playing time,
why add another one?
And a crippled legionnaire at that?
Tougher competition within the team
helps our Estonian
boys to get better.
Noorte Hl and other newspapers
are already boycotting Kalev.
Are you making Soviet
propaganda on purpose?
You ask the Russian to help us
because we can't do without them?
Why send such messages now?
Or you really can't do it?
The result of the qualification
tournament was a disaster.
You almost fell back
to Super League 1.
But we did qualify.
What if another well-known Russian
comes and offers his services,
will you replace all
the Estonian guys?
Dammit, you haven't
seen the team play!
You're just running your mouth!
Come watch some home games and
we'll have something to talk about.
Until then, shove your
questions up your ass.
But Aivar Kuusmaa, a very good
player, how do you comment?
Well, winners!
How's it going?
It went bad.
What do you mean, bad?
You made it to the tournament.
I didn't get to play.
Wait, your time will come.
You're part of the team,
even if you're on the bench.
And the team won.
What's going on here?
- It's me!
They almost burned
our house down.
But the damn bottle didn't break!
They would have burned
everything in broad daylight!
Calm down!
- Don't tell me to calm down!
We have small children!
Calm down, calm down...
...it's okay...
- Be careful.
I'm not going to cut the glass again.
The main tournament
hasn't started yet
and everything is already so fucked.
Should we quit?
Are you seriously thinking
about quitting?
I have to protect my family.
And the families of the guys.
What if they start attacking them?
Now we would still have time
to announce that we're quitting.
You think what happened today
would have happened
if you had played well in Russia?
You can't lose anymore!
And that's all.
Look, I really wish
you were home more often.
With me, with our children.
But if you give up now...
I don't know...
I'll leave you.
You have quite a wife.
Yes, I do...
You know what our
biggest problem is?
We're still considered a USSR team.
You know what they write in papers
Russian-minded, unpatriotic.
So let's make sure everybody knows
we're from the West.
Hello, ladies!
- Hello!
Riho Soonik.
Riho Soonik.
From the Kalev basketball team.
Yes, you too!
Have you ever watched
basketball games?
You will stand on a free throw line.
First passes to second.
First moves... let me show you.
Let's show Sergey number one!
Got it?
Well... not quite.
All right. Guys!
Let's go through it slowly!
First passes to second.
First moves in and covers you.
Second passes to third.
The third passes to you
and then the basket.
Got it.
You're the only team in the USSR
whose language we don't understand.
But we do know your gestures.
Got it?
- Yes.
I wish I had a more
comfortable chair.
I have nothing to do
on the court this year.
Want to make a bet?
Hey! Come here for a moment!
Get acquainted.
This is our secret weapon
for the main tournament.
George Jackson from USA.
I'm like an old truck -
keeps going against all odds.
You shouldn't have
sent them to hell.
- On the second page.
Maybe I shouldn't have
but now it's done, dammit!
What does it say?
It's about you.
They say you're a Russian.
Today's game is historic.
Our Kalev is playing
against CSKA Moscow.
And what's that?
- That's money!
We have sponsors now that we got to
the championship and started winning.
For the first time in a long time,
many sports fans have gathered
at Kalev's home arena
to watch a home game.
While playing in Russia, Kalev barely
made it to the final tournament.
According to critics,
today's game may be Kalev's last.
Their chances of beating Moscow's
strong team of taller men are slim.
We'll go with Sokk, Kuusmaa,
Nagel, Metstak, Karavayev.
If they want to rush us,
we won't let them.
We won't let them run.
And Tiit, take down all the fast
ones, with a foul if necessary.
The game still looks shaky.
Kuusmaa has the ball, Nagel,
Sokk in the corner and back to Nagel!
Kuusmaa tries a three-point
shot and... misses completely!
Looks like nobody will make it back.
And CSKA player
completes his fast break solo!
Babenko! Come on!
And Sergey Babenko enters the game!
A 29-year-old former
player of Spartak
Leningrad who remained on the bench.
Was bringing him here worth it?
We finally get a rebound.
We desperately need a
basket to get back in the game.
What will our guys come up with?
Nagel screens...
Babenko is wide open...
...and the first two points for Kalev!
So the system works.
- You bet.
Men cut through from under...
...now there's an opening...
...but the defense steps in
and we lose the ball again.
A quick counterattack gives
the opponents an easy basket!
Head coach Salumets takes time out.
What are their next choices?
The pressure from CSKA is strong.
Every mistake is quickly punished.
However, staying in the tournament
depends on making very good choices.
Jackson! You go!
Nagel comes off.
What the hell am I here for
if I can't play!
Your time will come.
Kalev, Kalev...
Great victory!
The team moves the ball well.
But I don't understand,
what do you do in training?
You win by thirty and they
still won't put you in the game?
You don't try hard enough?
- I do try!
That can't be true!
Obviously you don't want it enough!
You have no ambition.
Where are you going?
- I'm going to talk to Jaak.
About what?!
- He already has young Estonian boys.
You're not going anywhere!
They just don't give me a chance.
You keep telling me
that my time will come.
When will it come?
Did you like sitting
on the bench when
Salumets enjoyed games on the court?
Nobody likes to sit on the bench.
- Exactly!
You know, I'll do whatever I can
to help the team win.
I can even carry Jackson's sports bag
by my teeth if it helps us win.
Sometimes fortune favors the weak!?
What bullshit is this?
We lose, we get our asses kicked!
We win, we get our
asses kicked again!
Our court, our call.
But the fouls are always ours?
I only see what I see.
Where's the damn referee now?
You bastard!
We could have won
with a 50-point lead!
Why would you do that?
- Wait, wait!
What do you think you're doing,
young man?
Did you see the game?
What was he thinking?
Are you claiming that
the referee was bribed?
Maybe it's you who should
offer him some money?
So one can pay the Dynamo guys?
But not the referee?
Hey, attention!
Unless you all plan
to grow another 20
cm overnight, we have to watch this.
This is our secret weapon.
Baby still won't let you sleep?
We have to get our
counterattack running.
Otherwise we'll be
helpless in the playoffs.
Switch on the TV.
Yes. But when?
Unfortunately we have to
confirm the initial reports.
Russian military tanks
have invaded Lithuania.
Wait a moment!
A large military column
is moving towards Vilnius.
OMON units have wounded
unarmed Lithuanian border guards.
Attempts to stop the tanks from
invading the country have failed.
ITAR-TASS reports that,
according to Mikhail Gorbachev,
Lithuania's declaration of
independence was illegal.
Communist leader
Mykolas Burokevicius
sent a request for
assistance to Moscow,
which quickly responded to
restore order in Lithuania.
13 people have already died
defending the Vilnius TV tower.
Tanks are everywhere.
Uncertainty is great.
The number of victims may increase.
The Ministry strongly
advises to avoid
traveling to Latvia and Lithuania.
Stay at home.
It is clear that Moscow has
decided to violently suppress
the independence
attempts of the Baltic states.
Our faint hope for
independence is fading.
The USSR imposed a
blockade on Lithuania.
President Mikhail Gorbachev...
Until the cannons
roar, we don't play.
We're withdrawing
from the championship.
All the Baltic countries
are in mourning.
Nobody will play.
Damn Russians!
We can't play in this situation.
Pranas went home to
Lithuania, to his family.
To protect his family! His family!
We can't play, son.
- The hell I'm your son!
We could all be playing out there,
making good money,
but at your command we're stuck here
like circus monkeys in a cage!
Stuck here?! It's all
stuck in your head, dammit!
Who would you play with in Sweden?
Margus, with whom?
Or you, Tiit, in Finland,
with whom?!
Half of them are lean
literature students
who would break in half
in a man's game!
You were lucky not to get there!
In one year, your physical form
would drop so much
that they wouldn't even
let you play for Kuusalu KEK!
Think of all the work
I've done with you!
You're playing against the best!
- God damn it!
But you, kids, don't get it!
You run after the first pennies.
We do the work here. You're
just yelling from the sidelines.
We're stuck here
forever because of you!
Our families are stuck here forever!
No one knows if we'll ever
be allowed to play again!
Maybe the tanks
will crush everything!
What Aivar!
You all go to hell!
Everybody, go to hell indeed!
Do you...
think that Salumets
is keeping you locked up here?
That he doesn't
think of your future?
Jaak has been everywhere,
begging on your behalf.
Feeling ashamed to do so.
We had agreements.
With western agents to
come here to see the playoffs.
So that you could
play on foreign teams.
The borders were closed.
As the singers fled
one after another...
They didn't allow to...
Tonight, tanks have also
crossed the Latvian border.
Soviet tanks are already
just 200 km from Estonia.
Stone barriers have been erected on
Toompea, access roads are blocked.
The question remains when the
tanks will cross our borders.
Tallinn is ready, but what
will happen next is unknown.
I just wanted to say thanks.
Now I understand why
you didn't want me to play.
Because I'm Russian.
Sergey, it's not your fault!
Russian or not...
what's the difference?
People fight, people
make politics, people...
...play basketball.
Not nationalities.
A person makes choices,
not a nation. Right?
Bloody Sunday opened
the eyes of the world.
Mikhail Gorbachev is
being directly addressed
by the leaders of
USA, United Kingdom,
France and many other countries.
Today we can say that the cries
for help in Vilnius have been heard.
Soviet units have begun to withdraw.
I know them.
Those guys are from Zalgiris, we
played together in the youth league.
Alvydas and Gintaras.
And now they went to block a tank.
What would you do?
- What?
Someone is in the yard.
Come in.
Last year, Mikhail Gorbatchev
was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize,
but the Russian president said the
military acted without his orders.
It's not possible that this
could happen without him knowing.
There's hierarchy.
Control of the USSR
military is in his hands...
Jaak here.
Jaak? It's Pranas.
Hello, my friend!
How's it going?
Are you and your
loved ones all right?
Yes, yes. Everything's fine.
More or less.
As much as it can be.
I'm ready to come back,
I'll arrive on Sunday, so...
Pranas, listen!
We're not playing anymore.
What do you mean?
How can we play after what happened?
What do you mean how can we?
Just the opposite!
This is precisely the
right time to play.
Here in Lithuania,
we don't know what to give
for the chance to be
in the tournament!
In your place to quit?
You have to show
them for our sake too!
Hey, how can we not?
We must!
We must win this championship!
That's all, I'm coming to Tallinn!
See you there!
Put your pants on! Let's get going!
I know there's a lot of work to do,
but it is what it is!
They've had a whole month off,
I don't even want to think about
what shape the guys are in.
All the preparation in summer...
Come on! You'll see!
They've been here every day.
They called everyone
together themselves.
I just came to open the doors.
Kalev! Kalev...
We have reason to rejoice
Kalev is back!
And back strong!
First they won the main tournament,
now they beat SKA Kyiv in
the quarter finals - 100:91!
Next up are the semi-finals,
where two Baltic
giants will face each other.
Latvia and Estonia!
Our Kalev and VEF Riga.
Thank you!
Next question, please!
How have you decided to continue
playing in the current situation?
As I've said before, yes, we play.
Is that the whole answer?
But now that there are many
foreigners in the team
is Kalev a professional
or national team?
Jesus! What do I have to say now?
If there are no other questions...
- It was a problem
when we played
under the Soviet flag,
now we can't play
under our own flag?!
It's not about that.
It's about the members of the team.
Maybe we should quit
the tournament completely?
Send everyone to hell, as they say?
But that would mean giving up.
- What do you want?
Spit it out, what do you want?
Maybe we could win?
Then let us do that!
Many thanks to everyone!
That is all for today.
Riga here. The semi-finals
between Kalev and VEF have begun.
It's an aggressive
game by both teams.
But the Latvians, of course,
do not give anything easily.
Give the ball, dammit!
Talk to each other! If you
need to change, then change!
Kalev's attacking!
Sokk passes to Kuusmaa...
Where is the open man now?
And under the basket to Nagel...
and Jackson is completely forgotten!
Two more points to Kalev!
29:21 - Kalev
leads in the first half.
Now, VEF Riga is attacking.
Kuusmaa is screening...
very strong! Even pushing!
Now Kalev is attacking again.
Sokk seems to be looking for Kuusmaa.
And if Kuusmaa would
now make it to 45...
and there goes the ball!
And score! Three more points!
Kuusmaa is unstoppable!
Eight points from
Kuusmaa in a short time!
Hopefully he can keep his
energy up until the end of the game!
Quickly back!
The suspense is unbelievable!
But we're leading!
They must also get back. VEF
fires a three-point ball and scores!
Very sorry to say, they score.
Every mistake is punished!
Last minutes of the half.
Kalev is attacking.
Sokk is conducting the game again,
looking for someone...
Kuusmaa passes under the
basket again, cuts in... and slips.
Kalev loses the semi-final
opening game 87:94 to VEF Riga.
24 points from Kuusmaa,
then an injury that seems serious...
Groin strain.
The second game in Tallinn
is already in three days.
Who will lead Kalev's attacks?
Will the dream end here?
Get going!
I'll scamper after you shortly!
Let me help!
Go on, I'll manage!
- Don't act tough, I'll help!
You know how you can play more?
You have to send
an old teammate to the bench.
You're not helping your cause here.
A full house again and
everybody wants a victory!
But the Latvians already see
themselves in the final game.
Kalev is attacking, the Latvians
find Jackson and block his ball!
VEF Riga goes for a fast break...
and an easy two points result.
I told you so!
Which body part does
Salumets use for thinking?
VEF wins the first half.
It's a pity, but Aivar
Kuusmaa's injury is so serious
that he can only sit on the bench.
And just when he is needed most,
the head coach doesn't
put him in the game.
Does Kalev have any hope
of getting on from here?
Put me in the game.
Nobody goes fast, right?
All of you, listen to Sokk.
If at all possible...
Kuusmaa is in the game, but so
far he has stayed in the shadows.
Is now the moment?
We really need Kuusmaa's help.
Tiit Sokk is looking for
someone to pass the ball to...
Kuusmaa is open now,
the ball is on its way and scores!
Kuusmaa picks up where he
left off in the last game!
Kuusmaa with the ball...
passes to the edge...
moves to put a screen,
but it seems that...
the Latvians are not paying
attention, Kuusmaa is open again and...
Another long shot!
What a guy! He just
can't let us play!
Now Kalev already owns the game!
And the fans in the
Kalev arena are cheering!
Kuusmaa gets a pass, the
shot goes and... it's amazing!
Awesome! Amazing!
Aivar Kuusmaa has an unbelievable
will! He's an example for everyone!
A superhuman victory - 107:90!
I told you to let Kuusmaa play,
I told you!
After the loss in Riga, Kalev
has defeated VEF twice at home.
113:96 in the second game.
And now the final game.
The next opponent
is Spartak Leningrad,
the strongest team of the USSR.
Babenko against his
former coach and team.
Jaak Salumets
against his former coach.
Captain Biriukov.
Your documents.
Show me you high beams.
Turn signals.
What, they want money?
What the hell, we're not
going to give them anything.
Oh, dammit!
Hello, comrades!
I'm sorry but we're in a hurry.
We're athletes.
We have a game, a competition.
A game?
Yes, I know, there's still time
before the game.
Aivar Kuusmaa!
How's it going?
All's well.
- Aivar.
- Hi!
Please delay the start
of the game a little bit.
Our players need to warm up.
The game will start on time,
rules are the same for everyone.
Name your number. How many rooms
do you want in your apartment?
In return, you need to play
without overdoing it, so to speak.
Number 5, Aivar Kuusmaa.
Number 6, Tiit Sokk.
Number 7, Ivo Saksakulm.
Number 8, Margus Metstak.
Number 9, Andrus Nagel.
Number 10, George Jackson.
Number 11, Sergey Babenko.
Number 12, Marek Noormets.
Number 13, Aleksandr Karavayev.
Guys! Our opponents
are bigger and stronger.
It means we have
to play very smart.
Side by side in defense,
let's talk and help!
Let's move under screens if they
shoot, don't let them through!
When we attack, let the ball move,
always let the tall guy through.
We must prove to our people
that we're not traitors.
People want a victory!
We want it too. Today, we
play for Jaak and Babenko.
I've been waiting for this.
Spartak's home arena
is crammed with people.
And Spartak's opening
attacks are successful.
A shot goes, it misses,
now there's a new chance...
another rebound... and a foul!
And free throws.
Go through underneath,
as Salumets said.
And look for Babenko.
And another point for
Spartak from a free throw.
The home team has started well.
Kalev needs to think.
Time for a substitution.
A fresher man goes in.
Babenko takes a
breather and Jackson goes in.
And Spartak is combining.
A steal from Jackson,
now they can go for a fast break!
A center pass forward and...
...basically a dunk!
And a quick basket for Kalev!
Kalev is attacking.
They pass, look, put screens.
Where will Nagel pass?
And Spartak steals the ball and
Spartak's fast break follows.
An easy basket for them!
It's like they know what we're doing!
39:33 - Spartak has home
court advantage and it shows.
Thousands of people have
come to watch the game.
Will tactical choices determine
the result of the second half?
Or something else?
Who will outsmart whom?
Cross! Cross!
Dammit, they read our plays
like an alphabet book!
Let's give them something
more complicated to read!
When I show cross, you don't do a
cross, but Kalev's number one.
When I show one finger, you don't do
Kalev's number one but the cross.
And not to make it too easy for them,
we need to find another sign
that means number one.
I don't know...
- Head.
Right - the head.
When I raise my fist,
it symbolizes
our smart head,
and you do number one.
It looks like Kalev is
going through its main moves.
What will their tactics be for
the start of the second half?
Will they run under the
basket or go back to the edges?
The opponent did not expect this!
Kuusmaa is open...
a three-point shot is on
its way and it scores!
Babenko fights hard for his position.
And now Salumets
has raised his fist.
They play to the back on the arch,
Kuusmaa is also holding up his fist
and what does that mean?
But Kalev is combining, that's
for sure, the ball goes to the side...
It seems like they're doing one,
Babenko under the basket and...
an easy score.
50 seconds before the end of
the half, Spartak takes a timeout.
Spartak's next
attack doesn't work out.
Will Kalev manage to
decide the game here?
Babenko under the basket and a foul.
All of you at home following
the game on radio and TV -
remember this!
This is not just basketball,
this is history.
Spartak's arena is crammed with
people! The noise is deafening!
And Sergey Babenko has
the crucial free throw.
And he scores!
The game is done!
This is what we trained for!
Kalev Tallinn has made history!
In front of of the local audience,
their own team is
beaten in Leningrad!
Thank you.
Thank you!
It was a goddamn lottery after all.
Fortune favors the strong.
Sometimes one can buy it with money.
I heard about how you got
to the main tournament.
It's a good thing I didn't take you
with me to the Olympics.
What did I say?
That they won't let me
on the court anymore.
Pay up!
Oh, it's unbelievable! Good
thing we didn't bet on the court.
Throughout the game, Karavayev had
a white shirt under his tracksuit!
The Dynamo game!
Did you pay or not?
The guys paid Dynamo to lose.
You knew about it?
What damn times are these?
When even good guys
have to cheat and lie?
What kind of system is this where
an honest man can't stay honest?
How much foreign vodka did Riho
and I have to sell secretly?
Just so we could have hot water
at Kalev Arena in the evening.
Just thinking about it makes
me sick, as they say.
If we have to play a third game,
then in Russia,
Baltic guys and an American
will never be allowed to become
champions of the USSR.
We have to settle
accounts in Tallinn.
Tsarikov and Ryzhyk will be
the referees for the game in Tallinn.
Those are normal guys, right?
Whoever appointed them
gets a one-way ticket to the taiga.
It doesn't matter anyway. Referees
are the first to be pressured.
By the start of the game they're
as obedient as young communists.
Mister Ryzhyk, welcome
to Tallinn! - Hello.
Mister Tsarikov!
- Hello.
It's straight from here.
Good day.
These are Mr. Tolstoy
and Mr. Dostoyevski.
They are very important people
and no one should disturb them.
No calls in, no calls out.
And please, take
their meals to their room.
Actually... it would be great if they
couldn't leave their rooms at all.
Is that possible somehow?
Two tickets for the game.
I'll get you first row tickets.
This way.
Straight to the court
and at the last possible moment.
Hundreds of thousands of Estonians
listen to the radio and watch TV.
We all hope for victory today.
Because if we lose,
there will be a third game.
Good evening!
Sokk, Kuusmaa, Metstak, Babenko,
and Jackson will start the game.
The second game of the USSR
championship final is about to begin.
It's been a long time
since we've seen
so many people here
in the Kalev Arena.
Jaak. Jaak!
Mister Salumets... Soonik!
How does it feel,
do we win or do you lose?
Can you hear yourself?
If we lose, it's always just us.
And if we win,
it's always with you.
Is it even possible
for us to lose with you?
- Hello!
Let's keep ourselves sharp, okay?
When they gang up on Sergey,
immediately send a pass out.
Kuusmaa, Sokk - be ready, okay?
And think! Read the opponent, right?
Don't forget!
And the main thing - be as one!
Spartak's captain enters the court.
Their average age is
below that of the Kalev team.
But as you see, the opponents are
young but still very tall players.
Sokk, here!
Kalev has a nice start,
Babenko scores two points
against his former team.
As I said, Spartak's greatest
strength is the height of the men.
But their average age
is less than Kalev's.
And now Spartak is attacking...
Kuusmaa! Be more aggressive
in defense! Get closer to him!
Tall Spartak is looking for
the ball under the basket!
Metstak holds the
ball as well as he can...
and uses a fake... and
Spartak still scores a basket.
Men! Read each other,
this must not happen again!
If someone looks for help,
go and help right away!
Not just the closest guy
but others too!
Watch the ball! If necessary,
switch positions. Rotate!
Sokk holds up a finger!
Will they do a Kalev
number one combination?
Or a cross instead?
They're doing the cross.
But it seems like
Spartak reads minds.
They get a hand in and score a
basket as a result of their attack.
It seems that Jackson
has been injured.
How serious might that be?
It would be a pity if that tall
player had to leave the game.
Listen, their legs are really stiff.
They haven't recovered
from the last match.
At the end of the first half,
Kalev is ahead 42:36.
Kalev leads, but Spartak
keeps the pressure strong.
We have a tough game ahead.
But we'll give Spartak
a little surprise.
They've obviously
done their homework.
They think they know
what we're doing.
That we'll play our smart game
and do our old combinations.
That they can already expect.
But we'll use a new tactic.
We'll only do fast breaks.
We'll improvise.
We'll tire them out.
We'll make them run out of energy.
Show this crazy Lithuanian that
he hasn't trained you for nothing!
Kalev makes a few substitutions,
fresh men in.
Rauno Pehka has entered the game.
The attack is nice and sharp.
Nagel is looking for someone to
pass to, finds an open man!
And an easy two points result!
Kalev has considerably
increased the speed of the game!
A quick three-point
ball and it scores!
Go on! Faster! Faster!
Spartak is looking
for a counter move.
Their tall guys are asking
for the ball under the basket.
A good steal and
we're already running!
Jaak, ease the pace!
I'm afraid the guys
won't last until the end.
Spartak is sending
fresh men in all the time.
Tiit, let's make a change!
Dial back the speed completely.
Hold the ball.
They're running out of time!
Three minutes to play.
Spartak badly needs to
get the ball out fast.
Kalev! Kalev!...
What do you think,
shall we substitute?
I can't substitute now.
I need the ball in the hands of the
guys I can trust most. No substitute!
This is the first time in 50
years when Kalev really has time.
We're in no rush!
They have to find open players.
Sokk has the ball. There's
movement under the basket.
Tiit Sokk breaks through!
His opposite player hits a foul!
And we get two free throws.
Kalev! Kalev!...
Sokk is at the free throw line!
Here is one more point for Kalev!
We're in the lead!
And one minute to play!
Spartak quickly
answers with a basket,
but it doesn't matter much anymore!
The ball is put in play,
straight to Kuusmaa...
and Spartak stops the
attack with a foul.
The referees show a hit to the arm.
And Aivar Kuusmaa is
at the free throw line!
What is happening? It's too
early to open the champagne!
We must stay sharp -
the audience as well!
After 42 years,
Estonian basketball players are
the champions of the Soviet Union.
We can safely say that because in
24 seconds it's very difficult,
if not impossible to
make up for 9 points.
Kuusmaa has another free throw,
24 seconds to the gold medal.
Aivar Kuusmaa
misses his free throw,
and Spartak can quickly
start a counterattack!
Nobody from Kalev is rushing to
defense and Spartak
scores an easy basket.
The score is 83:76.
Kalev is leading by seven!
The ball is in play,
it reaches Sokk...
his opponent hits a foul,
but it no longer matters.
This is a victory.
It must be a victory.
The first ball scores a point. 84:76.
And the second one scores as well.
The score is 85:76.
Nagel hits his third foul
three seconds before the end.
That was really not necessary.
Spartak has free throws to use.
The crowd at Kalev Arena is standing
up and waiting for the final siren.
The first free throw misses.
The referees grab the
ball and give it back.
The second one misses as well!
There's still a chance,
three seconds to play.
Who will shoot?
Will anyone shoot?
Kuusmaa gives it a try
from the middle of the court!
It doesn't score but it's a victory!
Tallinn, May 6, 1991.
A great moment in
Estonian sports history.
A powerful moment for us all.
Kalev beats Spartak 85:77!
And becomes the champion of the
USSR Premier Basketball League!
Congratulations, Estonia!
Don't worry!
Next year,
I won't let you off the court!
And you'll bring us the next cup!
The breaking of the
cup is really symbolic -
today when the whole
USSR is collapsing.
On May 6, 1991, Kalev Tallinn
became the last champion of the USSR.
Three months later,
on August 20, 1991,
Estonia declared its independence.
Jaak Salumets made Zalgiris Kaunas
the champion of Lithuania in 1994.
Riho Soonik was vice president
of the Northern European Basketball
League (NEBL) in 1998-2003.
Gert Kullame made it
to Kalev's main team.
He became a 7-time
national champion,
and later a champion of Lithuania,
Netherlands, and Belgium.
In 2020, Aivar Kuusmaa was added to
the Estonian Basketball Hall of Fame.
A 7-time national champion.
Silver medal from
the Greek Championship.
Winner of the Greek Cup.