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Jose Calderon is suffering from a tricep injury but with Ricky Rubio healthy, the point guard position poses no issue for Spain. Pau Gasol is also enjoying his most consistent minutes since December.
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Tony Parker is back from injury and doing what he does best, whilst the Blazers' failure to make the play-offs may be a blessing in disguise for the French, with Nicolas Batum getting more opportunity to rest ahead of summer.
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Like Spain, Slovenia have no shortage of talent in the playmaker position. At the back end of the NBA season, Beno Udrih has been picking up his biggest minutes of the season and will challenge Goran Dragic for a starting spot in the summer.
Olympiacos and Panathinaikos have both secured their places in the Euroleague quarter-finals, with Greek players playing key roles. Also, Kostas Papanikolaou picked up a Euroleague MVP-worthy 21-point, 12-rebound double-double to secure Olympiacos' quarters spot.
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In Donatas Motiejunas, Jonas Valanciunas and Mindaugas Kuzminskas, Lithuania have an in-form, young, exciting offence-minded front-court. All three of these players have been showing signs of maturation in the past month or so and could work well under an experienced backcourt.
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Do not get us wrong - Russian teams are dominating every European-wide men's tournament...but how many are there because of the performances of their Russian players? Most Russian teams tend to be relying on foreign talent.
Nikola Vucevic missed five games at the back end of March for Orlando, but since returning, is back playing over 35 minutes a night, to retain his season double-double average, including an impressive 21-point, 21-rebound outing on Sunday.
| 8|| |
CSKA's mid-season bump in the road has been navigated and the Russian powerhouse is back firing on all cylinders, with Nenad Krstic and Milos Teodosic playing key roles whilst Zoran Erceg and Vladimir Micov are making nice cameos off the bench.
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For the first time since 2007/2008, Turkey will have a presence at the quarter-final stage of the Euroleague, thanks to Anadolu Efes - a team with a number of Turkish past and current national team players.
Despite no Croatian team remaining in any leagues outside of their home country, there are no shortage of Croats still playing in Europe with five Croatians on the rosters of the Euroleague quarter-final teams.
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Omri Casspi has shown recently, that despite his minimal role in Cleveland, his game has not been affected, with the small forward shooting at a healthy 54% to date this month - a percentage to keep Israel fans hopeful this summer.
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Dirk Nowitzki and Chris Kaman can sense a play-off berth in the NBA, why else would they and their Dallas teammates be growing playoff beards? Will be interesting to see how the coming fortnight for Dallas affects German national team plans.
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BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA
Mirza Teletovic may not be seeing the game time he would have hoped for in his rookie NBA season with the Brooklyn Nets, but with a trip to the playoffs guaranteed, Teletovic can only grow more as a player before summer.
| 14|| |
If you are an Italian basketball fan, we recommend that you do not watch the highlights of the Denver Nuggets clash against the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday night, with Italy's chances of making the quarter-finals in Slovenia limping off the court with a torn ACL.
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BC Khimki are perhaps one of the unluckiest teams to be finishing their Euroleague season but that can hardly be blamed on Finnish sensation Petteri Koponen who continues to put in strong numbers in all competitions involving the Russian club.
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With Pops Mensah-Bonsu continually increasing his minutes down in Spain and Joel Freeland beginning the month with his biggest back-to-back minutes so far this season for Portland, there is reason to believe life without Luol Deng may not be all bad.
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F.Y.R. OF MACEDONIA
If Pero Antic reneges on his earlier word and indeed decides to play this summer, this could be a godsend for F.Y.R. of Macedonia. The big man is appearing in the Euroleague quarters this week for Olympiacos.
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Maciej Lampe will be in Slovenia, and according to the Caja Laboral forward, so too will be the previously in-doubt Phoenix Suns forward Marcin Gortat, who had been quoted suggesting he would rest this summer.
| 19|| |
Ventspils have claimed their first ever Baltic Basketball League (BBL) title with significant input from a number of potential national team players, particularly Janis Timma who has done all he possibly can to put forward his case for a senior team debut.
| 20|| |
Budivelnik Kiev, as predicted, bowed out of the Eurocup and Viacheslav Kravtsov has played just one minute for the Detroit Pistons in their last four games, seeing the 2015 hosts dip a spot this week.
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The Achilles theme of this week's power rankings continues with Zaza Pachulia also being ruled out of participation in this summer's tournament. Arguably his loss will not be as great as that of Danilo Gallinari to Italy, but still big enough to send Georgia down the power rankings slide.
| 22|| |
Chris Czerapowicz was solid, if not spectacular in his third season playing for Davidson Wildcats in the NCAA, finishing the season with 9.1 points and five rebounds a night - slightly down on a season previous. Could be set for a national team call-up this summer.
Belgians turned out in force at the weekend, with over 15,000 fans attending one league game. With this amount of fandom, the Belgians hardly need a reminder of the support they have back at home this summer.
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Do not expect fatigue to be an issue for the Czech's household name, Jan Vesely, this summer, as the small forward completes another fortnight of playing fleeting minutes off the bench for the Washington Wizards.