The movement from the U.S. to Europe within the basketball world is still in motion, and so BallinEurope presents a quintet of stories (and highlight clips) involving American players from the NBA level to prep schools playing abroad.
• Deron Williams is sending personal word from Turkey these days; in his latest Blogging from Abroad entry, entitled “Breaking Down Beşiktaş and ‘Breaking Bad’,” Williams provides notes on an entire range of teammates running from David “The Incredible Hulk” Hawkins and Semih Erden (a.k.a. Ersin Dagli) to Mehmet Ali “Turkish Pistol Pete” Yatagan (who D-Will thinks is 18) and 16-year-old Kartal Ozmizrak.
Williams most recently led Beşiktaş Milangaz to a 98-82 victory over Mersin Bşb last night; D-Will was good for a game-high 28 on crazy 12-of-21 overall shooting (Would you believe he took not a single trip to the free-throw line?) to go with five assists and three steals. Earlier in the week, Beşiktaş took an opening-day win in the FIBA Eurochallenge, crushing ZZ Lieden in the Netherlands, 86-58; Williams contributed 20 in that win.
• In his second game with FIATC Joventut, locked out Cleveland Cavalier Christian Eyenga went for 11 points on 4-of-9 shooting in 19½ minutes of court time as his team took an ugly 86-67 loss to Blancos de Rueda Valladolid yesterday. At 2-5, Joventut is in 16th place in the ACB and hovering over the relegation zone.
• Stephen Dennis, a former NCAA Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference East player of the year with Division II Kutztown University, is this season playing for New Yorker Phantoms Braunschweig of Germany’s Bundesliga after a turn in the NBA D-League and in training camp with the Los Angeles Clippers.
Contributing a profile on Dennis for the Lehigh Valley (Pennsylvania) Morning Call is David Hein of Germany-based heinnews. Hein notes that, while Dennis is performing respectably with 10.5 points, 3.2 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1.2 steals and 2.2 turnovers per game thus far, “The 6-foot-6 playmaker is still struggling with his jump shot — his sore spot his entire career.”
• There’s a long interview/profile on former University of Montana Grizzly/Big Sky Conference all-time leading shot blocker Brian Qvale over at the Missoulan. Qvale is with Aliaga Petkim in Turkey, where he’s averaging just under nine points and 3.0 rebounds per game in TBL play; his career game this season came against Anadolu Efes, when he went for a 19 and 12 line. And he and his fiancée love it in Turkey.
• Finally, another U.S. player has announced his European transplant, but this one’s on the prep school level. Houston native Khadeem Lattin announced his transfer to Canarias Basketball Academy; Lattin is currently a freshman student who was at Second Baptist High School, playing well enough to earn a spot in ESPN’s “Terrific 25” rankings of top high-school basketballers.
The academy’s official website claims that Lattin “is the first top 25 high school basketball player from the United States in history to emigrate to a foreign country to develop his talents.”