Welcome to a round one preview of the FIBA Americas and FIBA Eurobasket specifically focusing on current and possible future San Antonio Spurs players. Through this guide, I’ll provide the times each Spurs player or draftee will be playing along with some NBA notable opponents they’ll be facing through round one.
So fasten your seat belt, because for the next four weeks there will be A LOT of basketball to watch!
For an in-depth look at each Spurs player and what their team needs to do to win their respective tournaments, check out the preview our own Trevor Zickgraf wrote a few days ago.
Let’s meet the Spurs affiliates in the FIBA Americas tournament being held in Mar del Plata, Argentina.
Country: Argentina. Spurs player: Manu Ginobili. Notable teammates: Former Spur Fabricio Oberto, Carlos Deflino of the Milwaukee Bucks, Andres “El Chapu” Nocioni of the Philadelphia 76ers, and Luis Scola of the Houston Rockets.
Country: Brazil. Spurs player: Tiago Splitter. Notable teammates: Former Spur Alex Garcia and one of Project Spurs’ Michael De Leon’s favorites Marcelo Huertas.
Country: Canada. Spurs player: Cory Joseph. Notable teammates: Joel Anthony of the Miami Heat, Andy Rautins of the New York Knicks, and Matt Bonner’s “yearn to play for team Canada.”
Now let’s go up to Europe and meet the Spurs affiliates in the FIBA Eurobasket tournament being held in Lithuania.
Country: France. Spurs player: Tony Parker. Spurs draftee: Nando De Colo. Notable teammates: Nicolas Batum of the Portland Trailblazers, Boris Diaw of the Charlotte Bobcats, Joakim Noah of the Chicago Bulls, Kevin Seraphin of the Washington Wizards, and Mickael Gelabale formerly of the Seattle Sonics (R.I.P.).
Country: Latvia. Spurs draftee: Davis Bertans
Country: Slovenia. Spurs hold draft rights of: Erazem Lorbek. Notable teammates: Primoz Brezec a former NBA player, Goran Dragic of the Houston Rockets, and former NBA player Bostjan Nachbar.
Here is a list of the games for round one by Spurs player name. All games are in CST. All games will be available to watch online at FIBA.com. FIBA Americas = F.A., FIBA Eurobasket = F.E.
Tuesday August 30, 2011
F.A. Tiago Splitter (Brazil) vs. Venezuela: Noon
Players you might recognize on Venezuela: Greivis Vasquez of the Memphis Grizzlies.
- Let’s hope Splitter can have great game against Vasquez, as Vasquez was part of the Memphis team that ended the Spurs’ season too early.
F.A. Manu Ginobili (Argentina) vs. Paraguay: 4 PM
- Don’t be surprised if Argentina wins by 30 plus points in this one.
Wednesday August 31, 2011
F. E. Tony Parker/Nando De Colo (France) vs. Davis Bertans (Latvia): 9:45 AM
- Spur against Spurs action in this game. Parker and De Colo get to square off against what could be a future teammate. It’s very realistic that these three could be the starting core for the Spurs in three years.
F.E. Erazem Lorbek (Slovenia) vs Bulgaria: 10 AM
- We get our first look at Lorbek whose draft rights were traded to the Spurs from Indiana in the deal that sent George Hill back home for Kawhi Leonard. The Spurs need a big man; we’ll get to see if Lorbek could be a possible answer.
F.A. Ginobili (Argentina) vs Uruguay (F.A.): 4 PM
F.A. Cory Joseph (Canada) vs Splitter (Brazil) (F.A.): 6:30 PM
- Two Spurs teammates going head-to-head in this game. Splitter will get a chance to play against his future backup point guard on the Spurs whenever the NBA lockout eventually ends.
Thursday September 1, 2011
F.E. Bertans (Latvia) vs. Serbia: 7:15 AM
Players you might recognize on Serbia: Former Boston Celtic Nenad Kristic
F.E. Parker/De Colo (France) vs. Israel: 9:45 AM
F.E. Lorbek (Slovenia) vs. Ukraine: 1 PM
Players you might recognize for Ukraine: Kyrylo Fesenko of the Utah Jazz
- A great opportunity to see how Lorbek does against NBA type talent in the Jazz’s Fesenko.
F.A. Joseph (Canada) vs. Dominican Republic: 4 PM
Players you might recognize: Fransisco Garcia of the Sacramento Kings, Al Horford of the Atlanta Hawks, and Charlie Villanueva of the Detroit Pistons
- A great test for Joseph to go against several NBA second tier caliber players. These are the players he’ll be playing against nightly in the NBA, he’d better get acclimated to the speed these guys play the game at.
Friday September 2, 2011
F.A. Joseph (Canada) vs. Cuba : 9:30 AM
F.E. Bertans (Latvia) vs. Italy: 9:45 AM
Players you might recognize: Andrea Bargnani of the Toronto Raptors, Marco Belinelli of the New Orleans Hornets, and Danilo Gallinari of the Denver Nuggets
- If Bertans gets some playing time, I’d like to see how he does defensively against the Nuggets’ Gallinari.
F.E. Parker/De Colo (France) vs Germany: 1 PM
Players you might recognize: Dirk Nowitzki of the Dallas Mavericks, Chris Kaman of the Los Angeles Clippers
- Now that Dirk has a finals MVP, he and Parker will be two players on the same court in an international game each with an NBA finals MVP. That’s got to be a first, right?
F.A. Splitter (Brazil) vs. Dominican Republic: 4 PM
- In an exhibition game, Horford really gave Splitter trouble. It’ll be interesting to see how Splitter holds his ground against Horford while also defending the paint against Garcia and Villanueva.
F.A. Ginobili (Argentina) vs. Puerto Rico: 6:30 PM
Players you might recognize: Carlos Arroyo formerly of the Boston Celtics, Renaldo Balkman of the New York Knicks, J.J. Barea of the Dallas Mavericks, and John Holland of Boston University
- Ginobili see’s a familiar I-35 rival; this time Barea is now a NBA champion when he walks onto the court with Ginobili. Ginobili can still remind Barea that he will always be a garden gnome.
Saturday September 3, 2011
F.A. Joseph (Canada) vs. Venezuela: 9:30 AM
F.E. Lorbek (Slovenia) vs Georgia: 10 AM
Players you might recognize: Zaza Pachulia of the Atlanta Hawks, Nikoloz Tskitishvili formerly of the Denver Nuggets
- The matchup between Lorbek and Pachulia could be an interesting scouting opportunity. Pachulia is tenured in the NBA, so it will be good to see how Lorbek can handle Pachulia’s game.
F.A. Splitter (Brazil) vs. Cuba: 4 PM
F.A. Ginobili (Argentina) vs. Panama: 6:30 PM
Sunday September 4, 2011
F.E. Bertans (Latvia) vs. Israel: 7:15 AM
F.E. Parker/De Colo (France) vs Italy: 9:45 AM
F.E. Lorbek (Slovenia) vs. Belgium: 1 PM
Monday September 5, 2011
F.E. Bertans (Latvia) vs. Germany: 9:45 AM
F.E. Lorbek (Slovenia) vs. Russia: 10 AM
Players you might recognize: Andrei Kirilenko of the Utah Jazz, Timofey Mozgov of the Denver Nuggets
F.E. Parker (France) vs. Serbia: 1 PM
These are all of the matchups in round one. Print this guide, save it if you’re a Spurs fan who’s looking to watch some basketball this week and over the next four. I’ll be back with a round two preview next Monday.
Be sure to keep checking Project Spurs daily as we'll be updating you on all the latest news from both tournaments as soon as possible.