Have you seen Chris Sheridan’s preseason 2013-14 power rankings yet? Here they are. Go do that.
France has won the EuroBasket title for the first time in its history, defeating Lithuania 80-66 today.
Spurs star Tony Parker led his country to the EuroBasket championship and won tournament MVP for France after 12 points and 3 assists in the game.
Blazers forward Nicolas Batum led France in scoring with 17 points and added 6 boards while Spurs forward Boris Diaw added 15 for the winners.
Former Raptors forward Linas Kleiza led Lithuania with 20 points, Mantas Kalnietis added 19 points in a losing cause.
Parker is now just nine points away from passing Greece’s Nikos Galis as the all-time EuroBasket scoring leader, a goal he will surely accomplish at the next tournament.
The title is significant for France, who fell to Spain several times in recent years. France took down their Spanish rivals in an overtime victory on Friday. The French club were in the tournament for a record 36th year.
NBA veterans Manu Ginobili and Pau Gasol sent out their congratulations via Twitter.
— Manu Ginobili (@manuginobili) September 22, 2013
Felicidades a Francia por ganar su primer Europeo. Congrats to France for winning their 1st European Championship.
— Pau Gasol (@paugasol) September 22, 2013
France features six NBA players on its roster. Led by Parker, the team went into the crowd after the game to celebrate with fans.
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Brett Poirier is a contributor to Sheridan Hoops. Follow @BrettNBA
Tweet of the Night: Batum, Rubio, Gasol and others react to EuroBasket semi-finals between Spain and France
France boasted a lineup of Tony Parker, Nicolas Batum, Boris Diaw, Alexis Ajinca and Mickael Gelabale. Spain also had plenty of familiar names like Marc Gasol, Ricky Rubio, Jose Calderon, Rudy Fernandez and Victor Claver. Unfortunately for Spain, they were missing two key players in Pau Gasol and Juan Carlos Navarro.
The quarterfinal round of EuroBasket ’13 began Wednesday.
With only six available spaces for the 2014 World Cup, seven of the remaining eight teams are battling it out to make it to the Spain next year.
It’s going to be an interesting season for the Los Angeles Lakers. It is a time of obvious transition, but for a team that’s accustomed to being on top, it’s going to be much different than that.
After a season in which they struggled to simply reach the playoffs, things might be even more frustrating for the Lakers in 2014. So before we dive into the upcoming season, a quick look at all the turmoil from a season ago should help make the picture a little clearer.
In 2012-13 the Lakers had some issues. They fired a coach, had half their team miss serious time due to injuries, saw their longtime owner pass away and ultimately got swept in four blowout games against the eventual Western Conference champions in the first round.
Then, to top it all off, they lost their future cornerstone, Dwight Howard, to the Houston Rockets. Needless to say, it wasn’t a very good season.
Now things are even more uncertain.