Latest

The BBL experience – Rowdy in Frankfurt +++ Fearless predictions: Euroleague playoffs +++ A Dario triple-double? Now that’s good timing +++ Swee’ Pea needs your help +++ Final Four: What the bookies say when the bookies talk +++ The greatest Eurodance tribute to Goran Dragic ever +++ Swaggy P’s tribute to Os moving back to the USA +++ Help Swee’ Pea make the big screen +++ The Dish: Can I play with Madness? +++ Just point out the bounce +++
Jan
0

Podcast: Interview with Spurs draftee Adam Hanga leads Hungarian-flavored show

Adam HangaEpisode #19 of the BallinEurope/ heinnews co-hosted “Taking the Charge” podcast is now online. Bearing a nice Hungarian accent, our centerpiece interview this week will be of great interest to Spanish basketball fans, San Antonio Spurs nation and NBA prospect-watchers, as Team Hungary’s Adam Hanga joins David Hein and yours truly for a solid 20 minutes or so of chat on all manner of subjects.

After wowing international scouts attending the 2009 Adidas Eurocamp in Treviso and announcing his jump from Hungary’s domestic league to the Liga Endesa with Manresa for 2011-12, Hanga became the first-ever Hungarian national to be drafted in the NBA when the Spurs chose him at no. 59 in 2011.

Continue Reading…

Apr
12

British Basketball announces 21-man national team roster, dubbed “strongest Team Britain ever”

Head coach Chris Finch and the British Basketball Federation today released a preliminary roster of 21 players to compete for spots on the host team’s 2012 Olympic team. Given the fairly short modern history of FIBA-level basketball on the ‘Isles, the claim from the federation that this is the “strongest-ever preliminary GB men’s squad” isn’t very debatable.

Said roster draws on quite an international reach, consisting as it does of NBA players Luol Deng (Chicago Bulls), Ben Gordon (Detroit Pistons) and Byron Mullens (Charlotte Bobcats); Liga Endesa’s Kieron Achara (Manresa), Robert Archibald (Zaragoza), Dan Clark (Asefa Estudiantes), Joel Freeland (Unicaja Malaga) and Devon van Oostrum (Tarragona); European professionals Ogo Adegboye and Kyle Johnson (Apoel Cyprus), Eric Boateng (Peristeri), Matthew Bryan-Amaning (Hacettepe), Mike Lenzly (CEZ Nymburk), Pops Mensah-Bonsu (Besiktas Milangaz), Sullivan Phillips (Prievidza); the BBL’s Nate Reinking (Sheffield Sharks) and Andrew Sullivan (Leicester Riders); NCAA players Andrew Lawrence (College of Charleston), Alex Marcotullio (Northwestern), Ovie Soko (University of Alabama-Birmingham); and current free agent/San Antonio Spurs draftee Ryan Richards.

Continue Reading…

Oct
0

Serge Ibaka “wants to play at least a month or two” in Spain

Already the rare naturalized player on Team Spain, Serge Ibaka would reportedly like to extend his commitment to his adopted home country.

Hoops Hype today is posting quotes from an unnamed source vis-à-vis the possibility of the Oklahoma City Thunderer joining an ACB team while the NBA lockout drags on.

He wants to play at least a month or two, or the whole season if there’s no NBA this year,” the source is quoted as saying. In addition, “It would have to be a crazy offer for him to go to a country other than Spain.”

Ibaka played with Manresa for the 2008-09 season before breaking in with Oklahoma City and has been musing about returning to Spain at least for the short term since early July.

Continue Reading…

Sep
0

ACB preseason: Unicaja Malaga, Lucentum Alicante, Caja Laboral take cups; Gran Canaria bows out in Germany

The 2011-12 ACB season may not have tipped off yet, but the Spanish league’s teams were nevertheless busy in preseason games this weekend. Below, BallinEurope briefly rounds up the action.

• A bunch of regional tournaments went down this weekend in Spain, including the Lliga Catalana semifinials. In this tourney yesterday, reigning Lliga and ACB champions FC Barcelona handled Lleida Basquetbol, 81-64, in their semifinal match; Boniface N’dong went for 18 points in the win.

On the other side of the bracket, Joventut survived a scare from hosts Assignia Manresa to take the 90-87 victory, thanks to a barrage of 14 three-pointers. Former Gonzaga University/KK Zadar guard Micah Downs was the game’s high scorer, with 20 points in Manresa’s losing effort.

The Lliga Catalana final will be played tonight at 8.45pm CET (2.45 EST).

Continue Reading…

Jul
2

Ibaka: “It would be nice” to play in Spain during NBA lockout

Add Serge Ibaka to the list of NBA players willing to suit up for a European team in 2010-11 in the wake of the lockout situation. Ibaka played for Manresa of the Spanish national league for the 2008-09 season, and the official ACB website has posted excerpts from an interview the Oklahoma City Thunderer gave to Catalunya Radio on the weekend.

Citing the potential “many complications” of such a move, Ibaka nevertheless emphatically stated that he’d like to return to Spain, emphasizing that he “would rather play to stay in shape, rather than [doing nothing].”

Ibaka mused that he relishes “an opportunity to play where people love me. It would be nice.”

Continue Reading…

Mar
2

Déjà vu in Ukraine? Proposed role models for Fratello’s new team

When Mike Fratello arrives to head up his national team coaching gig in Ukraine, he won’t see too many familiar faces beyond Sasha Volkov. Volkov played for the Czar’s Atlanta Hawks for a couple seasons way back when; unfortunately, Volkov hasn’t actually played ball at any level since year 2000. Coupled with the fact that Fratello hasn’t coached at any level since washing out of Memphis in 2006 and, wow, the television guy is facing lots of unknowns.

Here’s to thinking Fratello will rely on past experience to guide his new team. His historical preference for grind-it-out defense is sure to mesh well with a big, physical Team Ukraine; the side is also blessed with lots of shot blocking at its disposal. Will the Czar be imagining past glories as he trains in Europe? To when in the past will he look while watching his players in the present? BallinEurope looks at some potential role models for Eurobasket 2011.

• Serhiy Gladyr

Current team: Basquet Manresa

Scouting report: “Gladyr is a 6’5” shooting guard with nice athletic ability … What makes Gladyr intriguing is his shooting: He’s one of the better pure shooters in the draft. His shooting numbers are not overwhelming (36% on three-pointers), but he clearly has a sweet-shooting stroke … [at 19 years old, he] already shows the ability to drill shots coming off screens. … He’s not strictly a shooter thanks to his athleticism and good ball-handling. Pretty nice handle where he loves to use his left hand, and has an effective crossover dribble. Did have some issues when trapped on pick-and-rolls … had some issues in general when a second defender approached him … Solid rebounder for a 2-guard … Sergiy is a pretty good athlete by Ukrainian League standards, but how he rates as a NBA athlete is hard to gauge. If he was a Top 10 scorer in Spain or Italy then I’d feel more assured of his potential.” (The Painted Area, June 2009)

What he’s doing in 2010-11: So now Sergiy is 21 and, while averaging 9.1 points per ACB game – second-highest on his team to Uros Slokar – doesn’t put him onto Spain’s top 10 scorers list, BiE thinks The Painted Area must be pleased with Gladyr’s progress. It seems Gladyr’s three-point shooting still underwhelms, as he averages 1.6-for-4.7 shooting beyond the arc per ACB game, good for right around – you guessed it – 35%. Nevertheless, the future looks bright for this Ukrainian; could an NBA draft selection be in his future…?

Role model: Dan Majerle, who Fratello himself may barely remember, as Deadly Dan played just a single season with the Cavaliers and started only 15 times. Like Majerle, Gladyr is noted for his ball-handling skills and is particularly difficult to stop (or to stop from shooting) anywhere on the floor if single-covered. As Majerle is today one of the relatively unsung heroes of those Charles Barkley-led Phoenix Suns teams of the 1990s, so would a sharpshooting Gladyr should Team Ukraine surprise.

Continue Reading…

Jan
0

ACB race tightens: Madrid, Baskonia escape; Unicaja slips further on table

With 19 of its 34 weeks nearly complete, the ACB race is tightening quickly, as evidenced by three games of last night which were decided by a combined four points. (This just in: Real Madrid 62, Assignia Manresa 61, so surely BiE’ll have clips from that soon as well.) You want highlights? BallinEurope’s got your highlights right here. Under the break.

Continue Reading…

Jan
1

Give him a Guinness: Streetballer Filipy shatters record in Barcelona

Saturday night action in the ACB produced three adrenaline-pumping roof-raising finishes (BallinEurope will post video clips momentarily) but the only Guinness record-shattering performance took place before hundreds in Barcelona, where no game was played.

Streetballer Rubén Alcaraz, a.k.a. “Filipy”, managed to keep a basketball spinning on a single fingertip (okay, thumb tip, to be specific) for a muscle- and concentration-straining 10 minutes 33 seconds, a mark that destroyed the previous record of under two minutes. Indeed, Filipy’s record bettered the old standard by an incredible 555%.

Continue Reading…

Oct
3

¡Triples, triples, triples! Checking out the ACB’s new three-point line

6.75 is his: Martinez was 4-of-5 on threes

With the ACB converting its courts to that with the new FIBA standard three-pointer and key, most fans will be closely watching the effects on the Spanish league’s many sharpshooters. And while one week’s worth of games is an awfully small sample size, the early numbers show that lovers of barnburners have nothing to worry about this season.

Players shot a combined 128 of 350 on three-pointers in ACB week one, good for a 36.57% overall league average. Of note, too, is that the league’s worst two performances (CB Granada’s 2-of-17 and Manresa’s 4-of-20) played against the teams with the top three-point shooting (Valencia at 11-of-19, Bizkaia Bilbao Basket’s 11-of-18) in the opening games.

The overall numbers compare very nicely to 2009-10, as last season the ACB as a whole shot an average of 35.9% from the closer arc. Individually, University of Rhode Island alum Jimmy Baron Jr. teed off to go 5-of-7 often waaaaay beyond the new line, while Rafa Martinez’ 4-of-5 helped him to the top spot in week one scoring with 25 points.

What’s even more impressive about these (again, admittedly quite early) results with the new arc can be seen in the below official ACB highlight compilation entitled “¿6,75? ¡Y a mí qué,” which BiE will loosely translate as “6.75 meters? That’s mine!” Check out the locations on all these shots – and observe how the three from the corner is utterly ignored as a weapon.

Continue Reading…

Aug
0

Tuesday transactions: Unicaja signs Rubio (no, not that one); Boumtje-Boumtje stays with EWE EWE

Two free-agent signings and one contract extension were announced by Euroleague officials on Tuesday, with Guillem Rubio forsaking Manresa for Unicaja while EWE Baskets Oldenburg signed Acha Njei, most recently of Bundesliga second division team Bremen Roosters; Oldenburg also extended the contract for one of the great names in all of basketball, Ruben Boumtje-Boumtje.

Continue Reading…