2010 Summer Signings, Part 4
June 19th, 2010

– In Italy, Bucks draft pick Szymon Szewczyk signed a two-year extension with Air Avellino. He ranked second the team in rebounds last year behind Chevon Troutman, was second in points behind Dee Brown, and also managed not to get arrested in a drunken car wreck unlike the other two. Another NBA draft pick signed in Italy, Petteri Koponen, is to remain in Bologna for at least one more season. And ex-NBA player Jumaine Jones is staying with Pepsi Caserta for at least one more season, which really crippled this otherwise infallible post.   – Another ex-NBA draft pick to have signed in Italy is Milovan Rakovic, whose rights are owned by the Magic. Rakovic was one of the best players in the Russian Superleague last year, averaging 15.2 points and 6.4 rebounds in 25 minutes per game for Spartak St Petersburg. He’s cashing in on that and moving to Italy to play for Italian powerhouse Montepaschi Siena. There’s lots of upheaval in Russia at the moment; the Superleague teams have all signed a pact vowing to break away from the current governing body, with whom they are thoroughly disenfranchised, and to begin running operations on their own. Amidst this upheaval, many players have left; Spartak also released James White (14.8/3.7) and Goran Suton (played 94 minutes all season). Additionally, UNICS Kazan have released veteran Lithuanian jump shooter Saulius ┼átombergas, and Lokomotiv Kuban have released their imports James Gist, Andre Owens and Gerald Green. It’s probably fair to say that Green will not be returning to the Dallas Mavericks.   – Not everyone is suffering, though. Khimki have taken advantage of the situation by signing ex-Blazers forward Sergei Monia from cash-strapped rivals Dynamo Moscow, and have also signed ex-Nets guard Zoran Planinic from the other Moscow team, CSKA. CSKA can […]

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Where Are They Now, 2010; Part 65
May 9th, 2010

– Raymond Sykes After going undrafted out of Clemson, Sykes signed a training camp contract with the Phoenix Suns. He had little to no chance of making the team, however, and was waived within a week. Sykes then took his energetic style of play to the D-League and spent the year with the Sioux Falls Skyforce, averaging 10.5 points, 4.7 rebounds, 1.1 blocks and 3.0 fouls in 23.9 minutes per game. His PER was 16.7; over 48 minutes, that equates to a PER of 33.5, which is almost Lebron-like (38.3 PER per 48.)   – Wally Szczerbiak Wally Szczerbiak looks to be done. His contract with the Cavaliers expired last summer without incident, and he has not signed elsewhere since. Szczerbiak was a target of the Denver Nuggets back in November, but he declined their minimum salary contract as he was still recovering from left knee surgery. He also was supposed to work out with the Knicks, but it did not happen for the same reasons. No official announcement about his retirement has been forthcoming, but then again, they rarely do. The PER thing was a joke, by the way.   – Szymon Szewczyk Bucks draft pick Shevcheck is signed with Air Avellino in Italy. Air Avellino have made the news for other reasons this week, but Shev has helped to keep the boat steady. He is averaging 11.0 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in 27 minutes per game; in Avellino’s absolutely must-win game last night versus Angellico Biella, Shevcheck played 41 out of 45 minutes, and totalled 16 points, 12 rebounds and 3 blocks to ensure victory. Szymon Szewczyk was born in Szczecin. This prompts the question; how much is the Z worth in the Polish version of Scrabble?   – Yuta Tabuse Former Suns guard Yuta Tabuse […]

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2009 NBA Summer League round-up: Milwaukee Bucks
July 12th, 2009

– Joe Alexander: If you had expected the Joe Alexander/Scott Skiles marriage to end well for Joe Alexander, then…..well, you’re wrong Alexander is going to be a hollow shell of his former self, destroyed, a broken man, by the time he gets free from Skiles’s leadership. Skiles is a great defensive coach with the permanently contrite face of an “angry-looking man” (a real quote, yet sadly not mine), but if there’s one thing he hates, it’s players who repeatedly make defensive mistakes. And Joe Alexander is a player that repeatedly makes defensive mistakes. John Hammond, do yourself a favour, and trade Alexander while you can still get someone like the calibre of J.J. Hickson for him. Because if you don’t do it now, you’ll only get less later. (It also didn’t help Alexander that he supposedly receive an in-house suspension from his team for digging all up in one of the cheerleaders, which is depressingly against the rules.)   – Paul Delaney: In part three of my exceptionally long draft diary (no one really read parts two and three; I might have to make it about 9,000 words shorter next season), I mentioned how I had seen Robert Vaden of UAB play one game, a game in which he shot 0-17. Well, Paul Delaney was Vaden’s backcourt mate at UAB, and last year he averaged 16.1 ppg to Vaden’s 17.6 ppg, on 9.8 FGA per game to Vaden’s 15.4 FGA per game, on 5.8 FTA per game to Vaden’s 2.9 FTA per game, on 56% shooting to Vaden’s 40% shooting. Indeed, only one other player in UAB’s small rotation shot over 45% – 6’8 junior forward Howard Crawford. Delaney led his team in field goal percentage, steals and assists, while being second in scoring and fourth in rebounds. Yet Vaden […]

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Where Are They Now, 2009; Part 50
March 7th, 2009

– D.J. Strawberry is with Fortitudo Bologna, the same team as GMAC Bologna, but not the same team as La Fortezza Bologna. Can’t stress that enough. Strawberry averages 14.7 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.5 assists in EuroCup play, alongside 13.8 points, 3.5 rebounds and 1.2 assists in the Italian league. Strawberry however is a combined 16 of 76 from the three-point line, confirming once again that his major weakness is still a weakness.   – Brad Stricker has been on and off of the Dakota Wizards roster all year, averaging 11 minutes, 2.6 points, 2.3 rebounds and 2.1 fouls per game. His playing time wasn’t exactly consistent; his last ten games with the Wizards saw him play 5, 4, 3, 5, 2, 2, 8, 30, and 8 minutes respectively. Stricker eventually asked the Wizards for an unconditional release, as he wanted to play for a team closer to his home due to some family issue. He was granted it, and now plays for the Albuquerque Thunderbirds, where he averages 17.6 minutes, 3.6 points, 3.6 fouls, 1.8 rebounds and 1.0 blocks per game.   – Erick Strickland now works for the Mavericks in a capacity that I’m too confused to understand. Here’s Erick himself with an explanation. Did you know that Erick Strickland’s real first name is Demerick? Me neither. Fun fact.   – Rod Strickland is the Director of Basketball Operations for the University of Memphis, while also taking classes there to finish his degree. Ever since his hire in 2006, Memphis have gone on to be slightly brilliant. Coincidence? Maybe. Maybe not. But, since Strickland’s role entails things like organising travel plans, checking on student’s academic scores, and scheduling visits for recruits, it probably is.   – Curtis Sumpter averages 10.8 points and 5.9 rebounds for Chorale de Roanne […]

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