Outside of the Summer Olympics every four years, the EuroBasket is the biggest showcase for international talent to the NBA. EuroBasket 2017 may be the perfect showcase for guys fighting to find a team in the states or just turning back the clock one more time with their nation’s flag on their jersey. Let’s take a at players who have made some noise in this tournament so far.
Markkanen has looked like exactly what the Chicago Bulls will need to not continue to cry over trading Jimmy Butler to the Minnesota Timberwolves. Markkanen is averaging 24.3 points per game on 56.2 percent shooting. He has also grabbed 7.7 rebounds per game while shooting 54 percent from the 3-point line.
His play in the tournament so far would seem to play right into Bulls’ head coach Fred Hoiberg’s run-and-gun college-style system. If Markkanen can shoot well in the NBA, he has a long career ahead.
Osman has also played well. Just as the Cleveland Cavaliers noticed when it traded Tyus Jones for him and Rakeem Christmas on draft night in 2015. Osman has been playing overseas with Anadolu Efes. So far in EuroBasket 2017, Osman is averaging 18 points on just 35 percent shooting. That is something he will have to improve at the NBA level. Outside of scoring, he is averaging three steals, 4.3 assists, and six rebounds per game. He is noticeably more comfortable in his ability to share the rock more than any other tournament he has been in before. The Cavs will need him coming off the bench.
The DemiGod, the Unicorn or Latvian Jesus. Whatever you prefer, Prozingis has been incredible during this tournament. He’s averaging 24.3 points per game while shooting 46 percent from three. He will need to improve his game in ways that most people don’t notice in a tournament like this. For his scoring and shooting have come below average defense. He’s been scored just as easily as he has scored in most games.
He has only shown a small bit of his passing and rebounding and will need to improve that for the New York Knicks to get any better.
The most surprising person to make the list of best players in the tournament in Schroder. Although Schroder is not a known high volume scorer, he certainly has made a fool out of that analysis. He is averaging 25 points per game on 46 percent shooting and 43 percent 3-point shooting. He is also dishing out 5.3 assists while snagging 1.7 steals each game. Schroder’s improved passing and scoring can make him an easy Most Improved Player candidate. He had career-highs in both last season.
He has seemed more comfortable in shooting the ball from 15-plus-feet and the Atlanta Hawks will need that confidence going in to the season.
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