Pau Gasol, Spain upset at FIBA tourney; Iverson closer to Memphis?

09.08.09 8 years ago 29 Comments
Pau Gasol

Pau Gasol

Not much happening basketball-wise on this side of the ocean for Labor Day, but in Europe it was all about the FIBA European Championships. And right away there was a huge upset, with Serbia knocking off Spain on the first day. It’s pool play, so Spain isn’t eliminated or anything, but it’s still and alarming loss for a squad that’s a favorite to win the whole thing. In Spain’s defense, Rudy Fernandez didn’t play, and Pau Gasol (9 pts, 7 rebs, 1-8 FT) is dealing with a broken finger on his left hand. (Ricky Rubio had six points and three assists.) Serbia made a big run at the end of the first half and led by 15 at the break, eventually winning by nine. Nenad Kristic led the winners with 17 points and six boards … In other first-day games: Hedo Turkoglu dropped 19 points to lead Turkey past Lithuania; Tony Parker had 19 points (8-12 FT) and Ronny Turiaf added 15 points, 14 boards and three blocks in France’s win over Germany; Pops Mensah-Bonsu put up 18 points for Great Britain, but they lost to Slovenia; Marcin Gortat had 16 points, 10 boards and five blocks in Poland’s win over Bulgaria; Vasileios Spanoulis‘ 17 points led Greece over Macedonia; Israel’s Lior Eliyahu, an NBA Draft pick in ’06 whose rights are owned by the Rockets, dropped 31 points in his team’s loss to Croatia; and Kelly McCarty, an American-born naturalized Russian who literally played five minutes with the Nuggets back in ’99, put up 24 points and nine boards in Russia’s win over Latvia … Final note from the FIBA Americas tourney that wrapped up over the weekend: Luis Scola was named MVP for averaging 23 points and 6.8 boards while leading Argentina to the bronze medal … After meeting with the Grizzlies front office, Allen Iverson is reportedly close to agreeing on a one-year deal that could be announced as early as today. All of a sudden, that Grizzlies/Pistons season opening matchup on Oct. 28 becomes infinitely more interesting. (Two games later, the Grizzlies go to Denver for another meeting with a former A.I. team, and later in November a trip to Philly completes the one-month revenge tour) … Following in the footsteps of the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury and L.A. Sparks, the New Jersey Nets have sold ad space on their practice jerseys. Seriously. PNY Technologies will slap its name on the front of the practice jerseys of Devin Harris and Brook Lopez and crew. Cute idea, but what exactly does the company get out of this? NBA practices are mostly closed to the media until the last 20 minutes, so at most you’ll catch the logo every now and then during interviews taped after practice. PNY also bought naming rights to the practice facility, which makes more sense … When he gets inducted into the Hall of Fame this week, Michael Jordan will have David Thompson introduce him. At first that seems kind of random, but it’s actually almost perfect. We can appreciate that Mike appreciates those who paved the way for him, and Thompson was one of the original masters of the above-the-rim game that initially made MJ famous … Question to think about for about 10 years: When Kobe goes into the Hall, who should introduce him? What about when Shaq gets inducted? If we had to guess now, we’d go with Magic for Kobe and the Fu-Schnickens for Shaq … We’re out like Chip Fu …

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