After winning both its groups last season but getting swept in the quarterfinals, Boulogne Metropolitans 92 has had a sizeable roster shakeup, starting with venerable French national team coach Vincent Collet taking over the bench. His vast experience is reflected in several new additions to the roster, giving Metropolitans the depth of knowledge needed to aspire to a long run in this season's 7DAYS EuroCup.
With former EuroCup and NBA champions added over the summer, the Metropolitans backcourt will benefit, first and foremost, from experience and know-how. Veteran point man Will Cummings won the EuroCup title in his debut season with Darussafaka back in 2018 and has averaged 10.9 points and 2.5 assists over three seasons total. He'll pair nicely with versatile two-guard Jordan McCrae, who lifted the NBA trophy with Cleveland in 2016 and reaches Paris in his prime at age 30. They and newly signed sharpshooter Keith Hornsby will join forces with two solid holdovers: David Michineau started 14 games at point guard and averaged 9.6 points last season while Lahaou Konate mostly came off the bench for defense. Who among them can step up as a second lockdown defender and an extra shooter will go a long way to completing what looks like a very balanced backcourt.
Metropolitans has more newcomers than returnees in the frontcourt, with the arrivals led by Vince Hunter, who was the Top 16 MVP and an All-EuroCup Second Team selection last season while playing for Virtus Segafredo Bologna. The Parisians opted for experience when adding forwards, too. Bandja Sy has played five previous EuroCup seasons in three different countries, averaging 6.0 points and 3.6 rebounds with solid interior shooting. Power forward Steeve Ho You Fat, age 33, comes with a wealth of French League experience and a reputation as a solid rebounder. That duo will complement returnees Tomer Ginat, who was a full-time starter last season at power forward, and center Miralem Halilovic, who joined Metropolitans in the middle of the season but played just two games due to injury.
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If Hunter can anchor the inside as he did for semifinalist Virtus the second half of last season, Metropolitans will have made one of the steals of the summer signings market. In 11 games in the 2021 portion of last season, Hunter put up 12.5 points and 6.1 rebounds for a performance index rating of 18.0 per game. He also made 63.5% of his two-point shots in that span. Any similar numbers will go a long way toward helping Metropolitans establish an interior game that will make it easier for perimeter players to do their jobs.
With a seasoned expert like Collet calling the shots for a team full of veterans, Metropolitans will aspire to at least repeat its quarterfinals run of a season ago. Once surviving the regular season is secured, gaining homecourt advantage as deep into the elimination rounds as possible will be a priority, as will working on the end-of-game situations that are likely to be encountered in those do-or-die games. If both can be accomplished, Metropolitans can go far.