There are currently 6793 ex-college players, who play 2015-16 season overseas
BLOGS of pro basketball players overseas
Behind the backboard: the truth about life overseas
*the number is for both men and women players, who play outside of the U.S. (updated on 6/25/2016) Check Detailed list by College or by country
| Toyama retains Nash for 2016-17 season- Jun.21, 2016 (by Emeka)|
According to the Japan times, veteran coach Bob Nash will remain at the helm as the Toyama Grouses enter a new era. The 2015-16 bj-league championship runner-up squad announced last weekend that Nash would remain in charge for the upcoming season, when Toyama begins play in the new B. League's 18-team first division. The B. League season tips off in late September. The first division also features the Ryukyu Golden Kings, who captured the final bj-league title by beating Toyama on May 1... [read more]
According to the Japan times, veteran coach Bob Nash will remain at the helm as the Toyama Grouses enter a new era.
The 2015-16 bj-league championship runner-up squad announced last weekend that Nash would remain in charge for the upcoming season, when Toyama begins play in the new B. League's 18-team first division.
The B. League season tips off in late September. The first division also features the Ryukyu Golden Kings, who captured the final bj-league title by beating Toyama on May 15 at Ariake Colosseum.
The Grouses have a .726 regular-season winning percentage (151-57) during Nash's four seasons on the bench. They have advanced to the postseason four times and appeared in two Final Fours.
A former University of Hawaii player, assistant coach and head coach, Nash, 65, was named the bj-league's 2015-16 Coach of the Year and guided the Grouses to the Eastern Conference regular-season title with a 39-13 record and their first appearance in the title game.
During Nash's pro career, he played for the NBA's Detroit Pistons (1972-74) and Kansas City Kings (1977-79), and also saw time with the ABA's San Diego Conquistadors (1974-75) and the Alvik basketball club based in Stockholm, in the Swedish League (1975-77).
| Japan names provisional men's basketball team- Jun.21, 2016 (by Emeka)|
According to thr Japan times, the provisional Japan men's national basketball team entered its third training camp at Tokyo's National Training Center on Wednesday. Head coach Kenji Hasegawa selected 16 players for the squad on Tuesday, but Ryusei Shinoyama and Naoto Tsuji of the Toshiba Brave Thunders and Kosuke Kanamaru, Ryoma Hashimoto and Makoto Hiejima of the Aisin SeaHorses, all of whom played in the NBL Finals which ended Sunday, didn't participate in the afternoon practice on the... [read more]
According to thr Japan times, the provisional Japan men's national basketball team entered its third training camp at Tokyo's National Training Center on Wednesday.
Head coach Kenji Hasegawa selected 16 players for the squad on Tuesday, but Ryusei Shinoyama and Naoto Tsuji of the Toshiba Brave Thunders and Kosuke Kanamaru, Ryoma Hashimoto and Makoto Hiejima of the Aisin SeaHorses, all of whom played in the NBL Finals which ended Sunday, didn't participate in the afternoon practice on the first day of the camp.
Hasegawa said that all five players were hurt and hinted that the injuries to Kanamaru and Tsuji were a little more serious.
'It's tough,' Hasegawa said with a sigh. 'They are expected to return on Saturday, but to be honest, I'm not sure how much Kanamaru and Tsuji will have gotten better by then.'
Despite the situation, 'Akatsuki Five' is dead serious about earning a spot at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics through the qualifying tournament.
Japan earned a spot at the 18-team qualifying competition, which will be played in Belgrade, Manila and Turin, Italy, by finishing fourth at last year's FIBA Asia Championship.
'When we played at the Asia Championship last year, I had never thought that I wanted to win and play in the Olympics as much as then,' Japanese star point guard Yuta Tabuse said. 'We still have hope. We are going to stick to winning every game playing as hard as we possibly can.'
Meanwhile, one standout player on the roster is George Washington standout Yuta Watanabe, who wrapped up his second season with the Colonials, an NCAA Division I team, with the championship in March's NIT Tournament at Madison Square Garden.
Watanabe is available to play for Team Japan after opting to skip the first of the school's two summer semesters.
Watanabe, who reunited with the national team for the first time in a year, said that he felt a little rusty as his season ended a while ago but excited about the opportunity to represent his country.
The 21-year-old is the youngest player on the team, which has an average age of 28.2. But he said he has no intentions of backing off as he tries to make the final cut for Olympic qualifying.
'Once you get on the court, it doesn't matter how old you are,' Watanabe said. 'Somebody will not make the team in the end, but I consider my teammates are rivals, so I would like to show what I can do as much as I can.'
The training camp will continue until Sunday. The team heads to China to compete in the Atlas Challenge invitational tournament from June 14-19.
The 12-man roster for Olympic qualifying will be announced after the Atlas Challenge.
The final Olympic qualifying tournament will be played July 4-9. The winners of each venue will advance to the Rio Games.
Japan, which is ranked 48th in the world, is in Group B of the Belgrade tourney along with Czech Republic and Latvia.
Provisional Japan men's national team:
Guards: Yuta Tabuse, Naoto Tsuji, Makoto Hiejima, Ryusei Shinoyama, Ryoma Hashimoto, Keijuro Matsui, Daiki Tanaka, Takatoshi Furukawa, Kosuke Kanamaru
Forwards: Yuta Watanabe, Joji Takeuchi, Ryumo Ono, Kenta Hirose
Centers: Atsuya Ota, Kosuke Takeuchi, Pape Mour Faye
| Golden Kings win fourth bj-league title- May.20, 2016 (by Emeka)|
According to the Japan times, the Golden Kings are four times championships in nine seasons. That's the Ryukyu Golden Kings' remarkable legacy in the bj-league. The Golden Kings closed out the league's 11th season, its final chapter, with a solid all-around game on Sunday, beating the Toyama Grouses 86-74 at Ariake Colosseum before a boisterous, energized crowd of 11,038. The final title makes Ryukyu the winningest franchise in league history, surpassing the Osaka Evessa and Hamamatsu... [read more]
According to the Japan times, the Golden Kings are four times championships in nine seasons.
That's the Ryukyu Golden Kings' remarkable legacy in the bj-league.
The Golden Kings closed out the league's 11th season, its final chapter, with a solid all-around game on Sunday, beating the Toyama Grouses 86-74 at Ariake Colosseum before a boisterous, energized crowd of 11,038.
The final title makes Ryukyu the winningest franchise in league history, surpassing the Osaka Evessa and Hamamatsu Higashimikawa Phoenix, both of which collected three titles apiece.
Golden Kings coach Tsutomu Isa spoke about that accomplishment after his team received the championship hardware.
'We weren't able to get to Ariake last year,' he said, noting the team's playoff disappointment in 2015. 'We had tough times earlier this season and quitting (our new schemes) crossed my mind. But like today, too, if we kept doing the things we've done, we thought we would have the result we wanted.
'We lost to Hamamatsu last year and I had so much pressure, and at times leading this Kings club has overwhelmed me.'
He added: ''Hamamatsu and Osaka have won three titles, too, and we definitely wanted to prove that we were part of the bj-league.'
While the large throng of Golden Kings supporters from Okinawa and beyond shouted for joy as the club clinched the title, Toyama fans lamented the end of the team's magical run.
The Grouses entered the title game with 14 straight victories.
Ryukyu didn't play its flashiest or most efficient game. The Golden Kings turned the ball over 17 times, but they also held a significant advantage in 2-point shooting percentage, making 24 of 45 (53.3 percent) and holding the Grouses to 20 of 51 (39.2).
Toyama bench boss Bob Nash, a former University of Hawaii player and head coach, said now's the appropriate time to focus on the team's impressive journey from training camp to title-game participant.
'I'm going to applaud them on the season they had, not going to judge them on one game,' said Nash, who also played in the NBA, in his fourth season at the helm.
'Obviously we are disappointed in the game. But we are not disappointed in the season.'
He added: 'I think you have to give credit to Okinawa. They played a (strong) game.'
Nash pinpointed 2-point field goals as 'the big difference' in the game.
Across the board, most of the game statistics were similar. Besides 2-point shooting, Ryukyu's 54-41 rebounding edge was another key stat.
League legend Anthony McHenry, the do-it-all leader of the Golden Kings on all four championship teams, had a triple-double with 10 points, 15 rebounds and 10 assists. Big man Evan Ravenel had 22 points and 12 rebounds in the triumph.
'You have to tip your hat to Okinawa,' Toyama big man Sam Willard said after his 10-point, 11-rebound performance. 'They took care of business like they always do.'
Willard said Ryukyu makes plays and doesn't force things on offense. He said Kings players wait for chances and make shots and 'let the game come to them.' He praised McHenry for his ability to make everyone around him better.
'He runs the team,' Willard said of McHenry.
Ryukyu never trailed in the second half.
In the third quarter, the Grouses came as close as five points on five occasions, but couldn't get over the hump.
Early in the fourth quarter, on a play that captured the essence of the Kings' understated brilliance this season, McHenry deftly dished the ball to Ravenel, who converted a layup to push the lead to 62-52. Moments later, Shigeyuki Kinjo, an original Kings player in 2007, grabbed an offensive rebound and scored on a putback to make it 64-52.
Despite their spirited effort, the Grouses couldn't seize momentum and make a game-changing run down the stretch.
A Shuhei Kitagawa jumper pulled Ryukyu ahead 77-62 with about 3:30 to play in the final quarter. The lead stretched to 19 on two Ryuichi Kishimoto free throws with 1:11 left.
Ryukyu players and fans erupted for joy after the final buzzer sounded.
Toyama was at the opposite end of the emotional spectrum, and swingman Daichi Tanaka, walking off the court, saluted the Grouses fans, clapping in their direction to show his appreciation for their support, even in defeat.
'Right now I only have the feeling of disappointment,' Joho said after the game. 'We've played on this team throughout the year and we've had some good times and bad times, but we improved toward the end of the season, being united as one. So we wanted to win the championship by any means.
'Okinawa is such a great team, so we just came up short losing to a great team. At the same time, I feel like I could've done better.
After a dominating performance on Saturday against the Akita Northern Happinets to reach the title game, Joho noted the schedule didn't work in his team's favor a day later.
He added: ' (In the regular season), we've had a week to prepare for our next opponents, attacking on their weaknesses. But this is a win-or-go home situation and we weren't really able to prepare (against Ryukyu), plus, maybe we had some fatigue. But we played a good basketball game.'
For Toyama, Drew Viney was the high scorer with 19 points. Joho poured in 16 points and Duke Crews and Takeshi Mito had seven apiece.
The Ryukyu defense was effective against Crews, holding him to 1-for-11 shooting from the field. He grabbed 12 rebounds.
Starting guard Kishimoto had 10 points for the Kings. He was 0-for-6 from beyond the arc, but sank all six of his free throws. Shota Tsuyama, who turned 20 in April, added nine points, all on 3s, off the bench. Morihisa Yamauchi and Draelon Burns finished with seven and six points, respectively.
It was a tight first quarter, featuring six ties and Toyama and Ryukyu matching each other's intensity.
There were no big point swings or runs until the Golden Kings closed out the quarter on a 7-0 spurt, initiated by a pair of Burns free throws, to take a 22-17 lead with 3:50 left in the opening stanza.
Ryukyu began to build some breathing room early in the second period. After Mito's baseline 3 brought Toyama within 24-20, the Kings embarked on a 7-2 run. A Ravenel jam and a Kitagawa 3-pointer sparked the run that gave the Okinawan powerhouse its biggest lead of the half, 31-22 near the 5:20 mark.
Playing with two fouls, Joho sank a baseline jumper to pull his team within 35-33. He picked up his third foul while dribbling the ball with 58.5 seconds before halftime.
Ryukyu led for the entire second quarter.
The Grouses trailed 39-33 at halftime.
For the Golden Kings, Ravenel and Kitagawa were the top first-half scorers with eight and seven points, respectively. Viney and Willard both had eight points for the Grouses.
As a team, Ryukyu made 11 of 22 shots from inside the arc before intermission and 3 of 12 from 3-point range. Toyama's numbers: 13 of 28 and 2 of 13, respectively.
The rebounding numbers were identical (eight apiece) for the title-game participants in the first half.
'We just ran into a team that was really poised,' Nash said, 'and showed their mettle of being here and playing for championships.'
Said Isa: 'Toyama plays an up-tempo game like we do, but we were going to keep playing our game. We play 11 guys while Toyama (mostly) plays seven to eight guys, so we thought Toyama would slow down and we would have an edge.'
The Golden Kings captured titles in the 2008-08 and 201-12 seasons under ex-coach Dai Oketani. Isa, an assistant on the team from its inception in 2007 until 2013, has now guided the team to two championships, the first in the 2013-14 season (after he replaced Oketani's one-season successor, Koto Toyama). For Isa's team, Sunday's performance capped a season that was typical of the Kings (40-12 in the regular season) and a loaded roster featuring a dynamic mix of playmakers, defenders and quick-footed athletes.
Staff writer Kaz Nagatsuka contributed to this report.
Akita clobbers Kyoto
In the third-place game, the Akita Northern Happinets pounded the Kyoto Hannaryz from start to finish en route to a 122-74 shellacking.
Akita's 33-14 lead after one quarter ballooned to 59-36 by halftime.
The biggest key? Three-point shooting. Guys got open and made shot after shot after shot. Credit Akita for setting screens and getting the ball to players in the right spots and to hot-shooting players.
The Northern Happinets (40-18) nailed 7 of 12 3s in the opening half. At the same time, the Hannaryz had no answer for Akita's inside-the-arc attack, either.
Ray Turner dunked three times in the first half and had 14 points by the break. His team, meanwhile, was 16-for-24 on 2-point attempts, and sharpshooter Shigehiro Taguchi had 13 points, while Akitomo Takeno had 10.
Things fell apart even more for Kyoto (45-13) in the third quarter.
Akita coach Makoto Hasegawa's club spread the floor and fed the ball to perimeter shooters, especially Taguchi. The veteran guard fueled the club's third-quarter domination, burying 5 of 5 3s (plus both of his shots from closer range) in an electrifying 19-point performance in the quarter.
The Hannaryz couldn't stop him.
As a result, Akita used a 28-7 quarter-opening run, capped by a Taguchi baseline 3, of course, to bury Kyoto. That made it 87-43.
Shortly thereafter, a Yuto Otsuka 3-pointer increased the lead to 45 points.
Kyoto trailed 96-49 after three quarters.
Entering the final stanza, Taguchi had scored 32 of his game-high 35 points, making the greatest impact from downtown (8 of 9 on 3s before the fourth).
Taguchi's excellent performance didn't shock Hasegawa.
'The truth is, he's a strong player,' Hasegawa said of Taguchi, who averaged 14.6 points during the regular season.
Early in the fourth, Akita extended its lead to 101-51. Then it was just a formal matter of completing the remaining eight-plus minutes.
Akita sank 414 3-pointers during the regular season, and the way Sunday's contest turned into a bigger rout by the minute, it seemed as if the Happinets might make nearly as many 3s in their finale.
Here are Akita's actual 3-point numbers from its season finale: 19 of 30. The Happinets also converted 24 of 36 from 2-point range, with a jaw-dropping 43-for-66 overall shooting line from the field.
Akita doled out 30 assists, with Richard Roby dishing out nine to lead the attack. Turner had 18 points and 11 rebounds, Akitomo Takeno scored 15 points with six assists and Roby poured in 13.
Kevin Kotzur led Kyoto with 13 points and nine boards. Takuya Komoda and Rintaro Tokunaga each had 10 points.
Despite the team falling short of its ultimate goal, Roby said he's 'very happy to be here (at the Final Four) three years in a row.'
Hasegawa commended his players for their defensive effort on Sunday.
'Akita's a good team,' he said. 'The goal now is to become the best team in Japan (in the new B. League).'
He added: 'I'm looking forward to the new league.'
While the Hannaryz lost in shocking fashion, Hamaguchi didn't point fingers after the contest.
'It's about the team, it's a team sport,' he commented.
'We eat together as a team,' he pointed out.
In the paint: Forward David Palmer, the league's 2006-07 MVP, spoke to reporters after the third-place game. Palmer retired in December after suiting up for the Osaka Evessa, Ryukyu Golden Kings and Kyoto Hannaryz, his final bj-league club, in a distinguished career. Palmer, who flew in to Japan for the weekend from California, thanked the Hannaryz for inviting him to join the club for its final playoff games. He sat on the bench with his former teammates on Saturday and Sunday.
'I'm very grateful the team invited me to come back and be here with the team,' Palmer said.
'For me to be here as an observer and not as a player is a bit strange,' he added with a grin, saying he was 'more nervous.'
'As a player, I was more relaxed,' he said.
In recent months, Palmer, now 34, has kept busy 'pretty much as a stay-at-home dad,' he said.
But he's started helping out the Yuba Community College men's basketball team conduct offseason workouts. Palmer said he's planning to join the team's coaching staff in the coming weeks.
'It's a nice way to stay in touch with the game,' Palmer noted.
To help pay the bills, Palmer sad he intends to expand his workload as a skills-development coach as well. . . .
Hamaguchi reflected on his 11 seasons as a bj-league coach during his post-game news conference. He's the only man to be employed as a head coach from start to finish in the circuit. (Dai Oketani took over as the Oita HeatDevils bench boss midway through the team's inaugural season and has remained a head man ever since, with later stints running the Ryukyu, Iwate Bulls and, currently, Osaka.)
Said Hamaguchi: 'I've enjoyed the work.'
He described the experienced of leading the Sendai 89ers (2005-11) and Kyoto (since 2011) as 'my chance to lead.'
Asked about his impressions of the bj-league and the rival NBL, which joined forces along with the NBDL to create the B. League, Hamaguchi responded by saying that both leagues 'make an impression for children.'
'We do our best,' he said.
| Nash ignites Fukushima to victory Apr.18, 2016 |
| Toyama beat Shinshu in opening game of the series Mar.15, 2016 |
| B-Corsairs looking to even Aoki's record Feb.12, 2016 |
| Ryukyu's Ravenel overpowers Kanazawa Jan.7, 2016 |
| Hannaryz looking good to contend for title Dec.4, 2015 |
| West' defense pays off Dec.4, 2015 |
| Albirex defeat Broncos Nov.3, 2015 |
| Broncos bow to Albirex Nov.3, 2015 |
| Hamamatsu target another league title. Oct.2, 2015 |
| Holm returns to Sendai Aug.29, 2015 |
| Warren joins Hamamatsu Aug.29, 2015 |
| Hamamatsu sign Warren Aug.29, 2015 |
| JPBL to face many challenges from inaugural season Jul.23, 2015 |
| Suzuki takes charge at Kanazawa Jun.20, 2015 |
| Akita, Iwate, Hamamatsu, Shiga advance to Final Four May.12, 2015 |
| Shiga's Toyama relies on mentor to improve Lakestars Apr.10, 2015 |
| Karimata, Jones carry Fukushima past Yokohama Mar.31, 2015 |
| Akita overcome struggling Tokyo Dec.19, 2014 |
| Shiga outplays Gunma in first bj-league contest for ex-NBA coach Parker, center Ely Oct.11, 2014 |
| Alvark hold off Kings spirited comeback Sep.6, 2014 |
| Gunma hires longtime NBA assistant Parker as new coach Aug.2, 2014 |
| Isa to lead champion Ryukyu again next season Jun.26, 2014 |
| Golden Kings dismantle Happinets in bj-league final As Kishimoto is named MVP May.26, 2014 |
| Brave Warriors avenge loss to 89ers Apr.21, 2014 |
| Nakama set to retire Apr.21, 2014 |
| Iwate cruises past Gunma, keeps victory streak alive Apr.21, 2014 |
| Joho powers Grouses past Evessa Mar.18, 2014 |
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