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New FIBA format has its own set of challenges

 MANILA, Philippines — Over the past several days, two articles made the rounds. One about the Hellenic Basketball Federation, the governing body for hoops in Greece, accusing the Milwaukee Bucks and the NBA of preventing star Giannis Antetokounmpo from participating in the upcoming European championships.

Around the same time, there was a piece titled, “Red, White, and Who?” that was about the US men’s national basketball team missing its battalion of NBA stars and instead will line up players who weren’t good enough to make the league; who toil in smaller leagues if not abroad.

The article quoted USA Basketball’s Sean Ford as saying, “It’s going to be really interesting. We don’t know. We’re flying blind a little bit.”

Even a look at the rosters of the recently concluded FIBA Asia Cup, teams like Australia, New Zealand and even the Philippines to a certain extent were missing many players. When FIBA announced its new competition format last year, it was met with opposition from the Euroleague as it clearly overlapped into the tournament proper. It is also clear that FIBA is trying to force the issue and pick a fight with the European League by forming its own league with threats of banning national teams from FIBA events if they do not comply.

PBA clubs aren’t spared of that criticism. Is the pursuit of a PBA championship or grand slam bigger than the national cause?

Author: Rick Olivares, Philippine Star
Full Article: http://www.philstar.com/sports/2017/08/22/1731602/new-fiba-format-has-its-own-set-challenges

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