EUROBASKET NEWS REPORT - 8/27/2008

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Men News

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  ABA   


Streetball Vet, ABA Team Owner Wants To Take Streetball Culture To New Heights - by Eurobasket
Streetball has long been confined to park playgrounds and gymnasiums across the globe, until around the mid-2000s when the culture grabbed national attention thanks to TV exposure via shows like ESPN's 'Streetball' and 'City Slam' among others.

That exposure spawned the creation tours and companies like AND1 and Ball4Real, helping further push the culture into the mainstream. However, some feel that -- despite the corporate element finally showing its face into the streetball arena -- players haven't always been the beneficiaries of its success.

One man -- a second generation streetball player hailing from Compton, California -- plans to change all that. His name is Donye Mitchell, legendary Venice Beach streetballer and owner of ABA team, the Los Angeles Push.

After leaving law school due to a family emergency, Mitchell wanted to go back to his roots, which was basketball, and has since put his brain to work for nearly 2 1/2 years to see his plan set in motion.

Through his Push Company, the veteran streetballer is trying to take the streetball culture to new heights, and not just to benefit himself, but to help nurture and educate the actual players, bringing the ownership of the sport back to them.

'The Push Company was formed with an entertainment backbone,' Mitchell tells BallerStatus.com. 'We needed a way we could express our creative geniuses under one umbrella. That's why we created the Push Company, so we could implement some of our creative expressions through art, the internet, and through television.

'Street basketball, for a long time, has been given a bad stigma. They believe that street basketball players smoke dope, they have anger management issues, they hang out, they fight ... there's little credence to the art they perform. What I wanted to do was embrace street basketball because I'm a street basketball player myself,' he adds.

Mitchell's Push Company boasts a professional ABA basketball team; an entertainment division, which has developed and is developing eight TV series centered around streetball; and a non-profit organization that offers free anger management programs for players and at-risk youth, as well as a Push basketball league, taking place in 16 cities.

In July, his company held the 1st Annual Street Ball Festival & Awards Ceremony at the famous Venice Beach basketball courts. It was organized to celebrate the sport, as well as the city of Los Angeles for allowing players to showcase their skills on Venice Beach for so many years.

'It was a celebration of street basketball culture,' explained Mitchell of the event. 'I wanted to showcase that street basketball was viable, it's economic and is, in fact, and art form. [Second, I wanted to reward the city's police, Mayor, park staff and fire departments] for allowing us to grow here un-a-bridged. They could come here and monitor us, and send the park staff to regulate us, but they leave us open, and they've done so for years.'

The festival also served as production for the filming of new seasons for his TV shows -- Ballin', Streetball Reality, and ABA Dreams to name a few -- all of which air on indie TV station KVMD channel 23. According to Mitchell, Streetball Reality will place eight famous players in a mansion for 30 days where they will showcase their abilities, not just in basketball, but in other areas as well, including music. 'We're gonna show the world that street basketball players are dynamic, multi-dimensional, and not just out there on the court,' he says.

ABA Dreams, however, will document his Los Angeles Push ABA team's entire professional season -- from antics in the locker rooms, their play on the court, and what takes place on their off time.

While Mitchell and his Push Company have a lot going on, he's motives aren't driven by strictly monetary gain. He's an old school player, and revealed to us that he's seen too many of his peers get taken advantage of over the years. He plans to make a stand. How? Mitchell wants to organize a streetball labor union, a streetball player owned corporation under his guise, and help the new generation, as well as the old, protect their rights and business opportunities.

'You gotta understand, all these years of playing street basketball, we weren't rewarded for them,' Mitchell explains. 'I told [the players I know] they need to protect their moves. I told everyone. AND1 came up and sweep them all away, gave them a little funky $10,000, $20,000, and then they went bananas. Years later, they made shoes, the videos and stuff, and they didn't pay them. They didn't because they weren't SAG. No one represented them -- their publishing, royalties and all that stuff. They all came back and said 'Donye, you were right.' Of course I was, it was a no-brainer. Business is business. Protect your moves. Now, they're like 'Whatever you do, I'm with you.'

'It's time for us to organize and give the ownership back to their players. The players need to organize, form their own companies -- under one umbrella -- and hire a marketing firm to shop their talent, but at a fee. All the royalties from all the distribution deals, that has to come back home to us, so that we can distribute that through the culture,' he adds.

Donye is very familiar with the entire streetball culture, not through studying it or watching it on TV, but through living it, as mentioned. He grew up playing basketball on Venice Beach with the first generation of player. Making friends with vets at a young age holds a place in his heart that lingers today.

'First time I came to Venice Beach was 1980. I was 10 years old. The older guys, the first generation, they allowed me to play with them. That was a profound statement for them to let me play with them. They didn't know my situation. I used to catch the bus, beg my mom to drive me,' he said, beginning to get emotional recalling the memories. 'They embraced me. That gave me hope to excel. I was here every weekend, every opportunity I could get. I learned that to them, basketball, it was more. I learned from the old heads. Passing that along sparked a whole streetball entertainment value.'

With his heart still with the raw form of basketball, known as streetball, Mitchell wants the culture to expand. On the player's terms though. By everyone working together, he feels that can happen.

While he awaits his vision to come to fruition, he continues to set up various events to help that happen. Over the weekend, on Sunday (August 17), his Los Angeles Push team will hold their second tryouts at the Los Angeles Adventist Academy all day, allowing aspiring streetballers a chance at making the team.

He is also putting together a Push League, open to everybody. There will be several age groups in the 16-city league across the country, all of whom will compete for a chance to play at NBA All-Star Weekend for the National City Championship.


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  ARGENTINA   


Liga A 2008/09 official domestic rosters: part 1 - by Facundo Iatzky
ATENAS Cordoba
Leonardo Gutierrez (200-F-78)
Bruno Labaque (183-G-77, agency: Interperformances)
Federico Ferrini
Juan Locatelli
Diego Osella (207-F/C-69)
Cristian Romero (198-F-82)
Juan Pablo Figueroa
Bruno Barovero
Pablo Orlietti (208-C/F-90)
Emiliano Rosales
Mauro Abraham
Juan Cognini
Agustin Thompson
Manuel Olocco (198-F-88)
Head Coach: Ruben Magnano


BEN HUR Rafaela
Walter Storani (200-F/C-70)
Eduardo Calvelli (195-G-82)
Mariano Castets (188-G-83)
Sebastian Cabello (202-F/C-82)
Patricio Rodriguez
Lucas Ortiz
Jonathan Machuca (184-G-89)
Sebastian Uranga (200-F/C-89)
Ariel Hillebrand
Antonio Forte
Alexis Abrate
Youngster team players: Federico Serrano, Lucas Pecantet
Head Coach: Luis Orono


BOCA Juniors
Raymundo Legaria (178-G-80)
Gabriel Fernandez (204-C-76)
Alejandro Alloatti
Fernando Calvi
Juan Espil (193-G-68, agency: Interperformances)
Leandro Masieri (201-F-76)
Ariel Prado
Nicolas Aguirre (182-G-88)
Martin Miner (197-F-89)
Rodrigo Sanchez
Leandro Podesta
Juan Orellano
Youngster team players: Federico Vidal Ramos (206-C-90), Daniel Luna, Patricio Tabarez (195-F)
Head Coach: Oscar Sanchez


EL NACIONAL Monte Hermoso
Gaston Torre (185-G-85)
Sebastian Castineira (196-F-78)
Facundo Venturini (198-F-87)
Santiago Gonzalez (203-C-83)
Martin Macaya
Ramiro Heinrich
Fabian Sahdi (189-G-89)
Alexis Elsener (196-G-88)
Francisco Hoffmann
Fabricio Montironi
Franco Antonellini
Youngster team players: Nicolas Breppe, Gaston Diomedi
Head Coach: Juan Garcia


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  BALTIC LEAGUE   


BC Kalev/Cramo signes John Linehan - by Janar Filippov


BC Kalev/Cramo signes John Linehan - by Janar Filippov


BC Kalev/Cramo signes John Linehan - by Janar Filippov


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  BOSNIA   


Team Bosnia without captain on Eurobasket 2009 qualifications - by Eurobasket News
Bad news for Bosnian National Team was announced yesterday. Captain of the team Jasmin Hukic (204-G/F-79, agency: Beo Basket) won't be able to help his teammates on Eurobasket 2009 qualifications. Head coach Mensur Bajramovic and Hukic decided that he has to take a rest in order to be fully recovered for the upcoming season.

'We talked and we decided that it is better for Hukic to continue with therapies in order to be ready to play in about a month. Our captain once again showed his great attitude showing up on NT camp and practicing. Unfortunately, he is not ready to give 100% because of the knee surgery. We will miss his help a lot but we will try to stick together and fight in the upcoming qualifications' - said Mensur Bajramovic.

Bosnian National Team went yesterday to Konya for Efes Pilsen Cup. Its first rival on this tournament till be Portugal and the game is scheduled for Thursday at 16:45h. On Friday, Bosnia will meet Great Britain, which will be its rival on Eurobasket 2009 qualifications. At the last day of the tournament, which is Saturday, Bosnians will take on the hosts Turkey. As a reminder Bosnia played two friendly game last week-end against Montenegro recording win and defeat (86-69, 90-93).

'There is few things which we need to improve but I am very satisfied with our performance so far. There was a lot of bright moments in two games against Montenegro. If we keep working hard and if we show good attitude during the upcoming qualifications I think the good result is guaranteed. We will meet Great Britain of Efes Pilsen Cup, what is a good thing to see their power' - said Mensur Bajramovic.


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  CANADA   


NORTHEASTERN DOWNS QUEENS TO BEGIN CIS-NCAA MARATHON - by John Gary
courtesy basketball canada The exhibition schedule between CanadiaN iNTERCOLLEGIATE SPORTS and the NATIONAL COLLEGIATE ATHELETIC ASSOCIATION, got under way monday night as the NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY HUSKIES knocked off Queens U Gold GAELS 69-59. Junior Matt Jannerg scored 19 points and pulled down 10 rebounds to lead the Huskies who play in the NCAA division 1 COLONIAL ATHELETIC ASSOCIATION. Canadian Ben FELEX from Mil Bay on Vancouver Island, who is in his freshman year with the Huskies,played nine minutes tallying four points.

Northeastern bruise Queens University on Canada Tour - by Eurobasket News
Queens - Northeastern 59:69
The Northeastern University basketball team secured their first win on the Canadian tour. They held off Queens University in Kingston, Ontario in the first of the seven-game schedule in Canada. The teams entered the game quite well matched and were all square at 14 after the opening stanza. However the visitors gradually took over and built a 5-point advantage at halftime. The Huskies stretched the margin to 15 points in the third period however the hosts refused to fold. The Golden Gaels cut the distance to 11 points heading into the fourth quarter. The hosts continued to fight hard for every basket trying to spark the intrigue. They closed the gap to 5 points but failed to come any closer. Northeastern secured the winning outcome at the end. Matt Janning (6'4''-G/F-88) produced 19 points and 10 boards for the Huskies. Baptiste Bataille (5'10''-G-87) added 11 points, while Eugene Spates (6'8''-F-87) had 10 points for the winners. Mitch Leger (6'6''-F-87) answered with 20 points for Queens University. Nick Didonato (6'5''-F-89) contributed 9 points in defeat. The visitors outrebounded the Golden Gaels 33:31 and forced the home team to 21 turnovers down the stretch.
Northeastern will continue their tour when they take on Ottawa later today.

Queens: Mitch Leger 20, Nick Didonato 9
Northeastern: Matt Janning 19+10 boards, Baptiste Bataille 11, Eugene Spates 10


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  CENTROBASKET   


Centrobasket Championship 2008 starts tomorrow - by Eurobasket News
Centorbasket Championship 2008 begins tomorrow in Cancun and Chetumal. Eight teams are divided in two groups. Participants of the Group A are Mexico, Dominican Republic, Virgin Islands and El Salvador. In Group B are placed Puerto Rico, Panama, Cuba and Costa Rica. Two best teams from each group will advance to the semifinals. It will automatically mean that those four teams will book a spot for the 2009 FIBA Americas Championship. What is the most important, that event is 2010 FIBA World Championship qualifier.

In the first round of Group A Mexico will meet El Salvador while Virgin Islands will take on Dominican Republic. On the other side Puerto Rico will play against Costa Rica while Cuba waits Panama. The biggest favorites for the Gold are Puerto Rico as well as Dominican Republic. Mexico also is named as a potential candidate for the first place. Puerto Rico will have Carlos Arroyo, Jose Juan Barea, Larry Ayuso, Carmelo Lee and Joel Jones in its roster.

On the previous Centrobasket 2006 the hosts Panama surprised everyone with its performance grabbing the Gold. Silver medal belonged to Virgin Islands while Puerto Rico was third. It means that Puerto Rico didn't qualify for Centrobasket 2008 directly and it had to play on CBC Tournament. Puerto Ricans dominated on that tournament winning the Gold and booking a spot for this summer's Centrobasket.


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  CHINA   


Sun Yue Signs Multi-Year Contract With Lakers - by Arthur Volbert
The Los Angeles Lakers signed Sun Yue (205-G/F-85, agency: Passing Lane) to a multi-year contract yesterday. Per team policy, terms of the agreement were not released. The multi-year deal indicates that Sun is likely to make the team this season, though he may spend most of his time learning on the bench or playing in the D-League.

Sun is an asset to the Lakers from a marketing standpoint because of the large Asian community in Los Angeles. He is likely to be a defensive-minded shooting guard, rather than a point guard, in the NBA and will need time to learn the role that the Lakers want him to play.

Originally selected by the Lakers in the second round (40th overall) of 2007 NBA draft, the 6-9 guard started at shooting guard for the Chinese National Team this past month in the mens basketball tournament at the Beijing Olympics. In six games, Sun averaged 6.8 points, 1.7 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.33 steals in 28.0 minutes.

Playing point guard for the Beijing Aoshen Olympians of the American Basketball Association for the past three seasons, Sun, 23, was named First Team All-ABA in both 2007 and 2008 while earning Second-Team All-ABA honors in 2006.

Sun averaged 13.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 10.5 assists in 2006-07 when the team played its home games at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, CA before moving to Singapore for the 2007-08 season.


China Prepares for Asian Under-18 Tourney in Teheran - by Arthur Volbert
I've found the names of ten of the players who are on the Under-18 team that will play in the Asian Under-18 Championship in Teheran beginning Thursday.

The star of the team is Wang Zheng (216-C-90) the 216 cm center from Guangdong who is listed as being born in 1990.

The team recently lost to the Chinese Taipei junior team 88-75 in a warm-up tournament in Manila.

Dong Hanlin, Tian Yuchen and Sui Ran are supposedly promising players who were named to the preliminary team but did not play in this game.

Ding Jinhui, Li Xiaoxu, Zhang Dayu, Zhang Yongpeng, Cun Shouwei, Sun Zhe, Zhang Shu, Li Jingyu, Cai Liang, Xu Jinlong, Xu Zhonghao, Ju Peng, Wu Ke and Meng Duo are star players who were never named to the team. This is either because China is not really interested in this tourney or because these players were actually born before 1990 and China is finally becoming honest about player ages.

CHINESE-TAIPEI 88 -- Chang 22, Chung 20, Chou 12, Lin LJ 12, Lai 8, Lee 8, Lin WH 6, Li 0, Lin YH 0.

CHINA 75 -- Wang Z 19, Ren Junfei 15, Wang Y 11, Cao 9, Ren Junwei 7, Zhang Z 6, He 4, Zhao 4, Si 0, Zhang B 0.

Quarters: 19-18, 52-41, 66-60, 88-75

Wang Zheng 216cm 120 kg C Guangdong *
Ren JunFei 202cm PF Guangdong *
Ren JunWei 201cm PF/SF Guangdong *
He TianJu 203 96 kg SF Liaoning *
Si Yuheng 195cm SF/SG Beijing *
Zhao HongWei 192cm SG/PG Guangdong *
Zhang ZhiHan 196cm PG/SG Tianjin *
Cao Fei 193cm 80kg PG Zhejiang *
Wang YingLiang 183cm 80kg PG Liaoning *
Zhang BoWen 191cm PG Shanghai *


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  CROATIA   


David Ugrekhelidze agrees with Kvarner Novi Resort - by Eurobasket News
Kvarner Novi Resort continued with signings this summer. The team from Rijeka announced inking of David Ugrekhelidze (207-C-83, agency: Regeneracom Sports) on a one-year contract. Georgian big guy is coming from Bosnian team Borac Nektar Banja Luka. His Borac reached the final of Bosnian National Cup last season. Ugrekhelidze has nice experienced from ex Yugoslavian countries as he played almost six seasons in Slovenia. In 1999 he joined Geoplin Slovan as a 16-year old player. He spent first season on loan in Triglav Kranj and later played two years for Slovan. In 2002 he spent some time in Greek Panelionios but very soon he rejoined Slovan for two more years. In 2004 Ugrekhelidze agreed terms with Pivovarna Lasko having 6.9 ppg, 3.3 rpg and 1.3 spg for 10 ULEB Cup games. At the end of the season he returned in Georgia playing for TSU Nikora Tbilisi but in January 2006 he arrived to Lasko again. Season 06/07 Ugrekhelidze played for Georgian team Azoti Rustavi. Previous summer he moved to Borac Nektar. Croatian basketball public remembers him from season 01/02 when he netted 20 points against Zadar and 16 vs Cibona.

Kvarner Novi Resort very soon expects two more signings. According to the rumors everything is agreed with Davor Velcic (204-F-80) and Marin Modic (-85). There is some rumors also about the arrival of Antonio Zizic (207-C/F-86), ex player of Trogir. However, those are just the rumors and nothing is confirmed officially by the club yet.


Cibona close to get Davor Kus on loan from Unicaja Malaga - by Eurobasket News

Management of Cibona is finally really close to bring another National Team player to its roster. Unicaja Malaha and Cibona vocally agreed that Davor Kus (190-G-78) spend next season in Croatian Euroleague team on loan. According to Unicaja's General Manager Berdi Perez, Kus got a green light to join any other team outside the ACB. Cibona as well as Davor Kus waited for this decision the entire summer. The problem was Kus' guaranteed contract with the team valid until summer 2009. Unicaja officially promoted Thomas Kelati (195-G/F-82, college: Washington St.) announcing that roster for 08/09 is completed.

Everything is still unofficially yet but Cibona supposes to pay part of Kus' contract to for the next season to the player while the other part is up on Unicaja. Spanish team wanted to terminate the contract with Kus but they could not reach an agreement about that.
Davor Kus played 34 games in ACB last season averaging 8.7 ppg, 1.1 rpg and 1.7 apg. As a reminder, during the previous summer he signed two-year contract with Unicaja. He grew up as a player and reached the best achievements in Cibona. They won four championship titles of Croatia (2001, 2002, 2006 and 2007) and two Cups. The team also became a winner of Adriatic league in 2004. Season 06/07 was the best one for Davor Kus as he averaged 1.4 ppg and 2.8 apg for 59 games in total (Adriatic league, Croatian league and Euroleague).
This summer Cibona Zagreb also succeeded to return Croatian stars Nikola Prkacin (208-C-75), Damir Markota (209-C/F-85) as well as Branimir Longin (195-G-78). About Kus, everything supposes to be announced officially during the next couple of days.



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  CYPRUS   


Market news - by Chris Mammides

Achilleas Kaimakliou agreed financial terms with Vladimir Zujovic (201-F/G-80, agency: Beo Basket, college: Lock Haven) , the Serbian Forward played succssfully last seazon wearing Achilleas jersey so the management of the team decided to sign him for another seazon. This is the second official transfer for the Kaimakli team which seems to work in a much more proffesional way comparing with previous seazons, the Kaimakli Press office works with very proffesional manner unlike many other clubs in the First division of the Cyprus league.

.

According to some unofficial press in Cyprus, Pizza Express Primetel Apollon agreed terms with the famous Argentinean Head coach Guillermo Vecchio.

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Apoel agreed financial terms with the American head coach (ex player of the Nicosia team) Joey Wright

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Digenis Akritas Morfou agreed financial terms with Giannis Ioannidis, the ex player of A.Yermasogias, was targeted by Pizza Express Primetel Apollon but his transfer never proceeded so the new Team's manager Mr. Antigonos Theodorou didn't loose any more precious time and added the Cyprus international player in his teams roster, beside Ioannidis, Antigonos Theodorou brought in Digenis with two years contract the following players: Konstantinos Perentos (198-F-83) (ex player of AEL), Dimitris Prokopiou (187-G-83), Loris Hatzivassiliou (196-F-78), Nikolas Ioannou (201-C-87) and Kypros Grigoriou (193-G-84), Digenis is definetely among the top favorite teams to win the promotion in the top category of the island.



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  CZECH REPUBLIC   


Georgia beat Czech Republic in Day 2 of friendly tournament - by Eurobasket News
Czech Republic-Georgia 68:74 (21-15, 17-21, 14-22, 16-16)

Georgia and Czech Republic met each other in the second day in the friendly tournament in Latvia. Georgia was stronger 74:68 mostly due to the second half. Tyrone Ellis (193-G-77, college: S.Nazarene) led the winners with 22 points. Zaza Pachulia (212-C-84) netted 16 and Nikoloz Tskitishvili (212-C/F-83, agency: Interperformances) scored 14. Ladislav Sokolovsky (201-F-77, agency: PPGroup) finished the night with 11 points, while Petr Benda (203-F/C-82, agency: Court Side) posted 10.
It was Czech Republic that played better in the opening tip of the game. They used 21:15 to stay in front after the first 10 minutes of the game. Georgia bounced back with 21:17 in the second that still gave 38:36 for the Czechs. A 22:14 in the third period was decisive in the game and helped Georgia to lead the game. They had 6 points advantage after 30 minutes played and kept the margin until the last seconds. With 16:16 Georgia celebrated 74:68 win.

In another game Latvia overcame France 84:67 to take 2-0 record. Kristaps Janicenoks paced all the winners with 17 points. Andris Biedrins collected 15 points and 13 rebounds, while Berzins netted 15. Tony Parker top-scored for France with 13 points. Turiafs and Dekolo followed him with 12 each as France is 1-1.
Today Georgia will finish the tournament with the hosts, Latvia. France will play with Czech Republic in the first game of the day.

Czech Republic: Ladislav Sokolovsky 11, Petr Benda 10
Georgia: Tyrone Ellis 22, Zaza Pachulia 16, Nikoloz Tskitishvili 14


Latvia wins the opener of the friendly tournament - by Eurobasket News
Latvia- Czech Republic 70:55 (20-21, 14-9, 21-11, 15-14)

Latvia hosts a friendly tournament with 4 teams in Riga. Czech Republic, France and Georgia came to Riga to participate with Latvia. In the opener the hosts overcame Czech Republic 70:55 to take 1-0 record. Kristaps Janicenoks (196-F-83) led the winners with 21 points. Andris Biedrins (213-C-86) collected 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Janis Blums (190-G-82) added 9. Ladislav Sokolovsky (201-F-77, agency: PPGroup), Petr Benda (203-F/C-82, agency: Court Side) and Jiri Hubalek (211-C-82, agency: Interperformances) netted 10 points each.
Latvia won the opening tip of the game as Andris Biedrins made it 6:5. Even though the hosts were in front Czech Republic closed the first period at 20:21. They increased to 21:24 in the beginning of the second, but Latvia was better at the half 34:30. In the third period the hosts dominated the court and controlled the whole game. Latvia produced 21:11 in the period for 55:41 lead. It was not a big deal to keep the score for good in the next 10 minutes and Latvia managed to do it. They won the last period 15:14 and the game itself.
In another game of the tournament France beat Georgia 90:69.

Latvia: Kristaps Janicenoks 21, Andris Biedrins 18+11 rebs, Janis Blums 9
Czech Republic: Ladislav Sokolovsky 10, Petr Benda 10, Jiri Hubalek 10


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  DENMARK   


Denmark surprised Ukraine - by Eurobasket News
Denmark -Ukraine 81:79 (21:20, 17:20, 21:20, 22:19)

Tallinn welcomed four teams in their last preparation for the upcoming European Championship. Ukraine, Israel, Denmark and Estonia started their campaign in the tournament of four. Denmark surprised Ukraine 81:79 as they finished the game with 12:3 run in last 5 minutes. Andreas Jakobsen (187-G-83, college: Columbia (MO)) led the winners with 18 points. Nicolai Iversen (204-F-80, agency: Rasmussen Services, college: San Jose City JC) added 16 and Johansen ended up with 14. Artem Butskyy (185-G-81) top-scored for the Ukrainian side with 15 points and Andriy Agafonov (207-F-86, agency: Interperformances) nailed 13.

Denmark won the opening tip of the game as they posted 21:20 in the first period. It was a tough half and Ukraine could bounce back with 20:17 in the second period. Both squads went to the lockers with 40:38 for Ukraine. The latter even increased to 11 points but could not win the opener. The last minute of the game saw even result on the board and Denmark scored for 81:79. Ukraine still had a chance to tie the score but could not make it.
In another game the National team of Estonia achieved 69:66 over Israel. The second round is scheduled for today as Ukraine will face Estonia and Denmark will play against Israel.


Denmark: Andreas Jakobsen 18 points, Nicolai Iversen 16, Johansen 14
Ukraine: Artem Butskyy 15, Andriy Agafonov 13


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  DOMINICAN REPUBLIC   


Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico favorites to win Gold. - by Jaime Gomez

The national teams of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic arrived to Cancun and Chetumal, respectively. Both cities will be host of the 2008 Centrobasket Tournament to be played from August 27-31.
Both national teams are favorites to win Gold along with Mexico in this tournament that gives four berths for the 2009 FIBA Americas Championship (2010 FIBA World Championship qualifier).

The Puerto Rican team arrived with Carlos Arroyo (188-G-79, agency: Interperformances, college: Florida Intern.), Jose Juan Barea (181-G-84, agency: KMG Sports Management, college: Northeastern), Larry Ayuso (190-G-77, college: USC), Carmelo Lee (200-F-77, agency: Paris Global Sports, college: Long Beach St.) and Joel Jones (196-G/F-81, agency: Paris Global Sports, college: Sacramento St.) as their main figures.
'We have to go and win. Our goal is to win the championship in order to have more confidence and be more positive next year', said guard Jose Juan Barea.

The Puerto Rican team won Bronze in the last Centrobasket played in Panama after losing to the US Virgin Islands in the semifinal by one point.
By finishing third, Puerto Rico had to play in the CBC Tournament where they won Gold in order tu qualify for this tournament.

The other members of the National Team are Angel Rosa (206-F/C-84, college: Brescia (KY)), Luis Villafae, Alex Falcon (200-F-74, agency: Next Level), Filiberto Rivera (187-G-82, college: UTEP), Javier Mojica (190-G-84, college: Cent.Conn.St.), Angel Vassallo y Angelo Reyes (205-F/C-81).
Puerto Rico is in Group B along with Cuba, Costa Rica and Panama.

Meanwhile the Dominican team will play in Chetumal, capital of the state of Quintana Roo along with El Salvador, US Virgin Islands and Mxico.
The Dominicans have NBA players like Al Horford (208-F/C-86, college: Florida) and Francisco Garcia (201-F-81, agency: Octagon, college: Louisville) as their main figures. Both are committed to qualify for the 2010 World Championship in Turkey.

'I feel good with this opportunity, today we see Pau Gasol, Manu Ginobili and many players represting their countries and now I have mine and I fell honored to play for the national team', said Al Horford.

Francisco Garcia feels well about their preparation done in their country.
'Really we are very prepared, like I have said before, this is one of the best Dominican teams. I think we have many offensive weapons and our defense is very good. With that said I consider that we can go far', said Garcia.

The Dominican team also includes guards Joel Ramirez (191-G-81), Andres Sandoval (193-G-83, agency: AI Sports MM) and Alberto Ozuna (203-F-82); shooters Manuel Fortuna (187-G), Kelvin Pena (193-G-81, college: Southeastern CC) and Carlos Morban (187-G-82, agency: Global Sports Plaza, college: Florida Intern.) and forwards/centers Franklin Western (200-F-72, college: Providence), Jack Michael Martinez (203-F/C-81, agency: Paris Global Sports), Eulis Baez (201-F-82, college: W.Illinois) and Alejandro Flores (203-F-81, agency: Strategic Sports, college: E.Oklahoma St. JC).




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  ESTONIA   


BC Kalev/Cramo signes John Linehan - by Janar Filippov


BC Kalev/Cramo signes John Linehan - by Janar Filippov


Estonia defeats Israel - by Janar Filippov

Estonian NT started the Tournament of Four Nations in Tallinn with a superb 69:66 (31:33) victory against Israel. Kristjan Kangur (202-F-82) scored 19 points and took a decisive offensive rebound with 1.12 left before giving an assist to Tanel Sokk (188-G-85), whose three-pointer put Estonians up by three points, 67:64. The young star of Maccabi, Omri Casspi (204-F/G-88, agency: Interperformances) was Israel's top scorer with 11 points. He made his last points from free throws with 55 secs left to cut the deficit to a single point. But it was Kangur again, whose basket made it 69:66 and last two three-point attempts by Meir Tapiro (194-G-75, agency: Avi Zilberman) were not good.

Israel started better and led for alost the whole first half. They were up 4:9 and 12:17 after a three-pointer by Matan Naor (194-F-80). The 1st quarter ended 13:17. In 2nd, two baskets by Guy Pniny (201-F-83, agency: Arik Krayn Services) and Lior Eliyahu (205-F-85, agency: ZAG Advocates) from the inside kept the guests ahead 22:24 but a three-pointer by Gert Kullamae (198-G/F-71) took Estonia ahead for the first time - 25:24.

During next two minutes, the guests made a 0:7 run and led 25:31, already, but an unsportsmanlike foul by Moran Roth (178-G-82, agency: Arik Krayn Services) helped hosts to even the game as first half ended 31:33.

In 3rd, Gregor Arbet (195-F/G-83) made two baskets in a row for 36:34 but another 0:6 run put Israel up 36:40. Yotam Halperin (196-G-84, agency: Arik Krayn Services) worked well at both ends. In the middle of the quarter the hosts started a rain of three-pointers. Tanel Tein (194-G/F-78, college: St.Francis,NY) scored for 41:42 and on the next attack Estonian inside forces took back-to-back offensive rebounds and gave Gert Kullamae an opportunity to make three three-point attempts in a row. On third attempt, he scored for 44:42! Half a minute later, Kullamae nailed another one - 47:44 and after two free throws by Tarmo Kikerpill (197-F-77), the hosts led 49:44. Altogether, Estonia tried 14 shots from behind the arc in 3rd quarter, making 4 of them and were 11/35 in the entire game.

The end of 3rd belonged to guests, again. Free throws by Chris Watson (200-F-75, agency: Gross Zeev ISA, college: Niagara) and Casspi put Israel up 49:50 with a quarter left to play.
In 4th, the game was even until the very end. Yaniv Green was called twice for offensive foul and famous coach Zvika Sherf for a technical foul with 5 minutes left. Hosts levelled the game by free throws - 59:59 and Kristjan Kangur took them ahead 61:59. Tapiro's three-pointer took the guests ahead once more but Kangur scored again. Another basket from Tapiro (63:64) untli it was time for Tanel Sokk to shine with a decisive three-pointer.

The scorers:
Estonia - Kangur 19, Kullamae 14 (4 triples), Tein 10, Janar Talts (204-C-83) 7, Dorbek 6, Sokk 5, Arbet 5, Kikerpill 2, Makke 1
Israel - Casspi 11, Tapiro 10, Eliyahu 9, Halperin 9, Pniny 7, Green 6, Naor 6, Kozikaro 4, Watson 4



In another first round game, Denmark surprised Ukraine 81:79 as they finished the game with 12:3 run in last 5 minutes.

Andreas Jacobsen led all scorers with 18 points, Nicolai Iversen added 16 for Denmark. Artem Butskyy and Andryi Agafonov led Ukrainian players with 15 and 13 points, respectively.



BC Kalev/Cramo signes John Linehan - by Janar Filippov


*****************************************************
  EUROLEAGUE   


CSKA: Zabelin will miss the next season - by Kostas Papadopoulos
Yesterday in Israel CSKA's forward Artem Zabelin (215-F/C-88) underwent surgery on his injured right knee. It is estimated that it will take about nine months for the players full rehabilitation.
An arthroscopy confirmed the torn ACL diagnosis and ACL was reconstructed, CSKA's doctor Roman Smetanin explained to the clubs press office. Also surgeons revealed and repaired the damage to the lateral meniscus.
Today Artem Zabelin will be discharged and will be aimed at 10 day primary rehabilitation. Then the player will continue his recovery in Moscow.


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  EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS U18   


Eurobasket.com All-European Championships U18 2008 Awards - by Eurobasket
#s#
#e#6


Pappas


Sloukas


Zahariev


Kanter


Motiejunas

Best Player: Donatas Motiejunas (214-C-90) of Lithuania
Best Guard: Nikolaos Pappas (194-G-90) of Greece
Best Forward: Hristo Zahariev (198-G/F-90) of Bulgaria
Best Center: Donatas Motiejunas of Lithuania
Best Coach: Giorgos Vlassopoulos of Greece


1st Team:
Nikolaos Pappas of Greece
Konstantinos Sloukas (192-G-90) of Greece
Hristo Zahariev of Bulgaria
Enes Kanter (205-C-92) of Turkey
Donatas Motiejunas of Lithuania


2nd Team:
Filip Sepa (199-G/F-90) of Serbia
Toni Prostran (188-G-91) of Croatia
Kalvis Krumins (182-G-90) of Latvia
Alexis Tanghe (207-F/C-90) of France
Mario Delas (210-C-90) of Croatia


Honorable Mention:
Ben Reis (196-F-90) of Israel
Pavel Antipov (200-F-91) of Russia
Maurice Stuckey (187-G-90) of Germany
Tautvydas Slezas (210-C-90) of Lithuania
Andrew Albicy (178-G-90) of France
Quentin Serron (190-G-90) of Belgium



*****************************************************
  EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS U20   


Eurobasket.com All-U20 European Championships 2008 Awards - by Eurobasket
#s#
#e#6


MBaye


Macvan


Gecevicius


Dasic


Raduljica
Best Player: Miroslav Raduljica (212-C-88) of Serbia
Best Guard: Abdoulaye MBaye (189-G-88) of France
Best Forward: Vladimir Dasic (209-F-88) of Montenegro
Best Center: Miroslav Raduljica of Serbia
Best Coach: Dejan Radonjic of Montenegro

1st Team
Abdoulaye MBaye of France
Milan Macvan (205-F/C-89) of Serbia
Martynas Gecevicius (194-G-88) of Lithuania
Vladimir Dasic of Montenegro
Miroslav Raduljica of Serbia

2nd Team
Pietro Aradori (192-G-88) of Italy
Joaquin Colom (187-G-88) of Spain
Victor Claver (204-F/C-88) of Spain
Baris Hersek (204-F/C-88) of Turkey
Giorgi Shermadini (216-C-89) of Georgia

Honorable Mention
Alexey Shved (196-G-88) of Russia
Anton Shoutvin (205-C/F-89) of Israel
Pere Tomas (201-F-89) of Spain
Gokper Gen (188-G-89) of Turkey
Donatas Motiejunas (214-C-90) of Lithuania
Lukas Brazdauskis (203-F-88) of Lithuania


*****************************************************
  FRANCE   


Latvia achieves the second win at home - by Eurobasket News
Latvia -France 84:67 (24:14, 15:19, 23:16, 22:18)

Latvia won the second game of the friendly tournament with 4 teams in Riga. In the second game the hosts overcame France 84:67 to take 2-0 record. Kristaps Janicenoks (196-F-83) paced all the winners with 17 points. Andris Biedrins (213-C-86) collected 15 points and 13 rebounds, while Berzins netted 15. Tony Parker (183-G-80) top-scored for France with 13 points. Turiafs and Dekolo followed him with 12 each as France is 1-1.
Latvia started better and Umbrasko scored for 6:0 in the opening tip. The hosts increased to 10:2 and were dominant in the first period. France trailed in the whole quarter and finished it 24:14. In the second period the guests came bit closer as they won the quarter 19:15. The board showed 39:34 at the halftime, Latvian advantage.
Another spurt of their native team saw the spectators of the Arena Riga in the third quarter. Latvia scored some consecutive points and had 53:36. It was not time for France to give up as they reduced to 57:45 and then finished the third at 62:49.
The intrigue still remained in the last period when France climbed to 69:58. After that Latvia used the last push to seal the second win in the tournament. They reached 82:62 and then led to 84:67 after the final period.

Latvia:Kristaps Janicenoks 17, Andris Biedrins 15+13 rebs, Berzins 15
France: Tony Parker 13, Turiafs 12, Dekolo 12


A 29:14 in the last period lifts France over Georgia - by Eurobasket News
France-Georgia 90:69 (22-24, 21-17, 18-14, 29-14)

National team of France is getting ready for the start of European Championship and participates in the friendly tournament in Latvia. The latter hosts a friendly tournament with 4 teams in Riga. Czech Republic, Latvia and Georgia came to Riga to participate in 3 days campaign. In the opener France beat Georgia 90:69 only due to the last period. Nando De Colo (202-G-87) led the winners with 13 points, while Tony Parker (183-G-80) and Ronny Turiaf (208-C/F-83, agency: Priority Sports, college: Gonzaga) added 12 each. Zaza Pachulia (212-C-84) top-scored for Georgia with 23 points and 8 rebounds. Tyrone Ellis (193-G-77, college: S.Nazarene) netted 12, while Vladimer Boisa scored 11.
Georgian roster seem to be very strong as the team has lots of stars that play not only in Europe but in NBA as well. Georgia won the opening tip 24:22 and proved that would not be afraid of the strong France. The latter played with the star Tony Parker that did not show his best game. France however bounced back with 21:17 in the second period for 43:41 at the halftime.
Another 18:14 in the third quarter lifted them up to 6 points before the last period and intrigue still exist in the game. In order to prove the ambitions for the top European team France had to produce 29:14 in the last period to seal the initial win.
In another game the hosts overcame Czech Republic 70:55 to take 1-0 record.

France: Nando De Colo 13, Tony Parker 12, Ronny Turiaf 12
Georgia: Zaza Pachulia 23+8 rebs, Tyrone Ellis 12, Vladimer Boisa 11


*****************************************************
  GEORGIA   


Georgia beat Czech Republic in Day 2 of friendly tournament - by Eurobasket News
Czech Republic-Georgia 68:74 (21-15, 17-21, 14-22, 16-16)

Georgia and Czech Republic met each other in the second day in the friendly tournament in Latvia. Georgia was stronger 74:68 mostly due to the second half. Tyrone Ellis (193-G-77, college: S.Nazarene) led the winners with 22 points. Zaza Pachulia (212-C-84) netted 16 and Nikoloz Tskitishvili (212-C/F-83, agency: Interperformances) scored 14. Ladislav Sokolovsky (201-F-77, agency: PPGroup) finished the night with 11 points, while Petr Benda (203-F/C-82, agency: Court Side) posted 10.
It was Czech Republic that played better in the opening tip of the game. They used 21:15 to stay in front after the first 10 minutes of the game. Georgia bounced back with 21:17 in the second that still gave 38:36 for the Czechs. A 22:14 in the third period was decisive in the game and helped Georgia to lead the game. They had 6 points advantage after 30 minutes played and kept the margin until the last seconds. With 16:16 Georgia celebrated 74:68 win.

In another game Latvia overcame France 84:67 to take 2-0 record. Kristaps Janicenoks paced all the winners with 17 points. Andris Biedrins collected 15 points and 13 rebounds, while Berzins netted 15. Tony Parker top-scored for France with 13 points. Turiafs and Dekolo followed him with 12 each as France is 1-1.
Today Georgia will finish the tournament with the hosts, Latvia. France will play with Czech Republic in the first game of the day.

Czech Republic: Ladislav Sokolovsky 11, Petr Benda 10
Georgia: Tyrone Ellis 22, Zaza Pachulia 16, Nikoloz Tskitishvili 14


A 29:14 in the last period lifts France over Georgia - by Eurobasket News
France-Georgia 90:69 (22-24, 21-17, 18-14, 29-14)

National team of France is getting ready for the start of European Championship and participates in the friendly tournament in Latvia. The latter hosts a friendly tournament with 4 teams in Riga. Czech Republic, Latvia and Georgia came to Riga to participate in 3 days campaign. In the opener France beat Georgia 90:69 only due to the last period. Nando De Colo (202-G-87) led the winners with 13 points, while Tony Parker (183-G-80) and Ronny Turiaf (208-C/F-83, agency: Priority Sports, college: Gonzaga) added 12 each. Zaza Pachulia (212-C-84) top-scored for Georgia with 23 points and 8 rebounds. Tyrone Ellis (193-G-77, college: S.Nazarene) netted 12, while Vladimer Boisa scored 11.
Georgian roster seem to be very strong as the team has lots of stars that play not only in Europe but in NBA as well. Georgia won the opening tip 24:22 and proved that would not be afraid of the strong France. The latter played with the star Tony Parker that did not show his best game. France however bounced back with 21:17 in the second period for 43:41 at the halftime.
Another 18:14 in the third quarter lifted them up to 6 points before the last period and intrigue still exist in the game. In order to prove the ambitions for the top European team France had to produce 29:14 in the last period to seal the initial win.
In another game the hosts overcame Czech Republic 70:55 to take 1-0 record.

France: Nando De Colo 13, Tony Parker 12, Ronny Turiaf 12
Georgia: Zaza Pachulia 23+8 rebs, Tyrone Ellis 12, Vladimer Boisa 11


David Ugrekhelidze agrees with Kvarner Novi Resort - by Eurobasket News
Kvarner Novi Resort continued with signings this summer. The team from Rijeka announced inking of David Ugrekhelidze (207-C-83, agency: Regeneracom Sports) on a one-year contract. Georgian big guy is coming from Bosnian team Borac Nektar Banja Luka. His Borac reached the final of Bosnian National Cup last season. Ugrekhelidze has nice experienced from ex Yugoslavian countries as he played almost six seasons in Slovenia. In 1999 he joined Geoplin Slovan as a 16-year old player. He spent first season on loan in Triglav Kranj and later played two years for Slovan. In 2002 he spent some time in Greek Panelionios but very soon he rejoined Slovan for two more years. In 2004 Ugrekhelidze agreed terms with Pivovarna Lasko having 6.9 ppg, 3.3 rpg and 1.3 spg for 10 ULEB Cup games. At the end of the season he returned in Georgia playing for TSU Nikora Tbilisi but in January 2006 he arrived to Lasko again. Season 06/07 Ugrekhelidze played for Georgian team Azoti Rustavi. Previous summer he moved to Borac Nektar. Croatian basketball public remembers him from season 01/02 when he netted 20 points against Zadar and 16 vs Cibona.

Kvarner Novi Resort very soon expects two more signings. According to the rumors everything is agreed with Davor Velcic (204-F-80) and Marin Modic (-85). There is some rumors also about the arrival of Antonio Zizic (207-C/F-86), ex player of Trogir. However, those are just the rumors and nothing is confirmed officially by the club yet.


*****************************************************
  GERMANY   


Leading NCAA Rebounder & NCAA 3 national champ join Cottbus - by Daniel Poerschke

Last season leading NCAA rebounder Nick Harrington (201-F-85, agency: Scorers 1st Sportmanagement) joins the BBC White Devils Cottbus of the 2. Regionalliga East for the upcoming season. Harrington averaged 15.5 Rebounds per Game last season for NCAA 3 school Southern Vermont. He grabbed more Rebounds per Game then any other player in all three NCAA divisions in 2007/08. He also averaged 27.2 Points per Game, good for 3rd in the NCAA 3. His high game last season was a 37 Point / 33 Rebound performance, which earned him a feature story in the Sports Illustrated Magazine.

The second newcomer for Cottbus will be Brandon Jones (201-F-86, agency: Scorers 1st Sportmanagement). The versatile forward comes from NCAA 3 national powerhouse Amherst to the White Devils. Jones was part of the 2007 national championship winning Amherst squad and advanced to the 2008 title game again. He averaged 12.0ppg and 5.3rpg last year. 'We want both players to be our leading rebounder and scorer this season', says Cottbus Head Coach Rene Schilling.



Regionalliga West News - by Daniel Poerschke
The TSVE Dolphins Bielefeld of the 1. Regionalliga West will have Darren Stackhouse (198-F, agency: ProSportsCareers, college: Shepherd) as their american wing player on the roster for the upcoming season. Stackhouse spend last season with three clubs in the 2. Regionalliga West (Dorsten, Werne & Recklinghausen).

In the 2. Regionalliga West the Baskets Luedenscheid announced the signing of Omar Collington (186-G-83, college: NC-Asheville) to take over the point guard duties for the team of Head Coach Tome Zdraveski. Collington is a well known player in western germany, having played for Bergheim and Dsseldorf in the 1. Regionalliga already. He also spend some time in Luxemburg last season.

In the same league TV Werne added Trevor Wittwer (195-G/F-85, agency: Scorers 1st Sportmanagement) to their team. Wittwer comes from Gustavus Adolphus (NCAA 3) and is a very versatile swingman. He was a finalist for the Josten's Trophy, handed out to the nations best NCAA 3 player each season this year. Wittwer was also named to the CoSIDA/ESPN The Magazine's Academic All-America Third Team in 2008.
Meanwhile Head Coach Ivan Rosic announced, that Darko Filipovic (196-G-87) has left the squad already and returned home.


Two Americans for the Dresden Titans - by Moritz Korff
Larry Johnson (191-G-79, college: Niagara) and Joseph Polite (200-C-84, agency: Weller Sports - Entertainment, college: SE Louisiana) have joined the Dresden Titans (Regionalliga South-East) and are going to play for the team in the 2008-09 season. Polite started this past campaign at BV Chemnitz, but got waived after a tryout-period. He then moved on to TSV Quakenbrueck and scored 22.9 points per contest in the 2. Regionalliga. Johnson shot hoops for several German teams since 2004. He started the 2007-08 round with the Bremen Roosters and averaged 6.2 points in 10 encounters of the 2. Bundesliga Pro A, followed by a short stint at TV Konstanz in December. At the beginning of 2008 he joined Heimer Schulen Basket Landsberg (Regionalliga South-East) and played 13 games (20.8ppg) for this club until the end of the season.

Bundesliga-News - by Moritz Korff
The Duesseldorf Giants commenced a four-days training camp in Den Helder, Holland today. Also Fred Peete (193-G-84, agency: Pro One Sports, college: N.Mexico St.) entered the bus, when the Giants left for Holland this morning. The 23-year-old American is the latest newcomer to the roster of coach Achim Kuczmann. Peete played university-basketball at NE Oklahoma A&M, Kansas State and most recently at New Mexico State. He appeared in 35 games for the Aggies in NCAA Division One-play during this past season, averaging 10.8 points, 4.7 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.5 steals.

Chris Oliver (198-F-85, agency: Court Side, college: Radford) of BG 74 Goettingen has suffered a broken bone in his left foot in an exhibition game against Ludwigsburg. The 23-year-old Forward will be sidelined for at least six weeks.


99ers get Mostafa service - Keselj leaves - by Moritz Korff
The Koeln 99ers have signed Raed Mostafa (203-F-84, college: W.Kentucky). The 24-year-old former German A2-National Team Player has agreed a two-year deal at the 1. Bundesliga outfit. In this past season Mostafa had spells at Hamar/Selfoss in Iceland (8 games: 12.0ppg, 4.0rpg) and in Denmark at Horsens IC (8 games: 9.6ppg, 3.5rpg). From 2004 to 2007 he played college-basketball in the USA and suited up for the North Dakota State Junior College and Western Kentucky University (1.5 ppg and 1.2rpg in 2006-07). He grew up in Bonn and joined TuS Lichterfelde in 2001. Until 2004 Mostafa also had 4 appearances on the Bundesliga-team of ALBA Berlin.
Meanwhile, Red Star Beograd has snapped up Marko Keselj (206-F-88, agency: Beo Basket). The Koeln officials tried to keep young Serb, but finally had to let him go. Keselj shined at the U20 EURO just recently and helped his team to capture the title (he scored 20 pts in the final against Lithuania and averaged 14.5 points through the tournament). In this past season he averaged 9.8 points and 3.6 rebounds through 31 league-encounters and also played 10 games in the ULEB-Cup for the 99ers, producing 6.8 points and 2.8 boards a game.


Dachau Spurs ink pair - by Moritz Korff
The Dachau Spurs (Regionalliga South-East) announced the signings of two new players for the 2008-09 season today: Stijepan Ljubicic (178-G-89) and Derrick Wimmer (193-G-84, college: Chicago St.) will join the squad of coach Matthias Zollner.
19-year-old Ljubicic appeared in three games for FC Bayern Muenchen in the RLSO, but mostly played for the clubs' second team and NBBL-squad. Wimmer, 24 years of age and a native of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, played college-basketball at Chicago State and UW Milwaukee (both NCAA1). He played 15 games for the Panthers as a senior back in 2005-06 and averaged only 0.7 points per contest.


ALBA Berlin lands Casey Jacobsen - by Moritz Korff
ALBA Berlin (1. Bundesliga) has completed the signing of Casey Jacobsen (198-G/F-81, agency: Octagon, college: Stanford), the 2006-2007 Eurobasket.com German-1. Bundesliga Player of the Year. The 27-year-old swingman inked a one-year deal with the German champion.
In his first season in Germany Jacobsen led Bamberg to the 2007 Bundesliga-championship title and averaged 16.0 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 34 games. The Stanford-graduate played 53 times for NBA's Memphis Grizzlies in this past season with averages of 2.0 points and 1.2 rebounds.


*****************************************************
  GREECE   


Interview with Sean Marshall of Aris Thessaloniki - by Simon Varvakis

Sean Marshall (198-G/F-85, college: Boston Coll.) of Aris was kind enough to give us an interview about his first experiences as a player of Aris in Greece and also adding some personal insight to his image as a player and a person. The interview follows below:


Hi Sean,

to begin with I'd like to welcome you to Greece.

Q: So what are your first impressions of the city of Thessaloniki, your teammates and the staff of Aris?

Sean:
The city is beautiful. Im starting to learn my way around a little bit now but it will take more time. The city has great history and Im excited to continue to learn about it. My teammates are really cool. I like them a lot. Im still getting to know them as well but it will come. They seem like good hard working guys. The coaching staff has been really helpful. We have started some training now so its time to get to work and get better.


Q: This is your second year playing pro basketball overseas. What do you think are the main differences of college basketball and basketball over here?

Sean:
The biggest difference is just being in a place that you dont know at all. When you first go to college, yes its a new place but your still in America at the end of the day. When you come over here its a real shock but with time it grows on you. Being here in Greece I think I will adapt fast.


Q: How has the support been from the fans of Aris so far? Are you excited to play for them? I understand you have quite a few new friends in Facebook at the moment!

Sean:
Im extremely excited to play in front of the Aris fans. There is so much tradition here and Im glad to be a part of it. I play really hard and with a lot of emotion so hopefully the Aris fans will respect that. They have been great so far. When I walked out the airport they were there chanting and showing me a great welcome. I thank them for that.


Q: What do you think is the strongest element in your game?

Sean:
The strongest element of my game is my passion. I hate to lose and it shows when I play. If that means me making a big three, getting a big rebound, or coming up with a defense stop Im going to try my best for the team and for the win. I wear my heart on my sleeve like its the new fashion. As my favorite rapper Lil Wayne would say.


Q: Coach Andrea Mazzon gives lots of emphasis on defense. What do you think is the role he wants you to have in the team?

Sean:
Yes Coach does focus on defense and we talked about this the first time we spoke. He told me he liked how I played hard nose defense in college and I told him that I would bring that back to his team for Aris. So I have a big task ahead of me to defend and at the same time score the basketball.

Q: How did you start playing basketball?

Sean:
Well, my dad put me into basketball. I didnt want to play I was an american football player and loved that more than anything. But my father forced me to play basketball and it turned out to be my 1st love in the long run. I never told him but I am always thankful he forced me to play.


Q: Was there an NBA star that you particularly admired when you were a kid or perhaps even a role model?

Sean:
Growing up I loved MJ. He was the best player in the league and I wanted to be like him. My first number was 23 and I have worn it my whole life. I even got it tattooed on my arm. So I would have to say him. One thing I am a little upset about is in Greece you cant wear 23 so I had to change my number to 5. But if you think about it 2+3 equals 5 so I still have it in a way.


Q: You got the Greek League, Greek Cup and the EuroCup competitions coming up this year. How important is it for a player to have the support of the fans in every game?

Sean:
With the tough road we have coming up in the Greek league and the Eurocup we will need the fans to be more crazy then ever. To yell and chant like no other year. I expect big things from the fans of Aris as they do of me and my teammates. I want to make a deal with them. My teammates and I will do our part and play with our hearts if they try there best to fill the arena and make the other team hate to come to Thessaloniki to play against Aris. Deal or no deal?


Q: Is there anything else youd like to add?

Sean:
One last thing. I would like to dedicate this season to my girl friend Sarah Jane who is at home cheering for Aris as if she was here. I will play every game with her in my heart. I love you.

SEAN MARSHALL GO ARIS

Thanks for doing this interview Sean and I wish you the very best in the upcoming season!



Kavala in the A1!! - by Chris Mammides
Enosi E.K. Kavalas is officially the team which will be playing in the A1 this seazon after the 'merge' with Panorama, Enosi E.K. Kavalas allready agreed financial terms with Dimitrios Lolas (203-F-86) (ex Egaleo player), Yannis Gagaloudis (191-G-78) and the American Forward and top scorer and perforem in his college years, Will Daniels (203-F-86) graduate of Rhode island.
The Greek Head Coah Kostas Pilafidis who had agreed its terms with the team of Enosi E.K. Kavalas three weeks ago will now try to add some power in the paint and there are rumors that he allready agreed with two great players who will be wearing Enosi E.K. Kavalas's jersey simply because of him.


Zeygolis is the new coach of Ilysiakos - by Kostas Papadopoulos
Giorgos Zeygolis took the leadership at Ilysiako's bench for the following season, in order to represent a competitive team for the following A2 championship.
After the experienced coach agreed terms with the team, he stated that 'The whole philosophy of the people at Ilysiakos persuaded me to lead the team. To invest in young, challenging and talented players is the strongest motive for me, in order to coach a team, and Ilysiakos will offer me all these things I would like to have'.


*****************************************************
  HAITI   


Week 7 results - by Stardeak Durand

The Voila National All Star game that was scheduled for last Saturday, August 23, had to be postponed because of some administrative problems. It has been scheduled for saturday, august 30 at the Carrefour Sports Center. Therefore, the League had chosen to schedule the games, that had been postponed because of the bad weather, for august 27*.

Here are the reults :

At College Saint-Jean, Cayes :Topaz beat Dynamic 112-95
Samuel Danache ( Topaz ) : 34 points, 7 rebounds

At The Gymnasium of Cap-Haitien, Cap-Haitien : Bota's House beat Ninja 84-78
Jocenel Joseph ( Bota's House ) : 17 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists

At The Carrefour Sports Center, Carrefour : Bazooka beat Exposant 20-0 by League decision.


* Giants had beaten ASBA 89-81, in the Week 7 first game, on Friday, August 15, at Carrefour Sports Center

Kendy Jean-Francois scored 24 points in that game.



Voila National Standings
Division 1 Standings
 1. Giants 6-1 
 2. Topaz 5-2 
 3. Exposant 5-2 
 4. ASBA 4-3 
 5. Bazooka 4-3 
 6. Bota's House 3-4 
 7. Ninja 1-6 
 8. Dynamic 0-7 


*****************************************************
  HOLLAND   


Stats Leaders - Eredivisie
Eredivisie Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1 Mohamm., Magix 19.6
2 Champion, Weert 19.5
3 Wilson,Zwolle 19.5
4 McDowell, Weert 18.3
5 Sneed, Aris 18.2
Rebounds Per Game
1 Sneed, Aris10.3
2 Giles, W.Brabant 10.2
3 Briggs, Rotterdam 9.5
4 Champion, Weert 9.3
5 Chiotti, Leiden 9.3
Assists Per Game
1 Kimbrough, Aris 6.9
2 Coleman, Weert 6.1
3 Oliver, Eiff 5.8
4 Bradshaw, D.Helder 4.9
5 Nash, Leiden 4.9
Steals Per Game
1 Champion, Weert 2.7
2 Sykes, Rotterdam 2.2
3 Smith, Magix 2.2
Blocks Per Game
1 Mattis, M.Magix 2.0
2 Wilson,Zwolle 1.3
3 Briggs, Rotterdam 1.3
2FGP
1 Mattis, Magix 62.8
2 Aarts, Eiff 61.7
3 Morales, Hanzev 60.9
3FGP
1 Kabba, Amster. 46.4
2 Akerboom, Eiff 46
3 Smith, Magix 44.1
Free Throws
1 Pope, W.Brabant 85.9
2 Kabba, Amster. 85.7
3 Coleman, Weert 85.2


Standings - Promotie Divisie
Prom.Divisie Standings
 1. Gorinchem 0-0 
 2. Red Giants 0-0 
 3. MSV 0-0 
 4. Groene 0-0 
 5. Cangeroes 0-0 
 6. Akrides 0-0 
 7. Punch 0-0 
 8. EBBC 0-0 
 9. Landstede 2 0-0 
 10. MyGuide 2 0-0 
 11. Initial H5 0-0 
 12. Leiden 2 0-0 
 13. Pigeons 0-0 
 14. BV Rooi 0-0 


Standings - Eredivisie
Eredivisie Standings
 1. Eiff.Towers 0-0 
 2. Den Helder 0-0 
 3. Amsterdam 0-0 
 4. Hanzev.Cpt 0-0 
 5. Weert 0-0 
 6. Leiden 0-0 
 7. M.Magix 0-0 
 8. Aris Friesland 0-0 
 9. Zwolle 0-0 
 10. Rotterdam 0-0 
 11. West-Brabant 0-0 


Frieder Jacobsen on try-out at Aris Friesland - by Fred Roggen
Aris Friesland gives Frieder Jacobsen (198-F-86) a change to participate in the preparation of the team for the upcoming season. Jacobsen comes from Germany, where he played for Paderborn and Salzkotten. The forward is studying in Leeuwarden and he gets a change of coach Pete Miller during this six weeks preparation.
If both parties are enthusiastic after this period, Jacobsen will be add to the roster of Aris Friesland.


Frank Tolbert latest addition Matrixx Magixx - by Fred Roggen
The Matrixx Magixx have finished recruiting their team for the 2008/09 season,with the signing of Frank Tolbert (193-G-86, agency: Interperformances) of Auburn. Tolbert can play at the shootingguard as the small forward position. He has a reputation as being a very talented offensive player with both an array of moves close to the basket, and the shooting range to be a reliable 3 point shooter.
In his last years he came within the SEC to 13.5 points and 5 rebounds per game.
Coach Michael Schuurs: ' Frank Tolbert is a special player. He is very athletic and can even shoot '.


*****************************************************
  ISRAEL   


Israel participates in Tallinn - by Eurobasket News
Estonia-Israel 69:66

The National team of Israel started the Tournament of Four Nations in Tallinn. The team however could not win the opener playing with the hosts of the tournament. Estonia achieved 69:66 win trailing 2 points at the halftime. Kristjan Kangur (202-F-82) top-scored with 19 points and took a decisive offensive rebound. Omri Casspi (204-F/G-88, agency: Interperformances) was Israel's top scorer with 11 points. He made his last points from free throws with 55 secs left to cut the deficit to a single point. But it was Kristjan Kangur again, whose basket made it 69:66 and last two three-point attempts by Meir Tapiro (194-G-75, agency: Avi Zilberman) were not good.
Israel started better and led for almost the whole first half. They had 5 points advantage throughout the opening period and ended with 13:17. Guy Pniny and Lior Eliyahu from the inside kept the guests ahead 22:24 but a three-pointer by Gert Kullamae (198-G/F-71) took Estonia ahead for the first time 25:24. Moran Roth helped hosts to even the game as first half ended 31:33. The end of third belonged to guests, again. Free throws by Chris Watson and Omri Casspi put Israel up 49:50 with a quarter left to play.
Yaniv Green was called twice for offensive foul and famous coach Zvika Sherf for a technical foul with 5 minutes left. Hosts leveled the game by free throws 59:59 and Kristjan Kangur took them ahead 61:59. Meir Tapiro's three-pointer took the guests ahead once more but Kristjan Kangur scored again. Another basket from Meir Tapiro until it was time for Tanel Sokk to shine with a decisive three-pointer.
In another game of the day Denmark overcame Ukraine 81:79.

Estonia: Kristjan Kangur 19, Gert Kullamae 14, Tein 10
Israel: Omri Casspi 11, Meir Tapiro 10, Eliyahu 9, Yotam Halperin (196-G-84, agency: Arik Krayn Services) 9


Market News - by Yehonatan Eliahu
-Newcomer Maccabi Givat Shmuel confirmed the signing of vateran guard Cory Carr (192-G-75, agency: Priority Sports, college: Texas Tech). A few days ago it seemed that Carr will extend his contract with Eldan Ashkelon, but then Carr turned his back to his former team and signed with Givat Shmuel. It will be Carr's sixth stop in Israel, after playing for ashkelon, Gilboa-Galil, Maccabi Raanana, Ramat Hasharon and Naharia in the past. Last season he averaged 13.2 points and 3 assists. The team is also taking into account the possibility that Carr would finally complete his naturalization process and will get an Israeli passport. In that case the team will add another foreigner, as Carr will be considered as an Israeli.

- Hapoel Gilboa-Galil Elyon will bring a Brazilian center named Lucas Tischer (208-C-83, agency: Interperformances) on a try out term. Tischer was once considered an elite prospect, but did not lived up the expectations and stayed in his homeland Brazil. He signed a two years contract with Pheonix Suns during 2005, but never actually got to play there. Hes best attribute is his intimidation on defense.


*****************************************************
  ITALY   


Market News - by Stefano Pini
Napoli Basket is close to sign Us pointguard Dontaye Draper (180-G-84, college: Charleston), that last season played in Australia, Sydney Kings. Lucio Angulo (199-F-73, agency: Interperformances) is training at Treviso but he won't be part of the roster. Treviso is close to add the young argentinian talent Mateo Gaynor (198-G-90). Dalibor Bagaric (217-C-80) signed with Atlanta Hawks, so Upim Bologna is looking for a number 5. The new name is Kieron Achara (208-F/C-83). An option could be Tomas Van Den Spiegel (214-C-78) that parted away from Valencia, but seems more difficult.

*****************************************************
  KYRGYZSTAN   


10 basketball players dies in a flight accident - by Eurobasket News
10 of 17 Kirgystan national basketball team players died in a flight accident durring a trip near to the capital of Kirgizia Bishkek.

The report says that airplane Boein-737 operated by Kirgystan airlines named 'Itek Air' had a crash when they were flying to the capirtal of Iran Teheran.

At least 65 passengers of a flight died, 25 had serious injuries.

According to all the available information, it may be a possibility that former NBA star and the vicepresident of NBA club Indiana Pacers Sam Perkins was on this flight too.

Sam Perkins - one of the greatest NBA players, who played in NBA for 17 years. He won a gold medal in 1984 Olympics.
Courtesy of http://www.eurobasket.lt


*****************************************************
  LATVIA   


Latvia achieves the second win at home - by Eurobasket News
Latvia -France 84:67 (24:14, 15:19, 23:16, 22:18)

Latvia won the second game of the friendly tournament with 4 teams in Riga. In the second game the hosts overcame France 84:67 to take 2-0 record. Kristaps Janicenoks (196-F-83) paced all the winners with 17 points. Andris Biedrins (213-C-86) collected 15 points and 13 rebounds, while Berzins netted 15. Tony Parker (183-G-80) top-scored for France with 13 points. Turiafs and Dekolo followed him with 12 each as France is 1-1.
Latvia started better and Umbrasko scored for 6:0 in the opening tip. The hosts increased to 10:2 and were dominant in the first period. France trailed in the whole quarter and finished it 24:14. In the second period the guests came bit closer as they won the quarter 19:15. The board showed 39:34 at the halftime, Latvian advantage.
Another spurt of their native team saw the spectators of the Arena Riga in the third quarter. Latvia scored some consecutive points and had 53:36. It was not time for France to give up as they reduced to 57:45 and then finished the third at 62:49.
The intrigue still remained in the last period when France climbed to 69:58. After that Latvia used the last push to seal the second win in the tournament. They reached 82:62 and then led to 84:67 after the final period.

Latvia:Kristaps Janicenoks 17, Andris Biedrins 15+13 rebs, Berzins 15
France: Tony Parker 13, Turiafs 12, Dekolo 12


Latvia wins the opener of the friendly tournament - by Eurobasket News
Latvia- Czech Republic 70:55 (20-21, 14-9, 21-11, 15-14)

Latvia hosts a friendly tournament with 4 teams in Riga. Czech Republic, France and Georgia came to Riga to participate with Latvia. In the opener the hosts overcame Czech Republic 70:55 to take 1-0 record. Kristaps Janicenoks (196-F-83) led the winners with 21 points. Andris Biedrins (213-C-86) collected 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Janis Blums (190-G-82) added 9. Ladislav Sokolovsky (201-F-77, agency: PPGroup), Petr Benda (203-F/C-82, agency: Court Side) and Jiri Hubalek (211-C-82, agency: Interperformances) netted 10 points each.
Latvia won the opening tip of the game as Andris Biedrins made it 6:5. Even though the hosts were in front Czech Republic closed the first period at 20:21. They increased to 21:24 in the beginning of the second, but Latvia was better at the half 34:30. In the third period the hosts dominated the court and controlled the whole game. Latvia produced 21:11 in the period for 55:41 lead. It was not a big deal to keep the score for good in the next 10 minutes and Latvia managed to do it. They won the last period 15:14 and the game itself.
In another game of the tournament France beat Georgia 90:69.

Latvia: Kristaps Janicenoks 21, Andris Biedrins 18+11 rebs, Janis Blums 9
Czech Republic: Ladislav Sokolovsky 10, Petr Benda 10, Jiri Hubalek 10


*****************************************************
  LEBANON   


Silver For Lebanon In Arab School Championchip - by Hassan Thini
Lebanon lost the final aganst Syria 64-82 to be ranked in the second place.

The Lebanese team was qualified to the final by wining the four games against Morocco,Jordan,Kuwait, and Libya.

In other side theyouth team (under 18) left Beirut to the Iranian capital Tahran to participate in the worldcup qualifying in the absense of the team star Hayk Kokejian and Mohamad Jalool.

LLebanon group cosists of UAE,Philipine, and Taipe.

Lebanon will play the first match aganst UAE at thursday good luck.


*****************************************************
  MONTENEGRO   


Buducnost inks Marko Simonovic, Andrej Pajovic second best assistant is Sarajevo - by Eurobasket News
Reining Montenegrin champion Buducnost Podgorica announced signing of Marko Simonovic (203-F-86, agency: Beo Basket), who terminated the contract with Hemofarm STADA few days ago. Simonovic arrived to Hemofarm in December 2006 from Belgian team Telindus Oostende. In 07/08 he played 12 games in Adriatic league adding 1.6 ppg. He also played 55 games in ULEB Cup and 10 games in Serbian Superleague adding almost the same digits. Simonovic started basketball career in Radnicki from Belgrade later moving to Smederevo and Lavovi 063 Belgrade. On season 05/06 he played Ergonom Nis. Simonovic was a member of Serbian and Montenegrin U18 National Team. In 2007 he participated at Global Games in Dallas as well as on World University Games in Bangkok with U20 S&M. With Hemofarm STADA he reached three finlas last season but in each of those Partizan Belgrade was better: Adriatic league, Superleague and National Cup.

In the meantime U16 European Championship division B in Sarajevo ended. U16 Montenegro showed wonderful performance earning a place for division A for the next European Championship as well as a Silver medal. Andrej Pajovic got the award as a second best assistant of the championship. He played 8 games dishing out 26 assists, 3.3 apg. He shares the second place on this list with Alen Hodzic of Slovenia. Nemanja Djurisic (-92) was the best player of Montenegro on the entire even adding 16.4 ppg, 5.3 rpg and 1 apg in 8 games.


Goran Pejovic and Nedeljko Kovacevic inks for Primorje - by Dragan Scepanovic
Basketball Club PRIMORJE from Herceg Novi and DELFI SMG Agency announced that ex baskteball players of Basketball Club ABS Primorje form Hereceg Novi Goran Pejovic (203-F-77) singed contract for new season with Basketball Club PRIMORJE.In same way Basketball Club PRIMORJE from Herceg Novi and DELFI SMG Agency announced that ex baskteball players of Basketball Club ABS Primorje Nedeljko Kovacevic (201-C-72) singed too contract for new season with Basketball Club PRIMORJE.In season 2007-2008 Pejovic play 17 games in MNT1A : 15.4ppg,1.2rpg

*****************************************************
  NAIA   


Central Methodist University Signs Four Transfers - by Stephan Ditgens
FAYETTE, Mo. - The Central Methodist University men's basketball team completed its recruiting efforts for the 2008-09 season by signing four transfers. Paulius Cibulski, Eli Harris, Matthew Scott and Moses Harper committed to join the Runnin' Eagles for the upcoming season.
Paulius Cibulski is a 6-foot, 8-inch sophomore from Eastern Wyoming College. Cibulski averaged 5 points and 4 rebounds per game at Eastern Wyoming College last season. Prior to competing at Eastern Wyoming College, Cibulski redshirted at Kilgore College in Texas. He graduated from Brawley Union High School in Atlanta, Ga., where he averaged 22 points and 9 rebounds. Cibulski also has experience playing for Sarunas Marciulionis Basketball Academy in Lithuania.
Eli Harris, a 6-0 junior, transferred to CMU from Southeast Missouri State University. Harris was also a part-time starter during two seasons at Williams Baptist College in Arkansas.
Matthew Scott will join the Runnin' Eagles from Grayson Community College in Grayson County, Texas. The 6-6 sophomore is expected to compete for playing time at the strong forward position.
Senior Moses Harper will join former teammate Jeremy Esry from North Central Missouri College on the CMU team. Harper, a 6-6 senior, averaged 10 points per game at North Central Missouri, but saw limited playing time at Southwestern College last season.

Cibulski, Harris, Scott and Harper join juniors Brock Edris (John Wood Community College), Jake Prosser (Meramec Community College) and Alvin Brass (Southern University at Shreveport) as incoming transfers for the 2008-09 season.

The CMU men's basketball team returns eight lettermen, including three starters and two All-HAAC conference players from a year ago, when the Runnin' Eagles finished with a 20-12 record and a third-place finish in the Heart of America Athletic Conference. CMU is set to begin its season Nov. 7-8 in Alva, Okla., taking on Northern New Mexico College and Northwestern Oklahoma University.
source: centralmethodist.edu


*****************************************************
  NBA   


News from Houston, Dallas and L.A. Lakers - by Eurobasket News
Houston Rockets acquired D.J. Strawberry (6'5''-G-85, college: Maryland) from Phoenix Suns in exchange for Sean Singletary (6'0''-G-85, college: Virginia).
D.J. Strawberry played 32 regular season games for the Suns averaging 2.2 ppg. In December 2007 he moved to D-league team Albuquerque Thunderbirds but next month the Suns called him back. It was his first NBA season since he graduated at Maryland in 2007. He played 34 games at his senior year adding 14.9 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 3.5 apg and 2 spg. His last year was the best one at Maryland. Phoenix Suns picked him in the second round of 2007 NBA Draft.
Sean Singletary already was traded this summer from Sacramento to Houston. Most probably his final destination is Phoenix. Singletary came out from Virginia this year having 19 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 4.7 apg and 1.2 spg in 32 games. After two workouts with Sacramento and Charlotte, the Kings took him in the second round.

Dallas re-signed Devean George (6'8''-G-77, agency: Priority Sports, college: Augsburg), who had 3.7 ppg and 2.6 rpg in 53 regular season games 07/08. Later he had 5 appearances in play-off averaging 5.8 ppg and 3 rpg. Before the Mavericks, George spent seven years in Los Angeles Lakers. Actually Los Angeles was his only NBA destination before he moved to Dallas in 2006. He joined L.A. Lakers from Augsburg (NCAA3) signing 3-year contract in 1999. Later, actually when first contract expired, he inked another even longer one, 4-year deal worth $21 million.

Chinese guard Sun Yue (6'9''-G/F-85, agency: Passing Lane) signed a multiyear contract with the NBA finalist Los Angeles Lakers. Terms of the deal were not announced.


Clippers name Fred Vinson assistant coach - by Eurobasket News
Los Angeles Clippers today named Fred Vinson Assistant Coach/Director of Player Programs. Vinson served as a Player Development consultant for the Clippers during the 2007-08 season.

'We feel that Freds background and experience as an NBA player will allow him to take on a mentoring roll with our young players and help ease their transition to the NBA', stated Clippers Director of Player Personnel Neil Olshey.

Vinson played parts of the 1994-95 and 1999-00 season with the Atlanta Hawks and Seattle Supersonics, tallying career averages of 1.3 points and 5.2 minutes per game. Vinson also averaged 3.3 points per game for the Clippers during the 2005-06 NBA preseason.

A 64 guard out of Georgia Tech, Vinson worked his way to the NBA through the CBA and USBL, averaging 6.4 points in 20 games played for the Mexico Aztecas (CBA) during the 1994-95 season. Vinson also spent time with the Atlanta Trojans of the USBL during the 1994 season.

While at Georgia Tech, Vinson turned in his best season in 1993, averaging 11.9 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.3 assists in 29 games played during his senior campaign. He also connected on 72-181 (.398) three-point field goals on the year.

Courtesy of www.insidehoops.com


*****************************************************
  NCAA1   


Mark Graupe joins CSU coaching staff - by Eurobasket News
Colorado State University Rams added Mark Graupe, a 21-year coaching veteran to its coaching staff, Head Coach Tim Miles announced today.

Graupe (pronounced GRAWP-e) comes to Fort Collins from Lake Region College in Devils Lake, N.D. after seven successful seasons as the Head Coach of the Royals in which he posted an overall record of 126-95. In his final three seasons at Lake Region, his teams posted 20 or more wins each season including back-to-back Region 13 titles in 2007 and 2008. During that stretch, Graupe was named the region Coach of the Year both seasons. Prior to taking the reins at Lake Region, Graupe spent 14 years as a head coach in the high school ranks.

We are so happy to have Mark Graupe join us, said Miles. Ive known and respected Coach Graupe for almost 20 years and his experience and knowledge will be a great asset for the Rams.

Graupe earned his bachelors degree from the University of North Dakota in 1987 and his masters degree from UND in 2004. He was recently honored by UND as the 2008 winner of the Thomas J. Clifford Award for excellence in the coaching profession.

Courtesy of www.csurams.com


Jack Castleberry rejoins VMI as assistant coach - by Eurobasket News
When former VMI guard Jack Castleberry (6'3''-G) was in the lineup during his playing days at the Institute, head coach Duggar Baucom said it was like having another coach on the floor.

Baucom will now have Castleberry as a full-time staff member as the Virginia Beach native and Class of 2007 alumnus has joined the Keydets program as an assistant coach.

'We are very excited to have Jack Castleberry back at VMI.', said Baucom. 'As a player, Jack always brought tremendous energy, an unwavering work ethic, and outstanding leadership. We expect him to bring all of those qualities as an assistant coach, but of even greater importance, Jack is a VMI guy who knows what it is like to excel in the classroom, in the corps of cadets and on the floor. As a head coach it is very rewarding to have one of your former players come back to work with you.'

Castleberry assumed his duties in mid-August and will handle of wide variety of duties including monitoring the teams academic progress and assisting with scheduling, recruiting and travel.

Im excited about being back at VMI with Coach Baucom and the rest of the staff, says Castleberry. Ive always had a great respect for Coach, and being given the opportunity to work with him at a school that has given me so much is a dream come true.

A three-year letterman and two-year starter for the Keydets, Castleberry graduated from VMI in May, 2007, with a degree in Economics and Business and served as assistant basketball coach at Tennessee-Martin during the 2007-08 season where he was involved in all facets of the men's basketball program, including recruiting, scouting, player development and video exchange.

During his time at VMI, Castleberry served as team captain of the Keydet basketball team in 2006-07, where he helped lead the squad to a 14-win season, marking the most wins at VMI in a decade.

Additionally, Castleberry led the Keydets to their first conference tournament final in 20 years. During that same year, the Keydets led the nation in scoring offense (100.9 ppg), three-point field goals made (13.4 per game), assists (20.6) and steals per game (14.8), including setting NCAA records for three-point field goals made in a season (442), three-point field goals attempted (1383), three-point field goals made per game (13.4), steals in a season (490) and steals per game (14.8).

For his efforts on the playing court, Castleberry was bestowed with the 'Spirit of VMI Award' by the coaching staff for his leadership, toughness and hustle.

Before joining the coaching ranks, Castleberry as a summer camp aide held various different coaching roles on the East Coast as a team and teaching station coach for several camps, including stints at Duke, Winthrop, Old Dominion, East Carolina and Army.

Courtesy of www.vmikeydets.com


Northeastern bruise Queens University on Canada Tour - by Eurobasket News
Queens - Northeastern 59:69
The Northeastern University basketball team secured their first win on the Canadian tour. They held off Queens University in Kingston, Ontario in the first of the seven-game schedule in Canada. The teams entered the game quite well matched and were all square at 14 after the opening stanza. However the visitors gradually took over and built a 5-point advantage at halftime. The Huskies stretched the margin to 15 points in the third period however the hosts refused to fold. The Golden Gaels cut the distance to 11 points heading into the fourth quarter. The hosts continued to fight hard for every basket trying to spark the intrigue. They closed the gap to 5 points but failed to come any closer. Northeastern secured the winning outcome at the end. Matt Janning (6'4''-G/F-88) produced 19 points and 10 boards for the Huskies. Baptiste Bataille (5'10''-G-87) added 11 points, while Eugene Spates (6'8''-F-87) had 10 points for the winners. Mitch Leger (6'6''-F-87) answered with 20 points for Queens University. Nick Didonato (6'5''-F-89) contributed 9 points in defeat. The visitors outrebounded the Golden Gaels 33:31 and forced the home team to 21 turnovers down the stretch.
Northeastern will continue their tour when they take on Ottawa later today.

Queens: Mitch Leger 20, Nick Didonato 9
Northeastern: Matt Janning 19+10 boards, Baptiste Bataille 11, Eugene Spates 10


Cleveland State adds three players - by Eurobasket News
The first day of classes of the 2008-09 school year came on Monday (Aug. 25) at Cleveland State and men's basketball head coach Gary Waters celebrated the day by announcing the addition of three players to the basketball roster.

Joining the Vikings are sophomore Aaron Pogue (Dayton, OH/Dunbar) and freshmen Ethan Anderson (Grand Rapids, MI) and Tim Kamczyc (Strongsville, OH). Pogue will be required to sit out the 2008-09 season following his transfer from Vincennes Community College while both Anderson and Kamczyc will be eligible immediately.

'With the addition of Aaron, Tim and Ethan, we have helped to solidify our program for the years to come,' Waters said. 'Although I don't envision either of these players being able to help this year, I do believe that they have the potential to impact the lineup in the seasons to come.'

Pogue, a teammate of CSU's Norris Cole while at Dunbar High, was ranked as the second best power forward in the state after averaging 14.0 points and 14.7 rebounds while helping Dunbar to win its second straight state tournament.

A 6-9, 285-pound forward, he averaged 7.1 points and 5.6 rebounds, starting 14 times in 22 games as a freshman at Vincennes.

Pogue was being looked at by Florida, Pittsburgh, USC, Cincinnati, Louisville, Arizona and Tennessee coming out of high school but did not meet NCAA initial entry guidelines and elected to play at Vincennes University last year.

'Aaron has the ability to dominate inside through both his rebounding and defensive play,' Waters said. 'He will use this redshirt season to get accustomed to our program, improve on his skill level and get into the best shape of his life.'

Kamczyc, a special mention all-state pick as a senior at Strongsville High, was ranked as one of the top 65 players in the state last year after averaging 26.1 points a game. A second team all-state pick as a quarterback on the football team as well, he threw for over 2,000 yards last season.

'I've watched Tim play basketball since I came to Cleveland and I think that he is the type of player who will fit in perfectly to our program,' Waters said. 'I love his toughness and athletic ability.'

Anderson, a 6-8, 260-pound forward, has played just one season of organized basketball, that coming a year ago at Lee (Maine) Academy. He was an all-state selection in tennis at Grand Rapids (MI) High School.

'Ethan only recently started playing basketball but the improvement that he has shown in a short period of time has been astounding,' Waters said. 'He has outstanding athletic ability for his size and I foresee good things from him in the future.

The Vikings return four starters and eight lettermen from last year's team that went 19-13 and earned a berth in the NIT.

Courtesy of www.cstv.com


*****************************************************
  NCAA3   


Dave Faucher appointed Eagles' head coach - by Eurobasket News
Daniel Webster College Department of Athletics today announced that David Faucher has been named head coach of its men's basketball program. The announcement was made by Phil Rowe, assistant vice president of Student Affairs. The hiring of Faucher underscores Daniel Websters commitment to advancing its athletic program while continuing to provide an academic-rich environment, particularly in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math.

'I am extremely pleased that Dave has agreed to join the Daniel Webster College community as our next head mens basketball coach', said Rowe. 'Dave brings an incredible wealth of experience. He is an extraordinary coach, an exceptional recruiter, and a true program builder.'

Faucher inherits an Eagles program that posted a 7-19 overall mark last season, including a 5-13 Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) mark and a berth in the GNAC championship tournament. Along the way, the Eagles saw five different student-athletes earn GNAC Rookie of the Week honors, while newcomer shooting guard Chris Hanson of Salem, Mass. earned the first conference Rookie of the Year award in Eagles program history.

'I am extremely impressed with the renewed commitment Daniel Webster College has made to its athletic program', said Faucher. 'And I am very excited to assist in the Colleges effort to create a successful mens basketball program, and a first-class athletic program. We want our program to make an impact not only on the court, but in the community, and I cant wait to get started.'

Faucher is well known in not only New Hampshire college basketball circles, but throughout the New England region and at the national level. Faucher spent 20 years with the Dartmouth College mens basketball program, serving 13 years as head coach (1991-2004), preceded by seven years as assistant coach.

During his tenure as head coach, the Big Green compiled an overall record of 136-208 including a high-water mark of 18-8 in 1996-97. Dartmouth posted a 74-108 mark in Ivy League play, including a 10-4 record in both the 1996-97 and 1998-99 seasons.

Faucher has spent the past three years at Kimball Union Academy in Meriden, N.H., where he has served as the boys varsity basketball coach as well as assistant director of development. Under his guidance, the Wildcats posted a three-year record of 42-32 including an 18-8 record in 2006-07, in which the squad qualified for the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council (NEPSAC) Class B Championship tournament.

Faucher is a 1972 graduate of the University of New Hampshire, where he earned a degree in Health Studies/Physical Education. He got his coaching start as an assistant at UNH and later served as head coach for five years at Newmarket (N.H.) High School, four years at Sanborn Regional High School in Kingston, N.H. and one year as assistant coach at Merrimack College.

Faucher also directed the Dave Faucher Basketball Camp based in Hanover, N.H. for 19 years. Faucher is also the author of Baffled Parents Guide to Coaching Youth Basketball, a perennial best-seller in the youth coaching category.

The Eagles enter a new athletic conference in 2008-09 as charter members of the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC), which includes Bay Path College, Becker College, Elms College, Lesley University, Mitchell College, Newbury College, Southern Vermont College and Wheelock College.

About Daniel Webster College
At Daniel Webster College, we fulfill our mission by helping purposeful men and women discover how to channel that purpose in their lives. We do this through blending theory and practice from day one; and, in so doing, our graduates leave Daniel Webster College workforce ready for entry and advancement in a variety of highly-relevant professions.

Courtesy of www.dwc.edu


Joseph Brown signs with Sangalhos from Portugal - by Eurobasket News
Former Mid-America Christian University basketball player, Joseph Brown signed a professional contract to play in Sangalhos, Potugal.

Brown came to play at MACU in 2006. As a junior point guard he averaged 17 point per game. He was a member of the 2007 NCCAA National Championship Team and was named to the all-tournament team. As a senior, Brown averaged 14 points per game. In the Sooner Athletic Conference his three point field goal percentage was ranked in the top ten. Brown graduated with a B.A. in business administration in the spring of 2008.

Prior to his playing career at MACU, Brown spent two years at Rose State College. As a freshman he averaged 11 points a game with five rebounds and his team place 5th in the NJCAA National Tournament. As a junior he scored 21 points and was voted the team's most valuable player.

Brown, 25, from Chandler, Oklahoma is the son of Carmella Cavers and Albert Brown. He is a Chandler High School graduate. While playing basketball for the Chandler Lions he was an all-conference selection and all-state honorable mention. He was the 2002 Class 2A `Player to Watch,' and he was voted his team MVP twice.

MACU is a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics and the Sooner Athletic Conference.

Courtesy of www.cstv.com


*****************************************************
  NORWAY   


Delano is back - by Kaare Vangen
Ulriken Eagles have signed American forward Delano Thomas (203-F-82, agency: Chris Pearson SM, college: Shawnee St.) Thomas was in the club in 2005 but did never play in BLNO due to a serious injury close up to the opening of the season. The injury was that he got one of his hips relocated. Thomas is probably the only player in the history of Norwegian basketball with this injury. This time he and Eagles hope for a different story. Thomas has a lot of size and the tandem of Thomas and Peter Bullock will probably be hard to handle for many teams.

3B roster in BLNO - by Kaare Vangen
Tip-off is coming soon and the roster for 3B is ready (almost). The club will not have any American imports this year. Christer Elgmork sat out big parts of last season to be able to play college basket this fall. Without American imports it will be easier to claim that 3B is not a pro club and thus make the transition to college basket easier.

The roster is:
- Eric Ballester
- Ahmed Diomande
- Aksel Gregersen
- Thor Hagen
- Hans Thyge Solheim Hansen
- Aleksander Hovik
- Ole Gunnar Moss
- Filip Claesson (from Plannja, Sweden)
- Martin Elgmork (from Sandvika)
- Alexander Frang (from Fjellhamar)
- Joakim Hellerstrom (from Uppsala, Sweden)
- Muhamed Muminovic (from Bosnia)
- Oystein Ofte (from NTNUI)
- Oyvind Fritzen is still considering wheter to play or not


*****************************************************
  PHILIPPINES   


Kings simply wanted it more - by Eurobasket News

In the end, the team that wanted it more triumphed. In the end, experience prevailed over desire.

In a championship series where momentum shifted back and forth, Barangay Ginebra ended Air21's ambition of a first-ever title Wednesday last week, overcoming injuries and a tense Game 7 to bring down a classic closing performance in the Smart PBA Fiesta Conference the tournament many will remember the Kings ended with a blast despite starting it in a whimper.


Coach Joseph Uichico described it as equally sweet to his seven previous personal championships, and even though he didnt say it, will perhaps rank among the best in his coaching achievements.

Whats there to say? Every championship means a lot, every win means a lot, whether its your first, your eighth. Youre really happy because youve worked hard for a certain goal. The important thing is that you keep on trying.

Its really hard to explain how we won this series.

Starting the tournament with five straight losses, Barangay Ginebra put an emphatic ending to the conference despite having to play without Jay-Jay Helterbrand. What made it worse for the Kings was that Mark Caguioa was in pain because of knee tendinitis and Paul Artadi also was hurting due to a pulled hamstring.

But those did not deter the Kings from their goal, fighting with what Joseph Uichico said was pure heart and denying the Express of a shock title conquest they were favored to achieve the moment they took 2-1 and 3-2 series leads.

It was a triumph, too, that defied logic a Barangay Ginebra team winning despite being undermanned against an Air21 ball club that was healthy and deadset on ending a 6-year title drought or since they entered the league way back in 2002 under the banner of FedEx.

Joseph Uichico was humble enough not to take credit for the championship. He rather reserved the honor to the players, who he said were really the stars in the title showdown for playing with so much passion despite the odds.

He particularly mention Erik Menk, who in the title-clinching Game 7 scored eight points in the third quarter and finished with 21, a point behind another revelation in Ronald Tubid, the player who only started playing in the series in Game 3 when Helterbrand was no longer around.

Both were named co-MVPs for the Finals, giving Menk his third and Tubid his first. Overall, though, it was really a team effort.

We could have easily given up when Jay-Jay got injured. We could have easily given up when Mark got injured. We could have easily given up when Paul got injured. But we didnt.

Ginebra won Game 7 when it held Air21 without a field goal in the last 4:27 while unleashing 14 unanswered points. The final score was 97-84, a result Barangay Ginebra would probably remember as one of its most epic in its eight championship accomplishments.

Game 7 was simply a coaching masterpiece. Import Chris Alexander already had five fouls early in the fourth quarter and even looked as if he also had pulled a hamstring at one point, but Joseph Uichico gambled and did not relieve him.

Logic tells you that you take him (Alexander) out, said Joseph Uichico. But if you take him out, it could have backfired. Steven Thomas would easily score. The only thing there was that he did not foul out.

Alexander, the Best Import of the tournament, survived the game despite being whistled for his fifth foul with a little over minutes left in the final period, a hole in Barangay Ginebras defense Air21 couldnt crack. They also failed to capitalize on the absence of Junthy Valenzuela, who was taken out because of a knee injury late in the third period.

Coach Dolreich Perasol was a class in defeat, praising the Diety for a conference he said the team overachieved, and saying that Barangay Ginebra really deserved the win because they wanted it more.

Ive always been spiritual for everything weve accomplished this conference, said Dolreich Perasol . If we win, I will give all the glory to God. If we lose, that only means that He wants to make a lot of people happy. And tonight, a lot of people are happy because Barangay Ginebra won.

Coach Jong was right, Ginebra was fighting and wanting it more.

Air21 had its chances but the Kings blew them all into bits and pieces with their famous never-say-die attitude.

Courtesy of www.pba.ph



*****************************************************
  POLAND   


Prokom will play friendly games in Lithuania - by Eurobasket News
Prokom Trefl Sopot that has won the 2007/2008 championship and it's their fifth title in the row published the schedule for the friendly games. Polish squad will start the campaign on August 26 against Ukrainian Dnipro. Then on August 27th the team will meet Bremen from Germany. Latvian Ventspils will be the opponent on the 30th of August. On September 2ns the team will play against Russian Triumph and the day after against Latvian Valmiera. From September 4th to 6th Prokom will face 3 Ukrainian teams Knimik, Budivelnik and Symu.
The team still remembers the Final series against Turow. Milan Gurovic (207-F-76, agency: Beo Basket) was the key player with 36 points and 10 rebounds. David Logan was the best player in Turow with 26 points. Filip Dylewicz has been awarded with the MVP of the finals. Milan Gurovic didn't get this award because of fighting with Thomas Kelati in the game number 4.
Recently it became known that Mustafa Shakur (190-G-84, college: Arizona) won't play for Prokom Trefl Sopot. American point guard was thought to play in Polish hegemony once season more, however the club hasn't announced this yet. It means Shakur is still free agent and next season will spent in another club.


*****************************************************
  PORTUGAL   


Joseph Brown signs with Sangalhos from Portugal - by Eurobasket News
Former Mid-America Christian University basketball player, Joseph Brown signed a professional contract to play in Sangalhos, Potugal.

Brown came to play at MACU in 2006. As a junior point guard he averaged 17 point per game. He was a member of the 2007 NCCAA National Championship Team and was named to the all-tournament team. As a senior, Brown averaged 14 points per game. In the Sooner Athletic Conference his three point field goal percentage was ranked in the top ten. Brown graduated with a B.A. in business administration in the spring of 2008.

Prior to his playing career at MACU, Brown spent two years at Rose State College. As a freshman he averaged 11 points a game with five rebounds and his team place 5th in the NJCAA National Tournament. As a junior he scored 21 points and was voted the team's most valuable player.

Brown, 25, from Chandler, Oklahoma is the son of Carmella Cavers and Albert Brown. He is a Chandler High School graduate. While playing basketball for the Chandler Lions he was an all-conference selection and all-state honorable mention. He was the 2002 Class 2A `Player to Watch,' and he was voted his team MVP twice.

MACU is a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics and the Sooner Athletic Conference.

Courtesy of www.cstv.com


*****************************************************
  PUERTO RICO   


Hamilton signs in Poland - by Luis Ramirez

Kevin Hamilton (193-G-84, agency: Paris Global Sports, college: Holy Cross) who plays with the Fajardo Cariduros in the BSN has just signed with Club Kotwica of Poland. Hamilton has already had some experience with the Polish league as he also played with Polpak previously. Hamilton will join other players from the BSN who also will play in the Polish League such as Ansel Guzman who will play with Znics, Joel Jones with Politechnika, Javier Mojica with AZS and Donald Copeland with PGE Turow.

In other news, Gabriel Colon scored 20 points for Panteras of Aguascalientes in Mexico, other players currently playing in Mexico are Ricardo Melendez with Tecos, David Cortes with Dorados and Karim Malpica with Algonoderos, Malpica will be playing for Mexico in the upcoming Centrobasket Tournament which gets underway tomorrow.

Courtesy of BSN



*****************************************************
  RUSSIA   


St Petersburg will host Kondrashin and Belov Cup - by Eurobasket News
St Petersburg will host Kondrashin and Belov Cup during September 27-28. Three Russian teams Spartak, Khimky and CSKA will be joint by Croatian Cibona. As Russian fans know much Russian squads Eurobasket introduces the guests, Cibona.
Damir Markota (209-C/F-85) returned to Croatian Cibona, where he played two years ago. Markota defended Spartak St. Petersburg and Lithuanian Zalgiris in the previous season.
Croatian forward shined during the Euroleague Junior games last May in Barcelona and was one of the best players in his team that play the first Croatian league. He didn't get a lot of credit in the National Team for some reason. Anyways the entire Croatian team is in debt to Omerhodzic big time. He was the one to score an incredible 3 pointer in the last seconds, that sent Croatia to the Semi Finals. In 2003-2004 for KK Cibona VIP Zagreb he played one game Euroleague and had 2.0ppg, 1reb. His stats in Adriatic League were 4 games, 3.8ppg, 2.8rpg, 0.5apg. Robert Troha (194-G/F-77, agency: Court Side), Nikola Prkacin (208-C-75), Earl Calloway (190-G-83, college: Indiana) and Branimir Longin (195-G-78) are also the new names in the team.
On September 27th Khimky will face Cibona at 16.00. Spartak will host CSKA in the second and the last game of the day at 19.00 The Final is scheduled for September 28th as well as the game for the third game.


*****************************************************
  SERBIA   


Majstorovic and Lekovic in Ergonom - by Zoran Popovic
After the solid season Stefan Majstorovic (199-F-85) extend contract with Ergonom Nis for one more season. In season 2007-2008 Majstorovic scored for Ergonom Nis on 20 games average 12.3 points, 3.6 rebounds, 0.7 assistants. In his career Majstorovic played for Beopetrol, Atlas Banka, KK Lions Vrsac, Zeleznik Reflex, Borac Cacak and OKK Beograd. Majstorovic was member of Serbia and Montenegro National team U20 and U21 2004 and 2005.
Ergonom Nis also signed four years contract with young and perspective player Arso Lekovic (197-F-90). Lekovic started career in KK Jedinstvo Bijelo Polje and played for BC Buducnost Podgorica.


Simonovic in BC Buducnost Podgorica - by Zoran Popovic
Marko Simonovic (203-F-86, agency: Beo Basket) is new player of BC Buducnost Podgorica. Simonovic spent last season in KK Hemofarm Stada Vrsac and on 12 games in Adriatic league scored average 1.6 points per game and in Serbian Superleague on 10 games scored 1.4 points and 0.6 rebounds per game. Marko Simonovic also played for BC Radnicki Jugopetrol, Lavovi 063 Beograd, Ergonom Best Nis and Telindus BC Ostende. In 2007. Simonovic was member of Serbain University National team in Bangkok.

Friendly games: Partizan beats Khimik, Hemofarm STADA smashes Algeria - by Dragan Jankovski
Reining Serbian and Adriatic league champion Partizan Igokea celebrated in the first friendly game this summer. Partizan, which had to play without couple of very important members, was better than Ukrainian Khimik 58-51 (19-15, 13-7, 16-20, 10-9). Partizan played pretty good first half and mostly owing to it grabbed 7-point win at the end. Cedomir Vitkovac (201-F-82), Strahinja Milosevic (203-G/F-85, agency: Beo Basket) and Marko Djurkovic (205-C/F-87) were the best players of Black-and-whites scoring 11 points each. Center Jan Vesely (210-F/C-90) also demonstrated good performance scoring 9 points. Jarrius Jackson (188-G-85, college: Texas Tech) shined in Khimik with 15 points while Sasa Bratic (202-F/G-81, agency: Beo Basket) had 9.

Hemofarm STADA recorded an easy victory against National Team of Algeria in Vrsac 102-61 (26-14, 19-17, 26-11, 31-19). It was the first friendly game of Hemofarm since it officially started preparations for the upcoming season. Except of the opening 2-4, Hemofarm dominated during the entire time. Very soon the orange team succeeded to reach double digits lead extending it later a way more. After first 20 minutes of the game Hemofarm had advantage of 12 points. During the second half Algeria scored only 30 points while Hemofarm netted 57 for the final plus 41.
Center Vladan Vukosavljevic (206-F/C-84, agency: Beo Basket) led Hemofarm scoring 19 points. Young Uros Petrovic (206-F/C-90, agency: Beo Basket) and Petar Despotovic (195-G-88) exploited chance which head coach Stevan Karadzic gave them. Petrovic scored 14 points while Despotovic had two points less. Algeria got the most from Kana, who scored 14 points. Dieelan followed with 11 points.


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  SLOVENIA   


Elektra adds Tajnik and Cup - by Zeljko Zule

Elektra inked their former member Saso Tajnik (198-F/C-75) ex Rudar (B1) and Dejan Cup (202-F/C-83) ex Igokea Partizan for one year. Tajnik last season averaged 19,5 minutes, 6,9 points, 2,6 rebounds and 0,8 assists in 20 games of B-1 League and Cup averaged 10,4 points in 24 games of A1 Bosnian League (first stage).

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Union Olimpija signs Jonathan Wallace, trys-out Crawford - by Matej Bergant

Union Olimpija announced the signing of point guard Jonathan Wallace (185-G-86, college: Georgetown) to a one year contract. Wallace who will make his European debut with the Slovenian champions arrives from Georgetown University, where he averaged 10.7ppg, 2.1rpg, 2.6apg in 34 games. He also set the Georgetown University record with 240 three-point shots made during his career. During next weeks Union Olimpija will also announce another signings, this time on shooting guard position and maybe center.


Union Olimpija is also trying-out Georgetown shooting guard Tyler Crawford (191-G/F-86, college: Georgetown) these days.



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  SOUTH KOREA   


LG Sakers Defending In Brunei - by Rick Ross
LG Sakers unstoppable
Written by Rano Iskandar
Tuesday, 26 August 2008
LG Sakers 84 Jordan All-Stars 70

Who can dismantle the Sakers? They have made a perfect start to the competition by winning all their first four games.
Both Philippines teams couldn't overcome the Koreans. The Singapore Slingers came close but weren't good enough.
Jordan All-Stars were punished for missing their second opportunities and LG Sakers won the match comfortably in the last few minutes.
[Johnson of LG Sakers goes for the jump shot: Image by Jeffrey Wong]

LG Sakers came into this tournament with high expectations. Majority of my peers backed the
Koreans to once again lift the Brunei Cup 2008. Even despite a shaky performance from the defending champions,
they shut their opponents when it mattered. To me, LG Sakers are the bench mark for the other competing teams in the Brunei Cup.

No discredit to Jordan All-Stars as they had their good run but only in patches.
The difference that I learnt from LG Sakers was they were able to pull away before any team could close them down.
Sure, they were trailing by 5 points at the start of the first quarter but it was all a formality as the Koreans scored quick points.


*****************************************************
  SWITZERLAND   


Roster of Lugano Tigers for 08/09 is known, 9 new players - by Eurobasket News
Lugano Tigers completed their roster for the upcoming season. The team decided to keep Derek Stockalper (196-G/F-84, college: Cal Poly - SLO), Slavisa Pantic (200-F-85), Gustavo Lo Leggio and Massimo Majocchi (193-F-86). The Tigers also signed nine news players.

Daron Leonard (198-F-84) arrived to Lugano from Canadian Carleton University where he averaged 6.1 ppg, 2.5 rpg and 0.3 apg. He has double nationality Canadian / Suisse.

Point guard Marco Magnani (186-G-85) is coming from LNB team SAM Basket Massagno. He was maybe the best player of Massagno in 07/08 recording 15 ppg, 3.4 rpg and 3 apg. Magnani already played for Lugano before he moved to LNB.

Westher Molteni (192-F-87), who can play on both 3 and 4, spent last two seasons in SAV Vacallo Basket adding 7.3 ppg and 4.3 rpg in the last one. Interesting is that he also played for Lugano in the past.

Guard Niccolo Poretti (185-G-87) arrived from BBC Cossonay. He had 6.9 ppg, 1.8 rpg and 1.7 apg in LNB last season.

Beside above mentioned players, Lugano added 5 more which are coming outside of Switzerland.

Guard Kameron Gray (185-G-82, college: Cal Poly - SLO) from Oklahoma City University where he added 14.6 ppg, 4 rpg and 6 apg in 07/08.

Big guy Isaac Wells (203-F-85, agency: Strategic Sports, college: Arkansas St.) from Italian Lega Due team Indesit Fabriano.

Another American, this time power forward / center Josh Almanson (203-F-81, college: Bowling Green), who is coming from German TBB Trier. He averaged 6.4 ppg and 2.6 rpg in German 1. Bundesleague last season.

American Dutch Matt Otten (196-G-81, agency: R.H.Consultancy, college: San Francisco St.), ex BiG Storage Cheshire Jets.

The last one is American / Italian Daniel Muto. He graduated this year at Point Park University (NAIA).


*****************************************************
  TPBL   


TPBL - CHAPS SIGN 1ST PLAYER FOR 2009 - by Chris Cardenas


SAN ANGELO,TX- The San Angelo Chaparrals didnt feel to good about how they finished the 2008 season with 2 straight losses to the defending TPBL champion Midland Heat, so they went out and found themselves another scorer. The Chaps made the decision to sign 6'7 power forward MARLOW ROCKWELL for the 2009 season. ' Marlow brings lots of skills to the table. He can post you up with his back to the basket or he can face you and take you off the dribble. Rockwell will most certainly be a player to be dealt with and we hope he brings his 'A' game every night because i know he puts up big numbers' says team owner Chris Cardenas. Marlow Rockwell from Sacramento California was a two year starter at NCAA Div.2 Angelo State University who shot 46% from the field for his career and averaged 5 rebounds per game. The Chaparrals will also be signing 2 more power forwards ,that should also help put up big numbers in '09, by the end of sept.
for more information on San Angelo Chaparral team tryouts, sponsorship info , 2009 game info ...or if your team is interested in joining the state of Texas' pro league call 325-763-6630


*****************************************************
  UKRAINE   


Friendly games - by Eurobasket News
Many Ukrainian teams started the preparation for another season abroad. Here are some friendly results with the foreign teams.
Budivelnik beat Bremenhaven from Germany 79:73. It was a good game for the Ukrainian side that dominated the court. They had 21 points advantage in the third quarter but enjoyed 6 points win. Brian Wethers (194-F/G-80, college: California) led the winners with 16 points and 2 assists. Michael Chappell (205-F/G-78, college: Michigan St.) followed him with 15 points, while Merritt Scott and DeGroat John netted 11 each.
BC Donetsk played in Lithuania against Zarechye from Russia. Ukrainian team did not use all the leaders and as a result lost 75:82. Donetsk however led the game throughout the first half, but then Russian squad was too good for the opponent. Chris Burgess (209-C-79, college: Utah) was the best for the Ukrainian squad with 19 points and 9 rebounds. Oleg Kojenets (208-C-77, college: NC-Wilmington) nailed 11 and made 5 rebounds, while Luchenko Roman posted 11.
Azovmash beat German Oldenburg 90:62. It was a tough beginning in the game where Ukrainian squad led only 2 points at the half. In the third quarter Azovmash was too good producing 25:10 in the period. They finished with 28:17 in the last quarter to seal a win in the game. Salyers Marc was the best for the winners with 17 points. Simonas Serapinas (197-F-82) nailed 16 and Nsonwu Uche had 15.


Denmark surprised Ukraine - by Eurobasket News
Denmark -Ukraine 81:79 (21:20, 17:20, 21:20, 22:19)

Tallinn welcomed four teams in their last preparation for the upcoming European Championship. Ukraine, Israel, Denmark and Estonia started their campaign in the tournament of four. Denmark surprised Ukraine 81:79 as they finished the game with 12:3 run in last 5 minutes. Andreas Jakobsen (187-G-83, college: Columbia (MO)) led the winners with 18 points. Nicolai Iversen (204-F-80, agency: Rasmussen Services, college: San Jose City JC) added 16 and Johansen ended up with 14. Artem Butskyy (185-G-81) top-scored for the Ukrainian side with 15 points and Andriy Agafonov (207-F-86, agency: Interperformances) nailed 13.

Denmark won the opening tip of the game as they posted 21:20 in the first period. It was a tough half and Ukraine could bounce back with 20:17 in the second period. Both squads went to the lockers with 40:38 for Ukraine. The latter even increased to 11 points but could not win the opener. The last minute of the game saw even result on the board and Denmark scored for 81:79. Ukraine still had a chance to tie the score but could not make it.
In another game the National team of Estonia achieved 69:66 over Israel. The second round is scheduled for today as Ukraine will face Estonia and Denmark will play against Israel.


Denmark: Andreas Jakobsen 18 points, Nicolai Iversen 16, Johansen 14
Ukraine: Artem Butskyy 15, Andriy Agafonov 13


*****************************************************
  UNITED KINGDOM   


Mindaugas Janiska re-signs with the Leicester Riders - by Eurobasket News
The Leicester Riders decided to re-sign contract with Mindaugas Janiska (186-G-82, college: Huston-Tillotson). The team inked Lithuanian guard for one more year. The 26-year-old player averaged about 9 points and 2 steals per game last season. the Riders coach Rob Paternostro praised the strengths of the player pointing out his ability to play at both point guard and shooting guard positions, which is very important for the team. The Riders head coach expects to finalize the roster with few singings shortly. The Leicester Riders tip off their BBL regular season against the London Capital in a month.
The Guilford Heat bolster their squad with the addition of the NCAA University of Wyoming star Brad Jones (185-G-85). The guard spent the last three years with the Cowboys at NCAA Mountain West Conference. His average stats read solid numbers throughout three years with the Cowboys. In his senior year he scored 12.1 points and pulled down 5.3 rebounds per game. In his second year, Jones was the only player in the Mountain West Conference to rank in the Top Five in both scoring and assists. He averaged 18.1 ppg and dished out 4.5 assists per game to rank No.3 in the Conference in both categories. The Heat tip off the season with the Cup Winners Cup game against the Milton Keynes Lions on September 14.
The Marshall MK Lions meanwhile strengthened their squad with Dru Spinks (193-G/F-79). The team resigned the contract with their captain for the last five campaigns. Last year Dru Spinks averaged 6.5 points and 2.6 boards per game for the Lions.


*****************************************************
  VENEZUELA   


Miguel Marriaga and Eduardo Torres expected in Colombia - by Francisco Vega
Barquisimeto, Venezuela.- Venezuelan center Miguel Angel Marriaga (207-C-84) and small forward Eduardo Torres (195-F-81) are expected to become important factors for the rising of Norte de Santander in the upcoming season of first division basketball in Colombia, and are about to join the training sessions of the former Canoneros de Cucuta at the border city of Cucuta, near Venezuela.

'Torres should arrive on Tuesday or Wednesday and Marriaga should be here over the weekend', said Puerto Rican assistant coach Ramon Melendez , who'll be working with countryman Julio Toro in what promises to be one of the best seasons ever in this country, more known for its soccer but currently on the rise in terms of basketball by the acquisition of high quality imported players and the development of young local players.

Melendez and Toro worked together in the past season for Guaiqueries de Margarita in Venezuela's LPB, a team that reached the Quarter Finals round a year after becoming champions of Venezuela. Melendez also coach Guerreros de Lara back in LNB 2006 and was an assistant coach for Guaros de Lara for a couple of seasons prior to coaching the U18 squad of Lara state in the country's Liga Nacional Juvenil (LNJB).

Marriaga played the LPB 2008 Finals with Gaiteros del Zulia, who were unable to defeat Cocodrilos de Caracas. Marriaga averaged 9.6 points, 6.1 rebounds and led the league with 1.7 blocks per match in 35 outings during the regular season, which earned him a spot in Venezuela's Senior NT, the team that earned the bronze medal in the South American Championship of Chile and also a ticket for the 2009 FIBA Americas World Cup Qualy tournament to be played in Mexico.

Torres was also considered, but an injury left him out of the race. Torres averaged 14.9 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 31 games for Panteras de Miranda. It'll be the second consecutive season in which Marriaga doesn't play LNB regular season for Duros de Lara in Venezuela, as he was also in foreign land last season, when he belonged to Casa TED Koleji Ankara in Turkey's first division basketball. Torres used to play for Delfines de Miranda, the former strongest team in Venezuela's LNB, but as the team decided not to take part in the 2008 season due to finantial reasons and he was supposed to be drafted by the participating teams, he decided to explore other options.


Pedro Brito convincing Panteras de Aguascalientes in Mexico - by Francisco Vega
Barquisimeto, Venezuela.- Venezuelan power forward Pedro Brito (202-F/C-82), played a starring role in a couple of friendly matches played by Panteras de Aguascalientes, his team in the upcoming Liga Nacional de Baloncesto (LNBP) of Mexico, as he was one of the best scorers in both the victory and the defeat against Barreteros de Zacatecas.

Brito, who belongs to Trotamundos de Carabobo (LPB) and Duros de Lara (LNB) in Venezuela, averaged 7.3 points and 2.9 rebounds in 46 games for the Blue Express in LPB 2008. His performance earned him a spot in Venezuela's Senior NT pre-squad towards the South American Championship in Chile, but a minor foot injury prevented him from the fight for a spot in the definitive roster.

Against Zacatecas, he netted 12 points in a triumph, 80-71, in Aguascalientes. His points joined those scored by Mario Bennett (207-F-73) and Tyrone McDaniels, who scored 22 and 14, respectively. Barreteros could not take advantage of 20 points scored by Pablo Gonzalez (181-G-84), while Kenya Capers (194-F-73) added 18 and Tim Jones (193-G/F-73) finished off with 15. In the second match, Brito ended up with 8 points in a defeat at Zacatecas, 117-90. This time, Jones and Capers were too much for Panteras with 35 and 33 points. For Aguascalientes, Gabriel Colon (200-G/F-84) netted 20 points and Devon Ford (193-G-77) finished up with 17.


Standings - LNB
LNB Standings
 1. Duros 2-0 
 2. Cojedes 2-0 
 3. Graneros 2-0 
 4. Centauros 1-1 
 5. Estudiantes 1-1 
 6. Falcon 0-2 
 7. Trujillo 0-2 
 8. Tiburones 0-2 


Cedeno (Lanus) and Sucre (Union Sunchales) get ready for Argentinian Cup - by Francisco Vega
Barquisimeto, Venezuela.- Venezuelan players Carlos Cedeno (193-G/F-85), of Lanus, and Axiers Sucre (198-F-78), of Union Sunchales, are getting ready and taking part in the preseason workouts of their respective teams towards the beginning of the Argentinian Cup, the first serious compromise for them as imported players in this country and a competition that serves as a fair introduction to their Liga and TNA compromises.

Cedeno is a 23 year-old guard who decided not to take part in Venezuela's LNB with Duros de Lara to try out in a foreign league, following a season in which he averaged 14.2 points, 2.5 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 3.5 steals in 29 games for Guaiqueries de Margarita, with whom he won the championship title back in 2007 but could not go past the quarter finals this season. He also played for Venezuela's Senior NT in the South American Championship of Puerto Montt, Chile. In Lanus, he'll be sharing the role of imported player with Nathan Mielke (210-F-81) and Wendell Gibson (201-F/C-83).

Cedeno and Lanus will face Boca Juniors, Central Entrerriano and Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata in Group 8 of the Argentinian Cup. They're going to play a game against each other and the winners of every group will advance to the quarter finals, where series of three-games will take place. The winners will then go on to the semifinals, which will be played as a short tournament.

Sucre is a power forward in Venezuela, but due to his size, he could try to become a solid small forward internationally. He's a good rebounder and a tough competitor. He was among the best Venezuelan players in Chile and helped Marinos de Anzoategui reach the LPB Semifinals, though the team was aiming to earn the championship and had a very strong roster. He'll be facing Libertad de Sunchales, Ben Hur Rafaela and Alma Juniors Esperanza in Group 1 of the Argentinian Cup.




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Women News

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  CROATIA - Women  


Big changes in Zadar - by Eurobasket News
After pretty good last season, Zadar faced with many changes before the upcoming one. As a reminder, Zadar made very good results last season in A1 advancing to Top Group with Sibenik, Gospic, Medvescak, Ragusa and Studenec, what was a real surprise. However, after that the team couldn't keep some if its best players. Marija Vrsaljko (195-C-89) as well as Ana Vrsaljko (188-C-84) left the team. Lara Nikpalj (180-F-89) and Nevia Vidakovic (175-G-89) done the same. It means that Zadar continues without almost all starting five players from the last season. Staying of Maja Ledenko (172-G-89), which also had important role in the team, is under the big question mark. According to Zadar's head coach Marija Mazija, her team desperately looks forward to agree terms with Ledenko.
Because of all these departures Zadar had to hire couple of new players. Ina Marin (170-G-86) arrived from Croatia Zagreb where she didn't have a lot of chance to play. Except of A1 league, she had 4 appearances in EuroCup scoring 3 points in total. The team also signed Bozena Rados (192-C-88) from Croatia 2006. Interesting that as a 17-year old player Rados won Adriatic league with Sibenik. Anela Cular is third new player who joined Zadar. Except of these players, Zadar promoted few youngsters: Krstic, Blazevic, Strmelj, Borovic and Sikiric. Zadar's main goal next season will be survival in A1. The team started with preparations on August 11th.


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  FYR MACEDONIA - Women  


Macedonian U18 National Team Roster 2008 - by Todor Chalovski
#s#
#e#6


Antik


Musa


Tanturovska


Janevska


Reskoska

Macedonian U 18 National Team Roster


4 Aleksandra Pavlovska (170-G-90) of Pelister Bitola

5 Simona Janevska (168-F-90) of Vigor Skopje

6 Edina Musa (170-G-91) of Vodnjanski Lisici Skopje
7
Ana Tanturovska (170-G-90) of Vigor Skopje

8 Jelena Antik (182-F-91) of Liberty Christian Academy (USA)

9 Ana Dogazanska (185-F/C-90) of Kumanovo
10 Anzelika Mitrasinovic (170-G-93) of Mladinec Skopje

11 Bisera Bozhinovska (178-G-1990) od Kosice (Svk)

12 Sanja Radenkovic (179-F-91) of Vigor Skopje
13 Arnela Hodza (185-C-91) of Mladinec Skopje

14 Bisera Rajcinoska (181-F-90) of Kimiko Struga
15 Ema Reskoska (188-C-90) of ZKK Spars Sarajevo (BIH)


Head Coach: Svetislav Kostovski

Assistant: Pero Stamevski.



FYR Macedonian National Team 2008 - by Todor Chalovski
#s#
#e#6


Jovanovska


Gavrilovska


Radenkovik


Samardziska


Georgievska

4 Aneta Jovanovska (168-G-76)

5 Ivana Udovalieva (170-G-85) of University of Northern Georgia (USA)
6 Nena Sekuloska (170-G-87) of Vigor Skopje
7 Monika Gavrilovska (191-F/C-76) of SV Halle Lions (GER)
8 Slavica Dimovska (172-G-85) of Fjolnir (ICE)
9 Ana Zhivkovic (183-F/C-87) of Vigor Skopje
10 Elena Radenkovik (189-C-85) of CP Natacao (POR)

11 Bojana Samardziska (194-C-83) of Zepter Tigers Wels (AUT)

12 Bisera Stojanovska (172-G-88) of Vigor Skopje

13 Zorica Ackovska (171-G-88) of Vigor Skopje

14 Vesna Domlevska (185-C-80) of Vigor Skopje
15 Hanka Musa (187-C-89) of Liberty Christian Academy (USA)

Natali Georgievska (180-F-87) of Izgradba Komerc Mladinec Skopje


Head coach: Vidoja Sekuloski

Assistants: Dejan Aleksievski.



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  GERMANY - Women  


BG-Donau-Ries: decisions on the point guard - by Cornelius Damm
Former Youth National Team player Hannah Eitel (174-F-89) will join 1.DBBL newcomer BG Donau-Ries. Eitel comes from 2.DBBL club BSG Ludwigsburg where she developed into a solid second league player. Now she is willing to take the next step, trying to compete in Germany's highest league. She is supposed to fill the back up point guard spot on the team.

Meanwhile the club announced that last years championship campaign PG Chrissy Dizon (168-G-84, college: Ill.-Chicago) will not return for 2008/09. She will stay in the US and not play ball overseas due to a personal decision.


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  NORWAY - Women  


Basket Nord out of business - by Kaare Vangen
Sad day for our fans up north. Basket Nord has pulled out of Kvinneligaen. A thin roster combined with a sponsor that pulled out forced the board to make a decision it hoped it didn't have to. Still seven teams left in Kvinneligaen. Let's hope for a good season for them all. The remaining teams are: Gimle, Ullern, Asker/Baerums Verk, Hop, Ammerud, Nordstrand and Ulriken. Gimle is probably the biggest favourite for the title.

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  SERBIA - Women  


Serbia starts Eurobasket 2009 qualifications today against Greece - by Dragan Jankovski
Serbian senior National Team optimistically looks forward to Eurobasket 2009 qualifications, which starts today. In the first game, which is scheduled for 20:30h, Serbia will meet Greece. City of Nis will be the hosts of this summer's NT project. Serbians together with Greece, Bulgaria and Belgium are placed into the Group D. Group A, B and C count five teams while Group D is the only one with four. Two best teams from each group will automatically book a spot for Eurobasket 2009 in Latvia. The best third ranked team will do the same while all other third ranked as well as three best fourth ranked teams will meet in Additional Qualifying Round. Two top teams from this round will also take a place in Latvia. Fifth ranked teams from Group A, B and C as well as worst fourth ranked team in total will play for the survival in division A.

Head coach of Team Serbia Jovica Antonic showed optimism before the opening day.

'City of Nis turned out as a very good host. Basketball public there is great and I hope they will help us against inconvenient Greece tonight. We worked pretty good. My players really gave their best on each practice and I expect the same attitude in the future. The bad things for us are injuries of Sonja Petrovic (189-F-89) and Tamara Radocaj (168-G-87). Before that Ivana Matovic (197-C-83) also was unable to show up on NT camp but despite it I think we are able to make a good result. Greece is maybe the best and most experienced team in our group. We had to change a lot of things because above mentioned problems while Greece has the same team almost five years. It will be a very tough game for us but together with our fans we can do a lot. I do believe that Serbia will show up in Latvia next year' - said Jovica Antonic.


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  WNBA - Women  


Storm's Swin Cash may miss second half of season for back surgery - by Eurobasket News
First Lauren Jackson (6'5''-F/C-81) for ankle surgery, and now perhaps Swin Cash (6'2''-F-79, college: Connecticut) she has had a herniated disk in her lower back since last season that might require surgery.

Instead of just checking to see who's present, coach Brian Agler might also want to start asking if anyone else needs surgery.

Monday was supposed to be the golden return for Olympian Sue Bird, who won her second gold medal with Team USA, and Brazilian Kelly Santos, who showcased her game in Beijing.

Instead, there was news about the uncertain status of forward Swin Cash. Cash, 28, has been dealing with a herniated disk in her lower back since last season, needing a cortisone shot during the WNBA's Olympic hiatus to relieve the pain.

Cash has received a second medical opinion, and she alluded to the possibility she might not be able to play out the season. Her agent recently mentioned surgery as a possibility. Cash plans to have another discussion with her agent and family about her basketball future.

Cash would be the third Storm player to be out the rest of the season because of injury.

Center Janell Burse was out in May because of foot and shoulder problems. Lauren Jackson announced last week in Beijing that she will undergo right ankle surgery on Thursday. Jackson, whose Australian team lost to the Americans on Saturday, will have the operation in Sydney and hopes to return in four to six weeks.

'My issue right now is the pain and tolerance,' Cash said. 'Both of my doctors have said they don't understand how I'm playing. But I pride myself on being mentally tough.

'We'll see in the next couple of days. That's my thing, seeing how my recovery time is. I can get out and play, but it's always the recovery time the next day and the next day.'

Cash rehabilitated her back in New York while working for NBC's in-studio crew for women's basketball during the Games. She said her upcoming contract to play in Prague, Czech Republic, and plans to be an in-studio analyst for the NBA season also are factors.

But Cash did practice on Monday. Bird, who returned to Seattle on Sunday, did not participate in Monday's practice. Santos has been practicing with the team since Friday. The Storm is preparing to resume WNBA play against Houston on Thursday at KeyArena.

Bird said her team 'looked good' during the session, and she remained confident the Storm (17-9) will make its fifth consecutive playoff appearance regardless of Jackson's injury. The Storm is a half-game behind San Antonio for the Western Conference lead.

Teams with 20 wins have always advanced to the postseason and the Storm has two games against Atlanta (3-24) and one against Chicago (8-17) remaining in its final eight matchups. The Storm was 3-2 without Jackson before the Olympic break.

Agler said forward Sheryl Swoopes benefited most from the break, able to heal nagging injuries. Agler still hasn't acquired a player to replace Jackson and might have to wait to see how Cash handles her injury to decide which player would help Seattle.

Agler said he would fine and bench Cash because she didn't participate in practice during the break. He's thinking of altering his starting lineup for Thursday because of the changes of the past five weeks.

'It was a shock a moment of 'Wow,' but we're moving on,' center Yolanda Griffith said of Jackson's surgery. 'We're going to miss her. They put this team together to win a championship and the focus is still trying to win a championship whether we have LJ or not.'

Although Bird has to quickly transition back to WNBA play and learn some new sets installed during the break, the boost of winning another gold medal in dominant fashion should help her. She was the starting point guard for Team USA and enjoyed her first experience in Beijing.

'The world has caught up in their first six or seven players, but they haven't caught up with our depth,' Bird said of Team USA. 'China was cool. The people were nice. The weather is kind of weird. There's rain and there's humid rain. I'd take Seattle rain any day.'

Courtesy of www.seattletimes.com


Asjha Jones gets contract extension from Sun - by Eurobasket News
Connecticut Sun signed former UConn standout Asjha Jones (6'2''-F-80, college: Connecticut) to a three-year contract extension. Terms of the deal were not released.

Jones, 28 and in her fifth season with the team, leads the Sun in scoring (16.8) and rebounding (6.2). She has been the high scorer in 16 games this season, including a franchise-record 10 straight from June 16-July 8. Her play helped lead the team to a 16-10 record and first place in the Eastern Conference before the Olympic break.

'I'm just excited knowing that Asjha is going to be here for the next several years,' Sun coach Mike Thibault said. 'What she's done to become a prime time player in this league is terrific. She's done everything you could ask a player to do to become a leader and a go-to player. She's going to be an All-Star for a long, long time. She's a major reason for why we are where we are. Now, people are talking about her being one of the best players in the league.'

Jones was drafted by the Washington Mystics with the fourth overall selection in the 2002 WNBA Draft. She played two seasons in Washington before she was acquired by Connecticut in a three-way deal that also involved Phoenix. The Sun resume their season on Aug. 28 at Indiana (7 p.m.), and return home Aug. 31 at 1 p.m. vs. Seattle.

Courtesy of www.courant.com