By Antigoni Zachari / email@example.com
The Basketball Champions League returned this week and a new yet familiar to basketball fans across Europe face entered the statistic record books right from the first game day. Newcomers Galatasaray might have lost their first contest to Dinamo Sassari, though the infallible Brock Motum joins a list of very successful BCL debuts.
The Aussie power forward registered 24 points and seven rebounds with no turnovers in his first appearance in the competition, to become the third-ever player to combine more than 20 points, 5 rebounds, and no turnover in a BCL debut, alongside Alec Brown (Movistar Estudiantes) in October 2017 vs. AEK and Malachi Richardson (Hapoel Holon) in October 2019 vs. Turk Telekom.
This performance comes as no surprise since Motum, who just turned 30 this October, is known for his nearly perfect game by now. During the 2019-20 season with Valencia, he had an impressive average of 0.55 turnovers across 20 EuroLeague games with the Spanish team, ranking very low in the respective statistic chart.
His efficiency comes along with a five-year experience at the top-notch level of Europe upon his return to Turkey for Galatasaray. Motum spent a two-year stint with Anadolu Efes between 2017 and 2019 which ended with the domestic league title in 2019. His arrival at such a young squad such as Galatasaray’s could signal the start of a new era for the Australian forward, who finds himself for the first time in a leading role in a team and with space to improve and enjoy his new duties. Alongside veterans Baris Ermis and Caner Erdeniz (who has more of a minor role in the current roster), Motum is the third-oldest player for Ertugrul Erdogan’s squad.
Galatasaray’s entry in BCL this season also means a whole new challenge for Motum, who can use the space provided by the team to keep up his infallible game, and why not, go after big things in the competition as well. It might be a little too early in the season to talk about favorites or whatnot, though it’s never too early to set up expectations for what we could see on the court.
Motum looks at home in the Turkish squad, the adjustment period needed for both him and his teammates is proving to be working well, and it remains to be seen if they can put this negative result in the BCL opener in the past to continue with more edge and force in the season.
For sure, we will keep our eyes on Motum’s games – infallible is an adjective that suits him well!
Photo: Basketball Champions League