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Group:  L | 14.12.2005, 20:30h
Group:  L | 14.12.2005, 20:30h
91-73
Venue: Barcelona (ESP) |
Spectators: 1415 |
Referees: Shmuel Bachar (ISR), Gilles Bretagne (FRA), Carmelo Lo Guzzo (ITA)

GAME REPORT


DKV's Betts Shines Before Watching Bird

Andy Betts was unstoppable against Azovmash on Wednesday night as DKV Joventut destroyed the Ukrainian outfit 91-73 in the EuroCup.

The Englishman, a former NBA draft pick whose fortunes dipped the past couple of seasons when he played sparingly at Tau Ceramica under Dusko Ivanovic, tore apart the Mariupol outfit with 25 points and seven rebounds.

DKV, the only Spanish side still left in the EuroCup after Gran Canaria's surprise elimination in the opening phase, have one victory in Group L alongside BC Khimki, who won their game over Privatbank EKA AEL Lemesos on Tuesday.

Larry Bird
Larry Bird
Betts, a 2.17m center, recently spoke of his hope to return to the United States, where he played college basketball at CW Post and Long Beach State, to try and play in the NBA.

Should he cross the Atlantic and play next season, he would be a 29-year-old rookie, just as Sarunas Jasikevicius is this season with the Indiana Pacers.

It was not surprising, then, that Larry Bird, the NBA legend and president of the Pacers who finally lured Jasikevicius to the NBA, was in the stands evaluating prospects.

He would have been left in no doubt about Betts' potential.

It was thought that Bird would have been primarily interested in DKV Joventut's Rudy Fernandez, a Spanish international, and Brazilian Marcelinho.

He was coy about the players he was watching.

He told PA Sport: "I am looking at some players but I am not going to tell you who.

"I will be going to other places in Europe as well on the trip."

DKV led 24-19 after the opening quarter but held only a 42-40 advantage at half-time.

Behind Betts and Elmer Bennett, who had 10 points and 10 assists for DKV, Joventut stretched their advantage to 63-53 by the end of the third quarter and they romped home in the fourth quarter.

Alex Mumbru weighed in with 15 points and Czech Republic international Lubos Barton 14 for DKV, who play next week at Lemesos.

Azovmash will try to get their EuroCup campaign back on track when they take on Khimki.

Azovmash point guard Khalid El-Amin, who played briefly in the NBA after an outstanding collegiate career at the University of Connecticut, had 21 points and five assists for Azovmash but he turned the ball over six times.

Another former NBA player, Art Long, had 17 points and seven rebounds in defeat.

As for Bird and all the scouts, one of the challenges is deciding which players can adapt to the much faster pace of the NBA, which is also more physical.

"I am impressed with what I have seen although it is of course a different pace and a different style," Bird said.

Top performers

Accumulated statistics

55.6%

35/63
FG
M/A

48.2%

27/56

55.8%

24/43
FG2P
M/A

50.0%

19/38

55.0%

11/20
FG3P
M/A

44.4%

8/18

66.7%

10/15
FT
M/A

50.0%

11/22

31

6/25
RT
RO/RD

28

7/21

22

AS

11

18

TO

23

13

ST

9

3

BS

2

22

PF

19

91

Pts

73

Next Games

DKV Joventut

DKV Joventut

Azovmash

Azovmash

Mariupol, UKR
Gmunden, AUT
Riga, LAT
Tallinn, EST
Khimki, Moscow Region, RUS
Kyiv, UKR
Siauliai, LTU
Zadar, CRO
Gravelines, FRA
Cremenate, ITA
Nymburk, CZE
Cholet Cedex, FRA
Ploiesti, ROU
Mons, BEL
Badalona, ESP
Moscow Region , RUS
Kadiköy-Istanbul, TUR
Kfar-Blum, ISR
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, ESP
Tel Aviv, ISR
Krasnodar, RUS
Maroussi-Athens, GRE
Groningen, NED
Nahariya, ISR
Thessaloniki, GRE
Limassol, CYP
Köln, GER
Wroclaw, POL
Nancy, FRA
St. Petersburg, RUS