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BiE’s editor takes the ice bucket challenge, nominates Basketball Ireland boss +++ Žydrūnas Ilgauskas considering a comeback? Wow LeBron has power +++ The Dream Team’s children +++ Highlights: Belgium beat Belarus, Germany stay alive +++ EuroBasket 2015: Bosnia, Belgium, Israel, and Latvia lock up spots +++ First Person: Follow the FIBA World Cup through BiE’s eyes +++ Basketball World Cup of Beer: The Final – USA vs France +++ Tight knit Iceland too much for Great Britain +++ EuroBasket 2015: Round-up and Highlights from Wednesday’s qualifiers +++ FIBA dropped a sweet promo for the World Cup +++
Aug
0

BiE’s editor takes the ice bucket challenge, nominates Basketball Ireland boss

BiE-Ice-bucket
Well it had to happen. Watch me dunk a bucket of water with around 2kg of ice in it over my head. The €22 donation goes to the Irish Motor Neurone Disease Association. For Irish readers, donate €22 because the IMNDA get some extra tax break when you go up to that level.

And now it’s time to get wet.
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Aug
0

Žydrūnas Ilgauskas considering a comeback? Wow LeBron has power

NBA


Retired Lithuanian big man and 15-season NBA veteran Žydrūnas Ilgauskas is considering a comeback according to what would best be described as reports tonight.

That isn’t a critique on the source, rather that literally all anyone has to go on right now is a single tweet from a trusted source.

Ilgauskas hasn’t laced up on a NBA or indeed any competitive court since 2011, having followed LeBron James to Miami for a single season with the Heat before hanging up his kicks. At 39, you’d have to wonder what he can offer a team that retired his jersey last season. Bob Cousy’s return at 41 after 7 years retired is a good comparison, albeit a touch more extreme in terms of time off the court. The two things in his favour are the Cavs could probably do with another big and he is plenty familiar with LeBron but you have to think there are better options out there for a roster spot.

Whatever Ilgauskas, who due to assorted commitments in the NBA only played three internationals for his home nation, ends up doing or being asked to do, that it’s even a question is a sign of the influence of LeBron James in the sport right now. His mere presence in Cleveland has made a man retired three years consider making a comeback.

Aug
1

The Dream Team’s children

dream-team-bench-banner
The now elder statesmen of international hoops often speak about the influence the Dream Team had on them but what about the players who were born in the wake of that defining event in international basketball? Emmet Ryan looks at the most interesting young players at the 2014 FIBA World Cup of Basketball.

This seems like as good a time as any to talk about youth at the World Cup given Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk has been named in Ukraine’s squad. For the purposes of this we’re defining these players as any born from 1992 onwards. That means one or two were born before the 1992 Olympics but we’re going to allow them those couple of months when it’s safe to say they didn’t develop all that much as ballers.

What was stunning in our look across the squads was how few young players feature on teams from the Americas. Outside of Team USA, it’s a string of veteran heavy outfits. Europe, by and large, is sending more balanced squads but there are plenty of younger players knocking around.
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Aug
0

Highlights: Belgium beat Belarus, Germany stay alive


Belgium booked their place in EuroBasket 2015 with a big road win over Belarus yesterday. The comprehensives 99-73 win means they don’t need to worry about their final game of the second qualifying round on Wednesday night.
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Aug
0

EuroBasket 2015: Bosnia, Belgium, Israel, and Latvia lock up spots

Oprah-Eurobasket

The field for EuroBasket 2015 took a step closer to being set but the somewhat confusing tie-breakers means there are still places up for grabs. Here’s what happened on Sunday.

Bosnia and Herzegovina saw off a spirited Great Britain charge 74-68 to move to 3-0 and formally book their place out of Group A. Mirza Teletovic had another big night for the hosts as he led all scorers with 25 while Ben Mockford nailed five from deep for the visitors.

Group B saw Israel secure their spot with an 83-60 win over the Netherlands. Montenegro beat Bulgaria 85-73 on the road. Montenegro will play the Dutch to decide second spot although, and we’ll explain in a bit, victory alone may not be enough for either side.

No-one is securely in the finals after today’s games in Group C. Poland trounced Luxembourg 100-64 to move to 4-1 but they still need to beat Austria in their final game to be safe. Germany stayed alive with an 88-69 win over Austria. Germany need to win against Luxembourg to have a shot at second spot but a win for Austria in Poland would make things really messy.
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Aug
0

First Person: Follow the FIBA World Cup through BiE’s eyes

Emmet-looking-silly

BallinEurope editor Emmet Ryan is going to give followers of the FIBA World Cup of Basketball a different view when he gets to Spain. With the Epson Moverio BT 200 Smart Glasses, Emmet will record short videos to give BiE’s fans a look at what we’re seeing in Spain.

Here’s a taster of what it’s like to view life through theses glasses.
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Aug
0

Basketball World Cup of Beer: The Final – USA vs France

BWCB Opening Ceremony
After three weeks, there’s only one thing left to decide. We started with 24 beers, one for each of the nations in the 2014 FIBA World Cup of Basketball. Now, we find out who takes the title in the final of the Basketball World Cup of Beer.

It’s the USA vs France in the decider. Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA vs Admiral Benson. Before we find out who wins, let’s take a look at their paths to the final.

Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA (USA)
Group: Topped Group C
Second round: Beat Volfas Engleman Rinktinis (Lithuania)
Quarter Final: Beat 8 Wired Superconductor (New Zealand)
Semi Final: Beat Little Creatures Pale Ale (Australia)

Mont Salève Admiral Benson IPA (France)
Group: Topped Group A
Second round: Beat Quilmes Cristal (Argentina)
Quarter Final: Beat Ozusjko (Croatia)
Semi-Final: Beat Old Harbor Kofresi Stout (Puerto Rico)

And now, the final battle…
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Aug
0

Tight knit Iceland too much for Great Britain

Great-Britain-Iceland
Great Britain had hope at half-time but in the end, they fell yet again. George Rowland was in the Copper. Here’s his take on what happened on a big night for Iceland.

In what was a crucial game for both team’s hopes of Eurobasket qualification Iceland prevailed 69-71 in a closely run affair at the Copper Box. With GB leading by ten at half time it was a second half collapse that cost them a win that would’ve rekindled any hopes of Eurobasket qualification, while Iceland’s victory all but guarantees them a spot in next summer’s tournament.

The game was ultimately decided by two aspects, Iceland’s rebounding on both ends of the court, and the effort on both ends of the floor of the Icelandic guards, specifically Jon Arnor Stefansson and Hordur Viljhalmsson against an inexperienced GB back court.

Beginning with the guard play; Devon van Oostrum demonstrated some flashes of his brilliance in the first half, with a slick behind the back assist in transition highlighting what was probably his best half of basketball this summer. But once again for van Oostrum it seemed like it was style over substance as he struggled as he was often the only ball-handler and playmaker on court. His 5 assists were matched by 5 turnovers along with a 0/6 shooting night, as the Icelandic defenders contently dared van Oostrum to shoot, and with their improved rebounding in the second half the transition opportunities died out and van Oostrum struggled.
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Aug
0

EuroBasket 2015: Round-up and Highlights from Wednesday’s qualifiers


Latvia remain undefeated while Iceland are on the brink of qualification. Here’s what happened in Wednesday’s EuroBasket 2015 qualifiers.

In case you need a re-cap on what the teams involved need to do to qualify, the seven group winners progress to EuroBasket 2015 along with the top six second-placed teams from the seven qualifying groups.

Iceland overcame a 10 point half-time deficit to beat Great Britain in the Copper Box. That win leaves them on 2-1 in Group A and odds-on to qualify for next year’s finals. We’ll have a full report from George Rowland later today.

In Group B wins for Israel over Montenegro (80-65) and Netherlands over Bulgaria (66-57) moved both sides to 3-1. Montenegro are third on 2-2.

Austria needed to work for their Group C win away to Luxembourg, eventually taking the honours 80-71, but they were rewarded well as Germany fell 88-76 at home to Poland. Those results leave Austria and Poland on 3-1 while Germany are third on 2-2.
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Aug
1

FIBA dropped a sweet promo for the World Cup


That right there is FIBA’s latest promo for the 2014 World Cup of Basketball. BiE arrives in Bilbao on Friday 29th. It can’t come soon enough.