Fearless Predictions: 2014 FIBA World Cup of Basketball +++ It’s Jet-er not Jee-ter, watch Pooh get ready for the World Cup +++ EuroBasket 2015: Romania the odd team out on the final night +++ Gran Canaria gets the Phantom treatment for USA vs Slovenia +++ TrueHoop breaks down how David Blatt will work with LeBron James +++ FIBA World Cup Preview: Group D +++ 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 +++

Better know a Euro – Alessandro Gentile

With the 2014 NBA Draft taking place on Thursday, we’re providing quick refreshers on each of the European players hoping to hear their names called. Next up is Alessandro Gentile.

Alessandro Gentile
Position: SG/SF
Draft Express Rank: 61
Draft Express Projection: Undrafted
Nationality: Italy
Club: Olimpia Milano
Season: Quarter finals of Euroleague, currently in Italian league finals with Milano.
Notable personal honours: 2011 Italian league best player under 22

Bear in mind: Gentile logged heavy minutes in Euroleague this year for a Milano team that over-achieved. Psychologically he’s ready for the NBA, whether his game is up to it is another question.

So how good is he? Well he was plenty impressive at EuroBasket:


Maybe Italy should start jacking up 3s and Dragic loves his bro

Italy have been quiet from beyond the arc in Eurobasket 2013 so far but their success rate means they might want to go deep more often.

Simon Jatsch of has publish five charts on Twitter today with some fascinating stats on EuroBasket 2013. The number that jumps out is Italy’s success from three-point range despite taking the second fewest attempts in the tournament.'s stats on three point shooting at Eurobasket 2013
Italy are converting 46.8 per cent of their shots from beyond the arc but only 28.5 per cent of their shots have been threes. Only Israel have taken fewer three-point attempts. On the opposite end of the scale Finland are one of three teams to have taken over 40 per cent of their chances from long range but are in the bottom four for the tournament in conversion rate. Of the medal contenders, the team with the biggest opportunity to break out looks to be Serbia. With 29.9 per cent of threes converted, the Serbs need to raise their game to stay amongst the medal contenders. They are however playing smart and limiting their efforts from long range while they work out the kinks, taking just 32.7 per cent of their shots from beyond the arc.

In addition to threes, Simon has put together four other charts. Check out this great graphic of where assists leader Goran Dragic drops his dimes. Here’s a look at Alessandro Gentile’s off-dribble scoring. Unsurprisingly his brother Zoran has been one of the chief beneficiarys. Bosnia’s Zack Wright leads under-sized rebounders, and it turns out Russia were rather good in steals and blocks.


Coppa Italia preview: Can anyone stop Montepaschi Siena?

February will see Turin playing host to the Coppa Italia, a grueling four-day tournament featuring Italy’s top eight teams. With the matchups now determined, BallinEurope’s man in Italy, Enrico Cellini, provides a brief preview of the competition.

The first half of Serie A season is over and the table is set for a little appetizer to the final playoffs. In Turin, from February 16th to 19th, the top eight teams of the 2011-12 season’s first half will play each other in elimination games to conquer the Coppa Italia, the second-most important national trophy and litmus paper of each team’s ambitions.

The teams and matchups are as follows.

Montepaschi Siena (1) vs Banco di Sardegna Sassari (8)
EA7 Milano (4) vs Canadian Solar Bologna (5)
Scavolini Siviglia Pesaro (2) vs Umana Venezia (7)
Bennet Cantù (3) vs Sidigas Avellino (6)

Will this be an opportunity for Montepaschi Siena to reassert its dominance after a few unexpected losses or a chance for rampant new challengers to prepare for an assault on the throne?

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Gallinari is gone? Next! Emporio Armani Milan’s new sensation Alessandro Gentile

Emporio Armani Milano sits at a dismal 2-4 in Euroleague play and now marquee name Danilo Gallinari is departing the club … so what’s next? How about coaxing the top prospect in Italy, Alessandro Gentile? Enrico Cellini reports.

Emporio Armani Milan knew that sooner or later it would have had to deal with the loss of NBA lockout refugee Danilo Gallinari, but no one expected this moment would take place in such troubled waters. The team has shown poor chemistry, losing four of its first six Euroleague games to compromise the chances of getting to the EL Top 16.

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Spain takes U20 European title, Nikola Mirotic tourney MVP, notice served

Congratulations go out from BallinEurope this morning to Team Spain, winners of the FIBA U20 European Championship with an 82-70 win over Italy to cap an undefeated run through the tournament.
In so doing, notice has been served to the world that Espana has apparently produced yet another generation of ballers to someday soon act as a force throughout the world – and Real Madrid fans (not to mention forward-thinking Chicago Bulls backers) can take note that their Nikola Mirotic was named tournament MVP as well.

Official FIBA Europe writeup and highlights follow the break.

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