Bo McCalebb was noticeably slowed by a wobbly ankle against Cantu, who dominated former number one in these very rankings, Fenerbahe Ulker, by a score of 82-58. That was good enough to give Cantu the big bump and yank the rug out from under the Turks.
For now, at least. If Bo is healthy and Mike Batiste can figure out how to consistently contribute in the offense—his best bet might be a text to Coach Simone Pianigiani: “hey coach its mike. never really played pf before at pana. cool if i switch back to c? pf kinda suxxx. thx l8rz.”—I still like Fenerbahce to win the whole darn thing.
But this is the regular season, and Barcelona dominates the regular season. After a rash of rushed releases and iffy acquisitions in the paint (Ante Tomic and Nathan Jawai in, Boni N’Dong, Fran Vazquez and Kosta Perovic out), the Catalan superpowers are back to prove that they’ll be just fine, thanks.
This week, Barca get their debut atop the big board after taking out (then) fellow undefeated CSKA Moscow last week behind 21 points from 2007-08 NBA All-Rookie Second Teamer, Juan Carlos Navarro.
As for last year’s record-setting 62.1 opponents’ PPG, they might not get there this season. After all, they’re a full decimal behind (62.2).