MUNICH (Germany) – Plenty of gifted kids formed the story of the February window of the FIBA EuroBasket 2022 Qualifiers. Some made their first impression on a global viewers, whereas others already dominated the veteran-filled competitors.
FIBA contributor Marius Flachenecker has taken a have a look at 10 standouts born in 2000 or later who made an impression in the course of the third and final qualifying window for subsequent 12 months’s flagship occasion.
Filip Petrusev – Serbia
Beginning Date: April 15, 2000 (20 years outdated) Top: 210cm / 6ft 11in Membership: Mega Bemax (SRB)
Statistics: 24.5 PTS, 7 REB, 2.5 AST, 1.5 STL, 19-29 FG in 34.1 MIN
Since becoming a member of Mega Bemax in the summertime of 2021, Filip Petrusev has been one of many extra dominant offensive gamers in European basketball. With averages of 23.5 factors, 7.7 rebounds and great effectivity numbers (58.4% FG, 44.9% 3FG, 66.6% TS) within the ABA League and the Serbian Cup, the 20-year outdated large earned his first call-up to the Serbian senior nationwide workforce, after he had already represented them 33 occasions at varied FIBA youth tournaments.
In Tbilisi, he was capable of switch his home dominance onto the worldwide hardwood, delivering two wonderful performances in Serbia’s wins over Georgia and Switzerland. Petrusev proved unstoppable offensively. He transformed a number of hook pictures from the publish, took defenders off the dribble out of face-up conditions and even from the perimeter and completed a number of alley-oop dimes from his teammates. Moreover, he hit two pictures from downtown, persevering with a sizzling streak, which began in December. After a gradual begin from the three-point line (2-14 in his first six video games for the membership), he caught fireplace, hitting 22 of his final 39 makes an attempt all through all competitions.
With these performances and his general productiveness this season, Petrusev has proven that he is right here to remain, which provides Serbia one other potent choice on the middle spot.
Alperen Sengun – Turkey
POWER FORWARD / CENTER
Beginning Date: July 25, 2002 (18 years outdated) Top: 206cm / 6ft 9in Membership: Besiktas ICRYPEX (TUR)
Statistics: 15 PTS, 8.5 REB, 2 AST, 1.5 BLK, 9-15 FG, 11-20 FT in 28.4 MIN
Alperen Sengun is the rising star of the 2021-21 European basketball season. The 18-year outdated large has been remarkably productive, to the purpose the place he is risen to the primary spherical of mainstream draft boards for the 2021 NBA Draft. He is averaging 19.5 factors, 9.4 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 1.8 blocks per sport with unbelievable effectivity (64.1% FG, 69.9% TS) for Besiktas within the Turkish BSL and the FIBA Europe Cup, dominating across the rim with improbable contact and footwork, grabbing a ton of rebounds as a result of his power and smarts and contributing in a number of different areas of the sport as properly.
In Istanbul, the massive man placed on a present in Turkey’s essential win towards Sweden, though it was solely his third sport for the senior nationwide workforce. Sengun tormented Sweden’s inside defenders all sport, scoring within the publish, because the roll-man and even changing a stepback three-pointer to beat the shot clock in the course of the second quarter. He wasn’t as dominant in Turkey’s second win of the week towards Croatia, however nonetheless performed a significant function of their fourth-quarter-run, to which he contributed a number of defensive stops towards smaller gamers and one chasedown block, stopping a simple layup.
With these two wins, Turkey certified for his or her 14th EuroBasket in a row. By the point the match occurs in the summertime of 2022, Sengun will doubtless have accomplished his first season of NBA basketball.
Kenan Kamenjas – Bosnia and Herzegovina
Beginning Date: January 17, 2000 (21 years outdated) Top: 205cm / 6ft 9in Membership: OKK Spars (BIH)
Statistics: 16.5 PTS, 10.5 REB, 1.5 AST, 15-22 FG in 29.7 MIN
Bosnia and Herzegovina performed an incredible qualifying part. With 5 wins out of six video games, they simply secured a spot within the EuroBasket, and Kenan Kamenjas performed a giant half in that success story. Regardless of his youth, the massive man has been very productive within the Bosnian League (16.4 PTS, 8.6 REB, 68.3% TS) and delivered spectacular performances on the worldwide stage as properly.
Kamenjas was an integral a part of each of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s wins throughout this qualifying window. He effectively transformed the feeds of his teammates across the basket and infrequently created pictures for himself from the publish as properly, largely with easy drop steps. Moreover, he grabbed seven offensive rebounds of their sport towards Bulgaria, which catapulted him as much as 3.3 offensive rebounds per contest, sufficient for a tied second place in the entire competitors behind Slovenia’s Jordan Morgan.
Mihai Maciuca – Romania
Beginning Date: Could 25, 2000 (20 years outdated) Top: 196cm / 6ft 5in Membership: BCMU FC Arges Pitesti (ROU)
Statistics: 17 PTS, 3 REB, 2 STL, 14-20 FG, 6-8 3P in 24.8 MIN
Mihai Maciuca had a number of high-scoring FIBA tournaments on the youth stage, and through this qualifying window, he caught fireplace on the senior stage as properly. The 20-year outdated impressed particularly as a shooter, confidently taking and making tough three-pointers and even punishing the protection for going beneath ball-screens with pull-up threes. Maciuca had confirmed his taking pictures potential within the Romanian league, the place he is at present hitting 40.7 p.c of his threes and 85.2 p.c of his free throws, and now he is additionally proven his abilities to a global viewers. He wasn’t restricted to taking pictures both. Time and time once more, he attacked the basket and produced a number of good finishes by means of contact, rounding out a formidable few days of basketball for the Romanian.
Jeremy Sochan – Poland
SHOOTING GUARD/SMALL FORWARD
Beginning Date: Could 20, 2003 (17 years outdated) Top: 200cm / 6ft 7in Membership: Ratiopharm Ulm (GER)
Statistics: 18 PTS, 3 REB, 2 BLK, 6-10 FG in 29.1 MIN
Within the final sport of the qualifying part, Poland coach Mike Taylor inserted 17-year outdated Jeremy Sochan into the beginning lineup. The transition to the senior sport could not have gone any smoother for the swingman, though it was solely 18 months in the past that Sochan led Poland within the FIBA U16 European Championship, Division B and gained MVP within the course of. Towards Romania, the Baylor-commit launched himself to the viewers with a thunderous two-handed jam and by no means regarded again after.
Offensively, he exhibited no indicators of nervousness, changing 4-of-5 leap pictures, 5-of-5 free throws and even finishing a four-point play. Defensively, he confirmed his typical prowess, affecting pictures along with his lengthy arms, amassing two blocks and disrupting smaller gamers on switches. This was solely Sochan’s first sport at this stage, however along with his expertise, it is easy to see him change into an everyday contributor for Poland’s nationwide workforce within the close to future.
Henri Drell – Estonia
Beginning Date: April 25, 2000 (20 years outdated) Top: 206cm / 6ft 9in Membership: Victoria Libertas Pesaro (ITA)
Statistics: 9.3 PTS, 2.7 REB, 1 AST, 11-24 FG, 4-10 3FG in 22.1 MIN
Henri Drell has improved tremendously in his second season in Italy’s Lega Basket Serie A. After struggling final 12 months, he is now averaging 6.8 PTS (62.1% TS) whereas taking pictures 45.7 p.c from three for a a lot improved Pesaro workforce. In Perm, Drell was capable of present the identical offensive talents and helped propel Estonia to their third EuroBasket qualification of the century. He confidently let it fly from downtown at any time when open, successfully attacked closeouts and hit the dagger in Estonia’s upset win over Italy. The ahead additionally had his moments defensively, transferring his ft on the perimeter and forcing smaller gamers into robust seems every now and then. Drell’s expertise has been identified for a very long time, and with the progress he is made this 12 months, he is poised to change into a mainstay for the Estonian nationwide workforce for a very long time.
Keye van der Vuurst de Vries – Netherlands
Beginning Date: December 29, 2001 (19 years outdated) Top: 191cm / 6ft 3in Membership: Filou Oostende (BEL)
Statistics: 10.5 PTS, 3.5 REB, 6 AST, 8-20 FG, 3-8 3P in 28.4 MIN
We chosen Keye van der Vuurst de Vries as one of many standouts of the qualifying window in February 2021, and along with his performances towards Croatia and Sweden, he earned himself one other choice. The 19-year outdated initiated a justifiable share of the Netherland’s offense and often created simple alternatives for his teammates along with his wonderful court docket imaginative and prescient and passing talent. Furthermore, van der Vuurst de Vries had his moments as a scorer, attacking the basket out of pick-and-roll and hitting a few essential three-pointers. With these showings, the purpose guard confirmed his great season for Oostende, the place he is at present placing up 8.1 factors and 4.5 assists per sport whereas taking pictures 52.4 p.c from the sphere, and 42.9 p.c from three within the Belgium EuroMillions Basketball League and the FIBA Basketball Champions League mixed.
Aleksander Balcerowski – Poland
Beginning Date: November 19, 2000 (20 years outdated) Top: 215cm / 7ft 1in Membership: Herbalife Gran Canaria (ESP)
Statistics: 9 PTS, 4 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 8-11 FG in 16.1 MIN
Aleksander Balcerowski was a priceless contributor for Poland throughout their two video games in Gliwice. The large man completed effectively across the rim and had varied notable dunks, together with one towards Spain the place he tricked his defender into pondering he was going handy the ball off to a guard, solely to pivot and drive to the basket for a crashing slam by means of contact. Moreover, Balcerowski confirmed respectable court docket imaginative and prescient for his dimension, dispensing a number of good assists from the perimeter and on the quick roll. With these performances, he constructed on one of the best 12 months of his profession up to now, which has seen him break by means of into the rotation of Herbalife Gran Canaria and earn common minutes within the Spanish ACB in addition to the EuroCup.
Matteo Spagnolo – Italy
Beginning Date: January 10, 2003 (18 years outdated) Top: 193cm / 6ft 4in Membership: Actual Madrid (ESP)
Statistics: 5.3 PTS, 2.3 REB, 0.7 AST, 6-11 FG in 13.2 MIN
Matteo Spagnolo was one of many rising stars of this qualifying window, excelling on the senior stage solely 18 months after he made the All-Match Group on the FIBA U16 European Championship. In his two standout performances towards Estonia and North Macedonia, the scoring guard managed the sport with spectacular poise and by no means regarded misplaced, though he would not have a lot expertise on the professional stage but. The 18-year outdated was particularly efficient towards switches, the place he efficiently used his physique and his footwork to carve out area towards larger defenders, and completed the possessions by doing what he does greatest: hitting robust pictures. Regardless of his youth, Spagnolo has developed an incredible knack for changing off-balance leap pictures, a top quality which is able to certainly assist him prosper on the senior stage.
Regardless of the unsatisfactory outcomes on this qualifying window, the way forward for Italian basketball is wanting shiny. Spagnolo, Giordano Bortolani and Gabriele Procida confirmed flashes of their expertise throughout these three video games, and numerous different prospects like Nico Mannion (Golden State Warriors), Abramo Canka (Nevezis), Sasha Grant (Bayern Munich) and US highschool phenomenon and Duke-commit Paolo Banchero have proven promise as properly and might be essential contributors sooner or later.
Konstantin Kostadinov – Bulgaria
Beginning Date: March 25, 2003 (17 years outdated) Top: 202cm / 6ft 8in Membership: Actual Madrid (ESP)
Statistics: 11 PTS, 2 REB, 1 BLK, 3-6 3P in 20.3 MIN
With qualification secured, Bulgaria gave 17-year outdated Konstantin Kostadinov his first style of senior nationwide workforce basketball. The versatile ahead had excelled for Bulgaria in three FIBA U16 European Championship, Division B campaigns and did not take lengthy to make an impression at this stage both. Within the second quarter, he confidently sank three three-pointers, displaying no hesitation even with defenders shortly closing out to him. He confirmed additional glimpses of his potential with a couple of correct kickout passes and one wonderful defensive play, which resulted in a block. Kostadinov’s expertise has been identified for years, and it was apparent on this sport as properly. If he develops correctly, he might be a vital a part of Bulgaria’s future. Who is aware of, perhaps he’ll prepared for a roster spot on the EuroBasket as early as subsequent 12 months.
It was an important battle of left-handed stallions of energy whereas Zion Williamson was nose to nose with Julius Randle.
However the recreation was determined by the Knicks’ backcourt of Derrick Rose and Reggie Bullock, propelling the Knicks to their sixth consecutive victory, 122-112 in extra time, over the Pelicans to maneuver their report to a report of 31-27 the very best of season.
The Knicks recovered from a six-point deficit within the last 1:30 – topped by Rose main the inbounds by driving down the observe and having the means to make a cross to Bullock, who drained the sport by drawing 3 factors from the left nook with 2.3 seconds remaining. The Pelicans could have dirty Rose, however they will think about that he’s going for straightforward 2.
Maybe there’s something concerning the atrophy of teaching expertise, as a result of these two Knicks / Pelicans clashes had been embarrassing, as Thibs skilled rings round Van Gundy, who was once an excellent coach in Orlando. However SVG was horrible in Detroit, and in some way, it is even worse right here in New Orleans. They really want to fireside that man.
Anyway, one other unimaginable victory. In some ways, it’s precisely the identical sort of pleasure that we noticed once they had been dropping these powerful video games, however now they’re to do the final second shot as a substitute of lacking them. It actually makes all of the distinction.
4 video games over 0.500! Wow! Hopefully they will proceed towards the Hornets subsequent time! Hmmm … Future Knick Terry Rozier, perhaps?
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New coach Kim English was unable to carry the A-10 rookie of the 12 months Tyler Kolek, who introduced yesterday that he shall be transferred to Marquette. He shall be becoming a member of the brand new coach Shaka Sensible, so in case you take notes, Mason missed his predominant transfers to Jim Larranaga and as soon as to educate VCU Sensible. That hurts! Regardless of shedding his most promising participant of the period Dave Paulsen, Mason nonetheless appears to be blocked and loaded for the following season with the brand new expertise that the Englishman introduced. those that switch need to be neglected subsequent season. It was inevitable that there can be some change within the squad.
DeVon Cooper and D’shawn Schwartz are snipers which might be certain to fill the hole left by Javon Greene and Kolek. English has carried out an excellent job bringing in guys who shall be on the spot collaborators subsequent season and, in some instances, a expertise replace. Dropping Miller and Kolek is not nice, however it’s nothing to cry about and I might argue that changing Josh Oduro might have been harder. They nonetheless have Xavier Johnson and Jamal Hartwell on the backcourt, who can even thrive within the English system.
The Los Angeles Lakers will play their first sport in entrance of their followers in additional than a yr, on April 15, in opposition to the Celtics, and Alex Caruso was unable to cover his pleasure.
The Lakers may have some followers attending the Staple Middle for the primary time for the reason that pandemic. The NBA deliberate to have a full viewers all through the league by the 2021-22 season.
Suffice it to say that it will give the Lakers a brand new thrill, as the present NBA champions will play for followers for the primary time since successful the title.
“Dude, I am so excited, Mike, I am unable to even say how excited I’m. They all the time offered us because the world champions in title and we didn’t have anybody there to have fun, ”mentioned Caruso, Mike Trudell.