Grizzlies Win Title as Event Wraps Up
Posted Apr 13 2005 4:43AM
Basketball Without Borders
TREVISO, Italy, July 1 -- The three-day Basketball Without Borders camp in Treviso, Italy wrapped up on Tuesday with two final competitions to determine the overall camp champion.
Marc Gasol, brother of Pau, played on the Clippers team and was thrilled to be at Basketball Without Borders.
"I had a really great time and a rewarding experience," Marc said. "I really learned a lot and was happy to have the chance to play against the best young players across Europe."
All the campers received parting gifts and best wishes from NBA personnel and NBA stars. Once the camp was over, the campers took the opportunity to spend a few moments with their NBA idols and took home great memories.
Overall, the third Basketball Without Borders was a great success as it brought the best young European players together for three days of games and drills under the guidance of NBA stars.
For the first time, the camp brought together 15- to 17-year-olds from across Europe. Since its inception in 2001, Basketball Without Borders has served as a summer camp for young people, designed to promote friendship, goodwill and education through sport.
The Fédération Internationale de Basketball (FIBA) selected the young players based on their basketball skills, leadership abilities and dedication to the sport of basketball.
In addition to basketball instruction and competition, the young players shared living quarters with their new teammates, ate three meals a day together and participated in a seminar, led by UNICEF intended to promote leadership, support education and raise awareness about HIV/AIDS education and prevention.
The basketball camp returned to La Ghirada in Treviso, Italy, the camp's host in 2001. Owned and operated by co-sponsor United Colors of Benetton, which owns the Treviso basketball team of the Italian league, La Ghirada is the team's state-of-the-art basketball facility, one hour north of Venice.
Basketball Without Borders also marked a significant return for Jaric, Nachbar and Tskitishvili, all of whom played with professional teams in Italy before joining the NBA last season. Jaric played for Kinder Bologna and Nachbar and Tskitishvili were teammates with Benetton Treviso.
The other three NBA players also first started their professional basketball careers in Europe. Gasol played for F.C Barcelona in Spain, Parker spent two years with Paris Basket Racing in France and Kirilenko played with CSKA Moscow in Russia.
The inaugural Basketball Without Borders took place in July 2001, with Vlade Divac of the Sacramento Kings, Toni Kukoc of the Milwaukee Bucks and five other NBA players from the former Yugoslavia uniting to work with 50 children from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, FYRO Macedonia, Slovenia and Serbia Montenegro.