Eurobasket 2017 rolls on, and Cavaliers rookie Cedi Osman’s Turkish squad topped Belgium 78-65.
This was a game with real implications in Group D with both Belgium and Turkey sitting at 1-2 and in the fourth and fifth spots in the group. With the win, Turkey moves into the fourth spot, which, if they remain in that slot, will prevent their elimination from the tournament.
Osman had a quiet game after putting up well-rounded lines across the board thus far in the tournament, scoring 10 points on 4-10 shooting and only drawing three free throws while hitting zero of his three attempted threes. He’s been a terror in the passing lanes thus far in the tournament, but only had one steal.
With that said, he still contributed a solid effort, with a +5 on the game while chipping in a couple assists. Osman’s limitations showed in this game, however. He doesn’t have a particularly consistent outside shot, and he also doesn’t have the tightest handle.
Turkey doesn’t have the ball-handlers and shot creators that he should ideally play alongside, and as a result, he was forced to create out of the pick and roll in this matchup. He did a passable job, but he doesn’t have the tight handles to operate in the space that his screener creates, and it was often awkward.
The Belgians don’t have any NBA players on their roster, but kept it close through three quarters, trailing 55-53. A strong performance from Furkan Korkmaz and former Cavalier Semih Erden offensively was eventually too much for the Belgians as Turkey nearly doubled their efforts in the fourth, 23-12.
Turkey will play next on Thursday as they square off with Kristaps Porzingis’ Latvian crew.