National Cups: Real Madrid ends 19 years of futility; Beşiktaş, Chalon take first-ever titles; Montepaschi Siena continues dominance

Congratulations go out from BallinEurope today to a quartet of national Cup holders in Real Madrid, Beşiktaş Milangaz, Chalon-sur-Saone and Montepaschi Siena. The former three victories are set to be particularly noted in club annals: Real ended a 19-year drought while Beşiktaş and Chalon both bagged their first-ever championships in their respective national cup tournaments after each were runners-up in 2011. Below run game wraps and highlight clips.

In Spain, Madrid won their first Spanish Cup since Arvydas Sabonis was on the team with a convincing 92-74 victory over FC Barcelona on the Blaugrana home court. Twenty-three was the magic number for Los Blancos, as Madrid took its 23rd such title behind 23 points from tournament MVP Sergio Llull. An extrapolation from the Liga Endesa’s official site goes something like the following.

Continue Reading…


The ACB point guard of the year is … c’mon, like you don’t know

Yet another anticlimactic accolade has been bestowed upon Ricky Rubio for the 2009-10 season, as Spain’s ACB League yesterday officially crowned The Human YouTube Clip/defending back-to-back FIBA Europe Young Player of the Year as Point Guard of the Year. It’s the second such nod for Rubio, who also received the award for the 2007-08 season when with DKV Joventut.

Rubio swept all four groups participating in the voting, finishing first among players, coaches, fans and media and receiving double the point total of no. 2 Sergio Llull. Finishing third was Pablo Prigioni, Llull’s teammate at Real Madrid, while fourth was Valencia’s Nando de Colo.

Rubio is currently second-high in scoring for FC Barcelona, behind only Juan Carlos Navarro, and leads his team in starts with 31 in 33 ACB games this season. Naturally, he’s also tops on the team in assists (4.33 per game) and steals (2.03), putting him at fifth and third in the Spanish league in the statistical categories. The 19-year-old’s top game this season was registered against Joventut, when he went for six points, 10 assists, four rebounds, and five steals.

And perhaps most importantly, the official FIBA writeup points out that “Rubio, in his first season with Regal Barcelona, has won the Supercopa, the Copa del Rey and the Euroleague.”

Rubio is the first player to be named to the ACB’s “Quinteto Ideal” for 2009-10. (What’s that? Is there a YouTube clip coming? You bet: Please click below the break for Rubio’s top five plays in ACB play this season.

Continue Reading…