U.S. Firepower Too Much For World Team In Hoop Summit
Published by Drew Ebanks on April 12, 2011
The 2011 Nike Hoop Summit took place on Saturday, April 9, 2011.
The game features the “best” 19 and under players from the world against the
“best” the USA has to offer.
For the second consecutive year, the game will be played in Portland, Oregon at the Rose Garden. And, for the second consecutive year it will feature two Canadians. This year, Holland Landing’s Kevin Pangos and Kyle Wiltjer, who has dual U.S./Canadian citizenship, were selected to play on the World team. Ryerson Rams’ Head Coach, Roy Rana, also coach of Canada’s bronze medal-winning U17 Cadet Team, was chosen as coach of the World team.
Canada’s Pangos (Gonzaga) got the start for the World team and he would be matched up against Marquis Teague (Kentucky) from the U.S. Right off the bat, the U.S. squad knew what they wanted to do to the World team squad. They wanted to pressure them bringing the ball up and harass their shooters so that they wouldn’t find a rhythm early on. They did just that as the World team rushed shots and couldn’t get anything going inside. I counted several times when the World team forwards miss-timed their jumps while rebounding and missed easy grabs and/or put backs. Maybe they were nervous, maybe they hadn’t played in front of almost ten thousand people before, or maybe the U.S. was just that good! The World team shot an abysmal 14.3% in the first quarter and trailed 20-12. Michael Gilchrist (Kentucky) led the U.S. with 7pts after 1. In the second Quarter the game remained relatively close as Pangos buried a three to cut the U.S. lead to 3 at 27-24 with 5:39 left. But Austin Rivers (Duke), considered by most pundits as the best high-school player in the world, caught fire by scoring 8 points in the last 3:20 of the quarter as the U.S. led the World team 42-31 at the half. The World team struggled shooting as the U.S. defense held them to 26% from the field.
One bright spot for the World team, Bismack Biyombo (Fuenlabrada, Spain), is a Congolese man-child who was just too physical for the U.S. bigs. His squad had wanted to keep him in Spain, knowing that if he went to the States for the game, the NBA scouts would be drooling and salivating at the 6’9 forward with the 7’7” wingspan.
But Biyombo was ahead of his team’s brass, having his participation in the Hoop Summit game written into his contract, thus opening the door for him to be seen in front of over 100 NBA scouts in attendance. Smart move as the 18 year-old Biyombo has apparently declared for the 2011 NBA draft seizing on all the attention and kudos he’s receiving.
In the third Quarter, the U.S. dominance continued as Anthony Davis (Kentucky) caught an alley-oop from Brad Beal (Florida) to go up 50-36. The World team then used a 6-0 run to make it 50-42. But the World bigs including Canada’s Kyle Wiltjer (Kentucky) had a tough time scoring inside as the U.S. Forwards and Centers, using superior hops and timing, blocked several attempts in the paint. The U.S. led it 66-53 after three and wouldn’t look back from there.
4th quarter Latvian sharpshooter Davis Bertans started to catch fire, burying a couple threes. He and Wiltjer attempted a game-high 6 three pointers. Wiltjer finished with 12 points for the World team. Said Wiltjer “Playing against the best players in the world for me just shows me what I need to work on and I can’t wait to get back in the gym.”
Mateusz Ponitka led the World in scoring with 17 points.
But the World could never get closer than 9 though as Rivers took control scoring 8
4th quarter points and 8 other U.S. players then scored to give the U.S. their biggest lead of the game, 86-66 with 3:23 left.
The World team did rebound well, tallying 23 offensive boards while out-rebounding the
U.S. 41-39 in the game, but they looked a bit timid inside and had trouble finishing in traffic.
Despite the loss, it was a great experience for the World team as they learned they will all have to step up their games in order to compete with America’s best.
Biyombo was the story of the game though collecting the first triple double in Hoop Summit history. He amassed 12pts, 11rebs and 10blks, yes a triple-double with blocks! He was everywhere on defence, blocking layups, jump hooks and dunk attempts by the U.S. players. He also threw down several “man-child” dunks over helpless U.S. defenders while showing of pretty good footwork and no fear to go up in traffic and slam it home. He’s still very raw and scouts are salivating at what he will be when he really learns how to play the game of basketball.
Biyomo after the game had this to say, “Something happened, but the only thing I can say
is I really enjoyed the game, I really enjoyed the team, and all of us enjoyed the game.”
Next year’s game will be in Portland again and hopefully two more Canadians
will be in it again and hopefully the World can get a W.
The U.S. has won the last two Hoop Summits and now own an 11-3 advantage in the series. The difference with the U.S. now in international play is that they realize that they can’t come in as individuals and expect to beat international squads. They have to play a team game and with their athleticism and skill it’s really almost impossible to beat them if they’re passing and being unselfish on the court. Couple that aspect, with a desire to push the ball in transition, to defend all positions for a full 40 minutes, and their overall depth, and in my opinion, knocking off the U.S. will take a very special team.
Grades: Canadian contingent
Kevin Pangos “C”…looked a little overwhelmed, took a couple rushed threes, but didn’t really get into the paint. Wasn’t a huge factor in the game but made a couple nice passes for layups and scored a three. I liked how he was directing traffic and ensuring the bigs like Biyombo were getting the ball down low. Knowing Kevin really well, no doubt he will be right back in the gym looking to improve and be more aggressive going forward.
Stats: 6points on 1-6 shooting in 16 minutes. 2 assists.
Kyle Wiltjer “B-minus”…he had a tough time scoring inside. Had a few shots blocked by the long U.S. interior players. Got out in transition and scored. Showed his range shooting from outside hitting two threes. Will have to try to improve foot speed and try to get his shot off faster or using pump fakes when inside the paint.
Stats: 12points on 5-15 shooting in 23 minutes. Zero rebounds.
Head Coach Roy Rana “B-minus”…Rana put together a game plan but it seemed his players were a little awe struck by the surroundings missing easy layups, put backs. He tried to institute a zone to negate the U.S. squads superior athleticism only to give up several back door lobs and layups as well as three-pointers. They wanted to get their shooters like Bertans involved early but several early misses inside allowed the U.S. to take control of the game. The U.S. was simply a very talented team.