Furkan Korkmaz will play for Turkey in the U-20 European Championship, after all. The 76ers rookie will board an 11-hour flight to Germany on Saturday. From there, he’ll take a four-hour flight to Greece to join his Turkish teammates. The tournament, which will begin Saturday, runs through July 23. After that, Korkmaz will play for the Turkish senior team in Eurobasket 2017 from Aug. 31 to Sept. 17, if he’s selected.
“I can confirm my presence on the list and my intention to continue to win more medals and achieve success with our national team,” Spain’s greatest-ever player said this week at the launch of his academy. “Each tournament can be the last and that is why you have to give your all and compete as though that were the case. We shall see if in two years’ time (at the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019) I play or what we do.”
The two-time FIBA Basketball World Cup winner has called on players worldwide to support FIBA’s new competition calendar, describing it as ‘win-win for players, fans, national federations, leagues and clubs.’ “Representing your country is the ultimate honor and I know that many of you feel the same way. The new calendar means that, for the first time, they (players) will have one free summer in every four-year cycle, reducing the pressure and providing the time needed to rest and recover from an already arduous schedule. It is really important that the new global calendar will also create opportunities and help develop new talent by enabling younger players from more countries to play international basketball.”