Artur Drozdov (200-SF-80) decided to part ways with Azovmash. The forward opted for buy out of two remaining seasons on his contract with the Mariupol team. The forward joined Azovmash at the start of the previous season. Artur Drozdov notched 10.7 points, 7.6 boards, 1.4 assists per game in Superleague. In VTB League his stats read 10.5 points, 6.4 rebounds, 1.0 assist and 1.0 steal per game. Artur Drozdov also notched 9.5 points and 4.0 rebounds per EuroCup appearance. He made it into All-Ukrainian Superleague Domestic Players Team. Previously Artur Drozdov had spells with Vanoli-Braga Cremona, Budivelnyk Kyiv, BC Kyiv, BC Donetsk, Pau-Orthez and Autodorozhnik Saratov. He was named All-French ProA Most Improved Player of the Year in 2003. Artur Drozdov has been playing for the Ukrainian National Team since 2003. He is the captain of the National Team. The rumours sent Artur Drozdov to ACB League.
Behind a strong double-double showing of 12 points and 10 rebounds, courtesy of 6-11 Australian center Aleks Maric, and thanks to a dominate Most Valuable Player performance by interim big man Richard Hendrix, who contributed 14 points and 9 boards, Russian Lokomotiv Kuban secured its first ever Eurocup title with a 75-64 triumph over Spanish Uxue Bilbao [read more]
Behind a strong double-double showing of 12 points and 10 rebounds, courtesy of 6-11 Australian center Aleks Maric, and thanks to a dominate Most Valuable Player performance by interim big man Richard Hendrix, who contributed 14 points and 9 boards, Russian Lokomotiv Kuban secured its first ever Eurocup title with a 75-64 triumph over Spanish Uxue Bilbao.
Both Maric (Panathinaikos) and Hendrix (EA7 Milan), shown the door by their recently respected Euroleague homes, have managed to come alive in Russia, upped their statistics, and resurrect their stardom, en route to returning to Euroleague action next season.
While Maric is locked in with Kuban for the upcoming 2013-14 season, Hendrix, who is on a loan from Milan, will get shipped back to Italy to honor the second year of his deal.
Kuban Coach Evgeny Pashutin utilized his massive inside presence to the maximum. Maric playing the center, and Hendrix at power-forward revealed to be a killer duo combining for 19 boards, five of them offensive, and five assists.
"Our strategy offensively was to go inside to Richard Hendrix and Aleks Maric," a victorious Pashutin said. "They both dominated and we were able to get a lead, go from there and have a good game," the 44-year-old Russian-born coach added.
Awkwardly enough, Israeli power Maccabi Tel Aviv, currently trailing Real Madrid 0-2 in the best-of-five Euroleague quarter-finals series, is getting demolished inside the paint by its Spanish rival.
Seeing that Maccabi sent 7-footer Giorgi Shermadini to Greece on December 2012, and waived high-flying 6-8 power-forward Malcolm Thomas, who is now hooping for the Chicago Bulls, Shawn James' outstanding performances remain no match against Madrid's inside firepower. Dating back to March 2013, Maccabi targeted and engaged in conversations with Maric, who eventually preferred the Russian currency. Upon joining Kuban on January 2013, David Blatt heavily pursued Hendrix, and urged Tel Aviv officials to re-sign the Alabama alumnus. Yet Maccabi executives eventually inked Croatian Euroleague-rook Darko Planinic to a multi-year deal.
Planinic is far from being the coaching staff favorite Hendrix was, or Maric could have been, registering just 3.5 points and 1.5 boards during 6.5 minutes per versus Madrid.
As Madrid outrebounds Tel Aviv 85-44 over the first pair of series contests, Maric, tailing a miserable four points in seven minutes for Panathinaikos under former coach Zeljko Obradovic last season, has jump-started his international career, revisiting his dominance from when playing in Serbia with Partizan Belgrade.
"Our target from the beginning was to win this cup. We are now going to the play in the Euroleague. We conquered our goal of taking Kuban to the next level. It is an amazing feeling," said Maric, completing his Eurocup debut season with double-digit scoring figures of 11 points and 7.3 rebounds nightly.
Hendrix's season upside has also been remarkable. The 264-pounder who took home Israel's Center of the Year honors, discovered unfamiliar territory earlier this season under Sergio Scariolo, barley logging double-digits in minutes, which by default, meant failing to adapt to the Italian system.
In Russia, Hendrix revived his brand, doubled his scoring averages, and tripled his European competition statistics. For Kuban's defensive anchor, winning the Eurocup title was simply the icing on the cake.
Lokomotiv Kuban crowned new champions! - Apr 13, 2013
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Gescrap BB - Lokomotiv 64-75
Lokomotiv Kuban are the new EuroCup champions. They knocked down Bilbao Basket in Charleroi tonight to clinch the trophy. Aleks Maric (211-C-84, college: Nebraska) paced balanced effort from the Russian team finishing with a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds. The teams went neck and neck throughout the opening quarter. Bilbao Basket eked out a narrow 17:16 lead after the starting quarter. But Lokomotiv took over in the second frame [read more]
Gescrap BB - Lokomotiv 64-75 Lokomotiv Kuban are the new EuroCup champions. They knocked down Bilbao Basket in Charleroi tonight to clinch the trophy. Aleks Maric (211-C-84, college: Nebraska) paced balanced effort from the Russian team finishing with a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds. The teams went neck and neck throughout the opening quarter. Bilbao Basket eked out a narrow 17:16 lead after the starting quarter. But Lokomotiv took over in the second frame. They used a 15:2 run to secure a 37:28 lead. Kostas Kostas Vasiliadis (200-G/F-84, agency: FCM) stopped the rot with a jumper but Lokomotiv entered the second half up by 8 points 38:30. Derrick Brown (203-F-87, college: Xavier) and Calathes extended the lead to double digits early in the third term. Lokomotiv stayed in front throughout the third term. The Russian team entered the fourth quarter up by 9 points 54:45. Lokomotiv opened the fourth stanza with 11 straight points to shock Bilbao. The Basque team fought desperately till the final seconds and cut the deficit to 7 points but it was as close as they could get. Lokomotiv stayed calm and escaped with a triumphant victory at the end. Richard Hendrix (204-C/F-86, college: Alabama) finished with 14 points and 9 rebounds, while Derrick Brown added 11 points for the winners. Kostas Vasiliadis answered with 11 points for Bilbao Basket. Milovan Rakovic had 11 points in the losing effort.
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