In the kickoff of this year’s EuroBasket tournament, a mild concern arose for the Nets: second-year forward Bojan Bogdanovic suffered a concussion during Croatia’s 80-73 win over Slovenia. David Pick reports that he will be evaluated on a day-to-day basis and will miss the Croatian team’s next game, against Greece on Sunday.
There are still three weeks to go before the Nets begin training camp, and hopefully Bogdanovic will be healthy enough to be fully cleared to play by then.
No Timofey Mozgov, who underwent knee surgery in early July.
No Sasha Kaun, who just signed with the Cavaliers
No Sergey Karasev, who dislocated his patella and tore his MCL in March.
Not even Alexey Shved, the former Knick who is suffering from back pain.
Russia announced its roster for EuroBasket, and it doesn’t include a single NBA player. The team:
- Semen Antonov
- Evgeny Baburin
- Andrei Desiatnikov
- Vitaly Fridzon
- Dmitry Khvostov
- Nikita Kurbanov
- Sergey Monya
- Ruslan Pateev
- Anton Ponkrashov
- Andrey Vorontsevich
- Egor Vyaltsev
- Andrey Zubkov
Andrei Kirilenko has his work cut out for him as president of the Russian Basketball Federation. This program was in jeopardy of not even competing in EuroBasket. There are deep problems.
But the short term doesn’t look much brighter. It’s hard to see this barren roster finishing in the top seven of EuroBasket and qualifying for the 2016 Olympics (top two) or Olympic Qualifying Tournament (third through seventh).
At least this is good news for Cleveland, which won’t expose two of its players to injury risk in the tournament.
During the first quarter of a game between Italy and Georgia on Friday, Andrea Bargnani suffered a left ankle injury. He left the game and underwent an MRI. According to Sportando, the injury isn’t serious and won’t prevent him from playing for the Italian national team at next month’s EuroBasket tournament:
Andrea Bargnani’s ankle injury is not serious, according to sources. The Italian big man left the game against Georgia early in first half and did not return. Bargnani will regularly play at Eurobasket with Italian National Team.
Bargnani, who signed a minimum deal with the Nets in July after two disappointing years with the Knicks, hasn’t been able to stay healthy for several years. The last time he played more than 60 games in a season was 2010-11, and he played just 29 last year in New York. The Nets won’t need to rely on him for big minutes, having re-signed Brook Lopez and Thaddeus Young and added Thomas Robinson.
Last season, the Brooklyn Nets were 24th in the NBA in pace (possessions per game) under old-school coach Lionel Hollins. Before than Hollins had been in Memphis and when he took them over for the 2009-10 season they were a top 10 team in pace, but by the time he was let go they were dead last in the league. He’s not seen as a running coach.
But the Nets are going to run this year if you ask Thaddeus Young.
Young was on SiriusXM NBA Radio and talked about the Nets playing faster this season under Hollins.
Look at the Brooklyn Nets likely starting five — Jarrett Jack, Bojan Bogdanovic, Joe Johnson, Thaddeus Young, Brook Lopez — and you see a group that can get out and run. Reserves such as Shane Larkin, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, and even Andrea Bargnani (sprinting to the arc) would love to play more in transition. They are not going to be the Warriors, but the Nets don’t need to be slow.
But we’ll see what Hollins has in store for them. If he wants to pound it in to Lopez in the post or at the elbow, things will not be fast.
The Nets are going to count on Bojan Bogdanovic this season, he likely starts on the wing next to Joe Johnson and will get heavy minutes.
Part of Bogdanovic’s off-season program is to play in EuroBasket with his native Bosnia and Herzegovina (along with fellow NBA players Jusuf Nurkic and Mirza Teletovic). But playing in real games means an increased injury risk and that befell the Nets two guard.
It’s nothing serious, he tweeted.
This is not enough for the Nets to pull an Alexis Ajinca, but Brooklyn will be watching. The injury shouldn’t linger into training camp if he doesn’t aggravate it.
Bosnia and Herzegovina open EuroBasket play Sept. 5 against Poland. Bogdanovic and his teammates are expected to have a tough time advancing out of the round robin play to the knockout tournament, they are in a group with France and Russia but more realistically would need to beat Finland or Israel to advance.