Parker better than us down the stretch
Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on September 4, 2007
Maybe I should just guve a cut to the “Mr. Longoria” jokes and simply say that Tony Parker is a fantastic basketball player.
He almost singlehandedly beat us in the second game of the Eurobasktball 2007 played in Alicante, a 62-69 loss to France.
What can you say when a player ends with 36 points, more than 50% of his whole team? He started scoring France’s first 9 points and 13 of the first 17, answering Andrea Bargnani’s excellent start.
Parker reached 27 after three quarters, when France’s total was 51, and carried the Blues in the last minutes.
After Bargnani’s three pointer put Italy ahead at 60-57 with 4 minutes to go, the Spurs PG ignited a 10-0 break that basically closed the game, nailing a tough trey just before the shot clock expired to tie Andrea’s shot and scoring on another two drives to make it 60-67. Boris Diaw then sealed the game blocking Belinelli’s (soft) layup attempt.
The game was pretty enjoyable, if you love close, hard fought, tactical battles. Your typical FIBA basketball, to sum it up.
Andrea - a.k.a. “Il Mago”, the wizard, in the picture - began perfectly, scoring the first 7 points for us and taking 7’3 bust Frederic Weis (yes, the guy who was jumped & dunked on by Vince Carter in that famous play… a Knicks first round pick, gotta love him !!!) to school for the entire first half with drives, pump fakes, mid range shots, post up moves.
Parker kept France in the game, doing exactly what he does every single night in the NBA. If he can do that playing vs Shaq, Garnett, Ilgauskas etc, what could make you think he would have struggled playing vs Crosariol, Marconato & Gigli ????
Speaking of our frontcourt, I think it’s the worst in the whole competition. The guys fight, always give their best, but they are simply not talented and not athletic enough at this level. I have a hard time recalling more than
five three low post baskets in these two games, while our total of blocks is stuck at 4, I think.
Belinelli‘s fans MIGHT think he played better than last night vs Slovenia looking at the boxscore, while I think he got worse.
Marco should stop with the idiotic fallaway three(s) when the closest opponent is 12 feet from him, and learn that when an immobile center is guarding you, you should beat him off the dribble and go to the rim instead of driving laterally to take (again) a corner three.
Italy went 6/13 overall from the charity stripe, an unforgivable mistake in these low scoring marathons. The ridiculous number of attempts is just another confirm of what I just said about our low post (no) game and lack of aggressiveness.
France not surprisingly won the battle under the boards, even if by an acceptable margin (40-31), and shoot just as bad as us. But they had the go to guy when it counted.
Italy has still a chance to make it past the first round: we simply have to beat Poland in the last game of this phase.
France honestly didn’t impress me at all, showing only a nice new (at least to me) player in Tariq Kirksay: the rest is a bunch of role players that live off their star.
Monsieur Parker, chapeau !