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  1. #1

    Scheyer's Overseas Prospects

    I read with interest the link on the main page suggesting the Jon Scheyer could have a nice basketball career playing in Israel. The story brought to mind an American-born player who had a wonderful career playing in Israel - Tal Brody. Brody is from my era and was a fine, all around player for Illinois in the mid-60's (not unlike Scheyer). He was the first round pick of the Bullets in '65 or '66. Back in those days, it was not nearly as lucrative playing in the NBA as it is now and a pro team from Israel made him a better offer. He went on to becoming perhaps the best known sports star ever in that country after leading the Israeli team to the world championship.

    The last time my wife and I visited Israel, we stayed with a family on a kibbutz for a night and while watching some youngsters play some playground basketball, I casually mentioned that a player from the US had spurned my favorite pro team to play in Israel in the 60's. All the adults who were watching immediately mentioned Brody and filled me in on his exploits from 30-35 years prior.

    There is no doubt in my mind that Jon, with his all around team play that is admired in the European game, could become a big star playing in Israel. I also think the he could become a solid player in the 24-second game although it all depends on the team that drafts him.

    gw67
    Last edited by gw67; 05-24-2010 at 08:34 AM. Reason: typo

  2. #2
    Lots of Duke players that have at least some of that same team-oriented style are having successful careers in Europe after limited or no success in the NBA. Trajan Langdon comes to mind. Demarcus Nelson and Daniel Ewing as well, and Martynas Pocius to a lesser extent. If Jon does play in Israel or anywhere in Europe I'm sure he'll be successful and prob'ly put up gaudier numbers than he would in the NBA. He could even possibly make more money over there. None of this is to say that I don't think he can have a successful NBA career, which I certainly hope he does b/c it makes it easier to keep up with his exploits. Wherever Jon ends up playing I'm sure he will carry the Duke standard with class.

  3. #3

    Role Model?

    <i>He is a very smart player, and a great shooter, and he would be a great role model for Jewish youngsters.</i>

    I hate to make fun of the writer since he was trying to say something positive, but maybe he should think before he states such a silly platitude. Why does he think that the “Jewish community” needs a basketball role model? Does he really think that becoming a doctor, lawyer, scientist etc. is a problem that needs to be addressed? Why settle for being a great surgeon when you now know that you have a chance of becoming a professional basketball player. Put away all of those books and pick up a basketball and with hard work and a lot of luck you may some day be the 12th man on an NBA team. I’m only surprised that he didn’t say that John is a credit to his people.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    Boston, MA

    Not good for Jon

    According to NBAdraft.net, Jon is a T-Rex:

    "Jon Scheyer had the worst case of t-rex arms with a 6'4.75 measurement barefoot and just a 6'3.25 wingspan. His 8'3 standing reach is extremely low for a player that stands 6'6 in shoes (21 inches). Even Sherron Collins standing reach was 23 inches more than his height in shoes."
    Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things. - Winston Churchill

    President of the "Nolan Smith Should Have His Jersey in The Rafters" Club

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Lewisville, NC
    Quote Originally Posted by flyingdutchdevil View Post
    According to NBAdraft.net, Jon is a T-Rex:

    "Jon Scheyer had the worst case of t-rex arms with a 6'4.75 measurement barefoot and just a 6'3.25 wingspan. His 8'3 standing reach is extremely low for a player that stands 6'6 in shoes (21 inches). Even Sherron Collins standing reach was 23 inches more than his height in shoes."
    I hope Jon gets a fair shot to make an NBA team. He may lack length in terms of reach (though his height was helpful in seeing over smaller defenders on the perimeter) and run/jump explosiveness, but he can shoot, pass, handle the ball, and has great intangibles.

    If not the NBA, he should still have some good basketball opportunities.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    raleigh
    it's not a disgrace to be a dentist...


    my mom and dad used to hammer on me to get a college education so i wouldn't wind up being a "ditch digger"....


    i had a guy come to my house to build a ditch from the water main to the house.....he was there for just over an hour and charged $800......

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Atlanta, GA/Durham, NC
    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleDuke Dad View Post
    <i>He is a very smart player, and a great shooter, and he would be a great role model for Jewish youngsters.</i>

    I hate to make fun of the writer since he was trying to say something positive, but maybe he should think before he states such a silly platitude. Why does he think that the “Jewish community” needs a basketball role model? Does he really think that becoming a doctor, lawyer, scientist etc. is a problem that needs to be addressed? Why settle for being a great surgeon when you now know that you have a chance of becoming a professional basketball player. Put away all of those books and pick up a basketball and with hard work and a lot of luck you may some day be the 12th man on an NBA team. I’m only surprised that he didn’t say that John is a credit to his people.
    I understand what you're getting at but you're also kinda missing the point. Kids always like to see someone excel that have something in common with them. Of course, there are plenty of role models out there but hey - I didn't even know Jon was Jewish until he got the recognition this year.

    I think the two 7 foot Indian kids put it in perspective...

    The brothers are serious about their future - and would welcome roles as Indian basketball pioneers.

    The NBA had players from 36 countries and territories this season, but none from India.

    The brothers already have a following. When they visited the Golden Temple, a Sikh spiritual and cultural center, last summer, about 100 people crowded them.

    "If I was able to make the NBA," Sim said, "that would be something big for India."
    http://highschool.rivals.com/content.asp?CID=1087336

  8. #8
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    Feb 2007
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    San Francisco
    Will Avery played for several Israeli teams.

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Arlington, VA
    Quote Originally Posted by flyingdutchdevil View Post
    According to NBAdraft.net, Jon is a T-Rex:

    "Jon Scheyer had the worst case of t-rex arms with a 6'4.75 measurement barefoot and just a 6'3.25 wingspan. His 8'3 standing reach is extremely low for a player that stands 6'6 in shoes (21 inches). Even Sherron Collins standing reach was 23 inches more than his height in shoes."
    Yes--if you look at him, it looks like more than usual of Jon's height is in his neck and head; his shoulders are even with those of shorter players. So I guess it's not really surprising that his wingspan is smaller, because his body (without the head) is closer to that of a 6'3" player than a 6'5" player. But it's also not surprising that such a smart player would be using his head.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by SupaDave View Post
    I understand what you're getting at but you're also kinda missing the point. Kids always like to see someone excel that have something in common with them. Of course, there are plenty of role models out there but hey - I didn't even know Jon was Jewish until he got the recognition this year.
    Every Jewish mother wants her child to be a doctor not a dunker!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleDuke Dad View Post
    Every Jewish mother wants her child to be a doctor not a dunker!
    I must admit I have educated myself today. Here's an interesting read on Jews and basketball...

    http://www.myjewishlearning.com/cult...sketball.shtml

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by SupaDave View Post
    I must admit I have educated myself today. Here's an interesting read on Jews and basketball...

    http://www.myjewishlearning.com/cult...sketball.shtml
    I guess the best way to characterize Jews and basketball is “been there, done that”.

  13. #13

    Great line!

    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleDuke Dad View Post
    Every Jewish mother wants her child to be a doctor not a dunker!
    Great line, made me laugh...

    and while I can genuinely appreciate why you might be annoyed by the quote in the article, I'm sure you don't mean to stereotype Jewish mothers. Like all parents, the Jewish moms I know, just want their children to be healthy, happy and successful at whatever they do, whether it's in med school or the NBA.

    That being said, my own Jewish mother was always, and still is, thrilled when on the rare occasion she can point out a Jewish professional athlete. Jay Fiedler was never referred to by name, he was "the (one and only!) Jewish quarterback." When Shawn Green was up at bat for the Mets, it was, "Shhh, everybody quiet, Green is up!"

    Even now, I will get the occasional phone call telling me to turn the TV on to watch a sports documentary on Greenberg or Koufax. I guess it's a source of pride in one's culture and heritage, and whether it comes from Nobel Laureates or professional athletes...I'll take it.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleDuke Dad
    Why does he think that the “Jewish community” needs a basketball role model?
    Quote Originally Posted by SupaDave View Post
    Kids always like to see someone excel that have something in common with them.
    Quote Originally Posted by Duke Mom View Post
    my own Jewish mother was always, and still is, thrilled when on the rare occasion she can point out a Jewish professional athlete . . . I guess it's a source of pride in one's culture and heritage . . .
    I managed a little league baseball team for years. One of my players was Jewish. How did I learn this? When his folks had me and my family over for dinner one night he took great pride in showing me his baseball card collection - he had a card for every Jewish major league player he knew of (including an original Sandy Koufax - his prized posession). He was 10 at the time. He hardly needed positive role models - his mother was a professor at Duke and his Dad a professor at UNC. I think when you are a member of a minority group (there are plenty of Jews in Durham, but still a small group in comparison) taking pride in a fellow member of that group is pretty natural - no matter what their source of success is.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by allenmurray View Post
    I managed a little league baseball team for years. One of my players was Jewish. How did I learn this? When his folks had me and my family over for dinner one night he took great pride in showing me his baseball card collection - he had a card for every Jewish major league player he knew of (including an original Sandy Koufax - his prized posession). He was 10 at the time. He hardly needed positive role models - his mother was a professor at Duke and his Dad a professor at UNC. I think when you are a member of a minority group (there are plenty of Jews in Durham, but still a small group in comparison) taking pride in a fellow member of that group is pretty natural - no matter what their source of success is.
    This discussion reminds me of the following old joke.

    Question: What is the world’s smallest book.
    Answer: The book of great Jewish athletes.

    Of course Jews take pride in Jewish athletes. It is just that we have a much smaller group to kvell over.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleDuke Dad View Post
    This discussion reminds me of the following old joke.

    Question: What is the world’s smallest book.
    Answer: The book of great Jewish athletes.

    Of course Jews take pride in Jewish athletes. It is just that we have a much smaller group to kvell over.
    Maybe that's why some of us start dancing the Hora when we see one.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleDuke Dad View Post
    Of course Jews take pride in Jewish athletes. It is just that we have a much smaller group to kvell over.
    It's kinda like how we get all giddy when some Taiwanese person/team does something athletically significant in anything other than little league baseball or table tennis.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Washington, D.C.
    Basketball is a wildly popular sport in Israel; its professional league is close to a national obsession. Many professional stars in Israel are not Jewish; they are not even Israeli. Should Jon play in Israel and make a success, it might be the experience of a lifetime for him and bring joy to many, many young Jewish boys in Israel. There are worse things to aspire to then being brilliant in one's body and getting paid to enjoy it.

    Great link Supadave. A few years back, someone made a documentary trying to run the same track. The documentary had great promise but did not quite deliver. Allow me to qvell a bit, it featured pominently my very first basketball coach, the now late Sonny Hertzberg. Sonny was asked about the antisemiticism that surrounded Jews in the game at the inception of the NBA and whether he encountered any on the court (Sonny was a member of the original Knicks when the NBA was formed). He responded something to the effect, "Well, every once in a while I'd beat my man, the guy would say something like that was a real Jew move (the canard back then was that Jews were good at the game because they were sneaky and tricky), but it was no big deal. A punch in the mouth would end it." Sonny, you da man!

    Funny story. For those who haven't seen it, there is a wonderful documentary about a group of Jewish guys who grew up in Coney Island, a few miles from where I lived as a kid and exactly my age. The documentary is called, The Boys of 2d Street Park. Really, a must see. Anyway, all the guys ended up playing high school ball, the best of them went on to star at Harvard (if that's not an oxymoron--I went to Cormell the same 4 years and never heard of the guy) and then played in Israel for a couple of years, where he had a terrific time by his own account, followed by a wink, if I remember right. Anyway, upon returning home, he told his father that he was seriously considering becoming a teacher. Now, you really have to be able to hear in your mind's eye the old Yiddish inflections that infused how folks of my father's generation spoke to truly catch the loving sarcasim this answer conveys, which was, "So Brian, you're telling me that you went to Harvard to become a teacher?"

    The two great Jewish migrations from Eastern Europe at the turn of the last century were to Palestine and America. The young men of each migration turned from a life that had been relegated just to books, to a more secular existence in which life in the body could truly be celebrated. For the early immigrants to these shores and their progeny who found that expression in basketball, the game bridged both worlds, the cerebral and the physical. I think it fair to say, as the article that Supadave referenced points out, that melding of the two worlds was their contribution to what helps make the game great today. Dunking and killer cross-overs, we left for others to invent.
    Last edited by SupaDave; 05-25-2010 at 09:07 PM. Reason: Just HAD to correct my name...

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