Israel is known as the Holy Land and a place rich with history and culture, but what many people don’t know is that it is also home to high level basketball. Since 2000, Israel has been one of the biggest basketball hotbeds in Europe. Maccabi Tel Aviv, Israel’s top team, won Euroleague titles in 2001, 2004, and 2005, and reached the Euroleague title game in 2006 and 2008. They also produced NBA players Anthony Parker, Omri Casspi, Maceo Baston, and Sarunas Jasikevicius, and beat the Toronto Raptors in an exhibition game, 105-103, in 2005. Additionally, many NBA players including Jordan Farmar, Trevor Booker, J.J. Hickson, and Avery Bradley spent the lockout playing in Israel. I caught up with David Pick, a writer for Eurobasket.com covering the Euroleague and Israeli basketball, to talk about the lockout, the Israeli Super League, and LeBron James. Read More »
Last July, Amar’e Stoudemire made waves when he took a trip to Israel to research his Jewish roots. The trip was embraced by Jews everywhere, including myself, as it is not everyday that a 6-9 athletically gifted NBA All-Star declares himself to be a member of the tribe (a colloquial expression used by Jewish people to refer to other Jewish people). So when I saw former University of Florida power forward Alex Tyus tweet before the NBA Draft that he was hosting his Draft party at the UF Hillel, I thought to myself, “Is another 6-9 athletic power forward joining the tribe?” The answer to that question is yes. Read More »
The Florida Gators were one of the premier college basketball programs in the early and mid-2000s, a run that culminated in back-to-back national championships in ’06 and ’07. However, after 2007, the program has struggled somewhat to return to that level. That is, until this past year. One of the players who helped the Gators advance to the Elite Eight was starting power forward Alex Tyus. Tyus averaged 9.1 points and 6.2 rebounds last season, but saved his best performance for the NCAA Tournament with a 19-point, 17-rebound showing against BYU in the Sweet 16. Alex is known for being a high energy guy with lots of athleticism. I caught up with him at the Nets’ draft workouts this week to talk about his senior year, Rowdy Reptiles and the draft process. Read More »
/ Mar 25, 2011 / 2:23 am
Let that boy cook! You know if we didn’t consider ourselves semi-smart, we would say the NCAA did us dirty. Scheduling the two most exciting players in the country at the same time was just a low blow. It didn’t help that both of them had the kitchen burning up and the remotes wearing out … When you think about it, UConn’s seven-point win over San Diego State and Florida’s nine-point overtime win over BYU were really only watchable because of two guys: Kemba Walker and Jimmer Fredette. Everything else was sloppy, filled with turnovers, ugly jumpers, failed final possessions and technicals. The games were close, but take away those two players and we are talking mid-major excitement. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.) Read More »
Experience is priceless in college basketball, which is why the Florida Gators have to be considered a legit threat to make another Final Four run and possibly contend for a national championship in 2010-11.
Florida is returning its entire starting five from last season, a group that won 21 games and earned an NCAA Tournament berth: Erving Walker, Kenny Boynton, Chandler Parsons, Alex Tyus and Vernon Macklin. Read More »
It’s been three years since Florida Gators basketball had their slice of victory pie. After the “Gator Five” — Joakim Noah, Al Horford, Corey Brewer, Taurean Green and Lee Humphrey — took off for the pros, head coach Billy Donovan has been working day and night trying to get his program back to title contention. Read More »
/ May 9, 2010 / 7:12 am
And you thought the first round of the playoffs wasn’t competitive enough. With the Lakers and Magic taking care of business on the road yesterday in their respective Game 3′s, the defending conference champs are each up 3-0 in their series, and with the Suns also up 3-0 on San Antonio, that makes only one series (Cavs/Celtics) that doesn’t feel like it’s already over … For the Jazz, it was the worst kind of loss because they really gave Kobe and Co. their best shot and it still wasn’t good enough. With Kobe pretty quiet in the second half, Ron Artest was carrying L.A.’s offense to start the fourth quarter, scoring their first nine points in the quarter. Read More »
Granted, watching basketball all the time is part of my job, but it still amazes me how many people don’t (or rarely) watch college hoops until the NCAA Tournament. Because of such inexcusable ignoring of America’s best spectator sport (if you ask me), during the Big Dance I usually get peppered with “Who is that guy?” or “Who does [Team X] got?” questions.
Some of them make sense â€” even I can’t say I’ve seen Wofford or UC Santa Barbara play this year â€” but a lot of the players who slip under the mainstream radar don’t deserve the anonymity. After giving your four Players to Watch from the Midwest and South regions yesterday, here’s the West: Read More »
That’s right, the start of the college hoops season is just one week away and you know what that means: it’s time to unleash the mother effing fury! For the past seven months, I’ve been bottling up a vicious mixture of excitement and rage, just waiting for the moment to release my emotions onto the rest of the world. Well that time has come. Your boy Matty D is back to give you a look at the top teams in the country and to separate the champs from the chumps. Read More »