Eurobasket (FIBA Europe): Turkey suffered a surprising loss to Poland today, 84-83. Ersan Ilyasova scored 14 points and grabbed 4 rebounds (all offensive), but also allowed the game-winner for Poland. With the game tied at 75, Ersan made a pretty drive to the hoop and drew a foul. He hit both free throws, then got a tip-in on the next possession to help Turkey to a 79-75 lead. But Poland fought back. Trailing by 1 with 20 seconds left, Poland’s Dardan Derisha (game-high 21 points) faked a dribble-drive. Ilyasova bit on the move awkwardly, and Derisha, who stands 4 inches shorter than Ersan, hit a step-back 19-footer for the game’s decisive basket.
Turkey now stands at 2-2 for the tournament and their status for advancing hinges on one final round of games for Group A. They hold an edge over Poland, also 2-2, in the tiebreaking category of point margin.
In four games of group play, Ilyasova has scored 11.0 points per game on 44% shooting, while hauling in 4.3 rebounds in just under 25 minutes per game.
FIBA Americas: Carlos Delfino and Argentina emerged from the first round as the only undefeated team (4-0). Fueled by NBA star Manu Ginobili and Luis Scola, the tourney-favorite Argentines rolled to huge wins in their first two games over Paraguay and Uruguay. In the next game, facing top challenger Puerto Rico, who are led by J.J. Barea and Carlos Arroyo, Argentina won by 7. Delfino scored 14 points in this most important game of the initial round. For the tournament, Carlos has averaged 12 points (14/31 FG), 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2.3 steals in 3 games of action. He missed the first game with tendinitis in his right foot.
Now Argentina advances to the quarterfinal group. They face games in four consecutive days, beginning tomorrow (games begin at 4:00 PM CDT). The top four finishers in the standings move on to the semifinals.
Sep. 5: Canada vs. Argentina
Sep. 6: Argentina vs. Venezuela
Sep. 7: Brazil vs. Argentina
Sep. 8: Argentina vs. Dominican Republic
‘Lockout League’: (h/t to Frank Madden and his must-follow @BrewHoop Twitter account)
Howard Beck of the New York times reported yesterday that a league consisting of 40 players, including the Bucks’ Stephen Jackson, is set to tip off in Las Vegas. The venture begins Sept. 12 — as a means of training players in the absence of formal team workouts — and ends two weeks later with a championship game. The Impact Basketball Competitive Training Series also plans to sell tickets, keep stats, and perhaps most interestingly, repeat this exercise as needed should the lockout continue. Beck also tweeted that league has sought out Brandon Jennings as a participant. Jennings was also the subject of a feature today in the Boston Globe. He plans on winning with Jackson in the fold. What better place to start than Vegas?