But that was before he met Audie Norris, a former Spanish League champion who is widely considered the best American big man to ever play professional basketball in Europe. Norris was hired in early 2014 by Sevilla, where he and former NBA player and coach Scott Roth played an integral role in Porzingis’ development. “A lot of times, basketball is destiny,” Norris told SB Nation. “Scott and I came in at the right time for Kristaps’ career. He’s had some really good coaches, but Kris never had anybody that would really could talk to him about NBA life from a professional standpoint.”
Though the NBA is becoming more perimeter-oriented, true superstar bigs are able to balance their games with an inside attack. Norris knew it was crucial for Porzingis to diversify his game. “It wasn’t easy for him to adapt those moves because it wasn’t part of his daily routine, but Kris is a sponge,” Norris said. “Whatever he learns, he stays working. He’ll always try to find a way to make it work for him. He never really played with his back to the basket, so I told him, ‘we’re gonna work on three moves: the jump hook, the turnaround jump shot off the glass, and the shoulder fake jumper, and from there we built combinations.'”
A Spanish court is investigating the alleged use of false passports by two American basketball players. Both players allegedly used false passports issued by Equatorial Guinea in order to give their respective teams the ability to add another non-European player to its respective rosters. Due to a competition rule which allows players from African, Caribbean and Pacific countries to count as Europeans, both sides then freed up one additional spot. The players in question are Marcus Slaughter and Andy Panko, who respectively played for Real Madrid and Fuenlabrada last season.
The Oklahoma City Thunder will visit the capital of Spain next October to play against Real Madrid at the Barclaycard Center. The game, which is one of the NBA Global Games 2016 tour games that the Thunder will play this fall, will be played during the first week of October.
In an interview with ESPN, which you can see below, Bryant said one time when Barcelona went to Los Angeles, he met up with Ronaldinho, quoting the star as saying the follow. “Kobe, look, I’m going to introduce you to the guy who is going to be the greatest player of all time,” Bryant recalled. And who was it? None other than the world’s current top player, Lionel Messi.