The 20th edition of Basketball Without Borders (BWB) Europe had its final day yesterday Aug 28 in Wroclaw, Poland, with 80 of the top high-school-age prospects from 31 countries from across Europe, including Belgium, Finland, France Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, and the UK, taking part in a Q&A led by 2011 NBA champion and NBA Elite Basketball Academics & Player Pathways Lead Brian Cardinal, with the participation of NBA assistant coach Fred Vinson, former NBA player Kerry Kittles, WNBA champion Ruth Hunter and SAS’s Jeremy Sochan.
During the session, Cardinal expressed the importance of having the right mentality when playing and being prepared for what’s ahead, while Kittles shared his experience and how doing the right thing on and off the court for their basketball journey is incredibly relevant for their path ahead. Cardinal and Hunter also highlighted how coaches try to elevate the players and push them out of their comfort zone so they can become better as individuals and as teams. Campers were very interested in finding out more about Jeremy’s tryouts for the NBA and his process in joining the league, what he was doing at their age in high school and the tests he had to overcome to get to where he is right now.
Upon the conclusion of the panel, campers proceeded to warm up and prepare for the playoffs which saw San Antonio Spurs (Spurs assistant coach Mitch Johnson) face the Washington Wizards (Wizards assistant coach Joseph Blair), and the Memphis Grizzlies (Grizzlies assistant coach Scoonie Penn) match up against the New Orleans Pelicans (Pelicans assistant coach Fred Vinson). After advancing to the boys championship game, the Washington Wizards defeated the New Orleans Pelicans in the finals 27-26.
On the girls’ side, the playoffs featured the Dallas Wings (Houston Rockets assistant coach Ben Sullivan) against the Atlanta Dream (Italian coach Adriana Corazzullo), and the Phoenix Mercury (Detroit Pistons assistant coach Brian Randle) against the Chicago Sky (two-time WNBA champion Ruth Hunter). The girls final saw the Dallas Wings outlasting the Chicago Sky, 35-19.
The 20th BWB Europe Camp culminated with the Awards Ceremony led by NBA Europe and Middle East Associate Vice President of Basketball Operations, Neal Meyer, which recognized Tilda Trygger (Sweden) and Nojus Indrusaitis (Lithuania) as the Kim Bohuny BWB Europe 2023 Camp MVP for the girls and boys division, respectively. The Patrick Baumann Sportsmanship Award was presented by Senior Sports Manager for FIBA World Javier Deshayes López to Aymen Kraria (UK) and Etna Rexhepi (Kosovo) for the boys and girls division, respectively.
The full list of awards winners are as follows:
|Champions||· Washington Wizards (Wizards assistant coach Joseph Blair)||· Dallas Wings (Houston Rockets assistant coach Ben Sullivan)|
|All-Stars||Aleksandar Gavalyugov – Bulgaria (#1)Christian Anderson – Germany (#11)Jack Kayil – Germany (#23)Killyan Toure – France (#24)Neoklis Avdalas – Greece (#26)Nojus Indrusaitis – Lithuania (#27)Urban Kroflic – Slovenia (#29)Omer Mayer – Israel (#41)Joel Cwik -Poland (#49)David Mirkovic -Montenegro (#58)||Stintija Aukstikalnyte – Lithuania (#12)Janna Vogellar – Netherlands (#21)Sina Hollerl – Austria (#28)Eliza Farbas – Hungary (#34)Maja Kusiak – Poland (#36)Katie Cox – Great Britain (#37)Tanja Valancic – Slovenia (#39)Maria Arrebola – Spain (#40)Irene Asensio – Spain (#42)Tilda Trygger – Sweden (#47)|
|Three-Point Champion||Christian Anderson – Germany (#11)||Kyra Bruyndoncx – Belgium (#22)|
|Defensive MVP Award||Killyan Toure – France (#24)||Miriam Vilafranca – Spain (#41)|
|Patrick Baumann Sportsmanship Award||Aymen Kraria – UK (#20)||Etna Rexhepi – Kosovo (#20)|
|Kim Bohuny Camp MVP||Nojus Indrusaitis – Lithuania (#27)||Tilda Trygger – Sweden (#47)|