Dinamo Sassari – the comeback in the Basketball Champions League
After winning the FIBA Europe Cup, Banco di Sardegna Sassari, choose to play in Basketball Champions League, to fight against better opponents. Last season they finish the regular Italian season on 4th place and they never stopped until the big final against Venezia, when they lost game 7, 87-61. The big result came in the semifinals when they eliminated Olimpia Milano with a 3-0, making a huge surprise.
In comparison with last season, Sassari lost almost all the key members of the squad like Rashawn Thomas, Scott Bamforth, Terran Petteway, Justin Carter, Tyrus McGee, Jack Cooley and Jaime Smith. The only foreigner kept is Dyshawn Pierre and as well the local players (Gentile, Magro, Polonara, Spissu, DeVecchi) will continue with the Fiba Europe Cup champions. In order to compete at the highest level and bring another big result from Basketball Champions League, they added three foreigners and three Italian players.
For the foreigners, the first that got our attention is Curtis Jerrels (32 years-old, 1.85m, G). He played last two seasons for Italian rivals, Olimpia Milano. He averaged 6.2 points, 1.5 assists and 1 rebound per match in Euroleague. In the Italian League, he averaged 10 points, 2.1 assists and 2.1 rebounds. Next player is Dwayne Evans (27 years-old, 2.01m, F). He came after 4 years spent in Germany. Last season he played for Ulm and he averaged big numbers with 14.8 points and 6.7 rebounds. He`s a great addition to the club, especially for his offensive skills. And the last player brought was the big man, Miro Bilan (30 years-old, 2.13m, C). He won last season the title in France with ASVEL-Lyon. In Eurocup, he averaged 10.6 points and 6.2 rebounds. He will definitely be the starting center for Sassari because he brings a lot of experience and toughness in the paint.
Speaking about the Italian guys, the most interesting is Michele Vitali (27 years-old, 1.96m, G). He played last season for MoraBanc Andorra and averaged 7.8 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2 assists per game in EuroCup. The other two players, Marco Maganza (28 years-old, 2.04m, PF/C) and Lorenzo Bucarelli (21 years-old, 1.96m, G) came from lower Italian leagues and I don`t expect them to make a huge impact.
The chances for Sassari to reach out from the BasketballCL’s group stage are quite well. They added some good players but also lost their main players from last year successes. It will be a tough team, without a doubt. What do I like most about this team? They have kept many Italians players in the rotation and some of them are pretty good. That`s only in the benefit of Italian basketball.
Photo credit: http://www.fiba.basketball/europecup/18-19
Bogdan Vasile Tirc