The all star break is upon us and the normal expected run of the mill, skills competition, slam dunk contest and the rookie/sophomore challenge will draw loads of fans into the arena and glue them to their television sets. The biggest thing missing is that NO ONE IS DISCUSSING the AGREED UPON LEAGUE WIDE ROSTER REDUCTION! Yes, the NBA received agreement on Friday of a league wide reduction of roster spots for each team. The owners have agreed to 13 roster spots for players on each team, subject to approval from the NBAPA, we will see a little bit of a shakeup; as we are already experiencing a shortened season, due to the player lockout which spanned from June to December of 2011. After sitting through months of debating, false media spin and tell tales across the globe, players testing the international waters (some to be released and others to be locked into contracts with no way out), and then treated to a Christmas Extravaganza which was pretty much beyond belief as clubs, after a mere two week training camp, played a type of basketball similar to watching men just off of work playing at the local health club. The most amazing thing in all of that was that the gen pop, there is that correctional facility talk again, were so very happy and eager to have the NBA back; like the long-lost lover gone astray but returning home. The public accepted THE LEAGUE back with warm,inviting arms. Never questioning the product that they were then presented with, ALL ATTENTION turning to how many points Lebron or Kobe scored, or if D Rose was ready to assume his title as THE NEXT KING OF THE HILL in the NBA. It seemed as if everyone turned a deaf ear or a blind eye to the Breakup of Kobe Bryant and his wife, with their children left as the collateral damage in the wake of things, or the awful loss of a career by the two players who signed meaningful, substantial contracts,only to find out that they suffered from life-threatening illnesses, which subsequently voided the contracts. Often tine, once a lover returns, we tend to look beyond the reasons for the separation, and in our joy for a return to the normal way of life; we also tend to not see things for what they are. The NBA, after its rushed training camps and in the midst of a season of games with long road trips sandwiched into a season if we can honestly call this a basketball season. What I have seen, been interviewed about and have been writing about weekly to you, is not what I dreamed of most of my young life. The games that would not ever reach 100 points, the defensive struggles where both teams would only score 80 points apiece, the BAD BOYS of the late '80's winning back to back NBA Titles solely on defensive intensity and a will to win. What we have been presented with is, a very large group of overpaid, athletes who have taken it upon themselves to demand to be traded to what they believe are better markets; where they can promote their brand. Where the athletes appears to be in control of everything, leaving behind damaged families in their wake, fatherless children often times and entire cities devoid of their local hero, due to him feeling under-appreciated and desiring to play in front of star studded audiences....TOTALLY UNTOLERABLY UNFAIR. Unfair in that the basketball purists are left watching something that has been thrown together and not given proper time to become truly indicative of the GREATEST GAME ON EARTH. What we have, as I talked about in previous thoughts from the sideline is A PLAYER'S LEAGUE, in which the players call the shots, periodically have coaches fired and routinely do not follow instructions in the end of close games. The fan's always so trusting and loving care not for the unemployed coaches who only wanted to instill some order amongst the chaotic situation that they saw on the horizon, or the loyal fans who feel betrayed for loving to their fullest, a player or players who have shunned the love, affection and devotion. Gone are the days where a player would play out his career in one city, his name becoming synonymous with the team. Reggie Miller- Indiana Pacers, Isaiah Thomas-Detroit Pistons, Larry Bird-Boston Celtics, or Magic Johnson-LA Lakers as examples. Players chasing the bright lights of the big cities and the flash of the cameras have left us with a shell of what once was a thing of beauty. I do feel that the game is evolving, as evidenced by the bright spots on the radar the Jeremy Lin, Rodney Monroe, Isaiah Thomas, Blake Griffin or even Rickey Rubio. The game can and will return to what we once saw, admired and fell in love with. Speaking of which, the Kings have unearthed a point guard. Second round steal Isaiah Thomas started the last four games and averaged 19 points, six assists and 51% mostly from point blank range because no one seems to be able to stay in front of him. I would like to wish each and every one of you a happy and eventful ALL STAR WEEKEND, and hope that you enjoy the show, the dunks, the long range bombs and the star studded halftime events. Please in the midst of all of the hoopla, recall in your mind, the beauty of the game and the simplicity of it when it is played the right way, both on and off of the court.
Rudolfs Rozitis takes over Jekabpils - May 27, 2016
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BK Jekabpils (LBL) agreed on terms of contract with 28-year old head coach Rudolfs Rozitis. It is actually his comeback to Jekabpils as he used to work here before. Rozitis moved there from Barons Riga (LBL). The last season he worked as assistant coach at BK Jekabpils. He helped them to make it to the semifinals. The previous (13-14) season Rozitis coached at Latvijas Universitate (NBL). He contributed to his team making it to the final. Rozitis used to coach Latvian Women U18 National T... [read more]
BK Jekabpils (LBL) agreed on terms of contract with 28-year old head coach Rudolfs Rozitis. It is actually his comeback to Jekabpils as he used to work here before. Rozitis moved there from Barons Riga (LBL). The last season he worked as assistant coach at BK Jekabpils. He helped them to make it to the semifinals. The previous (13-14) season Rozitis coached at Latvijas Universitate (NBL). He contributed to his team making it to the final. Rozitis used to coach Latvian Women U18 National Team (as & arrNT2 (10,4) & ) back in 2014.
Eurobasket.com All-Baltic League Awards 2016 - Apr 7, 2016
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Finals MVP: Rokas Giedraitis (198-SF-92) of Siauliai; Player of the Year: Laimonas Kisielius (203-F-85) of Vytautas; Guard of the Year: Vytautas Sulskis (200-G-88) of Vytautas; Forward of the Year: Laimonas Kisielius (203-F-85) of Vytautas; Center of the Year: Steve Zack (211-C-92) of Liepaja/Triobet; European Player of the Year: Laimonas Kisielius (203-F-85) of Vytautas; Import Player of the Year: Johnny Berhanemeskel (188-G-92) of TLU/Kalev; Defensive Player of [read more]
Siauliai win Triobet BBL third time in a row! - Apr 6, 2016
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Home fans in Siauliai were witnesses to history being made, as Siauliai overcame a sizeable first-leg deficit against TU/Rock to become only the second team ever in Triobet BBL to lift the tournament crown three years in a row. The Lithuanian side celebrated a 102-76 victory in Siauliai after an excellent second half after losing the first game on the road in Tartu by seven points. Siauliai forward Rokas Giedraitis (198-SF-92) was awarded the MVP of the Final series. The visitors were not... [read more]
Home fans in Siauliai were witnesses to history being made, as Siauliai overcame a sizeable first-leg deficit against TU/Rock to become only the second team ever in Triobet BBL to lift the tournament crown three years in a row. The Lithuanian side celebrated a 102-76 victory in Siauliai after an excellent second half after losing the first game on the road in Tartu by seven points. Siauliai forward Rokas Giedraitis (198-SF-92) was awarded the MVP of the Final series. The visitors were not fazed by the rowdy atmosphere in the Siauliai arena and got off to a solid start, taking a 17-12 lead after a Gert Dorbek (193-SG-85) three-pointer seven minutes into the game. Siauliai didn't allow TU/Rock to break away, but were indeed behind for most of the first half. After two quarters of physical basketball, things were as they were at the start of the game, with teams level at 48-48.TU/Rock big man Karolis Petrukonis (212-C-87, college: Clemson) was unstoppable in the first half of the game, but had already had four fouls. The halftime pep talk seemed to have been much more useful for Siauliai, who came out with noticeably higher levels of energy after the break. A barrage of three-pointers in the third quarter saw the hosts jump out to a 76-56 lead before the final quarter. TU/Rock had to rely on three-point shooting to close the gap and while their shorts were falling, they couldn't handle Cameron Ayers (196-G-91, college: Bucknell) who rained fire from deep on the other end just as accurately. While the time was ticking down faster and faster, the gap between the sides was not shrinking, allowing Siauliai to confidently march to their third Triobet BBL title in a row. A feat also accomplished only by Zalgiris. Courtesy of: bbl.net
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