Today, I deliberately watched no Euroleague game on TV because the Live Blog from yesterday was a little too much for my nerves 😉 So here are some thoughts and rumors I found after seeing today’s results.
First of all, there was the first loss for Panathinaikos tonight. The Greens lost in Rome and if you believe what Chris Mammides says on Eurobasket.com, the refs had some kind of influence in this as the Octopus got three early fouls in just 10 minutes. However, it had to come one day, it is better for them to lose right now than during the Final Four.
Le Mans is still looking for their first win this season. But the game saw an extraordinary statistical effort by Nicolas Batum who went 10/10 in all his shot attempts that night. He finished with 33rkg points and got second in the MVP race for the day, just behind Marc Salyers. Even if the French teams are not winning many games, at least their individualities shine.
Some kind of strange game happened in Ljuubljana where Montepaschi beat the hometown favorites of Olimpija. If you just check the scoreboard, it does not look really strange as the Italian powerhouse went for another road victory. But there is some kind of trouble in the team. Coach Becirovic announced that he needs more players for his backcourt. He especially thinks on Alexander Capin who actually plays for Varese (even if some sources tell that he will get cut) who would be a good addition for his team. However, club officials say that the team can not afford another player, as the team has to pay its debts. But coach Becirovic goes that far that he is close to resign with Olimpija if his wishes will not be fulfilled. He even did not use his US-born guards Maurice Bailey and Ronnell Taylor in the money time and instead played with veteran Sasa Doncic and fan favorite youngster Jan Mocnik to show in which situation he is right now. And rumors are already going around that the coach’s agent is offering him around in Italy where Andrea Mazzon is close to the exit door as it has been rumored for some time already.
Another team that is still looking for some help is Brose Baskets Bamberg. A name that is going around these days is Thomas Gardner. As you may know, Bamberg signed last year Casey Jacobson during the season and went for the German title. Now they try to add Gardner that he can fulfill a similar boosting role than the actual Memphis Grizzly.
Another name that is on the market again is Marcus Slaughter. He is not a Euroleague player but he was with the ULEB Cup team of Hapoel Jerusalem. He has been cut by the Israeli team yesterday evening. Slaughter went with his team to Strasbourg on Tuesday to play the ULEB Cup game even with a little injury he suffered from after the last game of the Israeli league. So far so good, but the above mentioned article about him being cut gives some kind of details that explain this move. Officially, Slaughter did a very serious off court violation. But club sources told the website that the US born Center was with an escort lady in the team hotel after their loss. By the way, it should be noted that this is not the first time that the club was not happy with Slaughter’s behavior off the court. Maybe he needed some massage for his injured knee or psychological help for his decreasing minutes and scoring in the ULEB Cup, but all these excuses are not tolerated and Marcus Slaughter is now officially cut. By the way, the club also denies rumors of Mario Austin coming back to Hapoel to replace him.
As you see, even without watching any game, there is a lot to talk about.