This is my second edition of the international players blog. This may be a more talented group of players, so look for higher picks and better talents.
Ricky Rubio: (This ones for you G.O.A.T.)
NBA Position: Point Guard (PG)
Int Team: DKV Joventut
Hometown: Barcelona, Spain
Quick Notes: Rubio will have no trouble adjusting to the speed of NBA action because of his high basketball IQ. He plays so uncanny, almost like he is a step ahead of everyone else. His timing is almost identical to Larry Bird's. His style of play is extremely relaxed and confident because the game comes so easily to him. It seems like he does it without breaking a sweat. He is a big star at a young age, and already shows signs of having a big ego. His great hustle on defense can change the complexion of the whole game. Ricky likes to use his body to post up his defender on the block. He is used to using his gear-shift very quickly every time a defender falls asleep on him. Don't be surprised if he leads the NBA in assists one time or another.
NBA Similarity: Steve Nash
Projected: Top 5 2009 NBA Draft
NBA Postion: Point Guard (PG)
Int Team: Cholet
Hometown: Pointe-à-Pitre, Guadeloupe
Quick Notes: Rodrigue can show a fearless attitude and competitive nature when playing against opponents. He has an extremely long wingspan, 6-10, so he can be effective on both ends of the ball. He is ann excellent ball handler and passer who appers to be on a steep learning curve because he started playing organized basketball late. His cockiness and confindence about himself is what you don't find much in European players.
NBA Similarity: Rajon Rondo
Projected: Mid 1st Round 2009 NBA Draft
NBA Postion: Power Forward/Center (PF/C)
Int Team: HTV Hyères-Toulon
Hometown: Saint Étienne, France
Quick Notes: He is extraordinarily long and an athletic big man. He consists of excellent hands around the bucket. He understands the game very well and is a great shot blocker. Don't be surprised to see him sink a jumper. Alexis has good strength and balance considering how skinny he is. The good thing about him is he doesn't get frustrated easily. He makes good basketball decisions passing the ball and has good vision on the court. To be a great post player in the NBA, he needs to gain a few pounds though.
NBA Similarity: Jonathan Bender
Projected: Late 1st Round 2009 NBA Draft
NBA Position: Center (C)
Int Team: BC Kyiv
Hometown: Odessa, Ukraine
Quick Notes: Kravtsov is considered to be one of the best prospects in Europe with great physical potential as a big man. He plays with courage and desire. He is one of the few true centers that have come from Europe. His instincts for the game and ability to play at a high level is rapidly improving. Could possibly average 10 rebounds per game in the NBA if given the minutes. His foot speed and agility is excellent for a player his size. He is not afraid to use his solid touch around the basket using lefty hooks and jumpers. This center is one that is defensive minded.
NBA Similarity: Kyrylo Fesenko
Projected: Early 2nd Round 2009 NBA Draft
NBA Postion: Small Forward (SF)
Int Team: VEF Riga
Hometown: Igevsk, Russia
Quick Notes: N/A
NBA Similarity: Yaroslav Korolev
Projected: Mid 2nd Round 2009 NBA Draft
NBA Postion: PF/C
Int Team: VEF Riga
Hometown: Talsi, Latvia
Quick Notes: N/A
NBA Similarity: N/A
Projected: Late 2nd Round 2009 NBA Draft
NBA Postion: Point Guard
Int Team: Buducnost Podgorica
Quick Notes: Nenad has grow into one of the top PG prospects coming from Europe. He is a tough nosed Serbian PG with good size. In Europe, you won't find better footspeed than him. He contains a great package of skills. Can play with desire, intensity, and displays a good level of basketball understanding. He has great ballhandling for an impressive player like him. He creates well and can shoot well off the dribble when faced with a 1-on-1 situation. He's not affraid to take the ball inside with the big guys and get fouled. His leadership is outstanding.
NBA Similarity: Earl Watson
Projected: Late 2nd Round 2009 NBA Draft (Acctually, last pick of the draft.)