Two players with connections to the New York Knicks competed in the first day EuroBasket group stage on Thursday. Neither went home happy.
Mindaugas Kuzminskas’ Lithuanian team lost 79-77 to Georgia in Tel Aviv. Looking at their respective rosters, I’d probably say this was an upset.
The Kuz played 27 minutes and dropped 18 points on 7-16 from the field and 3-8 from deep. He had 7 rebounds, an assist and a steal, as well. Unfortunately, he also got worked by former Net Tornike Shengelia, who led all scorers with 29. Not the best start to the tourney, Cheese.
Here are the highlights:
Summer League big man Louis Labeyrie and his French team played Finland in Helsinki. They lost 86-84 to the Fins, who were sparked by a 22 point, 7 rebound and 1 block performance by 2017 lottery pick and current Chicago Bull, Lauri Markkanen. Thankfully Markkanen was picked one spot before—not after—Frank Ntilikina, or Knicks fans would be hearing even more insanely premature BUSSSSSSSSSSSSSSST talk.
Labeyrie grabbed 6 boards and had a block and a steal, but scored just 6 points in 25 minutes of game time. People did seem to love his defense, though, which is great news!
(He just said the defense nice).
Here are the highlights of that game:
Today was cool or whatever but Friday is the big day. Kristaps Porzingis and Latvia play Serbia at 10 AM ET and Willy Hernangómez’s Spanish side play Montenegro at 10:45 AM ET. Serbia and Montenegro used to be one country, so if someone in a coma since 2006 were to suddenly wake up and demand to watch some European basketball, they’d be hilariously confused. Only I will find that joke funny.