Top 20 Players of EuroBasket 2017 (10-1)

30/Aug/17 11:26 August 30, 2017

Mehmet Bahadır Akgün

30/Aug/17 11:26

We are only a couple of days away from the EuroBasket 2017 and the players are there to put everything they have on the court! Even with many stars missing, this is going to be a great ride and Eurohoops presents the biggest stars of the tournament!

By Utkan Şahin / Translation: Mehmet Bahadır Akgün

Dominant players like Milos Teodosic, Sergio Llull, Nikola Jokic, Nemanja Bjelica, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Ersan İlyasova, Rudy Gobert, Nicolas Batum and Danilo Gallinari will not participate, and therefore will not be able to help their teams contend for a medal.

Especially after deciding to take part in the tournament and help their teams, the fact that Llull, Teodosic and Antetokounmpo will not play due to injury has dissapointed many fans.

Although, there are many key players who can contribute to their teams at a certain level, all 20 players on this list are capable of taking over any game and they are aiming high!

After counting down from 20 to 11, please take your seats and fasten your seat-belts as you are about to see the top 10 players of the upcoming European Championship!

10- Evan Fournier – France

Age: 24
EuroBasket Experience: 1 time
Current Team: Orlando Magic
Last season’s stats: 68 games, 17.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, 3.0 assists

France has many key players missing from the roster, yet, there is someone returning to the team who can fulfill vacancies!

After suffering an injury before the Olympics Qualification games, he was not included in the roster for Rio. Returning to the squad after two years, Evan Fournier will be back but with a huge difference: He was a complementary piece in a team full of stars in 2015 but now he is the absolute man of the team along with one of the greatest French guards ever, Nando De Colo.

After enjoying a bigger role during the 2016-2017 NBA season and averaging 17.2 points, the 24-year-old Frenchman seems to be ready to dominate the tournament.

His performance will be critical for the faith of French squad!

9- Dennis Schröder – Germany

Age: 23
EuroBasket Experience: 1 time
Current Team: Atlanta Hawks
Last season’s stats: 79 games, 17.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, 6.3 assists

No more Dirk Nowitzki, it’s time to fascinate the audience with Dennis Schröder!

He was the second fiddle in the roster in 2015, and now he takes matter in his own hands.

However, we must not ignore the fact that he is coming from a long season NBA season, in which he was the starting point guard of a playoff team, and was criticised harshly due to his performance. Now has an even bigger objective waiting before him: To help his teammates do something memorable.

Germany has one of the youngest rosters in the tournament and one cannot easily say if their quality is enough to reach to the medals or even Top8. Still, even during prep games Schröder proved that he is a “real” NBA player and he can take the game over in Europe, whenever he wants.

Who could say “I got shocked by the fact that he is the scoring leader in entire tournament!”, after seeing a starring performance from the Deutscheman? That would not be much of a surprise!

8- Bojan Bogdanovic – Croatia

Age: 28
EuroBasket Experience: 3 times
Current Team: Indiana Pacers
Last season’s stats: 81 games, 13.7 points, 3.4 rebounds, 1.8 assists

The Croatian forward is one of the biggest hopes of his nation in the upcoming EuroBasket. He’s coming off a busy and peculiar season in the States, in which he travelled to Washington and then was traded to the Pacers right after the postseason was over. But now he has the chance to win a medal in a very open tournament.

In contrast with EuroBasket 2015, last summer Bojan and his teammates renewed their hopes for greatness. Coach Petrovic has solved the majority of issues within the team and rebuilt his gameplan around Bojan Bogdanovic and Dario Saric. These moves surprisingly allowed the Croatian side to have a spot in the Olympics.

Bojan’s responsibility is clear: To show his unique scoring abilities and not to disappoint his country!

7- Dario Saric – Croatia

Age: 23
EuroBasket Experience: 2 times
Current Team: Philadelphia 76ers
Last season’s stats: 81 games, 12.8 points, 6.3 rebounds, 2.2 assists

Until the preparation period started for Petrovic’s players, Saric was not ahead of Bojan Bogdanovic on this list. However, he proved to be the leader of his team.

After two successful years in Turkey, Saric headed to the NBA last summer and enjoyed a great rookie season. He was the runner-up for the Rookie of the Year and that alone proves that he established himself in the States.

The talented forward has just gone through a perfect preparation period! He used his skills to contribute and reshape his team! He will be the “ace” up Petrovic’s sleeves with his everlasting passion to compete and incredible skills!

6- Nando De Colo – France

Age: 30
EuroBasket Experience: 4 times
Current Team: CSKA Moscow
Last season’s stats: 52 games, 18.3 points, 2.7 rebounds, 4.2 assists

Even though he’s coming off a great season, Nando De Colo was even better one year ago and now he must continue being great as France needs him more than ever.

Despite the injuries he suffered, De Colo was one of the top guards in Europe and despite losing the EuroLeague title, there’s no doubt about what he can do on the court.

Still, he has a great weight to carry on his back. France is missing many great players and De Colo has to undertake the leadership role.

Can the French roster reach the medal rounds? That is open to discussion, and that discussion holds a great question mark. It seems that Nando De Colo has to showcase his entire arsenal on the court in order for this to happen!

5- Bogdan Bogdanovic – Serbia

Age: 25
EuroBasket Experience: 2 times
Current Team: Sacramento Kings
Last season’s stats: 44 games, 14.8 points, 3.7 rebounds, 3.9 assists

Just like Nando De Colo, who was the EuroLeague MVP of the previous season, Bogdan Bogdanovic has to undertake the leadership role due to the absence of great players like Milos Teodosic and Nemanja Bjelica, another EuroLeague MVP.

Just like the French team, Serbia enjoyed success in recent years, but they have many key players absent.

Apart from all similarities, Bogdan has a key difference from Nando De Colo! He had a great season both individually and in terms of team success. He lifted the greatest trophy of the old continent at the club level with Fenerbahce and got awarded by the biggest rookie contract in NBA history.

Having overcome many obstacles throughout the season, this summer Bogdanovic has another goal to accomplish: To prove that he can lead his teammates to the top!

While its difficult to estimate where Bogdanovic and Serbia’s adventure might come to an end in the upcoming EuroBasket, one thing is certain. He will not hesitate to shoot when he has to and the buzzer is about to be heard.

4- Goran Dragic – Slovenia

Age: 31
EuroBasket Experience: 4 times
Current Team: Miami Heat
Last season’s stats: 73 games, 20.3 points, 3.8 rebounds, 5.2 assists

Goran Dragic announced that this is going to be his last Eurobasket and we expect something special.

He came close to the medal with his beloved Slovenia in the past, but this tournament is his last chance. It remains to be seen if it will be also his best chances, due to players who are missing from traditional powerhouses.

His absolute goal is obvious and this time he has a sidekick with extreme skills: The Golden Boy of Real Madrid, Luka Doncic!

Which one is Batman? Which one is Robin? Hard to say. But there is no doubt that with his résumé full of experience in the best league of the world, he has to be the leader.

3- Pau Gasol – Spain

Age: 37
EuroBasket Experience: 6 times
Current Team: San Antonio Spurs
Last season’s stats: 64 games, 12.3 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.3 assists

He is getting older, but when he plays for the national team, he always has the energy of a teenager. Two years ag he proved that, by leading Spain to the gold medal on French soil.

Pau was just incredible… He averaged 25.6 points, 8.8 rebounds and 2.8 assists. Oh, not to forget, he scored 40 (FORTY) against France in the semifinal…

He is part of the “holy trinity” with Tony Parker and Dirk Nowitzki. He has won the World Cup, three EuroBasket titles, two silver medals in the Olympics and if this going to be his farewell tour, he wouldn’t accept anything less than the top.