#1. This week's number one is former international guard Donnie McGrath (193-84, college: Providence, currently plays in Greece). He was the major contributor in PAOK's victory against the 11th-ranked Aris (2-5) 72-63 in a derby game in the Greek A1 in Saturday night's game.
McGrath recorded 17 points and added 5 assists in 36 minutes on the court.
PAOK Thessaloniki (5-2) is placed fourth in the A1.
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.
McGrath has relatively good stats this year: 14.3ppg, 2.4rpg, 2.9apg, 2FGP: 62.2%(23-37), 3FGP: 38.9% in the seven games he played so far.
He is a naturalized American.
McGrath played for the Irish senior national team four years ago.
Strangely he has never played in Ireland.
#2. Second place goes to former international forward Colin O'Reilly (200-84, college: Post, currently plays in United Kingdom). He led Plymouth Raiders to an easy victory against one of league's weakest teams Sheffield One Health Sharks (2-8) crushing them 99-71 in the British BBL in Friday night's game.
O'Reilly scored 16 points and grabbed 9 rebounds.
UCP Marjon Plymouth Raiders (7-3) is placed fourth in the BBL.
But there are still lots of games to play and it's a long way to go.
It's O'Reilly's first season with the team.
O'Reilly is ranked eighth on the list of the top scorers in the league.
He has individually a very good season with high stats. O'Reilly averages: 17.6ppg, 8.0rpg, 3.3apg, 2FGP: 62.2%(51-82), 3FGP: 41.9% and FT: 87.0%.
He played for the Irish national team in 2009.
#3. The Irish player who performed third best last week abroad was former international point guard Bryan Mullins (185-87, college: S.Illinois, currently plays in France). He contributed to an easy victory against the 11th-ranked Charleville-Mezieres (3-7) crushing them 86-63 in the French ProB (second division) on Friday night.
Mullins scored 10 points and added 4 assists.
Chalons-Reims (7-4) is placed fifth in the ProB.
Mullins' overall stats this season are: 7.4ppg, 2.5rpg, 4.4apg, 1.6spg, 2FGP: 56.1%(23-41), 3FGP: 32.0% and FT: 64.7%.
He is a naturalized American.
Mullins played for the Irish national team three years ago.
Apparently he has never played in Ireland.
#4. Center Sean McCarthy (208-93, currently plays college basketball in the States) contributed to NJIT's victory against the South Carolina State University 72-63 in the NCAA in Saturday night's game.
McCarthy recorded 6 points and grabbed 8 rebounds.
The New Jersey Institute of Technology has conference record this season.
This year McCarthy has relatively solid stats: 13.5ppg, 3.3rpg and 2.9apg.
He used to play for the Irish U16 national team
back in 2009.
#5. Former international forward Mark Reynolds (197-84, currently plays in United Kingdom), who plays in the British BBL could not help Durham Wildcats (3-8) to beat Leicester Riders (11-1). He cannot count Saturday's game as one of the best ones.
Reynolds scored only 1 points.
Durham Wildcats was crushed 91-68 on the road by the leading Leicester Riders.
It was Durham Wildcats' fourth consecutive loss in a row.
This season Reynolds averages just 1.1ppg.
He used to play for the Irish national team
five years ago.
The list of other players, who all have Irish passport but never been selected to any of Irish national teams:
#1.Will Hanley (200-G/F-90, agency: Duran International, college: Bowdoin, currently plays in Spain), who plays in the Spanish LEB Silver (third division) could not help Oviedo CB (3-3) in their last game on Saturday. Despite Hanley's very good performance Oviedo CB was defeated 86-81 at home by the leading CB Guadalajara.
He recorded a double-double by scoring 28 points and getting 10 rebounds.
But the season just started, so everything may happen.
Hanley is currently second on the list of top scorers and also on the list of best rebounders (second place).
He has individually a very good season with high stats. Hanley averages: 17.7ppg, 9.7rpg and 1.8spg.
He is a naturalized American.
Apparently Hanley has never played in Ireland.
#2.Levon Kendall (209-F-84, college: Pittsburgh, currently plays in Spain), who plays in the Spanish ACB was not able to help Blusens Monbus (5-4) in their last game. Despite his good performance Blusens Monbus was edged 78-76 on the road by the second-ranked G.Canaria 2014.
Kendall scored 10 points and grabbed 4 rebounds in 32 minutes.
But the season is still in it's first stage and everything can happen.
Kendall is ranked third on the list of the top scorers in the league with 15.3ppg.
This year his other stats are: 6.0rpg, 1.9apg, 1.1bpg and 1.2spg in the nine games he played so far.
Kendall has a dual citizenship: Canadian and Irish.
#3.Orel Lev (195-SG-93, currently plays in Israel) led Hapoel Kfar Saba to a victory against the closely-ranked Beer Yaakov (2-5) 99-88 in the Israeli National League (second division) last Tuesday.
Lev had a double-double by scoring 20 points and getting 12 rebounds in 35 minutes.
Hapoel Kfar Saba/Kohav Yair (3-4) is placed eighth in the National League.
This year Lev's overall stats are: 7.0ppg and 3.6rpg in the five games.
#4.Mihajlo Pesic (206-F/C-81, agency: Three Eye Sports, currently plays in Cyprus) was not able to secure a victory for AEL (1-4) in their game against Keravnos (5-0) in the Cypriot Division A, despite his good performance in Saturday night's game.
Pesic scored 11 points and grabbed 8 rebounds in 26 minutes. It was his first game for AEL this season.
But AEL lost 62-66 on their home court in Limassol to the leading Keravnos.
It was AEL's fourth consecutive loss in a row.
Pesic is another player who holds two passports: Irish and Serbian.
#5.Ben Altit (208-PF-93, agency: Avi Zilberman, college: Bryant, currently plays in Israel) couldn't help Bnei Hasharon (2-4) in their game against Maccabi Rishon (4-2) in the Israeli Winner League. He cannot count Monday's game as one of the best ones.
Altit recorded only 2 points.
Bnei Hasharon was defeated 91-76 on their home court in Hod Hasharon by the higher-ranked Maccabi Rishon (#5).
It was Bnei Hasharon's third consecutive loss in a row.
This season Altit averages just 0.7ppg.
#6. Experienced Tony McCrory (199-G/F-77, college: Simon Fraser, currently plays in Switzerland) couldn't help Starwings in their game against Boncourt in the Swiss LNA, despite his good performance on Saturday night.
He scored 12 points in a mere 19 minutes.
But his team lost 75-86.
This year McCrory has relatively solid stats: 13.5ppg, 3.3rpg and 2.9apg in the eight games.
He has both Canadian and Irish nationalities.
#7.Yaniv Strauss (190-F-92, currently plays in Israel) couldn't help Hapoel Kazrin in their game against Ironi Nes-Ziona in the Israeli National League (second division).
Strauss recorded 6 points in 17 minutes.
His team was crushed by 36 points 94-58.
This year Strauss averages only 2.3ppg in the seven games.
Duane Johnson (ex DCU Saints) signs at Black Star - 6 days ago
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Black Star Mersch (N2) landed 25-year old American power forward Duane Johnson (201-86kg-91, college: E.Stroudsburg). He played most recently at DCU Saints in Irish Premier League. In 12 games he was the best scorer with impressive 26.2ppg and recorded 18.7rpg (leader !!!), 3.9apg, 2.6spg (in top 5) and 3.1bpg last season. It was a very successful year in his career as he was awarded Eurobasket.com All-Irish Premier League Center of the Year and selected to 1st Team. Johnson played in the... [read more]
Black Star Mersch (N2) landed 25-year old American power forward Duane Johnson (201-86kg-91, college: E.Stroudsburg). He played most recently at DCU Saints in Irish Premier League. In 12 games he was the best scorer with impressive 26.2ppg and recorded 18.7rpg (leader !!!), 3.9apg, 2.6spg (in top 5) and 3.1bpg last season. It was a very successful year in his career as he was awarded Eurobasket.com All-Irish Premier League Center of the Year and selected to 1st Team. Johnson played in the final of Australian Big V in 2014. He has played also professionally in Australia (Stingrays). Johnson attended East Stroudsburg until 2013 and it will be his fourth season in pro basketball.
Ulster Elks enter National League for 2016/17 - 16 days ago
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Ulster Elks have been granted a license to compete in the Basketball Ireland National League for the 2016/2017 season. The club will compete in the Men's Division One and play their home games in the Ulster University Sports Centre in Jordanstown. Ulster Elks compete in the Basketball Northern Ireland Wingfoot Premier League and were in the Men's National League as recently as 2012. The Men's Division One side will be coached by Patrick O'Neill, who has been at the helm for the last five... [read more]
Ulster Elks have been granted a license to compete in the Basketball Ireland National League for the 2016/2017 season. The club will compete in the Men's Division One and play their home games in the Ulster University Sports Centre in Jordanstown. Ulster Elks compete in the Basketball Northern Ireland Wingfoot Premier League and were in the Men's National League as recently as 2012. The Men's Division One side will be coached by Patrick O'Neill, who has been at the helm for the last five years. Elks will be the third Ulster side competing in the Men's National League this season. Belfast Star will continue in the Men's Premier League while the newly formed LYIT BC will be based in Letterkenny in Donegal and play against Ulster Elks in Men's Division One. As C&S Blue Demons will not be competing in the Men's National League this season, the number of clubs remains at 24. 'Three Ulster clubs in our National League is certainly not the end of our ambitions,' said Men's National League Commissioner and Basketball Ireland Secretary General Bernard O'Byrne. 'We were impressed with the presentation from Ulster Elks. All clubs who enter the National League are subject to a one year license in their first season. It's about ensuring standards both on and off the court in terms of clubs' organisation. Having 24 teams in the National League is going to be great.' Ulster Elks will also learn this week if their application has been successful to play in the Women's National League for the first time. Ulster Rockets look set to play in the Women's Division One in 2016/17, having finished fifth in their return season. Courtesy of: basketballireland.ie
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