Daily Gossip, Monday 18/8/14

Photo: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Photo: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports
Photo: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports
Italy’s Gigi Datome feels that he is a much better player than he was last season. This is what the NBA tends to do to most players.

DATOME FEELS GOOD

Being with the Detroit Pistons has helped Gigi Datome, and he is pleased to be able to hand his new found wisdom of the game to the national team.

Speaking with La Gazzeta dello Sport, Datome said: “I feel I am a better player compared to last year when I went to the NBA. I have worked hard day by day during last season to grow as a player. My goal is to be stronger. I want to play Eurobasket next season hoping that all the players named will be available.”

Italy are 2-0 in a Eurobasket group that includes Russia (0-2) and Switzerland (1-1).

KUBAN GET RANDOLPH

Former Denver Nuggets forward has signed a one-year deal with Lokomotiv Kuban, the club have announced.

Randolph averaged just 4 points with the Nuggets last season and wants more playing time. He feels that he can get that in Europe where he can further his game.

NICHOLS TO TRY OUT WITH CSKA MOSCOW?

Via CSKA Moscow official website.

Forward Demetris Nichols (29 years old, 203 cm) signed the contract with CSKA Moscow which supposes passing the 2-week tryout during the first training camp. If the player impresses the coaching staff 1-year contract comes into effect. During most of his career Nichols performed the role of power forward though he is also able to play small forward. His strongest assets are three-point shot, speed and athleticism. After graduating from Syracuse University in 2007 Demetris was drafted by Portland with 53rd pick of NBA Draft. The forward tried himself in the NBA by playing for the Cleveland Cavs, Chicago Bulls, New York Knicks and D-League’s Iowa. Nichols played in 18 NBA games (58 minutes, 22 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists and 4 blocked shots overall). After playing two seasons in France for Gravelines, Vichy and Cholet he got back to USA, played for Sioux Falls in D-League earning All-NBDL Team honors and the right to play in the league’s All-Star Game. Nichols missed the chance to get back to the NBA and returned to Europe. He played for Krasnye Krylia Samara last season and averaged 14.0 points, 3.7 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 1.2 steals, 1.1 blocked shots in 31.0 minutes in 22 VTB League games; 12.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.4 steals, 1.1 blocked shots in 32.6 minutes in 14 Eurochallenge games. Dimitris Itoudis, CSKA head coach: We scouted Demetris by studying the tapes of his performance for Krasnye Krylia. He is so-called “stretch four”, the power forward who shoots well from outside. Nichols is an extremely good athlete who can easily switch and defend of the perimeter. It is important that he is very motivated to play for CSKA. He will start from a tryout period of two weeks but we believe and hope that we will continue our collaboration after that. Demetris Nichols, CSKA forward: I am really excited with this opportunity. I was ready to go through the try-out only with NBA club or CSKA because this is the unique chance to play for one of the best teams in the world. Can’t wait to come to Moscow and start working. I think it will be very interesting.

TAQUAN DEAN SIGNS WITH GIPUZKOA

After a troubled stint in Italy, Taquan Dean has inked a new deal with Liga Endesa side Gipuzkoa.

Dean arrives in Spain from Sidigas Avellino, where he was recently sidelined due to disciplinary reasons for having an altercation with ex-team-mate Jeremy Richardson.