Basketball

EuroLeague rosters are complete after signings deadline – News

After a flurry of recent additions, the rosters for all Turkish Airlines EuroLeague teams are now set for the rest of the season with the passing of the signing deadline on Wednesday at 18:00 CET.

Any new players who could help teams late in the regular season, and eventually in the playoffs and the Final Four, had to be registered by that deadline. Several teams made their final moves during last few weeks, adding new players to be as competitive as possible in the final, decisive months of the 2020-21 season.

No team made more noise than FC Barcelona, which brought back basketball legend Pau Gasol, signing him for the remainder of the season. Gasol last played for Barcelona in 2001, when he was a teammate of the man who will now be his head coach, Sarunas Jasikevicius. In the last two decades, he has become most of the most decorated players in basketball history, winning two NBA titles with the Los Angeles Lakers as well as a Basketball World Cup, three EuroBasket gold medals and three Olympic medals with the Spanish national team, among other highlights. Gasol now has the chance to add a EuroLeague title. Only one player, Toni Kukoc, has been also to lift the EuroLeague, NBA, World Cup and EuroBasket trophies.

Panathinaikos OPAP Athens inked swingman Mario Hezonja for the remainder of the season. Hezonja helped Barcelona make it to the EuroLeague Final Four and win the Spanish League title in 2014 before spending the last five seasons in the NBA.

Olympiacos Piraeus bolstered its frontcourt by signing center Kosta Koufos, who played in the NBA for 11 years and was with CSKA Moscow in the 2019-20 campaign, when he averaged 3.7 points in 17 EuroLeague games.

AX Armani Exchange Milan brought in big man Jeremy Evans. He arrived in Milan on February 15 and successfully passed his medical tests before joining the team. Evans averaged 8.5 points on 43.8% three-point shooting and 4.4 rebounds in 21 EuroLeague games with Khimki Moscow Region last season. Coach Messina also has Jakub Wojciechowski to choose from after the veteran center was signed for the rest of the season.

FC Bayern Munich signed David Kraemer, who played for Northern Arizona of the G League last season. He is set to make his EuroLeague debut with Bayern, but brings in four seasons of 7DAYS EuroCup experience with ratiopharm Ulm.

Zenit St Petersburg added size and experience to its roster by registering center Tarik Black. The deal was made in mid-January, but Zenit has not registered him until now. Black last played for Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv, averaging 9.1 points on 61.8% two-point shooting and 4.8 rebounds in 11 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague games in the 2019-20 campaign, which was cut short due to injury.

Other players who had signed earlier and not yet made their debuts are CSKA Moscow’s Iffe Lundberg and Micheal Eric and Maccabi’s T.J. Cline.

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