We have talked with one of the most talented coach in Europe, Dimitris Itoudis. London journey with Pistons, working with Zjeliko Obradovic and headcoaching career that waiting for him...
Ugur Turker : Hello Coach Itoudis, you were in London last week, invited to watch the NBA game played there? Dimitris Itoudis : Yes, I was invited from Pistons organization ,Joe Dumars specifically and his assistant George David ,to spend with them some days in London and have the opportunity, like this summer, to exchange ideas about basketball.
Ugur Turker : As an expert in Euroleague, how do you see the comparison between the two leagues and could they be combined in any way in the future?
Dimitris Itoudis : First of all I believe that on the organization part the NBA is far ahead from teams in Europe. Of course there are some teams that try to do the best and they have to be the example,but the NBA has match bigger amount of money that invest in order to be all very but very organized. On the other hand ,regarding basketball as a game, there are differences,but Europe positively has been influential to many NBA teams. I want to say that Basketball ,like Joe Dumars use to say is Universal. Now, I do see in the future that the two leagues will have a lot of common things. I do really believe that Euroleague 's future is to have a close league like in NBA. This will be the first step. There many other steps to be done ,like the rules for instance or the dimension of the court and some other really important things. I am sure and I know that Mr Bertomeu and his assosiets are thinking how to make the game more interesting and in the future will see this for sure.
Ugur Turker : How do you think top Euroleague teams would perform in the NBA? Is there a way for them to be competitive if they increase their budget by more revenues?
Dimitris Itoudis : Without any question, the Top Euroleague teams could perform well, but they need to support this with the other things we just mention before,regarding the organization.
Ugur Turker : How was the past summer for you? You were approached to head coach by some organizations but you preferred not to accept the offers ?
Dimitris Itoudis : Yes it is true I had some offers, but after 13 very successful years with Panathinaikos ! the way of the approach was not what I was expecting and I didn't agreed. And I want to be clear, it was not the money the issue, but the vision and the plan. You know when one team approach me, I ask them, what are the expectations and the golds. If we can found the chemistry then we can go together.
Ugur Turker : What are your plans for the present and near future? Dimitris Itoudis : As you probably know I am analyzing Euroleague games officially at Euroleague.net and I am trying to give to people the coach approach to the game. Other than that I am watching basketball ,at different leagues. But also I do have more time to be with my family,that miss me during the season. You know this is my first year I don't work after 22 years continuously. Some times it is good to stay out and watch the things from a different angle.
Ugur Turker : If your plan is to be head coach a Euroleague organization, how would you feel if you had to face up Zjeliko Obradovic as an opponent? What would you tell him before the game?
Dimitris Itoudis : Yes I do plan to be a Head Coach ,but as I said before on a team that have vision and expectations. Now if I am going to face Zeljko ,that will be very strange ,but it will be only during the game, because before and after we will have some good dinners and talks. You know that Zeljko is my Best man and the relation we have is build with very strong bridges.
Ugur Turker : You have won 5 Euroleague championships, what would you say is the secret to go all the way in these championships?
Dimitris Itoudis : Dedication, knowledge, believe, plan,organization,collaboration. All this and one more is hard work with your players, and your staff . The very first thing is that the summer,after you and the management put the targets on the table, to BUILD a winning team. A team that can compete. A team that has players that have golds in their life. That's the first step and it's the most important. After that there are many other details that you have to consider as well.
Ugur Turker : Do you believe that basketball in the court has changed over the last few years with all the changes that happened?
Dimitris Itoudis : Yes and I really hope it will be changed a lot more in order to have better and more exiting games.
Ugur Turker : Can you describe the ideal team for you in terms of the style of basketball and the philosophy it would have?
Dimitris Itoudis : My friend all the teams I was part of and spend hours and hours on the court with, are the ideal teams and ideal players. I was privileged to work with a lot of Top players.
Ugur Turker : Have you followed the Turlkish championship? What do you think is the reason that there have not been any Turkish Club with final four presence in Euroleague in the recent past that Turkish teams havemade so big investements in basketball?
Dimitris Itoudis : Obviously i do follow Turkish league.Turkey last years really invest in Basketball. Has made very good steps ahead. People love basketball like sport. The Turkish league is among the best three leagues in Europe. I know that the mentality of Turkish people is similar with my country and they want immediate results. I don't blame them ,because this kind of pressure they put is that makes you want to be better. Obviously going to Final Four is not an easy think and definitely at final four they don't go only the teams that invest the more money or they are favourites.
Zoran Dragic(196-F/G-89) suffered a torn ACL muscle as Olimpia Milano officially announced and is out indefinitely. The Slovenian guard sustained an injury in the Italian League game between his team and Caserta yesterday and today's examination revealed the full extent of the damage. Dragic's condition will be re-evaluated in the upcoming days to determine the most appropriate therapy for his recovery, as the club mentions. He'll most likely miss the remainder of the season since a surge... [read more]
Zoran Dragic (196-F/G-89) suffered a torn ACL muscle as Olimpia Milano officially announced and is out indefinitely. The Slovenian guard sustained an injury in the Italian League game between his team and Caserta yesterday and today's examination revealed the full extent of the damage. Dragic's condition will be re-evaluated in the upcoming days to determine the most appropriate therapy for his recovery, as the club mentions. He'll most likely miss the remainder of the season since a surgery is required to fully repair the torn muscle. Courtesy of: eurohoops.net
ANGT Belgrade: Crvena Zvezda top Mega Leks to celebrate title - 2 days ago
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Crvena Zvezda U18 - Mega Leks U18 74:61 Crvena Zvezda earned the Adidas Next Generation Tournament Belgrade stage title. They overcame their Serbian rivals Mega Leks in the Final. Vuk Djordjevic (201-F-99) scored 21 points to pace the winners. Crvena Zvezda grabbed a 28:8 lead after the opening quarter. They kept Mega Leks at bay throughout the second frame. Crvena Zvezda ensured a 45:25 halftime lead. Mega Leks narrowed the deficit in the third term. They pulled within 12 points at the... [read more]
Crvena Zvezda U18 - Mega Leks U18 74:61
Crvena Zvezda earned the Adidas Next Generation Tournament Belgrade stage title. They overcame their Serbian rivals Mega Leks in the Final. Vuk Djordjevic (201-F-99) scored 21 points to pace the winners. Crvena Zvezda grabbed a 28:8 lead after the opening quarter. They kept Mega Leks at bay throughout the second frame. Crvena Zvezda ensured a 45:25 halftime lead. Mega Leks narrowed the deficit in the third term. They pulled within 12 points at the final intermission. But Crvena Zvezda held their opponents to just 15 points in the fourth stanza and rallied to the win. Aleksa Uskokovic (191-G-99, agency: Octagon Europe) produced 20 points, while Zoran Paunovic (190-G-00) added 15 points in the victory. Goga Bitadze (210-C/F-99) replied with 21 points and 18 boards for Mega Leks. Nikola Miskovic (204-G/F-99) and Igor Drobnjak (189-G-00) tossed in 11 points each in the loss.
Source: www.doubledouble.rs/en/ Crvena Zvezda reached 7th consecutive title at Belgrade ANGT 2017 with easy win vs. Mega Bemax 74-61. Red shirted guys got their job done in 1st quarter with 28-8 scoring run. Basketball presented at Belgrade ANGT 2017 was not at some impressive level, despite my expectations before the tournament. Many teams here have shown only bit above average qualities, while Mega Bemax and Crvena Zvezda were far ahead of all the opponents. Top names breakdown Al... [read more]
Crvena Zvezda reached 7th consecutive title at Belgrade ANGT 2017 with easy win vs. Mega Bemax 74-61. Red shirted guys got their job done in 1st quarter with 28-8 scoring run.
Basketball presented at Belgrade ANGT 2017 was not at some impressive level, despite my expectations before the tournament. Many teams here have shown only bit above average qualities, while Mega Bemax and Crvena Zvezda were far ahead of all the opponents.
Top names breakdown
Aleksa Uskokovic (guard, 1999.) is prolific leader of this Crvena Zvezda generation. He is already way better than Belgrade ANGT level, but his road to successful senior player is quite a long one. Uskokovic contributes in every phase of the game (AVG: 16.8 points, 5.3 assists), but his game has not improved much in ball control, passing, anticipation of defense, as well as shot selection. Aleksa used this tournament in great manner, especially after some weaker shows in NT jersey. Crvena Zvezda will mostly look at his abilities at final tournament in Istanbul.
Another prospect from Crvena Zvezda who has shined at this tournament is Zoran Paunovic (born 2000.). He is very successful in 2pt shooting, very strong around the rim and he has great body for future 2/3 position. Paunovic is active on the rebound as well, but he needs to work hard at outside shooting stroke, aggressiveness in game-play and better penetration. Zoran ended the tournament with following averages 11.5 points and 6 rebounds.
Vuk Djordjevic (1999.) has impressed at this tournament as well. He used his minutes in right manner contributing with 14.3 pts and 4.5 rebounds. His body has changed a lot in comparison with some earlier tournaments and he has improved his chances of becoming respectful player in senior competition. Vuk was deadly at outside shooting (45%), while his conversion for 2 was more than solid one (50%).
Honorable mentions from Crvena Zvezda squad are Arijan Lakic (2000.) and Stefan Momirov (1999.)
Mega Bemax young studs at this tournament were Goga Bitadze and Nikola Miskovic, while honorable mentions should be given to Jovicic, Islamovic and Drobnjak.
Goga Bitadze (211 cm, 1999.) has shown a lot of abilities at this tournament, while he was completely dominant. His averages of 16.5 ppg and 12 rpg, with more than solid 54.5% for 2 speaks alone about his role at this ANGT. Despite the positives, Bitadze has shown some serious cons like running, movement and lacks of concentration in some situations. Goga already plays at senior level in Serbian first league, which is a fact to be taken in account as well. Bitadze has elite size, very soft touch and if he continues to develop this fast as for now, he would shine at better level soon.
Nikola Miskovic (1999.) has shown great versatility and fluidity. His movement was more than solid, shooting touch around the rim as well, while his outside shooting needs big improvements. Miskovic is definitely capable to shoot behind the arc, but he has not shown any range at this tournament. His size (207 cm) is great for small forward in the future, but I am pretty sure that Miskovic would be fluid type of player capable of playing at 3 and 4 without a problem.
Stella Azzura Roma was not brilliant at this tournament, but some of the names there emerged as serious potentials. Serbian guys Lazar Nikolic and Djordje Pazin were noticed as big potentials, while Stella got dunk contest winner in Paul Eboua.
Lazar Nikolic (1999.) has averaged 11.3 ppg, 6.3 rpg and 6.5 apg, while his problems were in outside shooting (12% for 3) and big number of turnovers (5.3 per game). Personally, I expected better tournament from Nikolic, but he has established himself as clear leader of this Stella team. Nikolic can be compared with Uskokovic, about the situation of their potential role in senior basketball. Both of them have long road of adjustments ahead of them, but both of them have a lot to offer in the future.
Djordje Pazin (2001.) had solid tournament, but I am sure that he was capable of even better. No matter he is younger than others, he has vast range of qualities to offer. In my opinion, of all 2001. born guys at this tournament Pazin, Biberovic and Karapandzic were far the best. Pazin has true basketball moves, he is very polished, but he needs to work hard on aggressiveness, anticipation and passing. Next tournaments will show all the great moves which Pazin holds in the trunk.
Amit Ebo (180 cm, 1999.) was named in top 5 of the tournament. He led his Maccabi during this tournament, but the Israelis were not ready to compete at highest level. Ebo is physically limited PG, but with great scoring instincts and capability to find open spots for his teammates and himself. In front of Ebo is serious work for right hand development, as well as some adjustments towards his role in senior basketball as way non athletic and short. Ebo has ended the tournament with 22.8 ppg, 4.3 apg and 4 turnovers per game.
Honorable mention from Maccabi goes to Tomer Porat (201 cm, 1999.) who had great tournament with 15.5 ppg and 7.8 rpg.
Mateo Seric (203 cm, 1999.) has led Ludwigsburg to 3rd place at Belgrade ANGT. Germans presented us great team play with Seric as leader with 17.3 ppg and 7 rpg. Mateo is showing constant development and he is player to watch at some others competitions. If he continues to groom his all round game and improve passing ability he can be solid option for German teams in the future.
From Prague team at this ANGT two names emerged as some potentials. Marek Welsch (180 cm, 1999.) with similar problems as his colleague at PG Amit Ebo and second is Maros Zeliznak (208 cm, 1999.) who can be next solid center from Czech republic. His main problem are stiff hands and if he resolves that he can be interesting prospect to watch in the future.
To end the story with Partizan guys Mateja Jovanovic, Tadija Tadic and Stevan Karapandzic, as well as Spars leader Tarik Biberovic.
Mateja Jovanovic (2000.) has shown some upgrades in comparison to last year, but his problems remained in shot selection, percentages and conversion around the rim. He uses board with great sensitiveness, he is capable of drawing big number of fouls and he finishes easily from FT line.
Tadija Tadic (1999.) looked stacked at solid level for more than a year, but his problems remained the same as before. His AST/TO ratio is not the perfect one, while Tadija remained between SG and PG position. At this tournament Tadic averaged 13.5 points per game, contributing in rebounds (5 per game) and assists (6.3). Tadija is capable of 1 on 1 play, has great dribbling skills, but his anticipation of opponent moves is not at highest level. Tadic will have long road to becoming senior player with significant role.
Finally, Stevan Karapandzic (184 cm, 2001.) presented some great abilities at game vs. Ludwigsburg. Stevan shoots well, moves perfectly in offense, while he is capable of great 1 on 1 defense. He should work hard on his passing and positional defense, both were 'black holes' for him at this tournament.
At last, Tarik Biberovic (2001.) bought all the scouts in Belgrade with his games for Spars Sarajevo. Tarik averaged 17.8 ppg and 6.3 rpg, while he was true joy to watch in some cases. His shooting touch has improved since the last year and his running remained at very high level. Tarik is capable to play top defense with his 201 cm body, and he would be top prospect to watch in the future
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