Turkish Airlines EuroLeague
ADIDAS NEXT GENERATION TOURNAMENT
Week 8 MVP: Kristaps Valters, Snaidero Udine
Dec 20, 2006
While putting on one of the top scoring performances ever seen in the competition and pushing his team into the elimination rounds, Kristaps Valters of Snaidero Udine also earned the Week 8 MVP honor with an index rating of 41. Valters helped Snaidero to beat Anwil Wloclawek 84-88 in come-from-behind fashion to become one of the 11 teams that advanced to the elimination rounds on Tuesday. Valters exploded for 36 points on 4 of 5 two-pointers and 8 of 12 three-pointers, tying the record for most shots made from beyond the arc in one game. He added 6 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals and 6 fouls drawn for a 41 index. Jackson Vroman of Gran Canaria Grupo Dunas had the second-best individual performance with a 40 index. Vroman scored 28 points while making 13 of 22 two-point shots, grabbed 14 rebounds and collected 3 steals in his team's road loss against SLUC Basket Nancy. Darjus Lavrinovic of Unics Kazan followed with a 38 index as he helped Unics to beat EiffelTowers 84-88 and advance to the elimination rounds with 24 points on 6 of 7 two-pointers, 3 of 5 three-pointers, 9 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 steals. Last year's ULEB Cup regular season MVP, Mario Austin (index 34) of Hapoel, and Saulius Stombergas of Unics (33) completed the top performances of the week.
Individual highs: Hagag, Valters tie ULEB Cup records
Valters of Snaidero Udine not only earned Week 8 MVP honors, but was also the top scorer of the week with 36 points in his team's road win against Anwil. Due to his sensational game in Wloclawek, Valters now ties for the ninth-best scoring mark in a single ULEB Cup game, and also for the most three-pointers made in a ULEB Cup game, 8, along with Jurica Ruzic, Pedro Robles, Charles Smith, Hurl Beechum, Chris McGuthrie and Michael Watson. Despite his scoring exhibition, Valters is ranked just 32nd scorer in points this season, as Milan Gurovic remains the leader with 28.2 per game. Vroman of Gran Canaria led all rebounders by grabbing 14 against Nancy. He is the 10th-ranked rebounder in the league (7.2 rpg.) while Tariq Kirksay (10.4 rpg.) of Nancy is first. Sam Jones of EiffelTowers Den Bosch was the only player to reach double digits in assists by dishing 10 in his team's home loss against Unics Kazan. Jones ranks seventh in the assists table (4.7 apg.) with Mark Dickel of Anwil first, (6 apg.) and Valters second (5.2 apg.). Ben Eze of Montepaschi Siena had 4 blocks in his team's home win against Khimki and ranks third in the overall standings at 1.75 per game. Sharrod Ford of Alba Berlin leads that category with 2.88 blocks per game. Last but not least, Dror Hagag of Hapoel Migdal Jerusalem collected 11 steals and tied a ULEB Cup record. Jerry McCullough also had 11 steals to help Varese beat Crvena Zvezda 93-84 on December 2, 2003. Hagag had just 7 steals in 7 previous ULEB Cup games this season. His 18 steals (2.25 spg.) tie him for the fourth place in the overall standings, as George Evans of Dexia Mons-Hainaut leads with 2.88 per game.