I was talking the other night with the Head Coach of Guangzhou Free Man of the Chinese NBL League, Raca Dragan who spent most of his coaching career in Europe and mostly in Greece, Cyprus and Lebanon and lectured in many regions and many camps/clinics from USA to China, (he is working currently and for the last two years in the Chinese league), and I asked him to tell me his opinion and his feelings in regards to the Chinese league and Chinese level of Basketball in all aspects, organization, wealth, talent, training, space to work, communication etc. The guy is simply thrilled with what he is currently viewing in more or less all the pre-mentioned levels, Raca found his Basketball Ithaca in China in a never expected result.
He mentioned to me that in terms of organization and Basketball Technology there is no-where else in the globe to compare the tools they are using in China (and his team), other than NBA, and the Chinese level is really getting very close to the specific level. A sport, which seriously started in the land of the Middle Kingdom only some years ago, (less than 10), is now all the way to the top level in the most of its key-elements, as the experienced shared by Coach Raca is quite interesting.
According to Coach Raca, the tools which he is using for his training and the organization behind them is simply amazing, currently he and his team are on a training level (he is preparing his team for the season to come) and they are doing their preparation in a Basketball center which reminds a lot a 5 star hotel at any given place in Europe! This Basketball center contains 12 full armed basketball courts in full technology, boards, stat-tables, all the necessary machinery and personnel to assist the teams which are currently prepared in the specific area.
In the town of Chengdu the capital of Sichuan province in Southwest China one of the most important economic, transportation, and communication centers in Western China and more specifically in the Basketball center Sighuan Province is the Basketball Paradise for any Coach. Coach Raca told me that even though he traveled nearly all over the world and he has worked in many regions he never saw something like that. Imagine a huge covered camp consist of 12 (twelve) Basketball courts of the last technology (together with their fully equipped gyms) with everything that a coach, trainer and management team needs for their basketball team.
According to Coach Raca, the president Mr. Zhou Shiqiang is the inventor and owner of the specific Basketball Paradise which currently hosts 10 different teams which are preparing on a fast mode as the Chinese NBL League starts officially at the end of April. With the use of the specific Basketball center, these teams do not need to go anywhere else to get prepared, as all the trainings, the friendly preparation games, the necessary exercises and all the rest ingredients of the modern basketball takes place in this Basketball Paradise.
The Sighuan Province Basketball center is launched officially for non Chinese teams later this season as it will be a perfect training and preparation center for any European and/or American team which really wants to live a basketball myth, according to Coach Raca this center is probably unique in the Globe and the services offered to any team are so innovative as the center itself has the tools and capabilities to make the job of both the Coaching team and the players even easier and much better as the conditions in all the necessary terms are absolutely professional and the perfection is really very close at these standards.
As an ending note, Coach Raca warn me that very soon China will enter for good in the Global Basketball Map as at this stage all the grass root job took place and very soon the Chinese Basketball empire will rice.
A unique interview with Coach Raca was taken place on the 8th of April, 2012 especially for Eurobasket.com
Cadarian Raines claims Cypriot Division A weekly honour - 11 hours ago
follow us on
American Cadarian Raines (206-F-90) put on an amazing game in the last round for Apollon and that's him to receive a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 7. The 26-year old forward had a double-double of 17 points and twelve rebounds, while his team edged out Apoel (#3, 4-3) 70-66. Apollon maintains the 5th position in Cypriot Division A. The season is still in it's early stage, so the team may have a chance to improve their current position in the standings. They lost 5 game... [read more]
American Cadarian Raines (206-F-90) put on an amazing game in the last round for Apollon and that's him to receive a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 7. The 26-year old forward had a double-double of 17 points and twelve rebounds, while his team edged out Apoel (#3, 4-3) 70-66. Apollon maintains the 5th position in Cypriot Division A. The season is still in it's early stage, so the team may have a chance to improve their current position in the standings. They lost 5 games and had just two victories. In the team's last game Raines had a remarkable 53.8% from 2-point range. He turned to be Apollon's top player in his first season with the team. Virginia Tech graduate has very impressive stats this year. Raines is in league's top in points (7th best: 14.4ppg) and averages solid 1.2bpg and 56.0% FGP.
The second most remarkable performance in last round's games was 26-year old Canadian Murphy Burnatowski (200-SF-90) of Apoel. Burnatowski impressed basketball fans with 26 points, 7 rebounds and 2 assists. Bad luck as Apoel was edged by slightly lower-ranked Apollon (#5, 2-5) 70-66. Apoel managed to keep the same 3rd spot in the standings. His team's 4-3 record is not bad at all. Burnatowski is a newcomer at Apoel and it seems he did not have too much trouble to become one of team's leaders. He belongs to the best scorers in the league with 14.0ppg (#8). He also registered 5.9 boards per game.
The third best performed player last round was another Apollon's star - American Travis Franklin (200-F-88, agency: Interperformances). Franklin scored 22 points and grabbed five rebounds. He was another key player of Apollon, helping his team with a 70-66 win against slightly higher-ranked Apoel (#3, 4-3). Apollon can only dream about fighting for top spots in the league. They have rather bad season and 2-5 record places them close to the bottom of the standings. Too bad for Franklin he does not play for a better team. But maybe if he did, his season stats would not be that high. Franklin has individually a great season in Cyprus. After only 6 games, he made it on the list of the league's leaders in points with 19.3ppg (best scorer) and rebounds with 6.0rpg (9th best).
Other top performing players last week: 4. Terell Parks (204-C/F-91) of Keravnos - 15 points and 9 rebounds 5. Kenny Barker (191-G-86) of Keravnos - 15 points, 13 rebounds and 6 assists 6. Alex Harris (196-G-86) of AEK - 21 points and 2 rebounds 7. Mohamed Abukar (208-F-85) of Keravnos - 15 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists 8. Eric Washington (178-PG-93) of Enosis - 19 points and 6 rebounds 9. Maxie Esho (206-F-91) of Etha - 22 points and 6 rebounds 10. Panagiotis Trisokkas (207-PF-80) of AEK - 10 points and 8 rebounds
The Player of the week is chosen based on efficiency calculation, but also including game result, importance of the game, if played recorded double-double/triple-double, etc. The efficiency formula is a combination of various formulas used by different basketball organizations/leagues. We got involved many basketball scouts and journalists to assure it's accuracy. The formula: 1.5*PTS + 3* (REB+AST+ST+BL-TO) - 2*BSAG - 4*PF + 3*PFRV + 4* (2FGPM+3FGPM) + 1.5*FTM - 3* (2FGPA-2FGPM) - 3* (3FGPA-3FGPM) - (FTA-FTM)
During the 6th week Keravnos Strovolou (who's currently in the first position of the league after six games with a 5-1 record) dominated at all edges and got a small revenge from Paralimni is the team of Coach Papadopoulos was the one and only to force the Strovolos team (during the first round) to suffer their only (until now) defeat in the competition. The final score 43-75 says it all!! Coach Livadiotis troops remembered very well what has happened in their home court a month ago and w... [read more]
During the 6th week Keravnos Strovolou (who's currently in the first position of the league after six games with a 5-1 record) dominated at all edges and got a small revenge from Paralimni is the team of Coach Papadopoulos was the one and only to force the Strovolos team (during the first round) to suffer their only (until now) defeat in the competition. The final score 43-75 says it all!! Coach Livadiotis troops remembered very well what has happened in their home court a month ago and were very focused from the first to the last minute of the game leaving no space for a second surprise to E.N. Paralimni. Obviously there is a long distance between the two teams and this shown from the early stage of the game as the first period ended with 8-20 for the host team followed by a new triple score at the end of the first half with 8-24 with Keravnos leading the game already with 16-44 giving an early end to the game. Coach Livadiotis had the chance to use players that didn't have sufficient time in the previous games while he used many youngsters and rookies such as Panagiotis Markou (189-G-96) who played 24 minutes having 6 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal and 1 turnover in all around performance from the talent from Limassol, while minutes were received by the youngster Orestis Andreou (188-F/G-98) (in 5 minutes he scored 3 points, 2 steals, 1 assist and 1 turnover) and another 3:30 minutes by another talented youngster, Pavlos Stavrinidis (202-G-99) (3 points and 1 rebound)
The third period was a simple routine for the players of both the teams for different reasons, E.N. Paralimni tried to minimize the loss but it was obvious that the psychological factor was not with them, the 11-17 of the period is once more showing that they had scoring issues as only Jarvis Ray was scoring being also the top scorer but the only player on double digits (17 points, 6 rebound, 2 assists, 4 steals and 2 turnovers) and none of his team-mates scored more than 7 points (Kevin Thomas). On the other hand, Keravnos Strovolou who played this game without two of its starters (Stylianou and Abukar remain on bench) played control basketball with Terell Parks (204-C/F-91, college: W.Illinois) being the MVP of the game and the top scorer in his top performing game with Keravnos jersey, The American power forward ended the game with 24 points, 9 rebounds, 1 assist, 1, steal, 1 block shot and 2 turnovers in a bit less than 25 minutes in action)
The fourth period where everything was ended E.N. Paralimni "beat" Keravnos youngsters with 16-14 and the final result became official. With another great organizational performance by Barker who ended the game with 12 assist (5 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 turnovers in 25:25 active minutes) and the "soldier" O' Brien who remain on court for 27:38 minutes recording another double-double figure with 11 points, 10 rebounds, followed by Ross who recorded 13 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 4 steals and 4 turnovers in nearly 34 minutes... E.N. Paralimni is recording now a 3-3 being in the 4th spot with a +2 from the last two teams on the board..
The other two games of the week were characterized by the "easy" victory of APOEL over the champion team of AEK Larnakas with 89-77. APOEL's MVP was Akeem Wright (200-F/G-84, college: Kansas St.) who ended the game with 21 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals and 5 turnovers, followed by the very good Murphy Burnatowski with 15 points and 3 rebounds, while on the other hand, AEK for another game without its basic center Primoz Brezec was an easy task for APOEL, Coach Gavriel saw only Torey Thomas (178-PG-85, college: Holy Cross) trying for the best and nobody else stood with gatts on the derby, Thomas ended the game 17 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists, followed by Harris's 12 points and Trisokkas 11 and that was it... APOEL balanced it's record with AEK but bypassed the Larnaka team since the +12 deficit it's giving to APOEL at this stage the second spot. Both teams have a 4-2 record.
On the third and final game of the sixth week, the history recorded the easy win of ETHA Engomis over the weird team of Apollon Limassol with 86-61 (Maxie Esho's another great performance with 23 points, 9 rebounds, and 3 assists, followed by Walket's same performance with 22 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists) were the night's major factors, while from Apollon only Raines tried who ended with another double-double with 20 points and 13 rebounds, followed by Jermaine Marshall who ended the game with 15 points, were not enough to help their team to succeed something better than another easy loss with 25 points deficit... ETHA is currently on the sixth position recording the same with APollon Limassol as both the teams have an 1-5 record.
JDA Dijon Bourgogne (ProA) is close to sign 31-year old Cypriot international power forward Anthony King (206-110kg-85, college: Miami, FL) who played last time at Gaziantep Basketbol in Turkey. He is a dual citizen owning also American passport. In 32 BSL games he recorded 6.8ppg and 4.4rpg last season. King also played 14 games in FIBA Europe Cup where he averaged 7.6ppg, 5.1rpg, 1.7apg and 1.1bpg. The previous (14-15) season he played at Artland Dragons in German BBL. In 26 games he ha... [read more]
JDA Dijon Bourgogne (ProA) is close to sign 31-year old Cypriot international power forward Anthony King (206-110kg-85, college: Miami, FL) who played last time at Gaziantep Basketbol in Turkey. He is a dual citizen owning also American passport. In 32 BSL games he recorded 6.8ppg and 4.4rpg last season. King also played 14 games in FIBA Europe Cup where he averaged 7.6ppg, 5.1rpg, 1.7apg and 1.1bpg. The previous (14-15) season he played at Artland Dragons in German BBL. In 26 games he had 9.3ppg, 5.2rpg, 1.3apg and 1.0bpg. King also played 10 games in Eurocup where he got 12.8ppg, 5.6rpg and 2.2apg. The list of the past achievements is quite long as among others his team made it to the Bundesliga Semifinals in 2012 and 2014. King was also voted Eurobasket.com All-German Bundesliga 3rd Team in 2014. He represented Cyprus at the Qualifications to European Championships 2017 this year. His stats at that event were 6 games: 9.7ppg, 7.0rpg, 2.5apg, 1.0bpg, FGP: 42.9%, FT: 69.6%. King has played also professionally in Greece (Aris), Cyprus (Etha) and Germany (Deutsche Bank Skyliners). He attended University of Miami, Florida until 2008 and it will be his ninth season as a professional player. The scouts decsribe him following way:
Gives the team an additional scoring threat in the post as well as rebounding... physical performer who doesn't mind mixing it up down low... gives the team added toughness in the paint.
Received Cypriot passport in June 2012.
Copyright (c) 1998-2016 Eurobasket Inc. Disclaimer
Do not copy, redistribute, publish or otherwise exploit information that you download from the site !
Do not encumber, license, modify, publish, sell, transfer or transmit, or in any way exploit, any of the
content of the site, nor will you attempt to do so.