Arvydas Sabonis Rumors

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“I came in with a bunch of veteran guys in Portland and learned from them—practiced against them every day, going hard,” Randolph said. “That’s how I got my game, by going against Rasheed [Wallace], Shawn [Kemp], Dale Davis, Arvydas Sabonis, Scottie Pippen, Steve Kerr, those guys. Just being there and practicing hard every day.”
That whole thing was being at the forefront — and in the middle — of a globalization that has transformed the sport. In 1989, he helped persuade Marciulionis to sign with the Golden State team his dad coached. Eastern Europeans Drazen Petrovic, Vlade Divac, Toni Kukoc and others also came to the NBA about the same time the Berlin Wall fell. “I grew up shagging balls for the old Celtics, so I knew what an NBA player looked, breathed and smelled like,” Nelson said. “So I would come back and say, ‘Hey, Dad, there’s a Larry Bird over there, only this guy is 7-4.’ When you’re over there and actually locking horns with them, you realize these guys belong.” That 7-4 Larry Bird to whom Nelson referred was former Soviet and EuroLeague superstar Arvydas Sabonis. He was drafted by Portland in 1986 but didn’t arrive in the NBA until nearly a decade later after foot injuries had robbed him of his mobility.
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The late Drazen Petrovic is the clear No. 1 in the results of a poll conducted among 38 Eurobasket players in which we asked who were the Top 5 Europeans ballers of all time. The players competing at the tournament apparently put a lot of stock in the performances at FIBA championships as Petrovic, Arvydas Sabonis and Dejan Bodiroga – with 11 NBA seasons combined – made the Top 4 while All-Stars like Detlef Schrempf, Predrag Stojakovic and Zydrunas Ilgauskas were massively snubbed and Dirk Nowitzki, the only Euro to win regular season and Finals MVP, ended up in a surprising fifth position.
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Bobcats coach Mike Dunlap delivered high praise for Marc Gasol as the league’s best passing big man. Dunlap compared Gasol to former Portland Trail Blazers great Arvydas Sabonis. “He holds that ball like it’s an olive and he can send that ball anywhere he wants,” Dunlap said. Gasol had seven assists and is averaging 4.6 per game.
Arvydas Sabonis‘ last season in the NBA was in 2003, after taking a year off from the NBA to play in Europe. During his career he became one of the game’s consummate big men, and even won a gold medal in the 1988 Olympics while competing on behalf of the Soviet Union. Last year, the former Trail Blazer suffered a heart attack playing basketball and was advised by doctors not to engage in such rigorous activity — by the looks of things, Sabonis may have let himself go a bit in his post-playing days. As if doctors could stop him. Last week Sabonis suited up for his hometown Lithuanian team Žalgiris Kaunas as part of a legends game in which they took on a club from Moscow. There are any numbers of reasons that the below highlights are hilarious, among them are Sabonis’ size advantage and apparent lack of conviction on defense.
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There was one — and only one — Dream Team. So that is the American view. But not everyone is American. As all knowledgable American basketball fans know, Lithuania is the country that has competed at a high level most consistently over the past six Olympics. Lithuania produced Arvydas Sabonis, Sarunas Marciulionis, Sarunas Jasikevicius, Linas Kleiza, Jonas Valenciunas, and Egle, among others. And now a film has been made about the 1992 Lithuanian national team, entitled “The Other Dream Team.”
Lithuanian news site Delfi.lt reports that former Portland Trail Blazers center Arvydas Sabonis suffered a heart attack while playing basketball Tuesday night. Spanish website CadenaSer.com reported soon after that Sabonis did suffer a heart attack but quoted Arturo Ortega, a representative for Sabonis, who said the center was “out of danger.” Lrytas.LT reports that Sabonis has “stabilized.” LTBasket.com reports that Sabonis’ life is not in danger but that he “will still spend the night in [the] hospital.”
Thousands were on hand Thursday afternoon to celebrate one of Oregon’s most beloved professional sports heroes. Sabonis played for the Portland Trail Blazers from 1995-2000 and again from 2001-2002 as a member of one of the winningest eras in the Pinwheels’ history. Pioneer Courthouse Square in downtown Portland was jam-packed full of fans, young and old, who came to pay their respects to Sabonis. The 7-3 center was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame last week, and at the rally the big Lithuanian made his first appearance in Oregon in over eight years.
Arvydas Sabonis was probably one of the best basketball players ever, and although Sabas was an old man when he played in Portland, he did enough with his time in a Blazer uniform to warrant the type of reception he received at Pioneer Square. The cheering fans seemed to come as a shock to the big Lithuanian who more than once thanked the city for the simple act of remembering who he was. But it should come as no surprise to Blazer fans that we’d remember a hands-down fan favorite, who anchored Portland during one of their best stretches as a franchise.