Tuesday, September 11, 2007

This is just making the FIBA America's look like it was a Canadian high school basketball tournament

"Bring it on Jerry Sloan"

Bye bye Portugal. Welcome to the elite 8 Greece. With a 85-67 victory, Greece has moved on to the quarter finals. Portugal now heads home. Sorry but I am not that suprised, even though Potugal got a few victories, every game they lost was not even close. A 26 point lose in the opener vs Spain, a 12 point lose to Croatia, 13 point lose to Russia and now todays 18 point lose. Although now it's time for me to give some love to Greece. Seems that Greece is the defending Eruobasket Champions, having won it in 2005. Lithuania won the 2003 version. So then, if they are defending champs, why have I not seen much from this Greek team? They lost to Russia and had an 18 point lose to Spain so far. But part of the troubles they might be having relates to the lose of forward Antonis Fotsis who broke a finger just before the tournament started. Fotsis is a big contributor for the team, especially on the boards. Greece in these Euro's is near the bottom when it comes to rebounds. Fotsis holds the Euroleague record for most boards in a game with 24. Yeah...he might have helped if he was playing. I am also custom to give some more respect to teams with NBA players. The top teams all have NBA players on their roster except for Greece. I am not saying you need NBA players, but this is just another reason that Greece has gone under my radar so far. But now that they are in the final 8, and now that I have found out that they are the defending champions, I will give them some more respect. Although I still don't expect them to win it this year.

Who else is in the final 8? How about Andrei Kirilenko and his Russian team. You wonder why I give more respect to teams with NBA players? Well how about a solid 6 for 13 shooting for 20 points overall, 8 boards, 3 assists, 2 steals and a block. And this from a guy who was seen as a disappointment last season. Croatia on the other hand must have felt that beating Spain was good enough, as they now have lost the past 3 games. Here is the really confusing part for me, they lost all the qualifying games, yet they are moving on to the final 8. Seriously they need to change this set-up.

Israel did have a lead on Spain for most of the first half, but I think Spain was just toying with them. Spain wins big with a 99-73 victory and here is some good news. Calderon had a nice 15 point game. Only 2 assists but no one on the team gets any assists for whatever reason. If someone knows why, please let me know. Garbo dropped 4 from long range to give him 12 points. And Pau Gasol, good lord, a nice 10 for 13 shooting, 7 boards, an assist and a steal. 26 points all together. Gasol's Memphis Grizzly teammate Juan Carlos Navarro did not play today. So far in this tournament, Spain has looked alright I guess, but I figured they were the favorites going in based on the World Championship last year. I still think they have a solid chance at winning it all, but I now feel the same way about a few other teams as well.

So as I mentioned, tomorrow we got the big battle of the undefeated's as Slovenia takes on Lithuania. France vs Turkey in a game where Turkey is already out and France is already in. And here is another nice one, with Italy vs. Germany elimination game. Disco Dirk Nowitzki vs Andrea Bargnani. Loser is out. Winner moves on. The way I look at it, the more games the better for Bargnani. Us Raptor fans want a guy ready to kick some ass this year, and every ounce of experience he can get is going to help out this season. Of course, Italy has not looked good as of yet, so I have a feeling that we are going to see a Dirk 35 point game leading Germany to the W. I have been told in the feedback section that Italy plays a much slower game then the Raps which could be leading to the lower then average numbers we are getting from Bargnani, but I will discuss this tomorrow if they lose.

Until tomorrow

1 comment:

sager said...

FIBA scorekeepers just have a different idea of what's an assist... they are much more conservative with awarding them. It can probably be assumed 3 assists in a FIBA game is 6 in North America.