Over at Real GM, they’re taking a bit of a detour from their NBA focus to present an interview with J.R. Giddens, guard with Asseco Prokom Gdynia and formerly of BiE alma mater University of New Mexico.
After an infamous bar fight in which he was stabbed, Giddens transferred from the University of Kansas to New Mexico, where he was the undisputed team stud in 2006-07 and 2007-08, playing over 30 and 32 minutes per game in the two seasons. Giddens was taken as the last pick of the first round in the 2008 NBA Draft, but couldn’t stick with the Boston Celtics. After spending time with the D-League Utah Flash, a cup of coffee with the New York Knicks in 2010 and finally with the Sacramento Kings’ summer league squad, Giddens’ (and Bobby Brown’s) agent had his client take a deal to play with Poland’s Euroleague club.
Thus far in Euroleague play, Giddens has been good for 11.4 points and 5.9 rebounds per game (while also occasionally serving as a rare bright spot on a pathetic BallinEurope fantasy basketball team); after three games with Gdynia in the Polish national league, the former Lobo leads in ppg and overall player rating.
Cumulative, Giddens’ averages through 11 Euroleague, VTB United League and domestic games are 11.9 points and 5.3 while he’s shooting 50.1% overall; his top effort this season came in Euroleague game one, when J.R. shot 9-of-9 inside the arc for 20 points, plus 10 boards and three steals.
Check out Real GM for Giddens’ thoughts on Asseco Prokom’s Euroleague woes (they’re lacking chemistry — though they have won two in a row now), quality of Euroleague versus D-League play (Giddens is impressed with the EL), and how he likes Gdynia (the seafood there rules, apparently).