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Albanian Basketball (Men)

Ermal Kurtoglu selected the top Albanian playing abroad in last week's games - Nov 26, 2012

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We bring you last week's top performances from Albanians who are playing abroad and who all have had prior experience of national team duties at youth or senior level.

Ermal Kurtoglu
Ermal Kurtoglu
   #1. This week's number one is an international center Ermal Kurtoglu (208-80, agency: Beo Basket, currently plays in Turkey). He managed to help Anadolu Efes Istanbul in a victory against the 13th-ranked Turk Telekom (2-5) crushing them 96-57 in the Turkish TBL in Monday night's game. Kurtoglu scored only 4 points in 9 minutes on the court. Anadolu Efes Istanbul (6-1) is placed second in the TBL. It was his team's fourth consecutive victory in a row. But this is still an early stage of the season and everything may happen. This year Kurtoglu averages: 4.0ppg, 2.7rpg, 2FGP: 52.9% and FT: 75.0% in the six games he played so far. He has a dual citizenship: Albanian and Turkish. Kurtoglu played for the Albanian senior national team one years ago.

Klaudio Ndoja
Klaudio Ndoja
   #2. Second place goes to an international shooting guard Klaudio Ndoja (198-85, currently plays in Italy). He contributed to an easy victory against one of league's weakest teams Sutor Montegranaro (2-7) 97-78 in the Italian SerieA last Sunday. Ndoja scored 10 points and had 3 steals. Enel Brindisi (4-5) is placed ninth in the SerieA. It was his team's third consecutive victory in a row. But the season just started, so everything may happen. Ndoja's overall stats this year are: 5.0ppg, 1.3rpg, 2FGP: 41.7%, 3FGP: 39.1% and FT: 61.5%. He is another player who holds two passports: Albanian and Italian. Ndoja is in the roster of the Albanian senior national team.

Ersid Luca
Ersid Luca
   #3. The Albanian player who performed third best last week abroad was an international center Ersid Luca (212-81, currently plays in Lebanon), who plays in the Lebanese Division A. Luca could not help Hoops Club (1-4) in their last game. Despite his good performance the bottom-ranked Hoops Club was crushed 92-62 on the road by the much higher-ranked (#3) Al Moutahed. Luca had a double-double by scoring 14 points and getting 11 rebounds in 34 minutes. It was Hoops Club's third consecutive loss in a row. There are only three games left until the end of the Regular Season. So now every game will be critical. Luca is currently sixth on the league's list of best rebounders with 10.8rpg. This year he also averages: 15.5ppg, 1.5apg, 2FGP: 52.9% and FT: 42.1% in the four games. Luca has both Serbian and Albanian nationalities. Ex-Sport Klub Tirana player is also a member of the Albanian senior national team.

Franko Bushati
Franko Bushati
   #4. Shooting guard Franko Bushati (190-85, agency: Two Points, currently plays in Italy) was not able to help Givova Scafati (5-3) in their game against Tuscany Pistoia (7-1) in the Italian Lega2 (second division). He did not beat the league record on Sunday evening. Bushati recorded only 3 points and had 4 steals. Givova Scafati was edged in an overtime 88-86 in Pistoia by the leading Tuscany. But the season is still in it's first stage and everything can happen. Bushati's overall stats this season are: 5.1ppg, 2.5rpg and 1.5spg. He also holds two passports: Albanian and Italian. Bushati is also Albanian national team player.

The list of other players, who all have Albanian passport but never been selected to any of Albanian national teams:

   #1. Nderim Pelaj (179-G-88, currently plays in Germany), who plays in the German ProB (third division) could not help Dorsten (4-5) in their last game. Despite his very good performance the fifth-placed Dorsten lost 87-98 on the road to the higher-ranked (#3) Herten Lions in the Group North. Pelaj was the top scorer with 20 points. He also added 4 rebounds in 30 minutes. It's Pelaj's ninth season with the team. Pelaj has relatively good stats this year: 11.0ppg, 2.3rpg and 1.8apg in the six games he played so far. He has a dual citizenship: Albanian and German.

   #2. Erjon Kastrati (198-F/G-94, currently plays in EuroChallenge) was not able to help Krka (1-2) in their game against Tofas (2-1) in the EuroChallenge. Kastrati scored 5 points. The third-placed Krka was edged 82-79 in Bursa by the second-ranked Tofas in the group A of EuroChallenge. There are only three games left until the end of the EuroChallenge Regular Season. So now every game will be critical. Kastrati's overall stats this season are: 3.5ppg and 1.5spg. He is another player who holds two passports: Kosovan and Albanian.

Other top Albanian players, who play abroad:

Besnik Bekteshi (187-G-93) plays for EnBW Ludwigsburg in German BBL
Ljeko Nicaj (210-C-87) plays for Lovcen in Montenegrin 1A
Milan Dabovic plays for Smederevo Vizura in Serbian A League
Franz Harizaj (PG-94) plays for Bologna in Italian Nazionale A
Shkelzen Bekteshi (185-G-91) plays for Kirchheim Knights in German ProA
Eljon Harlicaj (193-F-93) plays for Lugano Tigers in Swiss LNA
Elyan Bumbli (190-G-87) plays for Riva del Garda in Italian Nazionale B
Grigoris Pappas (205-C/F-91) plays for Psyhiko in Greek B
Gerti Shima (202-PF-86) plays for Peja in Kosovan SuperLeague

Notice: The list above includes only some of the Albanian playing currently abroad. Go to Albanian Abroad Page to see completed list.  

Oresti Beli
Oresti Beli (ex ALB NT U20) is a newcomer at Aris Petropoulis - 9 days ago
AO Aris Petropoulis (C) strengthened their roster with addition of 19-year old Albanian power forward Oresti Beli (201-98). He played last season at Albanian U20 National Team in Albanian league.
Beli represented Albania at the European Championships U20 Division B in Oradea (Romania) this year. His stats at that event were 7 games: 9.9ppg, Reb-4(11  
[read more]

Elvisi Dusha
Elvisi Dusha is a newcomer at Worcester Wolves - 12 days ago
Worcester Wolves (BBL) added to their roster 23-year old naturalized Albanian guard Elvisi Dusha (188-82kg-94) from Plymouth University Raiders. Dusha managed to play in three leagues in two countries last year. In 16 BBL games he recorded 3.5ppg, 1.7rpg and 2.1apg. He helped them to make it to the final. Dusha also played that season for Reading Rockets where in 5 BBL games he averaged 9.8ppg, 3.0rpg, 4.0apg and 1.4spg. The other team he played shortly was Sigal Prishtina (SuperLeague) i...   [read more]

Scorchers land Darryl Palmer, ex Vllaznia - 15 days ago
Surrey Scorchers (BBL) landed 24-year old American forward Darryl Palmer (203-95kg-93, college: South Carolina State, agency: Elevate Agency). He played most recently at Vllaznia in Albanian Superliga. Palmer managed to play in four leagues in three countries last year (!!!). In 14 Superliga games he averaged 14.6ppg and 7.6rpg. He helped them to make it to both league and Supercup final after they ended regular season as second best team. Palmer also played that season for BC Rakvere in...   [read more]

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