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Author Topic: ¶ Basketball Professional Players News & In Search • Noticias y Bolsa de Trabajo de Jugadores del Baloncesto Profesional  (Read 559679 times)
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« Reply #39 on: Jan 21, 2013, 05:56:21 PM »

Basketball Professional Players News & In Search • Noticias y Bolsa de Trabajo de Jugadores del Baloncesto Profesional

Following European adventure, PJ Tucker rises for Suns

The U.S. Army used to advertise itself as a nice way to see the world.

Indeed, Anthony “P.J.” Tucker’s world travels started that way. His father was a soldier and the family transferred to Germany shortly after he was born. But he decided later that basketball was a better option to get the pages of his passport stamped.

Now, after playing with seven teams in six countries over five years, Tucker and his well-worn passport are back in the USA and NBA with the Phoenix Suns.

The 27-year-old never viewed success overseas as his way back to the world’s pinnacle league. The money in Europe was good and he enjoyed the variety of places he got to call, albeit temporary, home.

"I didn’t even think about coming back; it was never on my mind," said Tucker.

"I won three championships and three MVPs. I was one of the top players in Europe so I was happy with my career and how it was going. Coming back wasn’t a priority of mine."

Leaving the University of Texas behind - where he was named Big 12 Player of the Year an All-American, and a John Wooden Award finalist - the 1.98m native of Raleigh, North Carolina headed to Canada as the Toronto Raptors second round pick in the 2006 NBA Draft.

He bounced between the Raptors and their D-League affiliate in Colorado, getting playing time in only 17 games for the NBA franchise that waived him in March 2007.

After playing in that year's summer league with the Cleveland Cavaliers, Tucker decided his hoop fortunes lay elsewhere.

He made pilgrimage to the promised land where he was named league MVP on the way to lifting Hapoel Holon to the Israeli Ligat championship, breaking Maccabi Tel Aviv’s 14 year reign at the top.

Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks and P.J. Tucker #17 of the Phoenix Suns jockey for position at Madison Square Garden on December 2, 2012 in New York City. The Knicks defeated the Suns 106-99.
Photograph: Bruce Bennett Source: Getty Images North America

"Israel was nice," says Tucker of his time there. "I really liked Israel. Jerusalem was nice but the beaches, they have everything. You can have fun there."

Jeff Horowitz, who played with Tucker at Holon recalled his team-mate's positive mindset.

"P.J. was one of the most adaptable players I have ever played with," he said. "He truly enjoyed everywhere he played. He just wanted to maximize his time and experiences overseas."

But pro basketball is a business and combined with Tucker’s wandering spirit, he moved on.

A hot commodity, he then took a newly-promoted BC Donetsk team to a third-place finish in the 2008-2009 Ukrainian Basketball Super League, finishing as the league’s leading scorer despite suffering a season-ending knee injury. He re-upped for the following season but the team went bankrupt.

So Tucker returned to Israel in March 2010 playing for Bnei Herzliya (then Bnei Hasharon) until the end of the season where they made the State Cup final.

In August 2010, he signed with Aris BC in Greece but didn’t finish the season. There was a short stop in Italy where he played briefly for Sutor Basket Montegranaro but, after a 2011 summer stint with Quebadrillas Pirates in Puerto Rico, he moved on to Germany’s Brose Baskets Bamberg where he was named Finals MVP as they won the 2011-2012 German National Championship.

With Germany conquered, Tucker was on his way to play for Spartak St Petersburg in Russia when the Phoenix Suns came calling.
A Las Vegas League summer gig morphed into a full-time offer and Tucker’s NBA career resumed. It surprised him as well.

"I was ready to go (to Russia)," he recalled.

"I had signed in May to go with Spartak so I wasn’t interested in coming back."

But he did.

Phoenix may not have the beaches but Tucker is pleased that the warm Arizona weather is similar to what he enjoyed in Israel.

About midway through the season, Tucker has already played twice as many games as his first NBA go-round and has become a vital part of the Suns rotation.

The accolades of Europe – MVP and All-Star awards as well as scoring titles – may not follow but the appreciation of those who really matter, his coaches and teammates is there.

"I kept him on the team because he's a guy that gives you energy and does a lot of things for you," said Suns head coach Alvin Gentry. "You can never look at the box score and judge how he’s played in the game."

Suns captain Jared Dudley seconds his coach's take on Tucker.

"He adds toughness, especially on defense. He gets you extra possessions with offensive rebounds. Every team needs someone like that; he's our energy guy. He guards their best player. He works hard and knows what he has to do and works hard to get it done," he said.

And that suits Tucker just fine.

"Working hard. That’s right up my alley. That’s what I do," he said with a smile.


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« Reply #38 on: Oct 20, 2012, 08:07:45 PM »

Basketball Professional Players News & In Search • Noticias y Bolsa de Trabajo de Jugadores del Baloncesto Profesional


First I want to thank you for taking time out to read this message.

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Dowling College is a Division II school in Long Island. (East Coast Conference) I have many personal basketball achievements that I have attached to this email, along with my resume.

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Since college I have increased my skills and I am a better player now then I was in College. I am eager to reach my pinnacle and play at the highest level possible.

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Once again I want to thank you for taking time out to read this and watch the video and I hope you find interest and want to invest in me. Thank you!

See more info at!__john-merchant

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« Reply #37 on: Jun 27, 2012, 06:20:20 PM »

Basketball Professional Players News & In Search • Noticias y Bolsa de Trabajo de Jugadores del Baloncesto Profesional

LeBron finally takes care of business

He came, he saw and after stumbling in the NBA Finals before, he conquered.

LeBron James can breathe a sigh of relief because at long last, he is an NBA champion.

That was assured after Miami’s 121-106 Game 6 wins in the NBA Finals against Oklahoma City on Thursday night.

Let’s see here, NBA MVP?


Olympic gold medal?


NBA title?


A basketball phenomenon before he played a professional game, the player that signed a seven-year endorsement deal with a certain shoe and apparel company straight out of high school worth $90million , can say he's done it all.

Michael Jordan had to wait seven years before he won a title with the Chicago Bulls.

LeBron James, now 27, had to wait nine years for his.

From an international basketball perspective, King James' finest hour came in Beijing.

And that is going to be hard to top in London.

The USA had Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard and Dwyane Wade and numerous other superstars in their team, but James had a presence that was more commanding than all of them.

No team really came close to the USA in 2008 until they faced Spain for the second time, the gold-medal clash.

The game ranks as one of the best ever played at an Olympics.

The Americans won 118-107, although the contest was much closer than the score indicated.

After breezing through the Preliminary Round and romping to big wins in the Quarter-Finals and Semi-Finals, the United States had to pull out all stops to deny Spain.

James had 14 points, six rebounds, three assists and three steals in that game.

You know what he’s like in action, when he’s playing in the NBA?

He’s the same LeBron with Team USA.

What stands out most about James on the court is the power in his game.

You see this when he’s in the open floor and especially when he’s flying towards the basket with the ball.

One has to be a brave man to try and block a LeBron James dunk.

James’ most commanding performance at the 2008 Olympics, though, came in the press conference after the Americans’ gold-medal win.

He went so far as to tell his teammates, including Wade, where to sit before the assembled media began peppering the players with questions.

James was the unofficial spokesman for that USA team that day, not shy about answering questions or telling the world about the accomplishment of the team and how everyone had pulled together.

He also had kind words for Spain.

The respect that Team USA coach Mike Krzyzewski had for James grew at the Beijing Games.

On Thursday, Coach K spoke about his the Team USA leader.

Coach K, a university coach and therefore a teacher, understood that even with all the money in the world, and the individual accolades and the gold from Beijing that James had lacked fulfillment because he’d yet to win that NBA crown.

"I'm proud of LeBron and where he's at right now, and I do think that when you're that great a player, that great a talent, that you learn openly," Krzyzewski said.

"You don't go learn in private. You're out there while you're learning, and while you're learning, you're going to be criticized for the things that you're in the process of learning. ...

“There's some things you cannot learn unless you're in that moment. Like, you can't rehearse it.

"You can't feel it until you're in the moment of a finals, a gold medal game, a seventh game, a national championship. He's been in two of those moments, and I think he's shown in this series that he's learned from those moments."

After pouring in 26 points, handing out 13 assists and grabbing 11 rebounds in Game 5, James was named the NBA Finals MVP.

He deserved the title and the award.

Now USA fans and the rest of the world are in for another treat.

LeBron James, no doubt after giving countless interviews and taking a well-deserved holiday somewhere, will finally turn his attention the Olympics.

By Jeff TAYLOR from FIBA

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« Reply #36 on: Jun 23, 2012, 09:38:37 PM »

Basketball Professional Players • Jugadores del Baloncesto Profesional

Leo’s not done yet

Leo Gutierrez hasn't played in the bright lights of the NBA like some of his countrymen.

Luis Scola, Manu Ginobili, Fabricio Oberto, Carlos Delfino, Andres Nocioni, Walter Herrmann, Pepe Sanchez and Ruben Wolkowisky are all Argentinians that have had their time in 'The League'.

But special basketball careers are not exclusive to the NBA and Gutierrez, whose nickname is 'Cabeza' (Spanish for head) is proof of that.

His is a household name in places like Cordoba, Mar del Plata and Buenos Aires, too.

Gutierrez is, quite frankly, the stuff of legend in Argentina and for different reasons.

Turn the clock back to December, 2010, when the 2.01m sharpshooting forward scored 48 points in a game for Peñarol against Boca Juniors.

In that game, Gutierrez, who was 32 at the time, hit a Liga Nacional record 15 three-pointers.

He surpassed the 13 made by Leo Zanassi in the 1996-97 campaign.

"You don't look for records,” he said.

“It just happens.”

Two years before that, Gutierrez had spent most of his time on the bench at the Olympics in China when the coach at the time, Sergio Hernandez, needed him in a big way.

He called on Gutierrez in the Bronze Medal Game against Lithuania with Ginobili and Nocioni both injured and unavailable.

The South Americans trailed 27-26 nearly three minutes into the second quarter when Gutierrez came off the bench and nailed two momentum-changing three-balls in a row.

Argentina went on to beat the Baltic side, 87-75, and celebrated as if they’d won gold.

"Many people don't know Leo but he has been very successful in our country, winning league titles, earning MVPs, he has been our man there,” Scola told everyone after.

"He was ready for the big shot."

There was also the time in March, two years before.

Argentina were gearing up for the 2006 FIBA World Championship in Japan.

They had beaten the United States in 2002 on the way to the Final in Indianapolis and again in 2004 in the Semi-Finals of the Olympics in Greece.

Gutierrez endeared himself to many Argentinians when he spoke about the American team, saying the version at the time bore no semblance to the Dream Team in Barcelona that the world had fallen in love with.

"We do not have to respect them anymore,” Gutierrez said.

“We do not play against them to take photos - never again."

Only recently, Gutierrez led Peñarol to the Argentina league title with a championship series victory over rivals Obras Sanitarias.

His young teammate, Facundo Campazzo, was named MVP of the Finals but the 21-year-old said afterwards: "I'm not interested in the award.

"For me, the best player is Leo. He gives my game more power on the court and he gives me a lot of advice off the court.

"He's a winner that is worth all the gold in the world."

How special is Leo Gutierrez?

That Liga Nacional championship for the Marcos Juarez-born player - who turned 34 in May - was the ninth of his career.

The latest title was one of the most significant because last year, Gutierrez had an arrhythmia problem.

The veteran had a heart operation which prevented him from playing at the FIBA Americas Championship in Mar del Plata.

The time off the court, perhaps, made Gutierrez love the game more.

The story of his career is still being written.

On Thursday, Argentina coach Julio Lamas named Gutierrez in the 15-man squad for the London Games.

By Jeff TAYLOR from FIBA

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Posts: 200

« Reply #35 on: Jun 15, 2012, 08:29:59 PM »

Basketball Professional Players • Jugadores del Baloncesto Profesional

Greece’s rising star

For someone still a couple of months shy of his 22nd birthday, Kostas Papanikolaou already owns a curriculum vitae that many players can only dream about.

Every year, he’s reaching finals and often he’s winning them.

Consider what Papanikolaou has achieved already.

At the 2007 U18 European Championship, he captured a silver medal and in the same age group the following year in his own country, he helped the Greeks capture gold.

Next, he played two years at the U20 European Championships and in 2009, Papanikolaou and Greece again played at home, this time in Rhodes, and won the gold medal.

The following year in Austria, France edged the Greeks in the title game.

It’s not often that a player leaves the youth ranks and immediately takes a prominent role in the senior team, but Papanikolaou did last year at the EuroBasket in Lithuania.

After impressing for Olympiacos, Ilias Zourous drafted the forward into his squad and Papanikolaou rewarded him with one steady display after another, first in Alytus and then in Vilnius.

Papanikolaou and the Greeks then moved on to Kaunas and accomplished their pre-tournament aim of a top-six finish to earn a trip to the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament (OQT) for the second consecutive time.

After pushing France very hard in the Quarter-Finals before falling, 64-56, the Greeks rebounded with an 87-77 victory over Serbia, who are led by Papanikolaou’s Olympiacos coach, Dusan Ivkovic.

That triumph over the Serbians punched the Greeks’ ticket to the OQT.

Now, Papanikolaou has just completed a season in which he not only won a Turkish Airlines Euroleague crown with Olympiacos, something they achieved despite trailing CSKA Moscow by 19 points late in the third quarter, but he also celebrated a Greek league title after the Reds’ 3-2 series win against giants Panathinaikos.

The season could hardly have been any better.

Now, those three letters that are often associated with promising young players – N-B-A – are often mentioned in the same breath with Papanikolaou.

"The NBA is on my mind,” he admitted.

“I want to play in premier league in the world.

“It's a dream that one day should become a reality.

“I don’t mean that I want to go this year.

“There is no need to do something in a hurry (because) I have more time in front of me…”

Papanikolaou is working on his legend in Greece.

“Besides, I have a contract with Olympiacos. And I want to stay…” he said.

There could not be a better environment for Papanikolaou to learn in, and continue to win, than at Olympiacos.

He was just one of several youngsters to play a significant role in the Olympiacos success story this year.

The club’s future is bright.

Far more pressing is the OQT in Caracas, Venezuela.

He’s already shifted his focus to Greece’s national team.

"Participation in the Olympic Games is another big dream for an athlete,” he said.

“When you have such a challenge ahead, you’re not thinking about anything else.”

The adrenaline is already flowing.

Papanikolaou has seen his country compete in the big tournaments the past several years, including the last couple of Olympics.

He wants to experience that for himself.

“There is fatigue as we have had very little time to rest, but never mind,” he said in remarks to the Greek media.

“The national team awaits us and we must give everything.

“Our work in the pre-Olympic is difficult, but we must do everything to qualify in London.”

A word to the wise – don’t bet against Papanikolaou making it.

By Jeff TAYLOR from FIBA

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