1) The Winner Cup Preseason Tournament gets underway on Thursday with 3 games plus a Friday Matinee at the Drive-In. There will be plenty of interest to see how the teams will play being under a little more pressure than they were over the past few weeks with regular preseason contests. Now with something on the line, the players will step it up as they’ll compete to win the trophy which Maccabi Rishon Le’Zion captured last season.
Maccabi Rishon Le’Zion vs Nahariya
Nes Ziona vs Maccabi Haifa
Hapoel Beer Sheva vs Hapoel Gilboa/Galil
Hapoel Tel Aviv vs Maccabi Ashdod
Next Week the quarterfinals begin on Monday and Tuesday with each evening hosting a doubleheader as Maccabi Tel Aviv, Hapoel Jerusaqlem, Hapoel Holon and Hapoel Eilat all joining the dray at the Drive-In while the Semifinals will take place in Holon on Thursday. The Final will be played next Saturday night at the Drive-In.
2) The Sports Rabbi spoke to Demetrius Treadwell, Hapoel Tel Aviv’s new center about basketball, shoes and of course how he got his Twitter handle Tall Ass Tree!
Tall Ass Tree: I was 18 years old and I thought it was unique. It’s stuck with me ever since.
Childhood Dreams: I wanted to be a chef when I was a child and playing basketball was never my goal. Basketball wasn’t even my favorite sport growing up, I loved baseball player and Ken Griffey Jr. was my favorite athlete growing up. He had his hat on backwards and had that upper cut swing, I just loved his whole swagger. I got to meet him one time when he was with the Cincinnati Reds.
Basketball role models: Michael Jordan, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant but my favorite players were Penny Hardaway and Tracy McGrady.
Playing with Akron College: We were winning and we were very competitive for a mid-major program. We had an amazing group of teammates and it was close to home.
NCAA Tournament: One time we played we got killed. So it was an amazing experience to get there and it was a blessing that I had that chance.
Arriving in Israel at the start of his career: Romeo Travis who is an Akron Alumni told me Israel was a great place to start my career and it was an easy adjustment.
Playing in France for Nanterre: It was a good experience and we made it to the Final Four of the domestic league and Top 8 in the Champions League. Playing in Paris was great and we had great teammates and terrific chemistry.
Returning to Israel: Coach Ariel told me right away that he wanted to bring me back here and I was one of the first guys to sign. I came to do something special here with Hapoel.
About Hapoel Tel Aviv: We are aiming for the Sky. We want to win the State Cup and trying to be competitive in the league and win the title at the end of the season. We don’t want to sell ourselves short.
Favorite shoe: Air Jordan 4 – Black and Red. I’ve always got a nice pair of shoes on. That’s my thing, I’m a sneakerhead.
3) Maccabi Tel Aviv held their season opening press conference and Coach Ioannis Sfairopoulos stated in Hebrew the following when asked about the upcoming preseason tournament in Greece as well as the Winner Cup – “We want to win all of our games.” Check out the other quotes from the Maccabi Tel Aviv Hall of Fame!
4) Don’t miss the latest episode of The Sports Rabbi Show! The Sports Rabbi had the great honor to host Keith Dambrot, the head coach of Duquesne Dukes men’s basketball team who also was LeBron James first coach at Akron JCC and then at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School. We talk about college ball, his career, Akron, his current challenge and of course arguably the greatest player since Michael Jordan.
Hapoel Tel Aviv’s shooting guard Rodney Purvis also joined The Sports Rabbi to talk about his move to Israel after playing in the G-League and with the Orlando Magic as well as Maccabi Tel Aviv legend Anthony Parker. We also look back at his college days with NC State and UCONN and also his love for football and Michael Vick.
— Israel Sports Rabbi (@thesportsrabbi) September 13, 2019
5) Up in the Galilee, Hapoel Gilboa/Galil faced Maccabi Rishon Le’Zion, in a game that never reached a conclusion as Nick Ward out of Michigan State pulled down the basket, literally. WATCH!
6) Scores from this past week
12/9 – Cholet 77-89 Maccabi Tel Aviv – Nate Wolters 16p, Tyler Dorsey 13p, Tarik Black & Jake Cohen 10p each.
12/9 – Hapoel Beer Sheva 85-72 Hapoel Holon – TJ Williams 22, Cohen-Saban 17p, Steve Zack 15p/13r, John Petrucelli 13p for HBS. TJ Cline 15p, Malachi Richardson 14p, Ryan Thompson 13p for HOL.
12/9 – Hapoel Eilat 76-83 Nahariya – Eric Thompson 22p/16r, Rafi Menco 12p, Jonathan Skoldjebrand 10p for HE. Niv Misgav and Egor Koulechov 21p each, Dominic Waters 12p for NAH.
14/9 – Hapoel Eilat 78-89 Hapoel Holon – Rafi Menco & Kyvon Davenport 15p each, Larry Gordon 14p, Eric Thompson 13p for HE. Malachi Richardson 21p, Amit Simhon 14p, Marcus Foster 13p for HOL.
14/9 – Khimki 60-94 Jerusalem – James Feldeine 16p, J’Covan Brown 11p for HJ.
14/9 – Nahariya 79-72 Hapoel Beer Sheva – Egor Koulechov 20p, Travis Warech 16p, Jeff Adrein 14p for NAH. TJ Williams 23p, John Petrucelli 18p, Steve Zack 15p HBS.
14/9 – Maccabi Tel Aviv 94-57 Le Mans – Tyler Dorsey 14p, Tarik Black 13p, Quincy Acy 10p for MTA.
15/9 – Nes Ziona 88-85 Hapoel Tel Aviv – Jeremy Hollowell 21p, Tal Dunne 15p, Corey Fisher 12p for NZ. Tomer Ginat 21p, Rodney Purvis 17p, Yam Madar 13p for HTA.
15/9 – Maccabi Haifa 90-92 Hapoel Gilboa/Galil – James Young 29p, Willy Workman 19p, Scott Suggs 13p for MH. Jamar Gulley 24p, Justin Tillman 18p Yiftach Ziv 15p for HGG.
15/9 – Hapoel Jerusalem 87-77 Dinamo Sassari – Suleiman Braimoh and J’Covan Brown 15p each, Trent Lockett and Mindaugas Kupsas 10p each.
18/9 – Brescia 77-66 Hapoel Holon – Malachi Richardson 15p, Yogev Ohayon 11p, Ryan Thompson 10p for HOL.