Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Turkey - Finland ( Eurobasket 2013 )

turkey finland eurobasket 2013 slovenia pick and prediction
If this game were to be scheduled 3 weeks ago, i would have written completely opposite things; however, Turkish national team significantly increased their shape since then. The summer started with the ongoing discussion of who is supposed to be in charge of Turkey's rotation in Slovenia and Bogdan Tanjevic, with a decision not surprising anyone,  was confirmed once again to be in charge as the head coach of the team. Most of the basketball community, including me, desired the head coaching position to be filled by the last season's in arguably the best head coach Ergin Ataman, but Turkish National Basketball Federation didn't think the same way and they appointed Bogdan Tanjevic once again for god knows after how many times in the last 10 years. In other words, we are supposed to be happy with who we have rather than who we wish.

Anyway, Turkish National team, as usual, started to the preparations pretty bad. After losing all three games in a private tournament held in Celje, against Serbia, Latvia and hosting Slovenia, heavy criticism arose. They must have known what they were about to get, so that the next preparatory games were scheduled against considerably weaker teams such as Czech Republic and Belgium. Turkey surprisingly ? crashed those teams at home whereas the only significant victory was achieved against underachieving Crotia. (During this period, Turkey was slaughtered by Serbia once again ) Finally, Turkey defeated Poland in Istanbul last week and arrived to Slovenia for the big event.

Finland, despite being one of the most promising nations of European Basketball in the recent years, has considerably weaker rotation for this group. The only remarkable players they have are Khimki Moscow's Petteri Koponen and Union Olimpija's Sasu Salin. Just like Turkey, Finland defeated Czech Republic as well as was defeated by Latvia during August.  They were heavily trailed by injury weakened Russia and strong France. The most significant victory Finland achieved was against tournament's potentially weakest rotation England. All those games ended with high scoring, lowest of which totaled in 154 points.

Because of my latest sentence above and the given game total determined by the bookies, you might tend to think that I'm about to suggest game total over as a choice for this match up. ( which is only 150.5 points at the moment ) However, I seriously have doubts about it. Turkey's head coach Bogdan Tanjevic said something regarding the defensive attention his guys are expected to pay to. Since, Finland team is weak, especially in the front court, they are naturally in search of accelerating the tempo of the game whenever possible. Turkey, in contrast, is likely to employ half court offense, exploiting the quality of their big men, mainly Rockets center Omer Asik and Anadolu Efes' experience power forward Kerem Gonlum. Even the forwards Ersan Ilyasova and Hedo Turkoglu are quite tall compared to their counterparts and could easily create miss match up in the set offense. Finnish paint players Gerald Lee and Tuuka Kotti are doomed to be undersized against deep paint rotation of Turkey. We could expect a lot of offensive low post sets from Turkish side.

How effective Salin and Koponen could become is set to determine the fate of Finland in this game. Obviously, Bogdan Tanjevic should be well aware of that situation even I could think of that :) . He has players like Sinan Guler and Dogus Balbay at hand to slow down those Finland point guards; therefore, the biggest strength of Finland at some point is destined to be ineffective, possibly in the second half. What Finland could do in this group is to beat Sweden and hope to trip one of the other opponents. As I said above, I'm far from being a Tanjevic fan, but Turkey is still too good to be handled by Finland. I expect a head to head game and Turkey to take the absolute control of the game in the second half. A double digit Turkey victory is highly likely to happen.

Pick: Turkey Full Time -9.0 @ 1.98 pinnaclesports

Good luck and happy betting!!!

1 comment:

  1. http://i42.tinypic.com/jag8lt.jpg

    As stated at the first paragraph, I ain't a Tanjevic fan but even i didn't expect him to suck that much.

    miserably LOST!!!