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stuart
06-21-2007, 04:58 PM
From FoxSports: link (http://msn.foxsports.com/nba/story/6940112)


Say hello to Tiago Splitter
Peter Schrager / FOXSports.com

While most of America will be following the Oden/Durant sweepstakes next Thursday night, there's another 6-11 big man that several hoops fans will be tracking with a careful eye throughout this year's NBA Draft as well.

Though I've never seen him play in person, I feel like I've known him forever. He's an old friend I've never met; a crony I couldn't recognize in a police lineup.

Of course, I'm talking about the king of the mock draft — Brazilian center Tiago Splitter.

Who, you ask?

Simple enough question. And if you're not a die-hard NBA Draft guy who checks HoopHype.com 10 times a day like it's a disease, eats and sleeps Jeff Goodman's work, and updates his own personal mock draft on a regular basis — you may not be familiar with the name.

Where's the beef?

For the rest of Peter Schrager's Weekly Buffet, check out the Weekly Temperature, the Loose Ends and the Mailbag.

But if you ARE an NBA Draft-aholic, Tiago's part lifelong buddy from overseas/part flakey friend. On the one hand, he's one of the most well known international basketball prospects of his generation. On the other, he's an elusive enigma.

In truth, Splitter's only 22-years-old. But with the number of years he's been mentioned as an NBA draft prospect, you'd think he honed his skills playing with James Naismith on a peach basket.

So who is this guy with the funky name? And why does he have more experience with mock drafts than Mel Kiper, Jr. and Chad Ford combined? Well, there are reasons.

Kinda.

Splitter is a Brazilian player currently suiting up for the Spanish team Tau Ceramica. Having been in Spain playing ball since the age of 15, his name has been on the tip of scouts' tongues for the greater part of the past decade. A fluid big man who both runs the floor and plays a formidable post, Tiago's averaged more than 10 points in the highly competitive Euroleague, starred on the Brazilian national team, and gotten high praise from some of the top basketball minds in the world.

He's also been included in every NBA mock draft printed since 2004. Yes, 2004. The same year Dwight Howard and Sebastian Telfair were drafted and Scott Peterson was on trial, Splitter was being rumored as a Lottery pick. Feels like ages ago.

And yet, somehow, Splitter's STILL not in the NBA. He hasn't even been drafted yet.

What's the deal? Well, Tiago emerged in '04 as an exciting international talent. Only 19, he erupted during the 2005 FIBA America's Men's World Championship Qualifying Tournament with a 25 point effort in the finals. Already a contributor in the Euroleague, Tiago rapidly emerged as one of the top young international prospects. When the 2004 NBA Draft rolled around, Splitter fished around, but when no team was willing to promise him he'd be a lottery pick, he withdrew.

He did the same routine again in 2005. Asked around, withdrew.

Then again in 2006. Rinse and repeat. Enter and withdraw. Three years in a row.

Now, in 2007, Splitter's finally entering the draft. For real.

Of course, due to his current contract situation with TAU, he legally cannot play in the NBA until 2008.

Confused? Frustrated? Welcome to the club. It's like Tiago Splitter is "The Simpsons" movie: some great rumor that we've heard about for a decade, that can't seem to possibly be true. You tell me Tiago Splitter's coming to the NBA, I'm telling you "I'll believe it when I see it."

Jonathan Givony, the man behind mock draft mega-site draftexpress.com says there's a chance Splitter stays with TAU, even if he is drafted by an NBA team on June 28, "He has a contract for another two years, with a $1 million dollar opt-out clause next summer. If Tau chooses to, they can extend him until 2012 if he doesn't buy himself out."

Splitter quite possibly may be the most famous international star to never step foot on an NBA court.

He could also very well be the most highly overrated big man to come along in recent years. Some mock drafts have him listed going in the lottery. Others have Splitter being scooped up in the second round. When asked to compare Splitter to a current NBA player — any of them — Givony chooses P.J. Brown. And if not Brown, then Pacers forward Jeff Foster.

All these years of waiting, all this hype, all this build-up — all for the next P.J. Brown or Jeff Foster?

Sam Rubenstein, senior writer at SlamOnline.com, gives his own take on Splitter, noting, "I don't really have strong feelings on Tiago. He's one of those international mysteries that American journalists over-romanticize so that they can make it seem like they are doing work when traveling to Brazil or the outback or the eastern bloc, wherever. Can't blame them for doing it that way and trying to snag an all-expense paid trip to the far reaches of the world in the process."

And though Rubenstein's kidding around (I think), there's something to be said for the fascination NBA scouts have with young foreign big men. Darko Milicic was taken over Chris Bosh and Carmelo Anthony in the 2003 draft. Nikoloz Tskitishvili was selected four spots ahead of Amare Stoudemire in 2002. The list goes on. On the other side of the fence, you have the Dirk Nowitzkis and Pau Gasols — legit foreign big men who lived up to their potential and more. When words like "upside," "potential," and "length" are used as the primary adjectives to describe these players' games, it's really quite a crap shoot.

As for Splitter, I have no idea what he'll be in the NBA. Is he the next great international star? Or the next P.J. Brown? Is he even an NBA player at all? His clip montage on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQE52KLkN_0&mode=related&search=) makes him look fabulous — tough and surprisingly mobile. But what's that even mean? Nine out of 10 high school seniors can put together a nifty mix tape. Checking out YouTube to assess a player's skills is like judging a woman by her Match.com photo. Not exactly impartial. It's the Glamour Shots of game film.

In the end, some GM is going to draft Tiago Splitter. And after four years of mock drafts, nearly half a century of buzz, and more hype than a summer blockbuster with Jessica Alba, the King of the Mock Draft will finally be linked to an NBA team.

Of course, we'll have to wait at least another season to see what he's really got.

At this point, what's another year?

Fran Fraschilla
07-16-2007, 12:13 AM
thank god his name won't appear in mock drafts anymore


but he did benefit get drafted by the Spurs

boo_radley
05-29-2008, 11:53 PM
I'm hearing that he will re-sign with Tau, is that true?

rikhardur
05-30-2008, 08:52 AM
I'm hearing that he will re-sign with Tau, is that true?
Most likely, yes.

mvblair
05-30-2008, 12:48 PM
Most likely, yes.
That's what I'm reading from all the sports news sources: ESPN, Fox, Sports Illustrated. It's disappointing for San Antonio. They probably won't be able to bring Javtokas over either, and they already lost Scola. That's three great big men who could really help them next year. Maybe their Ian Mahini will be good, but he's so young.

damelo
05-30-2008, 01:08 PM
A few years ago, they already tried to bring Javtokas and he didn't accept. Then they signed Oberto.

Still, I think if Splitter wins ACb, why not...
How much can he earns at the max if he goes to San Antonio?

Also, He could probably get the start fastly in old Spurs team...

Test[banned]
05-30-2008, 01:41 PM
Spurs is good team for foreigners. I believe Tiago could help Spurs alot and coach will let him play. Javtokas lost his potential after motocrash and would be bench warmer in NBA.

rikhardur
05-30-2008, 06:10 PM
']Javtokas lost his potential after motocrash and would be bench warmer in NBA.
I do think so too. It wouldn't be a safe bet and besides he's still recovering his game so it's best for him to stay in Europe and have his minutes.

¹²³
03-03-2009, 03:17 PM
Another update on him from DraftExpress (http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Tiago-Splitter-25/):


Tiago Splitter (http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Tiago-Splitter-25/) (the longest player profile in DraftExpress history, at over 16,000 words and counting) continues to improve his game year by year, clearly emerging as one of the best players in European basketball this season, and maybe the top center around. His production is pretty astounding, ranking 3rd and 4th in PER in the Euroleague and ACB respectively, 8th in scoring in both categories, and amongst the league leaders in blocks, steals, free throw attempts and shooting percentage.

Offensively, Splitter continues to evolve his game, emerging as a real force for Tau Vitoria, to the tune of 16 points per game, on phenomenal percentages. He shoulders a big offensive load for them, and it’s clear that that’s something that is important for him in the way you see him calling for the ball on the left block. Splitter is primarily a low post player, showing an excellent assortment of footwork and spin-moves with his back to the basket, and a very effective jump-hook he can shoot with either hand. He is a little bit old school in that aspect, really putting pressure on his defender to hold his ground as he backs him down aggressively, which draws him quite a few fouls.

Splitter is extremely aggressive putting the ball on the floor and creating, showing excellent coordination and fluidity, and emerging as a terrific finisher thanks to his great hands and touch. He’s not incredibly explosive around the basket, which may emerge as more of an issue in the NBA (if and when), but with his excellent skill-level and high basketball IQ, he’s about as effective a low-post scorer as you’ll find at the European level. On top of that, he manages to find plenty of scoring opportunities with his ability to run the floor, play pick and roll with the likes of Pablo Prigioni (http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Pablo-Prigioni-5413/) and Igor Rakocevic (http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Igor-Rakocevic-4021/), and just find open spots around the basket to catch and finish.

Splitter is finally becoming a more consistent free throw shooter, now making about 66% of his attempts—nearly 10 per-40 minutes pace adjusted. He’s not really showing any kind of mid-range jumper, but probably doesn’t really have to for Tau considering that he’s shooting over 64% from the field.

Still not a great rebounder, Splitter has become even less prolific in this department on the offensive end this year, which is a relative concern and probably his biggest weakness. He is showing much better awareness in his ability to pass the ball, though, sporting an impressive 1/1 assist to turnover ratio for the first time in his career.

Defensively, Splitter is obviously a huge asset as we’ve discussed many times, as he has the size, strength and length to be very effective in the low post, but is coordinated and mobile enough to step out and hedge screens with great accuracy. The intensity he displays on this end of the floor tends to get him in foul trouble at times, but this is something that his coach will obviously live with. Splitter is seeing better productivity in the shot-blocking department than in years past, particularly in the Euroleague, where he currently ranks second in blocks per game.

Obviously a high-level rotation player and likely starter whenever he decides to step foot in the NBA, Splitter has a very difficult decision coming up when his current contract expires in the summer of 2010. The paltry $836,000 he’s slotted to earn from the Spurs on the very cumbersome first round rookie scale can’t compete with the 2.3 million dollars net he currently earns, meaning he’d have to take something in the neighborhood of a 75% paycut for the honor of playing in the NBA.

Talking to Splitter after the final, he seemed non-committal at best when the topic was broached, although it’s pretty clear that he would love to play in the NBA. “Right now it’s the middle of the season and I’m only thinking about Tau. The Spurs have some good players and we’ll have to see what happens.” In response to my question about whether his slot on the Rookie scale might impact his decision, Splitter obviously didn’t seem too happy with his predicament, jokingly asking me if I could “talk to David Stern about that.” He reiterated that “it’s a dream to play in the NBA,” stating “I’m still young, and for sure I want to play there”, but said that “we’ll see what happens when my contract is up in two years.”

mvblair
03-03-2009, 03:31 PM
At this point, Splitter's decision must be about money or comfort.

Obviously, some players just aren't comfortable in the US, which is fine and understandable. Everybody knows this kid could play well in the US, but, like Vazquez, he just might not want to come here. He grew up in Spain and Brazil, so that's where he is comfortable. Fine.

But the money is the bigger issue. If it's true that he can only make $800,000 if he signs with San Antonio, that's pretty bad. I sure as heck wouldn't do it if Tau or any other club gave me a better deal. Yeah, Oberto and Thomas need help in San Antonio, so Splitter would look good there, but there is no way I would do it if I could be making twice that money.

Given the financial circumstances, I predict that he won't come to the NBA.

damelo
03-03-2009, 04:13 PM
At this point, Splitter's decision must be about money or comfort.

Obviously, some players just aren't comfortable in the US, which is fine and understandable. Everybody knows this kid could play well in the US, but, like Vazquez, he just might not want to come here. He grew up in Spain and Brazil, so that's where he is comfortable. Fine.

But the money is the bigger issue. If it's true that he can only make $800,000 if he signs with San Antonio, that's pretty bad. I sure as heck wouldn't do it if Tau or any other club gave me a better deal. Yeah, Oberto and Thomas need help in San Antonio, so Splitter would look good there, but there is no way I would do it if I could be making twice that money.

Given the financial circumstances, I predict that he won't come to the NBA.

I think he already said he would stay until the end of his contract.

Anyway, he has at least 5 years of pro exp, so, he is far from being a rookie.

BBallfanJ
12-19-2009, 06:21 PM
Does anyone know what Splitter's intentions are after this season? He had signed a one year extension in Spain that will keep him there through this season. Will he come to San Antonio for next season, or is he waiting for Tim Duncan to retire?

each way
12-19-2009, 11:13 PM
I would love to see him play in the NBA one day. Hopefully soon while he has at his peak.

¹²³
12-21-2009, 01:46 PM
I would love to see him play in the NBA one day. Hopefully soon while he has at his peak.

Yeah, I would love to see Splitter in the NBA as soon as possible, but maybe he will follow his friend and ex-teammate Scola and head to the NBA with 27 years old.

LordOfLeyte
06-17-2010, 12:03 PM
Hoopsmarket says (http://thehoopsmarket.blogspot.com/2010/06/tiago-splitter-closer-to-play-in-nba.html):


Josean Querejeta, president of Caja Laboral, admitted that Tiago Splitter wants to play next season in the NBA, where the San Antonio Spurs own his rights, and that it will be normal his departure to the United States. The 25-year-old Brazilian center, MVP of the last ACB league, has an opt-out clause to move to the NBA next summer, after averaging 14.2 points and 7.8. rebounds last season. Splitter has been a member of Caja Laboral since 2000.

¹²³
06-17-2010, 01:24 PM
Yeah, it seems that this time he will actually go to the NBA.

mab
06-20-2010, 04:22 PM
Yeah, it seems that this time he will actually go to the NBA.

Hopefully he will play alongside with Timmy...

rikhardur
06-20-2010, 09:42 PM
considering how hyped this guy is, those numbers are good but not impressive

I don't think he will average more than 10 points and 5 rebounds if he comes to the NBA next year, and I'm actually being really optimistic :)

Just look at David Andersen as an example. the guy was killing it in Europe, but he hasn't been able to get it together over here.
No, actually Andersen was not killing it in Europe. He was a good, solid and reliable player, not the caliber of Splitter at all. He was never the star of any team he was with and was never an undisputed starter (not even close). Splitter is different material, watch some videos :p
But hey Jennings was not killing it in Europe and guess what happened :D

boo_radley
06-24-2010, 12:56 AM
Everyone that follows the Spurs is waiting with bated breath on a resolution to this situation

¹²³
07-10-2010, 12:13 AM
Finally! It looks like a done deal.

Report: Tiago Splitter finally coming to the NBA, agrees to terms with Spurs (http://probasketballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/07/report-tiago-splitter-finally-coming-to-the-nba-agrees-to-terms-with-spurs.php)


Tiago Splitter may not be but a blip on the average NBA fan's radar, but he's about to step into one of the finest organizations in the sport with the potential to make a huge impact. After much delay, Splitter will finally join the Spurs, according to a report by The Ticket 760 in San Antonio, giving Tim Duncan a proper big man running mate for the first time in a long while.

Even if Splitter doesn't quite make headlines in the LeBron aftermath, this is a huge signing for the Spurs. Antonio McDyess' season wasn't all that productive, and as impressive as DeJuan Blair may be, he was never the ideal candidate for a full-time gig at Duncan's side. Tiago's perfect for the job, and so much a stylistic fit for the Spurs that it's sickening.

Splitter's signing may not be earth-shaking, but it does have legitimate implications for the rest of the conference. Maybe the rest of the West's second-tier teams won't be goaded into making reactionary moves in the coming days, but the stability and depth the Spurs just picked up mandates their inclusion in any NBA outlook. Gregg Popovich's big three may have one more run in them yet, and with Splitter, Blair, an emerging George Hill, and possibly another acquisition in tow, San Antonio has quietly created a team reminiscent of their title-winning roots.

BBallfanJ
07-13-2010, 12:52 AM
Splitter's deal is for 3 years $10.9 million.

¹²³
07-13-2010, 03:03 PM
Update by Joe Alexander at 4:05 p.m.

The Spurs released their official announcement regarding Tiago Splitter at about 3:10 p.m.:

"The San Antonio Spurs today announced they have signed Tiago Splitter. The 25-year-old Splitter was selected by the Spurs with the 28th overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft. Per club policy, terms of the contract were not announced."

Update: Mike Monroe reports Splitter's contract is for three years and for $11 million total starting at $3.4 million.

From Tiago Splitter news conference beginning at about 3:40 p.m.

"I'm very happy to be a San Antonio Spurs. It's been three years for me and San Antonio to wait for this moment. I'm very happy. I knew that I want to be part of the NBA, part of the San Antonio Spurs. You never know when.

"My game in Europe is mostly low post. I'm a center. I can run the floor quickly for my size I think. I like to play pick and roll.

"They're the team since I'm a kid. I know them very well. I'm very happy to be here in San Antonio. For sure we're going to have fun.

"I told R.C. (Buford) and Pop (Gregg Popovich), when I started wearing 21 it was because I love the way Tim Duncan plays. He was one of my idols. Now that they change my number, I don't care.

"I decided I want to come here. I feel I'm in the right moment. Three years ago when San Antonio drafted me I knew it was impossible for me to come here. I signed a new contract in Europe. I improved my game a lot.

"I know the (NBA) game is different. I also know I know how to play this game. I will try to be the smartest and strongest I can do."

Link (http://blogs.mysanantonio.com/weblogs/courtside/2010/07/splitter-is-in.html)

I really expect him to succeed in the NBA.

mvblair
07-18-2010, 12:29 AM
Spurs fans seem pretty excited about him coming. Somebody put together a nice video of a Tau/Barca game, breaking down what Splitter does.

jVRHX8JinRk

CKR13
07-18-2010, 03:41 AM
Twin Tower days revisited.

Phantim3dx
07-26-2010, 04:21 PM
nice video matt

man i am hoping splitter doesnt bust. i think he is more developed and should be mature now for the NBA style of play. im curious as to how oberto, ginobilli and a brazilian play together. parker at pg, ginobilli at sg, sf is who?, timmy at pf, and splitter at center thats an intl all star cast already

¹²³
12-13-2010, 05:47 PM
It looks like it will take some time to see Splitter having a real impact on the NBA. But Pop seems to be working close with him.

Duncan
12-13-2010, 09:49 PM
I guess he is being eased in to the Spurs way of doing things. Pop is a great coach though, and Splitter will really be soaking up the info and experience. I think toward the end of the season he will get more PT as the starters get ready for the playoffs

mvblair
12-14-2010, 01:35 PM
Check out Splitter's game log (http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/players/4306/gamelog;_ylt=AsHntar8S86h8w7FJXFixqikvLYF). When he gets minutes, he gets points and rebounds. I'm a little disappointed that he hasn't played more minutes or that he isn't starting. I guess maybe Coach Pop is giving Dejuan Blair a chance too.

Duncan
12-15-2010, 01:57 AM
If the Spurs go up against the Lakers in the playoffs, they will need Splitter if Bynum is back for LA

¹²³
12-21-2010, 08:52 PM
Making sense of Tiago Splitter’s lack of playing time (http://www.48minutesofhell.com/why-tiago-splitter-isnt-playing-for-spurs#ixzz18mWDgeGR)

mvblair
12-22-2010, 01:18 AM
Making sense of Tiago Splitter’s lack of playing time (http://www.48minutesofhell.com/why-tiago-splitter-isnt-playing-for-spurs#ixzz18mWDgeGR) This article seems pretty realistic to me. Basically, it says that Splitter isn't getting much time because: 1) he's played way too much basketball this year, so Popovich wants him to rest, and 2) he was injured during training camp and hasn't been able to practice.

I like that Popovich is optimistic. Sometimes Popovich is very pessimistic, so it's nice to see him thinking highly of Splitter.

mvblair
12-22-2010, 10:43 PM
what the article does not mention is how bad Tiago has underperformed in practice and how badly DeJuan Blair, Matt Bonner, and Antonio McDyess have outperformed and abused him in practice. Maybe it doesn't mention that because it's not true?

¹²³
12-23-2010, 06:00 PM
what the article does not mention is how bad Tiago has underperformed in practice and how badly DeJuan Blair, Matt Bonner, and Antonio McDyess have outperformed and abused him in practice.

Do you have any source? Any link?

mvblair
12-24-2010, 01:10 AM
12 points and 9 rebounds in 20 minutes last night against the Denver Nuggets, who have a pretty big front line. DeJuan Blair had 16 minutes and Antonio McDyess 3. Matt Bonner had 25 minutes and scored 13 points, 2 rebounds.

I like all those big men, for the record.

Duncan
12-24-2010, 03:06 AM
Splitter will be fine once he gets use to the nuances of the NBA game. If he can stay active and use his fouls wisely, he will be valuable come playoff time. Tonight I am watching him play Orlando, he is struggling defensively, but the Spurs are not having a good game. Even Duncan and Manu look off

mvblair
12-24-2010, 09:24 AM
Splitter will be fine once he gets use to the nuances of the NBA game. If he can stay active and use his fouls wisely, he will be valuable come playoff time. Tonight I am watching him play Orlando, he is struggling defensively, but the Spurs are not having a good game. Even Duncan and Manu look offHe ended up with 11 points, 5 rebounds in 17 minutes. How is his offensive game, Duncan? What kinds of moves was he using last night? Back to the basket? Jump shots?

Duncan
12-24-2010, 03:17 PM
Kind of a lot of hustle points, and a couple of back to the basket moves, but mostly just staying active. He had some difficulty on defence at first, especially when matched up against Howard. But then again, Howard is a beast. lol

GustavoGanso
12-26-2010, 09:10 PM
Playing 15 or more minutes he have 8,0PPG and 4,1RPG.

This guy will be the best brazilian player on NBA in a couple years.

Duncan
12-27-2010, 10:30 PM
He'll get more PT as he gets used to the NBA. I see him as being a really solid player for the future, not sure about being a star though. Hope to be proved wrong

rikhardur
01-05-2011, 07:10 PM
Splitter: "There's a project with me here" (http://translate.google.com/translate?js=n&prev=_t&hl=pt-PT&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&sl=auto&tl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.acb.com%2Fredaccion.php%3Fid%3D 72993)

Duncan
01-06-2011, 01:31 AM
Nice article. I think he has the right attitude and what to expect in San Antonio with Coach Popovich. He will fit in nicely. I notice the refs give him no repect right now though. Some of the fouls he gets called for are pretty lame.

¹²³
01-06-2011, 08:46 PM
It looks like he will need tons of patience. I would really like to see him seeing more playing time, but we need to trust Pop and his staff on this subject.

BBallfanJ
02-05-2011, 02:41 PM
16 points and 9 rebounds for Tiago last night against Sacramento.

¹²³
02-07-2011, 06:09 PM
16 points and 9 rebounds for Tiago last night against Sacramento.

Good news. :)

Duncan
02-09-2011, 01:02 AM
sweeeeet

rikhardur
04-06-2011, 09:47 PM
BRA – Splitter’s journey

SAN ANTONIO (FIBA Americas Championship) - Tiago Splitter is cutting his teeth in the NBA with the San Antonio Spurs.

Other than spending time out with injuries, the Brazil national team center has had a positive rookie year.

He’s been on the same team as Tim Duncan, a player that he admired while growing up.

Just around the corner will be Splitter’s first taste of the NBA post-season.

He is 11 years removed from the time he made a very important decision in his life. He remembers that time well.

"I went to Spain at 15 years old,” Splitter said to FIBA.com. “I was really young and had a really tough start because my family and everyone else stayed in Brazil.

"I started to play, practice every day and just thinking about basketball every day.

"I remember my father saying, 'You've got the decision to do whatever you want.' So I say, 'Okay. I want to go to Europe.'

“And he started to cry, but also said, ‘Do what you want to do.’ It was tough."

The rest is well documented.

Splitter moved to Europe, competed alongside terrific players like Argentina’s Luis Scola and Brazil teammate Marcelo Huertas at Baskonia (Caja Laboral), and learned from coaches Dusko Ivanovic and Neven Spahija.

He developed into the best player in Spain.

Last year, Splitter led his team to the ACB title and decided it was time to leave for San Antonio.

In his entire basketball life, Splitter has been a player for Brazil.

The national team means everything to him, which is why come rain or shine, FIBA Americas Championship or FIBA World Championship, he’ll be with the team, leading from the front.

It’s with Brazil that he has developed so many close relationships over the years.

"We all start young in the national team,” Splitter explained. “I've known Anderson (Varejao), Leandro (Barbosa) since I was 16, 17 years old.

"We know everything about each other.”

They grew close off the court, and on.

Last year, that chemistry under the guidance of Ruben Magnano almost translated into an upset of the United States at the FIBA World Championship in Turkey but instead, Brazil lost at the death and then suffered heartbreak in a Sixteenth-Finals defeat to Argentina.

This is a Brazil team that is a force and make no mistake, come this summer in Mar del Plata, Splitter and Co will not be going to the FIBA Americas Championship just to reach the Final to qualify for the London Olympics.

They’ll be going to win it, just as they did in Puerto Rico in 2009. Knowing his teammates so well and being on the same page, it all helps.

“We started to grow, grow and grow and now we're here,” Splitter said. “We're at a good age 25, 26 years old.

“Maybe Marcelinho (Marcelo Machado) is a little bit older but he likes to do the same things as us. We're like a real family.”

Splitter has had the luxury of learning different styles of basketball.

There are notable differences when one watches teams play from Brazil and those from Europe.

"We play a different kind of basketball in the Americas,” he said.

“Here (in America) the game is a little more explosive with a lot of fast-breaks.

"In Europe, I played there a lot of years and over there it's more five-on-five, a little more different.

"I think the best way to play is mixed, both ways.”

And the players that he’s admired for many years who also wear the Brazil shirt?

One name comes to mind immediately: Marcelo Machado.

"He's big time in Brazil, the best scorer and best passer,” Splitter said.

“He comes to the national team and doesn't have the same role but he does it well.

“He's an exciting player. He can shoot three-pointers, pass it.

“He's a veteran, the captain and is great for the group.

“I have told him so many times that I'm a fan of his because of everything he has done.”
http://www.fiba.com/pages/eng/fc/news/inte/p/newsid/46320/arti.html

Duncan
04-07-2011, 01:26 AM
I was just going to post that lol

guilherme.rcf
04-13-2011, 04:24 AM
I have no doubts that once Splitter gets playing time he will start to produce.

And when you take a look at the San Antonio Spurs' roster, you see that, sooner or later, he will be the starter center.

Duncan
04-14-2011, 12:10 AM
I just hope he can stay in games. Sometimes he picks up quick fouls, though once the refs learn his game I think this will work out

BBallfanJ
05-14-2011, 11:00 PM
Popovich says he can see Splitter as the Spurs starting center next season, playing alongside Duncan.

Duncan
05-15-2011, 11:41 PM
he should have played him more this season. he would have been more ready for the playoffs. Tim Duncan is pretty much finished

mvblair
05-16-2011, 05:56 PM
Well, yes, I wish Splitter had played more. It sounds like, as J said, Coach Popovich is confident in him, but ideally he would have played more. I think he could have helped against Gasol and Randolph in the play-offs, and I'm guessing coach knows that now.

Duncan can still give some good minutes on the court, but not more than 25 per game. Blair will get Duncan's extra minutes and Splitter will get what Blair and McDyess used to get. So, Duncan and Splitter start, Blair/Bonner comes off the bench for Duncan. Just a prediction.

Duncan
05-16-2011, 11:41 PM
If as you say, Duncan and Splitter start, the Spurs really need an athletic small forward that can score and defend

mvblair
05-17-2011, 11:50 AM
If as you say, Duncan and Splitter start, the Spurs really need an athletic small forward that can score and defend Which, of course, they don't have now. Even though Jefferson had a better season than last year, his career still looks to be on the down-side. Know any hot young Brazilian shooters? :D

Duncan
05-17-2011, 03:04 PM
not at that position. Maybe someone else does, but like you said, Jefferson is not the answer at small forward.