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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 +++ Basketball World Cup of Beer – Bronze Medal Match +++ Rudy gets iced, the internet rejoices +++ FIBA World Cup Preview – Group C +++ CSKA Moscow’s Kyle Hines and Sonny Weems take the ice bucket challenge +++ Tony Parker does ice bucket challenge but his friend can’t use a camera phone +++ Basketball World Cup of Beer: Semi Finals +++
Oct
0

Bamberg & Galatasaray record stylish victories on Euroleague’s opening day

The Turkish Airlines Euroleague season got underway on Wednesay with Brose Baskets Bamberg and Galatasaray Liv Hospital getting off to a flying start. Bamberg defeated Strasbourg 84–70 in what was a comprehensive victory in the Brose Arina while Galatasaray saw off Montepaschi Siena 75–84 in the Nelson Mandela Arena.

Bamberg didn’t have the best of starts, trailing 16 – 21 after the first quarter, but when Jamar Smith came off the bench, the flow of the game changed. Making his Euroleague debut, Smith scored 11 points for the German champs, consisting of two jumpers, a three-pointer and a driving layup to bring Bamberg to within 25-26. Overall, he scored 19 points during his 14 minutes on the court, an impressive scoring rate.

Also helping out in the game was Anton Gavel who added 16 points and 6 assists, Sharrod Ford scored 11 while Maik Zirbes got 10. After Smith brought the side back into contention, it was Ford and Rakim Sanders that pushed them ahead 35 – 28. The final six minutes saw Bamberg finish the second quarter with a 19 – 1 run, bringing them into half time with a 43 – 29 scoreline.

However, Strasbourg wasn’t going to go down without a fight and always tried to catch up with Bamberg. Despite a forgettable third quarter where it trailed 66 – 45, Antoine Diot and Alexis Ajinca, who was Strasbourg’s top scorer with 19 points, brought the deficit down to 69 – 56. Yet it was Bamberg’s night as additional scores from Smith and Ford saw them lead 80 – 66 with two minutes left. Romain Duport reduced the lead to 12 but it wasn’t enough to worry Bamberg who ended the game comfortably.
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Jun
4

Thrilla in Siena: Montepaschi-Cimberio Varese Serie A semifinal game four

Game of the week last week? How about last night’s game four of the Montepaschi Siena-Cimberio Varese semifinals series in Italy’s Serie A? National powerhouse and this tournament’s no. 5 seed Siena found themselves nearly on the ropes at 10 minutes to play before slowly coming back with a 24-13 run. With 60 seconds left, it was the visiting no. 1 seed from Varese up, 75-74.

As you’d imagine, Bobby Brown and quarterfinals hero Daniel Hackett played key parts for the defending champs down the stretch … though perhaps not *quite* in the way you’d imagine.

Courtesy Basket Inside – and kudos to them for posting – here’s that how that final 60 seconds of game clock played out.

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May
4

Siena-Milano series highlights feature Bourousis, Fotsis, Moss, Sanikidze, Mensah-Bonsu and especially Daniel Hackett

Once again, Montepaschi Siena survives to play another day: The Euroleaguers managed to win the decisive game seven of the Serie A quarterfinal series at no. 4 seed Armani Milano, 90-80, last night. Below runs an impressive highlight clip of the top 10 plays from the series produced by the Italian league and starring J.R. Bremer, Ioannis Bourousis, Malik Hairston, David Moss (with quite the awesome block), Antonis Fotsis (who reciprocates on Moss), Viktor Sanikidze and, naturally, Pops Mensah-Bonsu.

Daniel Hackett also puts in an appearance within the ‘clip, but with his game-high 25 points in the decider showing his ridiculous range making him a threat from anywhere on the floor, this Serie A veteran gets a YouTube all his own…

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Mar
1

Sour tweets: Hackett’s comments on Twitter put future with Siena, Team Italy in doubt

So a professional baller getting himself into trouble via a few ill-advised tweets is hardly news, but Daniel Hackett’s popping off on Twitter last night could have long-term ramifications for his standing on Montepaschi Siena for the remainder of 2012-13 and even for Team Italy in the future.

While sitting out Siena’s 72-68 loss at Armani Milano last night, Hackett took to calling out the referee crew for their poor officiating. In bon mots since removed as Hackett shut down his account shortly after tweeting boos, declarations that “this sucks” and ultimately “This is not basketball.”

Sportando and Italy-based Corriere dello Sport report that club officials are reviewing the situation with regard to keeping Hackett on the squad at all, while the former source implies that his position on the national team has become suddenly tenuous.

Prior bad/missed calls by the refereeing corps aside, Siena looks to have helped blown their own game with poor shot selection and generally uncharacteristic non-clutch play. With Milano up three with 40 seconds to go thanks to an overly rushed Siena possession, Leon Radosevic fouled out to give Kristjan Kangur two chances to extend the lead. Both free throws clanged, but the rebound chased down to lead to a corner three from Matt Janning.

After Milano answered with another three, Kangur was the beneficiary of a questionable decision earning him three chances at the charity stripe and, well, let’s just say the game degenerates into whistle after whistle … is this what sent Hackett over the edge?

As for Hackett’s injury, news on the severity and games to be missed are reportedly to be revealed today.

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Feb
21

Cup finals highlights: Barca dominates Valencia; Siena squeaks past Cinderella; PAO bests “club of filth” Olympiacos; Korac Cup final postponed

Congratulations go out from BallinEurope this morning to FC Barcelona, Montepaschi Siena and Panathinaikos, perhaps each respectively their nation’s top basketball club, for taking domestic cup titles this weekend.

In Spain, FC Barcelona showed no letup after outlasting Real Madrid in Thursday’s barnburner from the Copa Del Rey quarterfinal round and cruised through Valencia BC in the finals, 85-69. Nice to note that BiE fave Pete Mickael snagged this year’s MVP award from within a relentless and balanced Blaugrana attack.

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Jan
4

Anonymous party sends pig’s head to Scavolini Pesaro HQ; Team responds on court

BallinEurope’s man in Italy, Enrico Cellini, contributes quite a bizarre story out of league basketball there. (To think that Cibona Zagreb fans merely created an interesting image in protest of their team’s poor play.) The headline gives away the punchline so BiE won’t forestall this tale’s telling further … um, enjoy.

On January 2, Scavolini Siviglia Pesaro (then 6-6 in Italy) was supposed to be fully focused on preparing for the toughest match of the season, i.e. the Serie A game against almighty juggernaut and five-time repeat champions Montepaschi Siena. Nobody could have ever expected that the greatest challenge for the team would come from outside the court.

On the morning of the game, Pesaro officials informed media that head of a pig had been left in front of Scavolini Pesaro basketball operations offices by an indignant anonymous fan or group of fans (or rather, more appropriately, “fanatic” or “fanatics”).

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Oct
2

The Italian League explained: Part one

Some consider Serie A to be the second best European league behind (and I mean, kilometers behind) only the ACB, others consider the league’s unstoppable decreasing level which began at the beginning of new millennium. Anyway, between clubs which fail year by year, rules about US and EU players never staying consistent for more than one season, and continual delusions of grandeur about the national team, there is one certainty that still stands before us atop this crisis. That certainty is called Montepaschi Siena and, honestly, it’s the only reason why Serie A could keep on attracting attention from every angle of Europe. After its threepeat, Siena goes for number four in 2009-10, and it seems it will be another easy ride.

A look at Siena and this rest of the top six in Serie A follows.

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Oct
1

Euroleague qualifying round game threes tonight

Round two of the Euroleague qualifying round tips off tonight, meaning that – oh boy – the Euroleague regular season is nigh upon us. This evening, it’ll be Maroussi BC hosting Alba Berlin and Benetton Basket at home against Entente Orleanise in Treviso. Previews follow.

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Oct
0

Just how good is Montepaschi Siena, anyway?

Symbol of quality

Symbol of quality

Poring over some Sporting Bet odds and lines on Lega Uno basketball reveals a stunning amount of continued domination from Montepaschi Siena. Not only is Ferdinando Minucci’s team a 4/15 favorite to take the Italian title, they’re also an incredible 3/10 favorite to once again (again!) go undefeated at home.

So the question to our BallinEurope correspondent in Italy, Francesco Cappelletti, was: Just how good *is* Montepaschi, anyway? Responded Francesco:

On this Sunday, in the Supercoppa, Bologna (a 25/1 underdog to take the title) is going to have the pleasure of being the first Italian team to face bulldozer Montepaschi Siena, at the dawn of a new boring season. “Boring” because Montepaschi has just completed a three-peat, the team has confirmed nearly all of its players from 2008-09 (exceptions being Rimas Kaukenas and Morris Finley’s departures, while David Hawkins and Nikos Zisis are in), and three entire regular seasons have passed since the team last lost at home.

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Aug
1

Team Italy’s Hackett down, out ‘til Euroleague

Clinging by a thread in the EuroBasket 2009 Additional Qualifying Round, Team Italy barely survived Finland on Monday to eke out the 77-75 win; the news worsened for Italia as coach Massimo Iacopini announced that Daniel Hackett would be out due to ankle injury for the remainder of the tournament.

In its article “Hackett KO resta fermo due settimane,” BasketNet.it reported that, well, the kayoed Hackett would be out for two weeks. Hackett has stated that he would be on the court for Benetton Treviso when that squad tips off on August 17 in Euroleague qualifiers.

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