Names for pre-draft Adidas EuroCamp announced

3 Comments

While the 2012 NBA draft may be one of the deepest on record, it is not as deep in European talent as has been there in recent years. But there is still some real talent there.

France’s two guard Evan Fournier is likely a pick in the last third of the first round. There are guys like Tomas Satoransky out of the Czech Republic, Greece’s Kostas Papanikolaou, and Tornike Shengelia out of Georgia who may well go in the second round.

All of them and more — 45 players total — will be at the Adidas EuroCamp in Italy. Plenty of NBA scouts and brass will be headed to Italy after they leave Chicago and the NBA Draft Combine this week. Below is a list of everybody attending EuroCamp year, all trying to make their name. This is the 10th year of the camp and guys like Serge Ibaka and Danilo Galinari and many other NBA stars from Europe came through there.

A few NBA players are coming through it this year as well. PBT will have more from the camp in the coming weeks.

Andrew Albicy, point guard (France)
Boris Barac, power forward (Croatia)
Jonas Bergstedt, center (Denmark)
Nemanja Besovic, center (Serbia)
Jaka Blazic, guard (Slovenia)
Bogdan Bogdanovic, guard (Serbia)
Dusan Cantekin, center (Turkey)
Olek Czyz, forward (Poland)
Daniel Diez, power forward (Spain)
Nihad Djedovic, forward (Bosnia)
Bojan Dubljevic, power forward (Montenegro)
Jaime Fernandez, point guard (Spain)
Evan Fournier, shooting guard (France)
Josep Franch, point guard (Spain)
Rudy Gobert, forward/center (France)
Nikola Ivanovic, point guard (Montenegro)
Nemanja Jaramaz, forward (Serbia)
David Jelinek, shooting guard (Czech Republic)
Ilkan Karaman, forward (Turkey)
Maxi Kleber, forward (Germany)
Artem Klimenko, center (Russia)
Louis Labeyrie, forward/center (France)
Christophe Leonard, forward (France)
Oleksandr Lypovyy, forward (Ukraine)
Michal Michalak, guard (Poland)
Nenad Miljenovic, center (Serbia)
Riccardo Moraschini, shooting guard (Italy)
Kyryl Natyazhko, center (Ukraine)
Devon Van Oostrum, point guard (England)
Kostantinos Papanikolaou, forward (Greece)
Mateusz Ponitka, guard (Poland)
Artem Pustovy, center, (Ukraine)
Klemen Prepelic, point guard (Slovenia)
Bogdon Radosavljevic, center (Germany)
Dovydas Redikas, point guard, (Lithuania)
Sasu Salin, guard (Finland)
Sertac Sanli, forward/center (Turkey)
Zisis Sarikopoulos, center (Greece)
Tomas Satoransky, guard (Czech Republic)
Tornike Shengelia, power forward (Georgia)
Axel Toupane, forward (France)
Izzet Turkyilmaz, center (Turkey)
Edgaras Ulanovas, forward (Lithuania)
Maik Zirbes, center (Germany)
Tomislav Zubcic, power forward (Croatia)

Cavaliers’ Kendrick Perkins not into “all that new stuff” like Chewbacca

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Chewbacca was at Game 3 in Cleveland Saturday. Sitting courtside.

Why? Because growing up on Kashyyyk he played a little hoop and admires LeBron James‘ skill? Because Drake gave him the tickets? Maybe. I mean, it’s not like that was just a clever little publicity stunt for a movie.

After the Cavaliers’ win, Kevin Love decided to make a little joke of it with noted humorist Kendrick Perkins, and it went over as well as expected (with Dave McMenamin of ESPN catching it).

That’s vintage Perkins.

Celtics’ Terry Rozier on Game 3: “We needed to get our butts whooped”

Associated Press
2 Comments

Cleveland dominated Game 3 Saturday night. They played harder, to start. The Cavaliers’ defensive pressure on the ball was better, they were sharper rotating out to shooters and covering passing lanes. Cleveland’s role players stepped up and helped LeBron James.

Boston, meanwhile, wilted in the face of that pressure Saturday, something it has done a few times on the road these playoffs. The Celtics got away from the things that got them to the Eastern Conference Finals. Guard Terry Rozier put it more bluntly, via A. Sherrod Blakely of NBC Sports Boston:

“I feel like we needed this (loss) to get us back … to get us ready for Monday,” Rozier said.

Rozier later added, “We needed to get our butts whipped. Come back to reality and take care of business on Monday.”

Cleveland is a championship team — from LeBron James on down through the core guys, they all have rings. They have been down before, and heading home it was expected they would play with force. Cleveland’s back was against the wall and they responded.

From the Celtics’ perspective, they also got a little too fat and happy and were not ready for what the Cavaliers came with in Game 3.

Now the pressure is on Boston to push back, to get back to their level of execution and do it under pressure. Make the Cavaliers prove the improved defensive effort was not a one-off game. The Celtics must move the ball and play with some pace, then see if the Cavaliers can keep it together in the face of crisp play.

When this series heads back to Boston Wednesday, it will either see the Celtics in control up 3-1, or the series will be a best of three (with the Cavs still having to figure out if they can win on the road). At home, the Cavaliers are going to play with force again and have some depth. We’ll see if Game 3 was enough of a wakeup call for Boston.

PBT Extra: Can Rockets take Game 2 energy, execution on the road?

1 Comment

Houston found its blueprint to beating Golden State in Game 2: Strong defensive pressure on the ball, quick switches and communication on defense, getting out in transition when possible, and starting sets earlier in the shot clock and attacking downhill with James Harden and Chris Paul.

Now can they do that on the road? Against a more focused and sharper Warriors’ team?

That will be the question in the next two games of the Western Conference Finals, and it’s what I discuss in this latest PBT Extra.

Cavaliers cruise past Celtics in Game 3, change complexion of Eastern Conference finals

AP Photo/Tony Dejak
9 Comments

The Cavaliers were heavy favorites over the Celtics entering the Eastern Conference finals. LeBron James has dominated the East for years, and Cleveland appeared to hit its stride in a sweep of the Raptors last round. Boston was shorthanded and inexperienced.

Were the Celtics’ two wins to open the series, as impressive as they were, really enough to override everything else we knew about these teams?

The Cavs walloped Boston in Game 3, 116-86, Saturday. Cleveland now has four of the NBA’s last five 30-point playoff wins – two against the Celtics last year, one over Toronto last round and tonight. (The Cavaliers lost the league’s only other 30-point game between, to the Pacers in the first round.)

Boston still leads the series 2-1, and teams up 2-1 in a best-of-seven series have won it 80% of the time.

But the team up 2-1 is usually the one seen as better entering the series. That isn’t the case here, not with LeBron on the other side. And the leading team usually isn’t so woeful on the road, which will remain a major storyline entering Game 4 Monday in Cleveland.

The Celtics bought themselves margin for error, but they blew a lot of it tonight.

It’d be an oversimplification to say the Cavs just played harder, but they did, and it went along way. They chased loose balls, tightened their defense and moved more off the ball offensively. Cleveland jumped to a 20-4 lead, led by double digits the rest of the way and spent most of the game up by at least 20.

LeBron (27 points, 12 assists, two blocks and two steals) dazzled as a passer and locked in as a defender. He received help from several players:

In a low-resistance effort, Boston didn’t goon up the game at all.

The Cavaliers still have plenty of work ahead to reach their fourth straight NBA Finals, but tonight, they showed a path to advancing. Climbing out of their early series deficit now looks far less intimidating.