Monday, August 17, 2009

Monumental Petteri Koponen Watch: Finland takes France (!) Koponen takes Parker (!!!)

This just in from BlueForest, whom I thought had mysteriously disappeared long ago...

Hello Seth,

I will try to outscoop Hippo for this one, though his complete report with stats should be coming soon...

Petteri had his best game by far this summer, and considering the opposition, maybe ever. His advantage over Tony Parker at both ends kept Finland in the game, and in the fourth quarter Teemu Rannikko caught a supernova shooting streak to win the game for Finns, 77-73.

OK, France had nothing to play for and kept Batum and Petro out of the lineup.
Parker played long minutes, but was clearly not at full speed; he was not aggressive with the ball, and missed every one of his jumpers off the front rim.
Petteri was able to stay in front of his drives, getting two blocks and a steal in the process. At the other end PK hit two pull-up 3s over Parker, got inside paint to dish 6 or 7 perfect assists and drew several fouls. He also iced the game by hitting 2 FTs with 9 seconds remaining.

Finland's third key player Hanno Möttölä had also his best game since coming back to national team this summer. France's most efficient players were the Spurs' prospects Ian Mahinmi and Nando de Colo.

This season PK should get more minutes at Virtus, without the short shadow of Earl Boykins looming over him. After that it's decision time: if Blazers still do not want him, Pritchard should trade his rights, because he looks able to play solid backup PG in the NBA.

Finland - France 77-73 (33-36) (Teemu Rannikko 21, Hanno Mottola 17/9, Petteri Koponen 15. 1 - 75,0% (12/16), 2 - 53,3% (16/30), 3 - 39,3% (11/28). R: 20+9=29. TO: 11. - Nando De Colo 18, Antoine Diot 15, Ian Mahinmi 12, Ali Traore 12. 1 - 57,1% (8/14), 2 - 56,8% (25/44), 3 - 33,3% (5/15). R: 24+10=34. TO: 13.

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