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Highlights: Croatia beat Spain 80-55 in FIBA Europe U18s +++ Highlights: Serbia coast past Lithuania 83-67 at FIBA Europe U18s +++ Highlights: Greece beat Italy 85-68 in FIBA Europe U18s +++ VIDEO: Basketball World Cup of Beer – Opening Ceremony and Schedule +++ Serbia and Croatia make statements at FIBA U18s +++ Coach James Weldon gives his thoughts on Dragan Bender +++ Sarunas Jasikevičius retires, joins Zalgiris in coaching role +++ Vintage Drazen Petrovic jersey up for auction +++ Ireland announce select squad for Luxembourg friendlies +++ We really need you to nominate beers +++
Jun
1

NetScouts to host Elite Skills and Exposure Camp; early registration rates through June

NetScouts logoAttention, European youth players: BallinEurope’s compadres over at NetScouts Basketball have announced their hosting for their Elite Skills and Exposure Camp in Prague for boys and girls aged 12-19 years old. The event runs August 7-10; participation includes a skills evaluation with top players joining the NetScouts Basketball International Recruiting Service for promotion to prep schools and college in the US.

NetScouts and the partnering Get Better Academy bring an impressive list of coaches and scouts for the camp; as of this writing, the list features former Union Olimpija youth head coach Luka Bassin; former CSU/Santa Clara women’s head coach Chris Denker; Get Better Academy skill development trainer Julian Betko (whose past clientele has included Danny Granger, Mario Chalmers, Jarret Jack and Carl Landry among others); and NetScouts’ own Carl Berman.

Through June 30, registration for the event is €160 for Czech Republic players and €260 for those from outside the country. From July 1, prices go to €200 and €300 for Czech and non-Czech players respectively. Prices include all lodging and meal expenses, and participation is limited to 80.

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Oct
4

Profile: Jan Vesely, Washington Wizards first-round draft pick

Despite the bad news handed down by NBA commissioner David Stern, BallinEurope’s man in the U.K., Sam Chadwick, is optimistic enough to suppose that the big league will be playing ball in 2011-12 – or at least optimistic enough to submit a draft profile on Jan Vesely. How good will the Czech be once NBA ball tips off again? Read on to find out!

Name: Jan Vesely
Country: Czech Republic
Club: Partizan Belgrade
Position: SF/PF
Height: 6’11” (211 cm)
Age: 21 (born April 1990)

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Oct
2

Euroleague Qualifying Round: Galatasaray, Spirou Basket fill final two spots

Well, at least BallinEurope got one of ‘em right

In Vilnius, it wasn’t so pretty or high-scoring, but Galatasaray used a couple of scoring runs and outlasted Lietuvos Rytas to become the third TBL team in the 2011-12 Euroleague season in its first-ever bid in the big league … by the way, does this make the Lithuanian side the outright favorite to take the 2012 Eurocup title or are we still thinking Beşiktaş?

An excerpt from the league’s official writeup and highlights via Lietuvos Rytas TV follow.

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Jun
1

A dunking ninja in America: Clips, comments on Jan Vesely’s draft night

On NBA Draft night, surely no European player – not even the mysterious (to the American market) Enes Kanter – drew as much notice as no. 6 overall Jan Vesely. In a serious case of instant fame injection, the Czech big man leapt into the collective consciousness thanks to a post-draft smooch and the resulting publicity for a YouTube clip collection that challenges young Senor Rubio’s in terms of imagination-bending awesomeness.

As BallinEurope this morning runs down Vesely’s video record, firstly here’s the introduction of no. 6 by David Stern and *that kiss*.

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Apr
1

Monday videos: Barcelona beaten, Cook cookin’, remembering Moses and more

Welcome to the week, BallinEurope readers. We’ll get Monday started with a few video clips, stories, links, and some apocalyptic thinking about FC Barcelona.

• Now here’s some motivation for Ricky Rubio to, you know, give that Minnesota Timberwolves thing a try: The decent possibility that Barcelona will not recapture the ACB championship title and, unlike last offseason, will blow up the team and reshape the roster.

That’s certainly how it looks from this perspective right now; surely BiE is pulling the trigger quickly on this one, but Barça is proving quite vulnerable right now. After dropping three straight to Panathinaikos, the Blaugrana lost *at home* to ACB fifth-place team Bizkaia Bilbao Basket, representing Barcelona’s first L in el Palau since October – and Bizkaia’s first-ever win there.

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Feb
3

Vesely named FIBA Europe young player of 2010

[Editor's note: BallinEurope apologizes for a previous edition of this piece which incorrectly identified Jan Vesely as having rights owned by the Oklahoma City Thunder. This was a grievous error of which you surely need not know details. Rest assured that the infinite number of monkeys formerly ravaging the BiE headquarters are now under control of the proper authorities. Thank you for your patience.]

Jan Vesely was yesterday named FIBA Europe’s Young Men’s Player of the Year for 2010, nipping three-time winner (!) Ricky Rubio for the honors. Both fans and a panel of experts voted, with the tallies weighted to produce a final score.

How close was the race between Vesely and Rubio? Vesely received some 53 more popular votes than The Human YouTube Clip of 97,079, a difference of less than 0.06%; in the expert vote, Vesely scored 14 points higher than Rubio of a total 693, or just about a 2% margin.

Finishing third overall was 19 year-old Jonas Valanciunas, currently of Lietuvos Rytas; Andrew Albicy, currently of Paris-Levallois; and “Free” Enes Kanter, currently in basketball limbo thanks to forces beyond his control.

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Oct
1

NLB wrap: Zagreb bests Radnicki, Buducnost upsets Partizan, CEZ Nymburg no. 1

The first week of play in the Adriatic League (a.k.a. the NLB Liga ABA) was capped yesterday with KK Zagreb’s 82-76 home-opener win over Radnički despite an amazing performance by Michael Lee – and just check out who’s atop the standings.

Lee, a two-sport star at St. Bonaventure who was with the Hungarian league’s Albacomp for 2009-10, played all 40 minutes and contributed 29 points on 11-of-18 shooting, including a lights-out 100% on his five three-point attempts.

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Oct
1

Team Czech Republic’s biggest fan

With the FIBA World Championship for Women title game just minutes away, BallinEurope pays tribute to a man who must be the biggest women’s basketball fan in the world. Or at least in Europe. Definitely in the Czech Republic.

Rostislav Pav, to whom it seems the women’s game “is better than the men’s game” will surely be in his glory tonight as the Team Czech Republic attains easily its best finish internationally in women’s basketball just by taking the floor in the game against Diana Taurasi, Sue Bird and the ladies of Team USA tonight.

The official FIBA World YouTube channel calls the below video “The Most Dedicated Fan of Czech Republic,” so we’ll simply run with that. Talk about devotion…

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May
6

Dreaming of a Euro-centric 2011 NBA Draft

Vesely: BiE's 2011 EL MVP, NBA lottery pick

Here at Ball in Europe we (sometimes) like to do things a little early, and I mainly have one thing on my mind about this year’s NBA draft: Namely, next year’s NBA draft.

Since watching the Euroleague third-place game between Partizan Belgrade and CSKA Moscow, I can’t help but think that, because of his decision to stay in Europe an extra season, Jan Vesely [also BallinEurope’s official fearless prediction for Euroleague MVP for 2010-11 --Ed.] could make himself the number 2 pick in next June’s 2011 NBA Draft.

Before removing himself from consideration, Vesely was this season projected as the 10th-15th pick and was considered the best/second-best European pick in the draft alongside Donatas Motiejunas. If Vesely can play as well next season as he did this one, while also improving in his weaknesses and making himself a bit bigger, he could even push Harrison Barnes aside and go no. 1 overall.

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Mar
0

ČEZ Nymburk takes third Czech Cup in a row, awaits EuroCup quarterfinal

Congratulations from BallinEurope go ahead today to ČEZ Nymburk, winners of the Czech Cup after beating Mlékárna Miltra Nový Jičín, 66-48, thanks mainly to a shutdown 21-7 fourth quarter put in by the new champs. The 2010 Cup makes it the fourth such title in a row for the team.

Official FIBA Europe press release follows.

(FIBA Europe) – ČEZ Nymburk lifted the Czech Cup over the weekend after a 66-48 triumph over Mlékárna Miltra Nový Jičín.

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