Ukraine and The Czar

Our team had a couple setbacks following the AeroSvit Friendship Cup. After the tournament Sergey Gladyr had an MRI that revealed a meniscus tear in his knee. Unfortunately he must undergo surgery to repair the damaged cartilage and will not be able to compete in the European Championship. A member of Bàsquet Manresa in Spain last season, Sergey can play both the small forward and two-guard positions. He is an excellent shooter who gave us athleticism and would have been either a starter for the Ukraine or the first sub off the bench. We also lost one of our point guards, who ruptured a disc in his back and needs a month or two of steady rehab.

We brought up two, young 19-year-olds who have been playing well for the Under-25 Team to take their places at training camp. We’ll have to wait and see if either of them is good enough to join the Ukraine’s final 12-man roster. On Sunday we’re set to scrimmage Belarus again, and on Wednesday we fly out to Turkey for another four-team tourney in Izmir. This is going to be a big test as we’ll face three very difficult opponents: Turkey, Serbia and Germany, all of which will be top-five contenders at EuroBasket 2011.

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