Actual competitive basketball being played in an actual arena with actual NBA players! No, this isn’t another Drew League versus Goodman League showdown — it’s better. It’s Eurobasket 2011 and if you’re completely starved for some quality hoops, then welcome your all-you-can-eat buffet of basketball.
You’re probably sick of people trying to convince you how quality the European game has become, and while no, it’s not the NBA, it is about as good of basketball as you’re going to get. And with the labor negotiations going about as well as Charles Barkley in a marathon, this might be one of your last chances to get competitive basketball.
The EuroBasket tournament features 24 countries all with the opportunity to put away an automatic bid to the 2012 Olympics in London. The top two finishers get an automatic bid while four bids to the Pre-Olympic qualifying tournament (for third through sixth) are at stake as well. But it’s not only about the Olympic bids. It’s about taking home a title for your country against the top competition in Europe. It’s a big deal.
It starts up Aug. 31 and runs through Sept. 18. It’s going to be a frantic few weeks of hoops with big names like Pau Gasol, Dirk Nowitzki, Luol Deng and Tony Parker. Other than it just providing a solid little basketball fix for us junkies, it also has a pretty decent Thunder connection in it. Keep Reading…