Could the NBA head to Europe for good after David Stern leaves his post as NBA boss? The NBA commish says maybe so. Also in the news: Euroleague fans better make sure they have money in their bank accounts as tickets for the Final Four in May in Paris go on sale this week; Maccabi Tel Aviv coach Pini Gershon apologizes for his antics in New York; we learn of a tragic death in Portugal; could Marc Gasol be getting a lot better very soon; and Nicolas Batum goes under the knife.
NBA in Europe in post-Stern NBA?
But we start off today with NBA commissioner David Stern saying that the NBA will be coming to Europe. David Hein of heinnews had his ear on the pulse of U.S. media and wrote up this piece on Stern’s interview with ESPN personality Colin Cowherd.
Here are a couple of quotes: “I think that it will be done. I don’t know if it will be done under my watch.” And: “It’s either Barcelona or Madrid. It’s either Milan or Rome. I think it’s London.”
Euroleague Final Four tickets on sale this week
Euroleague Basketball has made an announcement about 2010 Final Four tickets going on sale this week.
Here all the info you would need
Euroleague Basketball has announced that tickets for the 2010 Final Four will be available for purchase this week by the general public. The Final Four, which will crown a champion of the 2009-10 Euroleague season, takes place from May 7 to 9, 2010 at Palais-Omnisports de Paris-Bercy in the French capital. A pre-sale of tickets to fans who registered for that privilege will continue until midnight on Tuesday. Just 12 hours after the pre-sale ends, at noon on Wednesday, sales of 2010 Final Four tickets will open to the general public through the official page of the competition, www.euroleague.net . Ticket prices for the 2010 Final Four range from €150 to €495, not including on-court VIP seats that cost €1,000 and come with access to Euroleague Basketball VIP Hospitality. There are also official VIP Hospitality Packages for the very best seats in the arena, offered by THG. All tickets grant their holders access to four games, both of Friday’s semifinals, plus the third-place and title games on Sunday.
Maccabi boss Gershon apologizes
One coach usually appearing at the Final Four is Israeli legend Pini Gershon. The Maccabi Tel Aviv coach has apologized for his behaviour at Maccabi’s recent game against the New York Knicks, where he would not leave the court after being ejected by the game referees. Gershon has since apologized for his actions, as published by the New York Times.
Here his statement sent to NBA commissioner David Stern and Knicks president Donnie Walsh:
Having had time to reflect on my actions while our team was in New York, I would like to apologize to the New York Knicks franchise, the NBA and basketball fans not only at Madison Square Garden but throughout the country. Our trip to the U.S. was for a wonderful cause – the children of Migdal Ohr – and hopefully a few minutes of bad behavior on my behalf won’t detract from all the good that was accomplished by our spirited competition with the Knicks and the Clippers.
Locker room death in Portugal
Monday also came the tragic news of the death of American basketball player Kevin Widemond. The Associated Press reported that the Ovarense player collapsed in the locker room at halftime of the Ovarense – Academica Portugal cup game cup on Sunday and later died at local hospital. An autopsy was still to be performed. Our prayers go out to the family and friends of Widemond.
Could Marc Gasol be getting a lot better very soon?
Marc Gasol must have been doing cartwheels at Memphis Grizzlies practice on Monday when he saw Hall of Fame legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar sitting in on the practice session. The Memphis Commercial Appeal is speculating that Abdul-Jabbar may soon be joining the Grizzlies coaching staff.
Nicolas Batum goes under the knife
Don’t look for Portland Trail Blazers small forward Nicolas Batum on the court for any time soon as the Associated Press reported that the French international will be undergoing shoulder surgery.
Batum will have torn cartilage in his right shoulder repaired. He played with an injured right shoulder for much of the second half of last season and re-injured it over the summer playing for the French National Team at EuroBasket 2009 in Poland. Batum again injured his shoulder the first week of training camp.
Belinelli getting cold shoulder in Toronto
Sticking with the NBA and Europeans there for one more second, Italian guard Marco Belinelli appears to be receiving less playing time during the NBA pre-season with the Toronto Raptors. He a bit of coverage on the issue by the Toronto Sun.