By John Askounis/ firstname.lastname@example.org
At 5-6 in Basketball Champions League Group B, the playoffs are not a given for Teksut Bandirma. It will come down to the remaining home games against RASTA Vechta and EB Pau-Lacq-Orthez plus the trip to Poland to face Anwil Włocławek. Regardless the outcome, several young players have displayed growth during this 2019-20 BCL Regular Season.
Hakan Demir’s squad consists of many proven Americans and young Turkish upstarts. The Gameday 11 contest saw 17-year-old Furkan Haltali and Alperen Sengun gain just over ten minutes on the court. Sehmus Hazer, 20, scored a team-high 23 points leading the visitors to the road win against AEK.
Size in Haltali
An exciting view indeed, but it wasn’t only about Athens. Haltali has already notched ten Champions League appearances under his belt averaging 2.1 points and 1.9 boards per contest. Future looks bright for the young center who remains calm and solely focused on improving going through his debut season.
Another settled down youngster comes in the form of Sengun. Similar to his above teammate, he is making strong BCL waves before turning 18. Currently at 4 points and 2.8 rebounds per game further proves that Bandirma holds some talent.
The examples to follow
Hazer is already going through his third BCL season. Not long ago was in a similar position to his younger teammates, but earned an improved role averaging 10.5 points, 2.3 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.2 steals per Basketball Champions League appearance this season.
Can’t miss out on Ridvan Oncel. The 22-year-old small forward brings more fresh Turkish flavor to the squad. Averaging 13.8 minutes on the court per 2019-20 BCL affair has 3.2 points, 1.6 assists, 1.1 rebounds and 0.9 steals per appearance.
Mixing development with results
Teksut Bandirma is another Basketball Champions League side setting up rising stars for higher challenges. Back in 2017 made it to the inaugural Final Four with squad members the likes of current NBA player Furkan Korkmaz and EuroLeague player Tolga Gecim. Making it to the Champions League playoffs in 2018 and 2019 shows that the team is more than capable to provide for its own future as well.
Haltali, Sengun, Hazer and Oncel are still developing and help for some wins in the process. Apart aiming for the BCL playoffs, Demir’s team is tied for sixth place in Turkey’s BSL with a 9-7 W-L tally so far. One more Super Ligi playoffs run seems likely.
Photo Credit: Basketball Champions League