#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.
32-year old Irish ex-international guard Donnie McGrath (193-90kg-84, college: Providence). He is a dual citizen owning also American passport. McGrath played last season at Obradoiro in Spanish Liga Endesa. In 33 games he had 7.7ppg, 1.7rpg and 4.7apg. The previous (14-15) season he played at Krasny Oktyabr in Russian league where in 6 Eurocup games he recorded 11.2ppg, 2.7rpg and 5.3apg. McGrath also played 17 games in VTB United League where he avera... [read more]
Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius (LKL) signed 32-year old Irish ex-international guard Donnie McGrath (193-90kg-84, college: Providence). He is a dual citizen owning also American passport. McGrath played last season at Obradoiro in Spanish Liga Endesa. In 33 games he had 7.7ppg, 1.7rpg and 4.7apg. The previous (14-15) season he played at Krasny Oktyabr in Russian league where in 6 Eurocup games he recorded 11.2ppg, 2.7rpg and 5.3apg. McGrath also played 17 games in VTB United League where he averaged 9.2ppg, 2.6rpg and 4.6apg. The other team he played shortly was Anadolu Efes in Turkish league. In 5 Euroleague games he got 4.0ppg, 1.4rpg and 1.0apg. McGrath also spent pre-season at La ICL Manresa (also in Liga Endesa) that year. He was a member of Irish Senior National Team between 2006 and 2008. McGrath is quite experienced player. He has played also professionally in France (Cholet Basket), Greece (PAOK Thessaloniki, AEK Athens and Egaleo), Italy (Openjobmetis VA, Verona and BancaTercas), Lithuania (Zalgiris) and Russia (Spartak St.Petersburg). McGrath attended Providence College until 2006 and it will be his eleventh (!!!) season as a professional player.
Ian O'Leary agreed terms with Fuenlabrada - 10 days ago
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30-year old American (has also Irish passport) forward Ian O'Leary (201-101kg-86, college: St.Mary's, CA) from Iberostar Tenerife CB Canarias. In 34 Liga Endesa games in Spain he recorded 4.5ppg and 2.7rpg last season. The previous (14-15) season O'Leary played at Gran Canaria where in 26 Liga Endesa games he averaged 4.9ppg and 3.1rpg. He also played 20 games in Eurocup where he had 6.8ppg, 3.0rpg and 1.2apg. A... [read more]
Montakit Fuenlabrada (Liga Endesa) strengthened their roster with addition of 30-year old American (has also Irish passport) forward Ian O'Leary (201-101kg-86, college: St.Mary's, CA) from Iberostar Tenerife CB Canarias. In 34 Liga Endesa games in Spain he recorded 4.5ppg and 2.7rpg last season. The previous (14-15) season O'Leary played at Gran Canaria where in 26 Liga Endesa games he averaged 4.9ppg and 3.1rpg. He also played 20 games in Eurocup where he had 6.8ppg, 3.0rpg and 1.2apg. Among other achievements O'Leary played in the final of WCC Tournament in 2009. He received also Eurobasket.com All-Spanish LEB Silver Forward of the Year award back in 2011. O'Leary has played previously for four other teams: Blancos de Rueda, Palencia Baloncesto, Vigo and Oviedo CB. He attended Saint Mary's College of California until 2009 and it will be his eighth season in pro basketball. The scouts decsribe him following way:
Overlooked somewhat at college but has blossomed in Europe. Strong going to the basket and has good athletic ability. Working on being more consistent outside the 3pt line but provides a real mis match for teams.
A very good athlete he is able to play several positions effectively because of a great mix of size and quickness. Rebounds like a center but runs like a guard. Very effective mid range jumper causes a lot of problems cause he is able to just shoot over top of most defenders. Can handle the ball and has no problem handling pressure and being a release valve for any backcourt. Aggressive offensive mind set makes him lead by example. At college played in a system to showcase NBA Draft choice Patrick Mills, but his performance in Europe will be very different as he will be allowed to show his complete game. Has very long arms and consistently tips and blocks shots from the backside and weak side. A very complete player is capable of playing at very high levels as he continues to develop. Shoots the deep ball quite well and is extending his range which for a player his size will make him deadly.
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