U18 European Championships: B Division
By Giovanni Conte
The level in the European Championship Division B (played in Varna, Bulgaria) is not very high, but you can equally find some interesting prospects.
Pavlin Ivanov (6’4”/195 cm, SG, Bulgaria, 1993): You may remember him from his participation at adidas EuroCamp, Jordan Brand Classic and 2010 adidas Nations. Ivanov led his team to the gold medal with 18.3 points per game and was named MVP. He showed good consistency during the tournament, and confirmed his ability to score: in seven games he was always in double figures, including a monster game in the semi-finals against Montenegro where he scored 33 points going 61% from the field. Pavlin is ready to play in Europe and despite being undersized has a chance to be an NBA role player off the bench.
Boris Bojanovsky (7’1”/215 cm, C, Slovak Republic, 1993): With his body alone he is interesting; he averaged 22 points, 13.3 rebounds and 4.2 blocks per game and made a name for himself. He is still skinny, is not flashy, but he runs the floor well and his presence in the paint is solid. He also showed some nice touch: he finished at 59% from the field and 60% from the charity stripe.
Or Solomon (6’6”/198 cm, SG, Israel, 1993): One of the most intriguing players of the competition. Solomon is an amazing shooter, he finished the competition with 17.5 points, 2.5 assists and 8.3 rebounds per game, but the most interesting stats is his three point percentage: 51.4% (19/37 in seven games)! He has really smooth mechanics. But he has more than just shooting: he is a smart player, solid in defense and rebounding, and is also an underrated passer.
Simon Krajcovic (6’1”/185 cm, PG, Slovak Republic, 1994): he’s a really smart player! He is small, but strong: he averaged 12.4 points, 7.4 assist (the best) and 5.6 steals (the best) per game. He probably lacks NBA talent, but not many guys are as clever as he is.
Alex Olah (6’11”/210 cm, C, Romania, 1993): another interesting big man from Europe. His body makes him a landmark in the paint, and his technique is not so bad: He is better facing the basket than when he has his back turned. He finished the tournament at 16.7 points, 14 rebounds and 2.9 blocks per game. He is not dissimilar to Zaza Pachulia.
Rasmus Larsen (7’0”/213 cm, F, Denmark, 1994): Possibly the prospect with the most upside in this event, Larsen is a 7 feet shooter. Physically he is still weak, but his hands are excellent. He finished with 11.1 points and 8.8 rebounds.