Interview with Marcus Ginyard – the truth about overseas.

Marcus Ginyard is the latest Tar Heel to join George on the Ceiling is the Roof Podcast.

Marcus played at the University of North Carolina from 2005-2010, making him a member of the 2009 national championship team. Marcus has since played internationally since graduating from Chapel Hill and has played all over the world.

Subscribe to the YouTube Channel and follow on your podcast platforms, then you will get notifications for when new episodes with former UNC players are released.

George (@britishtarheel) has an hour-long conversation with Marcus Ginyard and this interview is like none other so far on the podcast. Marcus talks about his experiences overseas and the truth about Overseas Basketball from teams not paying him his salary to being detained in a foreign country due to teams not paying his VISA, even though they said they did.

He also talks about his five years at the University of North Carolina, the 2009 championship team and some funny stories on his Tar Heel Teammates.

This episode will have you laughing one moment, and speechless the next.

The podcast is now available on many different platforms;  YouTubeSpotifyApple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsPocket CastsRadioPublicCastbox and Anchor FM.

Follow @britishtarheel for all updates on Tar Heels Overseas and more, also subscribe to the website below.

Tar Heels in WNBA – Season Tips Off

The WNBA tipped off its 25th season on Friday evening and currently, there are four Tar Heels on rosters throughout the league; Stephanie Watts, Allisha Gray, Jessica Breland and Diamond DeShields.

Ceiling is the Roof will be keeping a close eye on the Tar Heels in the WNBA and providing their latest statistics and highlights throughout the season.

Follow @britishtarheel on Twitter for more Tar Heel updates.



Allisha Gray – Dallas Wings

Allisha Gray played her first two seasons in Chapel Hill, then transferred to the University of South Carolina and winning a National Championship before foregoing her final year of eligibility to head to the WNBA.

The Georgia Gatorade Player of the Year was picked with the fourth pick in the 2017 WNBA Draft by the Dallas Wings and had an unbelievable first season. Gray was awarded Rookie of the Year.

Gray has started the 2021 season on the right foot in leading her team with 23 points in a win against the Los Angeles Sparks. The guard also provided 9 boards and 4 steals in the victory on opening night. Gray is also playing with this year’s number one pick, Charlie Collier.

Gray’s and the Wings next game will be quite the challenge as it is against the reigning champions, Seattle Storm.

Originally tweeted by Dallas Wings (@DallasWings) on May 15, 2021.

MOST RECENT GAME:
94-71 (WIN) vs Los Angeles Sparks
23 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 steals in 36 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGAPG
ATLANTA DREAM201826.48.37.92.0
ATLANTA DREAM201923.27.57.31.7
INDIANA FEVER202118.08.04.01.0
Statistics are up to date as of May 15th (source: wnba.com)

Jessica Breland – Indiana Fever

Jessica Breland is the veteran Tar Heel in the WNBA and is now on her sixth team in the league. Breland is now a nine-year veteran and playing for the Indiana Fever for the second time in her career. She is a former All-Star and hoping to bring some experience to the Fever.

Breland is another Tar Heel who has won the Gatorade Player of the Year in North Carolina, before spending five years at the University of North Carolina, then being drafted by the Minnesota Lynx in the second round of the 2011 WNBA Draft.

Indiana’s opening game was in New York against the highly-anticipated Sabrina Donescu’s debut for the New York Liberty. Breland came off the bench and provided 8 points and 4 rebounds in a loss to the Liberty off a last-second game-winner from Donescu that you couldn’t appreciate… okay maybe not the Fever fans.

Breland and Indiana play again on Sunday against the NY Liberty and will try to get redemption.

MOST RECENT GAME:
87-90 (LOSS) vs New York Liberty
8 points, 4 rebounds, 1 steal in 17 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGAPG
DALLAS WINGS201930.410.64.12.3
DALLAS WINGS202026.213.14.21.3
DALLAS WINGS202136.023.09.04.0
Statistics are up to date as of May 15th (source: wnba.com)

Stephanie Watts – Chicago Sky

Stephanie Watts started her Carolina career under Coach Hatchell in 2015 coming in as a McDonald’s All-American and North Carolina’s Gatorade Player of the Year in her senior year at Weddington High School. Watts had lots of highlights through college, including ACC Freshman of the Year. Although, a lot of time in Chapel Hill was spent on the sideline due to injury and then spending her senior year at USC, also including a season-ending injury.

Watts played the 2020/21 season with the Tar Heels again with her final game in the Carolina Blue with 29 points and 7 out of 11 from deep in her one and only NCAA Tournament game.

Watts was then picked with the tenth pick in the 2021 WNBA Draft, by the Chicago Sky playing alongside her childhood hero, Candace Parker.

“I grew up watching her, I had posters of her on my wall at some point. She’s obviously an idol of mine. She’s helpful. She’s a coach on and off the court, just always helpful no matter what I’m doing. If she’s on the sideline, she’s still helping me from the sideline. Her basketball IQ is so high that it’s infectious and spreads and helps us in every single way possible.”

Stephanie Watts on Candace Parker (Source: Tar Heel Tribune)

Watts made her debut on Saturday against the Washington Mystics coming off the bench for two minutes in a win for the Sky.

Diamond DeShields – Chicago Sky

Diamond DeShields spent her freshman season at the University of North Carolina and breaking the record for points scored by a freshman in the ACC. DeShields then transferred to the Tennessee Volunteers for the rest of her college career.

DeShields was drafted by the Chicago Sky with the third pick in the 2018 WNBA Draft. In her second season, she was named an All-Star and is now a staple in the Chicago Sky roster.

DeShields played a big part in the Sky’s season-opening win against the Mystics with 7 points and 5 assists in the win.

Originally tweeted by Chicago Sky (@chicagosky) on May 15, 2021.

MOST RECENT GAME:
70-56 (WIN) vs Chicago Sky
7 points, 5 assists, 1 steal in 28 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGAPG
DALLAS WINGS201930.410.64.12.3
DALLAS WINGS202026.213.14.21.3
DALLAS WINGS202136.023.09.04.0
Statistics are up to date as of May 15th (source: wnba.com)

Currently, there are only four Tar Heels in the WNBA, but keep an eye out for more to come in through the season including Paris Kea, who is identified as a Reserved Player in the 2021 Free Agency Hub. Tiarra Ruffin-Pratt is also an experienced Tar Heel who was recently waived by Los Angeles. Petra Holešínská and Janelle Bailey who both recently graduated from UNC will be hoping to make their way onto a WNBA roster.

Ceiling is the Roof will be posting updates on the Tar Heels through the season every two weeks, keeping you informed on all their statistics and how the WNBA season is going.

Have you watched or listen to the latest podcast episode with Joel Berry II? Watch it below or listen on all podcast platforms.

The Podcast is now available on many different platforms; YouTubeSpotifyApple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsPocket CastsRadioPublicCastbox and Anchor FM.

Follow @britishtarheel on Twitter for more Tar Heel updates.

Top 10 ‘What If’ Tar Heels

The University of North Carolina has had some of the best players to play the game of basketball, but fans will always wonder of the hypothetical, “what if that player signed for the Tar Heels?”, or “what would have happened if he joined that team?”.

We could have had superstars joining Championship Teams such as 1982, 2005 and 2009, or players that could have been the missing pieces on that team cutting down the nets in the last game.

Here is a list of players who nearly or could have signed for the University of North Carolina, the Top 10 “What If They Were Tar Heels”.

Follow @britishtarheel on Twitter @britishtarheel on Instagram and subscribe to the YouTube Channel for the podcasts with former UNC players.



10. Damian Lillard

Damian Lillard is probably in the Top 10 players currently in the NBA, but coming out of high school he was a Two-Star Recruit and was not heavily recruited. Lillard went on to have a great career at Weber State and by the end of his college career, he was a top prospect going into the NBA Draft.

It is a stretch to say that Lillard could have been a Tar Heel, due to not even having an offer from Chapel Hill. Although, Lillard tweeted a few years ago, regarding what other college he would have gone to, his answer… North Carolina.

Lillard was at college from 2008 to 2012, meaning Lillard would have been on the bench for the 2009 championship team and what I am more intrigued about is his role in the 2011-2012 team. The team that should have gone all the way in a lot of Tar Heel’s minds, but… Creighton.

After the injury to Kendall Marshall against Creighton, Damian Lillard would have taken full control of the point guard role and led Coach Williams to at that time, his third championship.

POTENTIAL 2011/2012 TEAM:
KENDALL MARSHALL
DAMIAN LILLARD
HARRISON BARNES
JOHN HENSON
TYLER ZELLER

9. Brandon Ingram

Brandon Ingram coming out of one of the best high schools for basketball in America, Kinston High School, where Tar Heels such as Jerry Stackhouse and Reggie Bullock have graced the court. Ingram was heavily recruited in high school and the gyms were packed in North Carolina to see him play.

North Carolina’s Mr Basketball was the Number 3 overall recruit in the 2015 class. Duke, Kentucky, UCLA and Kansas were all trying to get Ingram to sign for them. Carolina was also on the list and had a good shot, except for all the scandal allegations aimed at UNC. Ingram even commented about UNC and the scandal.

“I probably would have committed in November.”

Brandon Ingram’s comments about committing to UNC during the scandal allegations

Brandon Ingram would have joined the 2015-2016 team, the team that was so close to bringing back another championship to Chapel Hill. Ingram would have teamed up with the likes of Marcus Paige, Brice Johnson, Kennedy Meeks and Joel Berry II.

That team, led by Paige, was one shot away from cutting down the nets and imagining what Ingram could have brought to that team. Ingram started 34 games for Duke in his one season there, it would have been interesting to see the role he would have had in Chapel Hill.

POTENTIAL 2015/2016 TEAM:
MARCUS PAIGE
JOEL BERRY II
JUSTIN JACKSON/BRANDON INGRAM
BRICE JOHNSON
KENNEDY MEEKS

8. JamesOn Curry

To the average basketball fan, you may not have heard of JamesOn Curry, his professional career has been spent with time in the NBA D-League, Overseas Leagues and the shortest NBA career in history. To a basketball fan from North Carolina, you may have thought about it a few times… what could of happened to JamesOn Curry?

Curry signed a letter of intent to join the University of North Carolina. He held the record for all-time North Carolina scoring record with 3,307 points, a record that stood for some time before Coby White broke it in 2018. Curry would break numerous records in high school.

In February 2004, Curry was among 49 students to get arrested in a drug raid. He pleaded guilty to the drug charges and the Tar Heels rescinded their scholarship offer. Curry signed with Oklahoma State and had three seasons there, before getting picked up by the Chicago Bulls in the second round of the 2007 NBA Draft.

Curry, an unbelievable scorer would have joined the Tar Heels for the 2004-2005 season, where he would come off the bench for the championship team. But the season after, I imagine he would have started and led the back-court. Over the next couple of seasons, UNC added some star power with Ty Lawson, Tyler Hansbrough and more.

What could have been of JamesOn Curry? If he wasn’t at that drug raid? If he didn’t go down that route at high school? More than likely an NCAA Champion.

POTENTIAL 2005/2006 TEAM:
JAMESON CURRY
DANNY GREEN
DAVID NOEL
REYSHAWN TERRY
TYLER HANSBROUGH

7. Earl Joseph ‘J.R’ Smith

Earl Joseph ‘JR’ Smith was a 6 ft 6 Guard coming out of New Jersey. JR was one of the top players in the nation and in high school, he shared the MVP of the McDonald’s All-American Game with Dwight Howard.

JR Smith committed to the University of North Carolina and was set to have his college career in Chapel Hill, but the story goes after that McDonald’s game he decided to declare for the NBA Draft after he had such a good performance.

If JR Smith did not declare for the draft and stayed at the University of North Carolina, in his first season he would have been an NCAA Champion for the 2004/2005 team. Some people may wonder, what would Smith and Rashad McCants have been like on the same team, can you imagine!?

Smith likely would have been a one-and-done off the bench for North Carolina and probably gave Coach Williams some more grey hairs earlier than expected. Perhaps, he may have got the starting role over Jackie Manuel? I would have loved to have seen that team play though… would it have been better than 2009?

POTENTIAL 2004/2005 TEAM:
RAYMOND FELTON
JR SMITH
RASHAD MCCANTS
JAWAD WILLIAMS
SEAN MAY

6. Andrew Wiggins

Andrew Wiggins was probably the most talked-about high school player since LeBron James at the time. Everyone was getting excited about the potential of Wiggins in a ‘Carolina Blue’ jersey. He cut his options down to just Kansas, Kentucky, Florida State and North Carolina… sadly, for Tar Heel fans he wore a different shade of blue.

Wiggins was always going to be in college basketball for just a short time and he had his year at Kansas, where he was in the running for all the prestigious college basketball awards. He was part of a very young class in Kansas with Joel Embiid and Frank Mason.

At North Carolina, Wiggins would have been surrounded by a little bit more experience. Paige, Tokoto and Johnson were all sophomores, while McAdoo was in his junior season. UNC went out in the third round of the NCAA Tournament, the same as Kansas.

You wonder what Wiggins abilities could have brought the Tar Heels during the 2013/2014 season?

POTENTIAL 2013/2014 TEAM:
MARCUS PAIGE
JP TOKOTO
ANDREW WIGGINS
JAMES MICHAEL MCADOO
KENNEDY MEEKS

5. Dwight Howard

Okay, potentially the 2004/2005 Team could have been over-stacked. Dwight Howard was heavily recruited by Coach Williams and Howard has gone on to say that he would have gone to North Carolina, if he didn’t make the jump from high school straight to the NBA.

As you’ve already read, it could have had Howard, JR Smith and JamesOn Curry on already, one of the most dominant teams of the decade.

The 2004/2005 team had six future NBA players on its roster (Williams, Felton, May, McCants, Noel, Terry), throw in the number one pick from 2004 NBA Draft, that team could have gone undefeated!

Dwight Howard was the number one player in the nation and was the first pick in the NBA Draft. A player of his calibre to an already championship team is a fun thought to have. Also, Howard was a good baseball player… could you imagine Howard playing for the Diamond Heels as well?

North Carolina would have had Sean May, Marvin Williams and Dwight Howard providing the strength inside would have caused so many nightmares for teams in college basketball.

POTENTIAL 2004/2005 TEAM:
RAYMOND FELTON
RASHAD MCCANTS
JAWAD WILLIAMS
SEAN MAY
DWIGHT HOWARD

4. Zion Williamson

The most recent big-time recruit that UNC missed out on was Zion Williamson. There has been so much hype on Zion since his days at Spartanburg Day School and North Carolina were in his last six schools (Duke, Kentucky, Kansas, Clemson, South Carolina and UNC).

Zion was heavily recruited by Carolina and Coach Williams wanted his man. Zion had a close friendship with Nassir Little and UNC was hoping that would swing in the favour of the Tar Heels. Sadly, he chose the team down the road and blew out his shoe (that was his only highlight, right!?).

If Zion came to North Carolina, he would have been part of a very experienced team with some unbelievable young talent. Coby White and Nassir Little were the star freshmen for UNC. Luke Maye and Cam Johnson provided the experience.

Would he have started? Likely. I see Zion taking some of Garrison Brooks’ minutes. Instead, he went to that team down the road and blew out his shoe, the rest is history.

By the way, I can’t ever cheer for a Dook player… even Zion.

POTENTIAL 2018/2019 TEAM:
COBY WHITE
KENNY WILLIAMS
CAM JOHNSON
ZION WILLIAMSON
LUKE MAYE

3. Patrick Ewing

Yes, the same guy who UNC went to battle within the 1982 NCAA Championship Game, well… that game would have been a little easier if Ewing signed for UNC.

Patrick Ewing was getting national attention at a young age and was a player everyone wanted. Ewing’s college career went as planned; a National Champion, Most Outstanding Player and College Player of the Year, although this all could have happened at UNC.

Coach Dean Smith was recruiting Ewing, alongside other schools; Georgetown and UCLA. Ewing was close to signing at UNC, but his experience on his official visit was likely the reason Ewing never became a Tar Heel.

“I was close, North Carolina was a very good school, when I went down there, they had me in the Carolina Inn and there was a Ku Klux Klan rally when I was there. You know what I’m not going here, I’m staying my butt in Boston.”

Patrick Ewing on why he didn’t choose the University of North Carolina

Coach Dean Smith did tell Ewing, that if he doesn’t sign for UNC, he should go to Coach Thompson and the Georgetown Hoyas.

Could you imagine what he would have done in North Carolina? Imagine his junior season joining up with Michael Jordan, a freshman Kenny Smith, a young Brad Daugherty and a senior Sam Perkins. Another championship in 1984 as well? I think so.

POTENTIAL 1981/1982 TEAM:
JIMMY BLACK
MICHAEL JORDAN
MATT DOHERTY
JAMES WORTHY/PATRICK EWING
SAM PERKINS

2. Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant, one of the greatest scorers of all time, was nearly a Tar Heel. Durant has openly said that he could have gone to North Carolina.

Kevin Durant was roommates with Ty Lawson in high school, when they both played for Oak Hill Academy. Durant spoke on Player Tribunes’ Podcast about his experience in being recruited by the Tar Heels.

“They were recruiting me heavy with Lawson. They were expecting us to come together. I’m going on official visits. I went to a game where they beat Duke at the buzzer, and they won a national championship that year, my junior year in high school. So I was like, ‘Man I want to go to Carolina.'”

Kevin Durant on his recruitment to North Carolina

Coach Williams was able to recruit the best class in the nation at Chapel Hill, including Brandan Wright, Ty Lawson, Wayne Ellington, Deon Thompson. This class being added to an already stacked team of Hansbrough, Green, Ginyard and more.

“They were stacked though. They had a nice senior class. They went to the Elite Eight that year. Tyler Hansbrough was there, Danny Green, all those dudes, so I would’ve gotten kind of lost — not lost, but I would have been playing 25 minutes instead of 40 minutes like I should have been playing.”

Kevin Durant on the playing time he would have got at North Carolina

Durant was crowned with every major College Player of the Year award in his one and only season with the Longhorns. Durant declared for the NBA Draft after one season. UNC made the Elite Eight that season, would Durant have stayed more than one season in Chapel Hill? The next season the Tar Heels reached the Final Four and the one after that, they won the whole daggum thing!

Either way, if Durant did go to UNC, that season would have been a very exciting team to watch.

POTENTIAL 2006/2007 TEAM:
TY LAWSON
WAYNE ELLINGTON
KEVIN DURANT
TYLER HANSBROUGH
BRANDAN WRIGHT

1. Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant + Vince Carter + Jerry Stackhouse + Antawn Jamison + Rasheed Wallace… maybe the greatest WHAT IF Team of ALL-TIME!

Kobe Bryant is on the Mount Rushmore of basketball greats and he did announce that if he went to college, he would have gone to the University of North Carolina. Bryant was heavily recruited by Coach Dean Smith until Smith stopped recruiting him and said this was because he believed Bryant would go pro, as he did.

Bryant said in an interview with Jimmy Kimmel that he would have chosen the Tar Heels due to the competition he would get at practice every day.

“I probably would have wound up going to Carolina, because of the competition. The year before my senior season, Vince Carter went to Carolina and the year before he was the best guard in the country. I want to play against him every single day.”

Kobe Bryant on where he would have ended up going.

Rasheed Wallace and Jerry Stackhouse declared for the NBA Draft in 1995 (if they stayed, they would have been seniors in 1996/97 season), but Bryant would have played with National Player of the Year, Antawn Jamison and the player who he wanted to practice against every day, Vince Carter. The team was also made up of freshman guard Ed Cota who surely would have got even more assists to his career total if Kobe joined. As well, Serge Zwikker who provided a lot of strength at the post.

Well, the truth has come out and Kobe Bryant would have been a Tar Heel!

And that is what I think about when I go to bed.

POTENTIAL 1996/1997 TEAM:
ED COTA
KOBE BRYANT
VINCE CARTER
ANTAWN JAMISON
SERGE ZWIKKER

Source: Bleacher Report

I hope you enjoyed this post, it was fun to think about the hypothetical. Of course, we do not know how each team would have worked out or if the championship teams would have gelled as well as they did.

Who else would you put on this list?

Follow @britishtarheel on Twitter and subscribe to the YouTube Channel for the podcasts with former UNC players.

Also, check out the latest podcast below… and SUBSCRIBE!

The Podcast is now available on many different platforms;  YouTubeSpotifyApple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsPocket CastsRadioPublicCastbox and Anchor FM.

Thank you to everyone who is already following the blog or following @britishtarheel on Twitter.

Tar Heels in Europe – May Update

Over in Europe, lots of teams are finishing their regular season and heading into the playoffs. There are many Tar Heels who are trying to achieve postseason success overseas. Here is the latest update on the Tar Heels in Europe, with their latest statistics, highlights and interviews.

This month we have Kenny Williams joining the list of Tar Heels in Europe, the latest interview with Joel Berry and big-time plays from Brice Johnson, Deon Thompson and Marcus Ginyard.

Follow @britishtarheel on Twitter for all the updates on Tar Heels Overseas.

Subscribe to the YouTube Channel for all the episodes with George and the Tar Heels playing overseas on the ‘Ceiling is the Roof Podcast’.



Joel Berry II – Besiktas (Turkey)

Joel Berry is in his first season overseas and is heading into the postseason with his team Besiktas. Berry has averaged over 10 PPG in his 20 games for the team from Istanbul. Besiktas are playing well as of late and on a five-game win streak, their regular season record was 18-11.

The next game for Berry is against Pinar Karsiyaka (21-8) in the postseason and this will be his first experience of this overseas, but the Tar Heel has had plenty of success in his career and expect to see Berry step up.

MOST RECENT GAMES:
104-75 (WIN) vs Afyonkarahisar Belediye
10 points, 4 assists, 1 steal in 19 minutes.

104-89 (WIN) vs Demir Insaat Buyukcekmece
16 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists in 34 minutes.

83-77 (WIN) vs Bahcesehir Koleji
12 points, 2 assists in 26 minutes.

Berry recently joined the Ceiling is the Roof Podcast, you can watch it here below:

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGAPGSPG
BESIKTAS (TURKEY)2020/2125.010.93.11.25
Statistics are up to date as of May 5th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Nate Britt – Panthers Schwennigen (Germany)

Nate Britt has just finished his fourth season overseas and this was probably his best season as a professional basketball player. Britt is now playing in the second-tier of German Basketball and his team reached the playoffs for the first time at this level. I recently spoke with Britt:

“I’m very excited for this final part of the season. We are going to have a great showing. This season is the first time this club has been to the playoffs at this level.”

Nate Britt

Britt averaged 13.5 PPG and 5.4 APG for the Wiha Panthers this season, recording his best offensive rating since turning professional. Britt has played the United Kingdom, Argentina and Cyprus.

“Germany is the most strategic and tactical place that I’ve played at thus far. This league also has the best talent from top to bottom compared to my last two seasons. I’m enjoying the journey as a professional. I couldn’t be more blessed!”

Nate Britt

The Wiha Panthers have finished their season this week due to unfortunate circumstances with multiple players testing positive for COVID-19, meaning that they could not finish the final games in their group and not making the final. Britt led his team in Assists and Steals for the 2020/21 season.

MOST RECENT GAMES:
79-83 (LOSS) vs Eisbaren Bremerhaven
14 points, 7 assists, 4 steals in 30 minutes.

71-80 (LOSS) vs Eisbaren Bremerhaven
8 points, 6 assists, 5 rebounds in 28 minutes.

79-93 (LOSS) vs MLP Academics Heidelberg
8 points, 7 assists, 5 steals in 30 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGAPGRPGSPG
GLASGOW ROCKS
(UNITED KINGDOM)
2017/1828.511.723.563.681.8
OMONIA NICOSIA (CYPRUS)2019/2033.714.523.624.141.76
WIHA PANTHERS (GERMANY)2020/2130.013.585.393.652.16
Statistics are up to date as of May 5th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Deon Thompson – Unicaja Malaga (Spain)

Deon Thompson is having a great season in Spain and his team are pushing for those final playoff positions. Thompson plays in the top-tier in Spain against the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona (recently signed Pau Gasol).

Thompson has started 45 out of 48 games this year and he plays a major part for his team. The same man who holds the record for the most games played for the University of North Carolina has now played over 500 games overseas.

Malaga are 8th in the Liga ACB with a 15-16 record and the top 8 teams go through to the postseason and Thompson will be hoping that his team can continue strong to the end of the season.

MOST RECENT GAMES:
102-93 (WIN) vs Club Joventut Bardona
12 points, 5 rebounds, 2 steals, 1 block in 20 minutes.

78-101 (LOSS) vs Casademont Zaragoza
16 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists in 23 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGSPG
UNICAJA MALAGA (SPAIN)2019/2020.89.113.230.89
UNICAJA MALAGA (SPAIN)2020/2119.38.083.520.62
Statistics are up to date as of May 5th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Joel James – Duzce Belediye (Turkey)

Joel James is having his best year as a professional basketball player with his season coming to an end soon. James has averaged a double-double this season in the second-tier of Turkish basketball.

Duzce Belediye has struggled of late and is on a four-game losing streak, making their current season record 15-15. James has tried his hardest to pull the teams through with some big performances including a game of 17 points and 15 rebounds.

Joel James plays his final game for Duzce Belediye on the weekend, who cannot qualify for the postseason.

MOST RECENT GAMES:
62-74 (LOSS) vs Yalova Group Belediye Spor
5 points, 11 rebounds, 1 block in 25 minutes.

60-62 (LOSS) vs ITU Bakiroy
17 points, 15 rebounds in 31 minutes.

75-81 (LOSS) vs Gemlik Basketbol Bursa
7 points, 7 rebounds, 1 block in 23 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGDBL/DBL
RAYOS DE HERMOSILLO (MEXICO)2018/1927.312.119.5722
CAPITANES CIUDAD DE MEXICO (MEXICO)2019/2022.210.916.146
DUZCE BELEDIYE (TURKEY)2020/2128.712.9711.8621
Statistics are up to date as of May 5th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Kenny Williams – Bnei Herzelia (Israel)

Kenny Williams is the newest Tar Heel to play professionally overseas after a couple of seasons in the NBA G-League for Austin Spurs. Kenny recently signed for Bnei Herzelia and made his debut last week for the team that is struggling in the top-tier of Israeli Basketball.

Bnei Herzelia is currently 7-16 and finds themselves near the bottom of the table. Williams made his debut last week, playing for 11 minutes and started the game for his new side. He contributed with three points, which were obviously from behind the arc.

Williams’ next game is against Hapoel Tel Aviv, the team of Jean-Pierre Tokoto.

MOST RECENT GAME:
85-90 (LOSS) vs Hapoel Unit Holon
3 points, 1 rebound, 1 assist in 11 minutes.

Originally tweeted by George (@britishtarheel) on April 25, 2021.

Marcus Paige – KK Partizan (Serbia)

Marcus Paige is now in his third season playing professionally in Serbia and the team is on a six-game win streak to finish off the season. Partizan ended their season with a 13-13 record and 7th in the ABA League (the top four teams go to the playoffs).

Paige has had a great season for Partizan and has averaged more minutes since starting his career overseas. Paige also broke the team’s record this year for most 3 pointers in a game.

MOST RECENT GAMES:
80-58 (WIN) vs KK Split
13 points, 4 assists, 1 steal in 21 minutes.

97-74 (WIN) vs FMP Beograd
11 points, 5 assists in 19 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGAPGSPG
PARTIZAN BELGRADE (SERBIA)2018/1924.210.53.721.1
PARTIZAN BELGRADE (SERBIA)2019/2022.39.931.880.79
PARTIZAN BELGRADE (SERBIA)2020/2126.29.22.40.9
Statistics are up to date as of May 5th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Marcus Ginyard – CSP Limoges (France)

Marcus Ginyard is one of the veteran Tar Heels still playing professional basketball. A member of the 2009 National Championship teams is now one of the most experienced players on his team in France. Ginyard signed a three-year extension with CSP Limoges in 2020, who play in the top-tier of French Basketball.

CSP Limoges are currently 8th and pushing for a playoff spot. Ginyard’s season has consisted of some highs and lows, he was injured for a month earlier this year but has since come back to put on Player of the Game performances. Ginyard has started the last six games for his team and they have won four of those games.

Ginyard recently recorded a podcast with Ceiling is the Roof Podcast and will be the next guest on the show, coming out on May 17th.

MOST RECENT GAMES:
96-95 (WIN) vs Chalon-Sur-Saone
5 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist in 15 minutes.

88-66 (WIN) vs JSF Nanterre
9 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists in 23 minutes.

68-81 (LOSS) vs Strasbourg IG
5 points, 6 rebounds, 1 steal in 23 minutes.

69-66 (WIN) vs JL Bourg-en-Bresse
20 points, 3 rebounds, 1 block in 26 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGAPG
CSP LIMOGES (FRANCE)2019/2026.79.863.051.05
CSP LIMOGES (FRANCE)2020/2120.58.132.571.22
Statistics are up to date as of May 5th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Brice Johnson – Budivelnyk (Ukraine)

Brice Johnson is now playing for the most successful team in Ukraine and hoping his team can achieve more success while he is there. Budivelnyk has won ten Ukrainian Basketball Super League Championships and will be heading into the postseason again.

Johnson is having a fantastic season in Europe, now in his third season overseas with his fourth team. Brice was well known for his monster jams at Carolina and not much changes with him being the poster of multiple highlights this year. Johnson has started the last five games for his team and they have won four of them, with Johnson putting up some big numbers.

Brice Johnson leads Budivelynk in RPG, BPG and SPG and has been a big-time player for his team this year. It will be great to see him lead his team deep into the playoffs.

MOST RECENT GAMES:
82-87 (LOSS) vs Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk
20 points, 11 rebounds, 1 block in 32 minutes.

126-99 (WIN) vs Kharkivski Sokoly
16 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists in 21 minutes.

79-71 (WIN) vs MBC Mykolaiv
18 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists in 35 minutes.

Originally tweeted by George (@britishtarheel) on April 13, 2021.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGBPG
ORLANDINA (ITALY)2019/2032.417.3511.180.82
CHORALE ROANNE (FRANCE)2019/2025.413.295.430.43
BUDIVELYNK (UKRAINE)2020/2123.312.298.291.09
Statistics are up to date as of May 5th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Luke Maye – Dolomiti Energia Trento (Italy)

Luke Maye is playing his first season overseas and his team have turned it around to push for a playoff spot. The top-eight teams qualify for the playoffs in the Lega Basket Serie A and Trento are currently sat in the final spot.

Dolomiti Energia Trento has had some great performances this year, including a win over the best team in the country, AX Armani Exchange Milan. Trento also played in the EuroCup this season and had some big wins there too, including a win over Marcus Paige’s Partizan.

Maye will be hoping for Trento to continue strong to the end of the season and qualify for the postseason.

MOST RECENT GAMES:
76-94 (LOSS) vs Banco di Sardegna Sassari
5 points, 4 rebounds in 20 minutes.

81-69 (WIN) vs Pallacanestro Trieste 2004
16 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists in 28 minutes.

76-75 (WIN) vs Acqua San Bernardo Cantu
10 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists in 23 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGAPG
TRENTO (ITALY)2020/2125.211.786.061.31
Statistics are up to date as of May 5th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

JP Tokoto – Hapoel Tel Aviv (Israel)

Jean-Pierre Tokoto is back from the injury from the rivalry game on January 31st. Tokoto had not played since January until last week and he is a starter for Hapoel Tel Aviv, who play in the top-tier of Israeli Basketball.

Hapoel Tel Aviv struggled in Tokoto’s absence, falling to an eight-game losing streak. The team’s record is currently 8-16 and will be trying to push into the positions for the postseason.

Tokoto has started the past two games since returning and recorded 16 points and 10 point games. Tokoto’s next game will be against Bnei Herzelia, the new team of Kenny Williams.

MOST RECENT GAMES:
104-98 (WIN) vs Hapoel Unet Holon
16 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals in 33 minutes.

71-80 (LOSS) vs Hapoel Haifa
10 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals in 28 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGAPGRPGSPG
HAPOEL EILAT (ISRAEL)2018/1928.113.423.187.611.45
IRONI NES ZIONA (ISRAEL)2019/2031.414.214.146.292.21
HAPOEL TEL AVIV (ISRAEL)2020/2126.211.13.34.71.5
Statistics are up to date as of May 5th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

I hope you enjoyed this update, if you are interested you can read the other updates on the Tar Heels in Europe from January, February, March and April.

Thank you to everyone who is following the blog already or following @britishtarheel on Twitter, your support has been mind-blowing.

The support from everyone is the reason for the podcast, to find out more about our favourite Tar Heels from all over the world. Make sure you subscribe to the YouTube Channel and share any post/interview that you enjoy!

The Podcast is also available on many different platforms; YouTubeSpotifyApple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsPocket CastsRadioPublicCastbox and Anchor FM.

Interview with Joel Berry II – First Season Overseas

Joel Berry II is having a memorable first year overseas as a professional basketball player and is heading into the playoffs in Turkey. This is nothing new for the Tar Heel who has had success multiple times in his career. Berry is one of the most decorated Tar Heels to wear the Carolina Blue and at 26 years old, he has many years ahead of him with lots of goals still to accomplish.

Joel Berry II joined the Ceiling is the Roof Podcast and sat down with George for an hour-long interview. Joel discussed his first season overseas in Turkey, including the style of play and the culture of living in Europe. He had multiple stories about his time at the University of North Carolina and much more on Coach Williams and his Tar Heel Teammates.

Watch and listen to the full interview on YouTube, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic, Castbox and Anchor FM.

Berry’s career already speaks for itself and we were able to talk about the journey of his basketball career so far, from Florida to North Carolina, to California and now in Europe.

Berry was awarded Mr Florida three times when he was in High School at Lake Highland Preparatory High School, an award that was given to the best High School basketball player in the state of Florida.

“Basketball holds a special place in my heart, winning those awards was great and winning it three times and especially with the people winning it before me, guys like Vince Carter, Brandon Knight, Austin Rivers who I really grew up watching. A guy I watch and know a little bit more about in overseas basketball is Nick Calathes. Winning and being in the same company as those guys is great and it really puts Florida and basketball on the map.”

Joel Berry received a phone call from Sean May on April 1st, expecting a phone call wishing him a happy birthday, it wasn’t the call he was expecting. Coach May broke the news to Berry that Coach Williams is retiring. Berry goes onto speak about Coach Williams and what he remembers when he was still in the recruitment stage.

“A lot of people have forgotten when we committed to Carolina, we were going through the scandal academically and of course, Coach Williams being the figure that he is and every time you heard about the scandal on ESPN, his face was on it. During that time, I had a lot of people telling me “why you going there? you guys will get banned!” Through it all, I stuck to my gut feeling and Coach Williams helped us through that process as well. Every update that came out, anything that came out that was skeptical, he was always calling us and reassuring us that everything was going to be fine. We trusted Coach Williams and through it all we stuck with him. My time there speaks for itself.”

Coach Hubert Davis was an Assistant Coach during the four years that Berry was in Chapel Hill and Berry went on to comment about the new successor and how excited he is for him at UNC.

“I think it was a great decision, when they first hired him I believe they had an intention for him one day to become the Head Coach. I love that Carolina kept it in house and got someone who knows the culture of Carolina. He’s stepping into some big shoes. When you think about Carolina, you think of Dean Smith and Coach Williams. He’s part of that legacy.”

Many would say Joel Berry played for some of the greatest Tar Heel teams (2016 and 2017). Berry talked about the amount of talent that the 2016 team had, including the likes of Brice Johnson and Marcus Paige and compared the back-to-back NCAA Championship Game squads.

During his time at South Bay Lakers in the NBA G-League, Joel had quite a severe injury and tore his meniscus and broke his tibia, having him out of action for a long time. Joel went into how he overcame such an injury and still wanting to prove himself.

Joel Berry is playing his first season overseas and is playing in the Turkish Basketball League for Besiktas. Berry has been averaging over 10 PPG and the team from Istanbul are about to enter the playoffs. He is joined by former NC State player Markell Johnson.

“I think the time there, the wins we had against them, I think it speaks for itself. He’s a great dude. We laugh and joke about the battles we had against each other, particularly the 50 point game we beat them by.”

Every Ceiling is the Roof Podcast is rounded up with a Tar Heel Teammates with questions asked to Joel such as the best dancer on the team and who was most likely to get told off by Coach Williams and more.

Watch and listen to the full interview on YouTube, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic, Castbox and Anchor FM.

Follow on Twitter at @britishtarheel and subscribe to the website for updates on UNC Basketball News and Tar Heels Overseas.

Kenny Williams signs for Bnei Herzliya in Israel

Kenny Williams has recently signed for Bnei Herzliya in the Israeli Basketball Premier League after two years at Austin Spurs in the NBA G-League.

Bnei Herzelia is currently on a 7-16 record in their league, with Williams joining for the rest of the season. They will be hoping that Williams will bring more of the same performances that he did for Austin this year, including a 20 point game with 6 from behind the arc.

Kenny Williams made his debut on Sunday evening against Hapoel Unet Holon and lost 85-90. Williams finished with 3 points and you can see his shot from behind the arc below.

Follow @britishtarheel on Twitter for all the updates on Tar Heels Overseas.

Originally tweeted by Winner League (@WinnerLeague) on April 25, 2021.

It is near the end of the season in Israel, but this will be Williams first experience of basketball overseas. Williams graduated from the University of North Carolina in 2019 and has since played professional basketball in the NBA G-League.

If you haven’t already, you can read more about the Tar Heels in Europe and Tar Heels in Asia in the updates on Ceiling is the Roof.

Remember to check out the latest episode of the Ceiling is the Roof Podcast with Justin Pierce, who played his first season overseas and was spoke more about his experience in Finland.

Follow on Twitter at @britishtarheel and subscribe for updates on Current Tar Heels, Pro Tar Heels with a close eye on the Tar Heels Overseas.

Subscribe to the YouTube Channel for all the interviews with former UNC players on the Ceiling is the Roof Podcast.

Tar Heels in Asia – April Update

The basketball season in Asia is coming to a close with the season finished for the Tar Heels playing in South Korea, and a handful of games left in the regular season in Japan.

This update takes a look at the latest statistics of James McAdoo and Jawad Williams in Japan. Also, looking at this year’s performances of Isaiah Hicks, Kennedy Meeks and Justin Knox in South Korea, including season highlight videos.

Follow @britishtarheel on Twitter for all the updates on Tar Heels Overseas.

Subscribe to the YouTube Channel for all the interviews with former UNC players on the Ceiling is the Roof Podcast.



James Michael McAdoo – Hitachi Sun Rockers (Japan)

The two-time NBA Champion took his talents overseas in 2018 and has since played in Italy, Serbia, Turkey and now finds himself in Japan. JMM has teamed up with former Dook player, Ryan Kelly in Tokyo… I do hope they watched the rivalry games together this year.

McAdoo has been coming off the bench this year and averaging over 10 PPG. Hitachi Sun Rockers are 5th in the Japanese B-League 1 with a current record of 38-18 and are hoping to make it to the playoffs. The top 8 teams qualify for the post-season, so the Sun Rockers are on track.

McAdoo will face up against Jawad Williams twice more this season when Levanga Hokkaido visit the Sun Rockers. JMM has had some great performances over the last month, including a 22 and 10 performance against Akita.

MOST RECENT GAME:
85-71 (WIN) vs Yokohama B-Corsairs
10 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists in 23 minutes

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGSPG
BESIKTAS (TURKEY)2019/2020.78.556.641.15
PARTIZAN BELGRADE (SERBIA)2019/2011.68.03.00.56
HITACHI SUN ROCKERS (JAPAN)2020/2120.910.536.351.42
Statistics are up to date as of April 20th (source: basketball.realgm.com

Isaiah Hicks – Seoul Samsung Thunders (South Korea)

Isaiah Hicks just finished his second season overseas and had a great season in the Korean Basketball League in South Korea. Last year, Hicks played in Russia.

Hicks played 54 games for Seoul this season and started 51 of them. Seoul struggled in the league this year with a record of 24-30, but Hicks’ numbers were impressive. He led his team in PPG, RPG and BPG and was also 8th in scoring in the KBL.

Isaiah’s best performance this year was probably the 91-90 win over Incheon. He ended the game with 22 points, including the game-winning basket in the final seconds. Video Highlights Europe have put together Hicks’ season highlights for the 2020/21 season in the KBL.

YouTube – Video Highlights Europe

Hicks ended the season strong with games of scoring-highs of 27, 24 and 21. With the season coming to an end Hicks is now a Free Agent and will be looking for a new team for the 2021/22 season.

MOST RECENT GAME:
93-77 (WIN) vs Busan KT Sonicboom
21 points, 3 rebounds, 1 block in 23 minutes

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGBPG
AVTODAR SARATOV (RUSSIA)2019/2028.312.866.712.0
SEOUL SAMSUNG THUNDERS
(SOUTH KOREA)
2020/2124.817.287.351.46
Statistics are up to date as of April 20th (source: basketball.realgm.com

Jawad Williams – Levanga Hokkaido (Japan)

Jawad Williams is the most experienced Tar Heel still playing professional basketball. French Cup Winner, Turkish Cup Winner, Japanese League Winner and a member of the 2005 National Championship Team, Williams is still performing at a high level.

You would have read in the last Tar Heels in Asia Update about Williams game-winning buzzer-beater last month. Since then, Levanga Hokkaido hasn’t had much to cheer about and are currently on an 8 game losing streak. Williams is the third leading scorer for Levanga and had his season-high of points of 23 a few weeks ago.

Williams has missed the past five games due to an injury from his game against Yokohama. Williams is currently 38 years old and said in a recent interview:

“My path was to play in Europe until I was 35, then go back to Japan and retire at 40 and I’m on the path for exactly what I set out to do.”

Jawad Williams on Euro Steppin’ Podcast

Jawad Williams is also a Children’s Book Author and is about to release his book, make sure you take a look at his previous work at NailahAndNash.com.

MOST RECENT GAME:
70-71 (LOSS) vs Yokohama B-Corsairs
2 points, 1 rebound in 11 minutes (INJURED DURING GAME)

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGAPG
TOYOTA ALVARK (JAPAN)2017/1819.78.83.391.0
TOYOTA ALVARK (JAPAN)2018/1923.610.424.311.27
LINK TOCHIGI BREX (JAPAN)2019/2014.17.162.890.58
LEVANGA HOKKAIDO (JAPAN)2020/2125.510.474.31.51
Statistics are up to date as of April 20th (source: basketball.realgm.com

Justin Knox – Wonju Dongbu Promy (South Korea)

Justin Knox was a Graduate Transfer at Carolina, after gaining his degree at the University of Alabama. Knox is an overseas veteran with over a decade’s experience in professional basketball that has taken him all over the world.

Knox just finished his season in South Korea playing for Wonju Dongbu Promy, who finished with a 24-30 record and one position outside the playoffs. The previous season Wonju Dongbu Promy were Co-Regular Season Champions of the KBL (season finished early due to Covid-19).

Two Points put together Justin Knox’s highlights for the 2020/21 Season in the Korean Basketball League.

YouTube – Two Points

Knox has been able to light it up this season, including a season-high of 33 points. Knox’s last game of the season, he scored 12 points in 10 minutes coming off the bench in a win against Goyang Orions. Knox is now a Free Agent.

MOST RECENT GAME:
93-91 (WIN) vs Goyang Orions
12 points, 5 rebounds, 1 steal in 10 minutes

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGBPG
PALLACANESTRO TRIESTE (ITALY)2018/1917.110.424.290.68
TRENTO (ITALY)2019/2022.110.575.190.59
WONJU DONGBU PROMY (SOUTH KOREA)2020/2121.613.946.780.69
Statistics are up to date as of April 20th (source: basketball.realgm.com

Kennedy Meeks – Changwong LG Sakers (South Korea)

Kennedy Meeks, a member of the 2017 NCAA Championship team, has been playing overseas since 2018 after a year in the NBA G-League. Meeks has played in Japan and South Korea. Last season, Meeks averaged over 20 and 10 for Levanga Hokkaido (Jawad Williams Current Team).

Kennedy started this season in Seoul, South Korea alongside one of his best friends, Isaiah Hicks. Meeks was traded to Changwon LG Sakers but did not play many games for his new side before returning to America to get ready for the 2021/22 Season. Meeks is now a Free Agent.

I spoke with Kennedy about his plans for next season and he said;

“New team coming!”

Kennedy Meeks

I am excited to see where Kennedy plays next and I hope to see some more success on the basketball court for him.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGBPGDBL/DBL
AISHIN SEA HORSES (JAPAN)2018/1932.014.6811.01.0517
LEVANGA HOKKAIDO (JAPAN)2019/2034.120.9710.871.2321
SEOUL SAMSUNG THUNDERS (SOUTH KOREA)2020/2115.16.816.000.311
CHANGWON LG SAKERS (SOUTH KOREA)2020/2110.77.254.250.50
Statistics are up to date as of April 20th (source: basketball.realgm.com

Ceiling is the Roof Podcast

In case you missed it, it was the first interview on the Ceiling is the Roof Podcast with a Tar Heel who plays overseas this week. Justin Pierce gave a great insight into overseas basketball and his time at North Carolina. Check out the interview below!

Justin Piece Interview

Follow on Twitter at @britishtarheel and subscribe for updates on Current Tar Heels, Pro Tar Heels with a close eye on the Tar Heels Overseas.

Subscribe to the YouTube Channel for all the interviews with former UNC players on the Ceiling is the Roof Podcast.

Interview with Justin Pierce – First Season Overseas

I was able to have a conversation with Justin Pierce on the Ceiling is the Roof Podcast. We talked about his first season overseas in Finland, his time at the University of North Carolina and his Tar Heel Teammates (including most likely to get told off by Coach Williams…)

Justin recently finished his season with Kobrat in Finland and averaged over 16 PPG. This year, Kobrat reached the post-season for the second time in the club’s history. Pierce struggled with some injuries throughout the year, but did gain a lot of attention and can be very happy with his first season in professional basketball.

Pierce spent three years at William & Mary, playing alongside now Atlanta Hawks player, Nate Knight, before transferring to UNC. Pierce was a Graduate Transfer during the 2019/20 season in Chapel Hill and played 32 games in Carolina Blue.

Listen to the latest podcast on YouTube, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic and find out more about Pierce’s first season overseas, his college career, travelling around Europe while playing overseas and who was most likely to get told off by Coach Williams.

Subscribe to the YouTube Channel for all future interviews with former UNC players.

Follow @britishtarheel on Twitter and don’t forget to subscribe to the website.

Tar Heels in Europe – April Update

I think most of the University of North Carolina fans have been caught up with everything going on in Chapel Hill and the transfer portal.

In other news, Tar Heels are continuing their season overseas, and here is the latest update on the 12 Tar Heels playing in Europe this year. As usual, including the players latest statistics, games and highlights.

In this update, it includes a Ukraine Cup Winner Brice Johnson and great performances from Joel James and Nate Britt and more.

Follow @britishtarheel



Marcus Paige – KK Partizan (Serbia)

Last week, it was the anniversary of the greatest ‘what if’ shot against Villanova, so Paige’s shot was all over our social media channels. However, Paige still is knocking down jumpers in Serbia in his third season overseas.

Since March 20th, KK Partizan is on a four-game win streak in the ABA League. Paige leads Partizan with 2.0 3PM per game in the ABA (7th in the league) and averaging 9.1 PPG in all competitions this season.

In Paige’s last game, he came off the bench to make 3 out of 5 from behind the arc and provided 11 points in a 97-74 win against FMP Beograd.

In the ABA League, the top four teams go through to the postseason, which now looks quite a challenge for Paige and Partizan.

MOST RECENT GAME:
97-74 (WIN) vs FMP Beograd
11 points, 5 assists in 19 minutes

Source: YouTube BC Partizan
TEAMSEASONMPGPPGAPGSPG
PARTIZAN BELGRADE (SERBIA)2018/1924.210.53.721.1
PARTIZAN BELGRADE (SERBIA)2019/2022.39.931.880.79
PARTIZAN BELGRADE (SERBIA)2020/2126.39.12.360.9
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Joel James – Duzce Belediye (Turkey)

Joel James is having his best season as a professional basketball player and teams around Europe need to take notice. James recorded his 20th Double/Double this week, with a huge performance grabbing 16 boards. The week before, he had a 20 and 10 outing, Joel James is balling!

James is playing in Turkey for Duzce Belediye, who are 15-12. James’ 12 rebounds per game are the second-highest in the second-tier of Turkish Basketball. The next game for Joel is against Gemlik Basketbol Bursa who is near the bottom of the table.

I spoke to Joel recently about his recent performances;

“We lost a big one today, that ultimately could determine if we play in the postseason or not. I’m playing well, past two games have been double doubles. But the team doesn’t seem to me meshing at this critical point in the season.”

Joel James

MOST RECENT GAME:
71-82 (LOSS) vs Yeni Mamak Spor Klubu
10 points, 16 rebounds, 2 steals in 34 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGDBL/DBL
RAYOS DE HERMOSILLO (MEXICO)2018/1927.312.119.5722
CAPITANES CIUDAD DE MEXICO (MEXICO)2019/2022.210.916.146
DUZCE BELEDIYE (TURKEY)2020/2128.913.3511.9620
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Justin Watts – Donar Gronigen (Netherlands)

Justin Watts is now entering his tenth year since graduating from Chapel Hill and has travelled the world playing professional basketball ever since.

Watts is now playing in the Netherlands for Donar Gronigen, who is currently 4th in the top division of Dutch Basketball. There is still plenty of games left to play in the DBL.

Donar Gronigen has played four games over the past two weeks and are 2-2, including a game of a 17 point high for Watts. He has been recovering from a calf injury and had a month out, although Watts seems back to full fitness and will be helping Donar climb the ladder in the DBL.

MOST RECENT GAME:
91-72 (WIN) vs Landstede Zwolle
10 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists in 19 minutes.

Originally tweeted by RTV Noord Sport (@RTVNoordSport) on March 31, 2021.
TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGSPG
WILKI MORSKIE SZCZECIN (POLAND)2018/1923.89.933.141.29
PIENO ZVAIGZDES (LITHUANIA)2018/1922.98.83.60.9
DABROWA GORNICZA (POLAND)2019/2027.614.673.331.0
DONAR GRONIGEN (NETHERLANDS)2020/2117.67.313.540.69
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Joel Berry II – Besiktas (Turkey)

Since the last Tar Heels in Europe Update, Berry has played in one win for Besiktas who find themselves 5th in the top division in Turkey. Berry still leads his team in steals and the fourth-highest scorer. In his most recent game, he came off the bench for just 5 minutes.

As it stands, Besiktas will be heading into the playoffs and this will be Berry’s first postseason overseas.

MOST RECENT GAME:
94-85 (WIN) vs Turk Telecom
2 points in 5 minutes

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGAPGSPG
BESIKTAS (TURKEY)2020/2124.610.593.121.41
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Deon Thompson – Unicaja Malaga (Spain)

The 2009 NCAA Champions, many say that they are one of the most dominant champions that college basketball has seen… I wouldn’t disagree. Deon Thompson was a big part of the squad and still holds the record for most games as a Tar Heel.

Thompson is now in his second consecutive season in Spain after playing for some of the best teams in Europe, including ALBA Berlin and Bayern Munich. Thompson is playing for Unicaja Malaga, who currently sit 8th in the Liga ACB. The eight highest-ranked teams will enter the postseason, so Malaga will be hoping to finish in those top spots.

MOST RECENT GAME:
93-101 (LOSS) vs Hereda San Pablo Burgos
5 points, 3 rebounds in 11 minutes

Originally tweeted by Liga Endesa (@ACBCOM) on March 3, 2021.
TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGSPG
UNICAJA MALAGA (SPAIN)2019/2020.89.113.230.89
UNICAJA MALAGA (SPAIN)2020/2119.18.053.410.59
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Brice Johnson – Budivelnyk (Ukraine)

Brice Johnson has played in the NBA, G-League and now in his third season overseas. Johnson signed for Budivelnyk in Ukraine and has just recently seen his first silverware in Europe. Budivelnyk is the most successful team in Ukraine, with ten championships in the Ukrainian Basketball League.

Source: Facebook – BC Budivelynk

Johnson leads his team in BPG and SPG, and his second in RPG. He has played a big role for the Kyiv team and will look to push for a place in the postseason.

Budivelnyk Kyiv recently won a cup competition in Ukraine, seeing Johnson lift his first trophy overseas.

MOST RECENT GAME:
92-69 (WIN) vs Ternopil
16 points, 8 rebounds, 4 blocks in 21 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGBPG
ORLANDINA (ITALY)2019/2032.417.3511.180.82
CHORALE ROANNE (FRANCE)2019/2025.413.295.430.43
BUDIVELYNK (UKRAINE)2020/2122.411.768.071.14
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Marcus Ginyard – CSP Limoges (France)

Marcus Ginyard is one of the most experienced Tar Heels still in professional basketball. Now in his 11th season, Ginyard is in France playing for CSP Limoges.

Ginyard has struggled with injuries this season but has recently come back and put in some good performances in the Jeep Elite League. CSP Limoges are currently 8-8 with lots of games still left to play.

CSP Limoges have recently signed Bruno Caboclo, former NBA player with Toronto Raptors, Memphis Grizzlies and most recently Houston Rockets. I spoke to Marcus about how he is feeling about the new addition;

“Love it, he’s going to help us a lot!”

Marcus Ginyard

MOST RECENT GAME:
82-81 (WIN) vs Cholet Basket
14 points, 3 rebounds in 30 minutes

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGAPG
CSP LIMOGES (FRANCE)2019/2026.79.863.051.05
CSP LIMOGES (FRANCE)2020/2119.47.562.391.11
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Luke Maye – Dolomoti Energia Trento (Italy)

Luke Maye is in his first season overseas and has been shining for Trento in Italy. Maye was awarded MVP of the Week earlier this year and has been getting noticed for his play in the EuroCup.

Trento has a handful of game left of the season and will be pushing to get into the top eight spots to reach the playoffs. Trento is currently 10th with a record of 9-14.

Luke’s scoring numbers have slightly been decreasing over the past month, compared to the storming start to 2021 that he had. Hopefully, we can see Maye pull out more MVP performances entering the end of the season.

MOST RECENT GAME:
90-84 (WIN) vs Umana Venezia
5 rebounds, 4 assists in 27 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGDBL/DBL
TRENTO (ITALY)2020/2125.311.916.065
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Nate Britt – Panthers Schwennigen (Germany)

Nate Britt, NCAA Champion, is now in his fourth season overseas and playing some of his best basketball since going pro. Britt leads the team in assists and steals, also averaging 14 points per game.

Nate last month scored 27 points in a win for Wiha Panthers, who play in the second-tier of German Basketball. Britt plays a big role in his current team with playing at least 30 minutes per game.

The Wiha Panthers qualified for the postseason, to try and gain promotion to the top-tier of German Basketball, with the playoffs starting on April 17th.

MOST RECENT GAME:
69-88 (LOSS) vs Erdgas Ehingen
8 points, 3 assists, 2 steals in 35 minutes.

Source: Facebook – Wiha Panthers (Highlights from Panthers vs Heidelberg)
TEAMSEASONMPGPPGAPGRPGSPG
GLASGOW ROCKS
(UNITED KINGDOM)
2017/1828.511.723.563.681.8
OMONIA NICOSIA (CYPRUS)2019/2033.714.523.624.141.76
WIHA PANTHERS (GERMANY)2020/2130.014.045.073.72.04
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Justin Pierce – Kobrat (Finland)

Justin Pierce had a memorable first season as a professional basketball player. Pierce played his first season overseas in Finland and saw his team Kobrat reach the postseason, for only the second time in the club’s history.

They were an 8 seed going up against the best team in the country, Helsinki and went out in the first round. Pierce missed the final games due to injury.

Pierce’s season has finished and he ended averaging 16.56 PPG. That’s quite the first season, looking forward to seeing what’s next for Pierce.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGRPGAPG
KOBRAT (FINLAND)2020/2128.016.565.193.5
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

Christian Keeling – Glasgow Rocks (Scotland)

Christian Keeling was a graduate transfer with Justin Pierce and he is enjoying his first season overseas as well. Keeling has been playing for the Glasgow Rocks in the British Basketball League and has caught a lot of attention.

Keeling has been putting up big numbers this season, including recently against Manchester Giants he scored 26 points in the win. Keeling led his team in PPG, APG and MPG. Keeling was 6th for scoring in the BBL.

It was announced at the end of March, that Christian Keeling left the Glasgow Rocks on good terms and is now a free agent.

MOST RECENT GAME:
83-99 (LOSS) vs Surrey Scorchers
19 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists in 39 minutes.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGAPGRPG
GLASGOW ROCKS (SCOTLAND)2020/2134.117.052.895.47
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

JP Tokoto – Hapoel Tel Aviv (Israel)

Jean-Pierre Tokoto was a Sports Center dream during his days in Chapel Hill. Since then, Tokoto has been playing professional basketball overseas, with a lot of that time spent in Israel.

Tokoto is a starter for Hapoel Tel Aviv, but sadly got injured in the derby game on January 31st and hasn’t returned since.

TEAMSEASONMPGPPGAPGRPGSPG
HAPOEL EILAT (ISRAEL)2018/1928.113.423.187.611.45
IRONI NES ZIONA (ISRAEL)2019/2031.414.214.146.292.21
HAPOEL TEL AVIV (ISRAEL)2020/2125.110.623.54.51.38
Statistics are up to date as of April 10th (source: basketball.realgm.com)

After a recent poll on Ceiling is the Roof, I have decided to report every two weeks on the Tar Heels playing overseas, compared to the usual monthly update. I hope you enjoyed the latest update on the Tar Heels in Europe.

Follow on Twitter at @britishtarheel and subscribe for updates on Current Tar Heels, Pro Tar Heels with a close eye on the Tar Heels Overseas.

Why Coach Hubert Davis is my choice.

Coach Roy Williams has Size 9 feet, but his shoes at North Carolina are a lot bigger to fill. After his shock announcement on April 1st, the greatest job in the world just became vacant. Basketball coaches are dreaming of the opportunity to stand on the sidelines at the Dean Smith Center as the new Head Coach of the Tar Heels.

From Brad Stevens to Kenny ‘The Jet’ Smith, major mainstream media sites are throwing names in the hat of who they think is going to be the next Head Coach of the University of North Carolina. I don’t believe we have to look very far.

Take a look at why I believe Coach Hubert Davis should be the next man in charge.

Follow @britishtarheel on Twitter.

Source: newsobserver.com

Coach Hubert Davis is a Tar Heel and for me, that is very important. The Carolina Family is a basketball tradition, and that speaks volumes to why we have reached more Final Fours than any other school. Davis played for Coach Dean Smith for four years, playing with the likes of; Rick Fox, George Lynch, Eric Montross and more.

Davis averaged over 20 PPG in his final year in Chapel Hill and started a majority of those games. He had a career-high 35 against Duke, so we know he likes performing against the school down the road. He also has the record for career 3PT% in UNC history. Davis played a big role in his time under Coach Smith.

Coach Davis understands the Carolina Way. There is no one better to learn this from than Coach Dean Smith himself. Then he to sat next to Coach Roy Williams for 9 years and watching him closely. Davis has had the best seat in the house for preparation.

After stepping down from his job at ESPN as an analyst, Davis came to work under Coach Williams and become one of his Assistant Coaches. To a Tar Heel fan, you would think why would you not want to be one of the assistants at UNC?! Although, take note that the job at ESPN was a pretty good gig, to me it says a lot to coming back here. Hubert Davis is a Tar Heel and he loves North Carolina.

Source: pinterest.com

Coach Williams took the wheel of the ship in 2003 and we are all aware of his love and respect for Coach Smith. Williams would use a similar style of play as his mentor. Granted that, Coach did things his way and coached in his style as well. He was not a Coach Smith 2.0, no one ever could be. He took great parts of Coach Smith’s style, who wouldn’t!? (879 wins at UNC). Coach Davis will not be a Coach Williams 2.0 either.

Hubert Davis – the player – has the record for best 3PT% at UNC. He made 728 3 pointers in the NBA and currently 3rd in NBA history with 3PT%. You hear fans cry out for shooters, and I believe that Coach Davis would look for them in his coaching style and recruitment. That is his game, he was a shooter at college and the NBA. I believe we would see more at UNC with him at the helm. Shooters, shoot!

I do hope we see some of the same coaching styles from Coach Williams; fast break transition, second break offence, out-rebound every team in the nation! Then I would like to see Coach Davis’ twist on it as well. Can you imagine a fast break Carolina, then when the play slows down, we swing the ball to multiple shooters… I am visualizing Coach Hubert’s style now and it’s beautiful.

“He hasn’t been a Head Coach before, he can’t recruit.” The amount of recruiting that Assistant Coaches do is more than you realize. Coach Davis can recruit and has been recruiting for the past twelve years. That is one of his roles given to him by Coach Williams and he has learnt from one of the best. You know what… the name North Carolina Tar Heels does a lot of recruiting for itself too. UNC is a Top 3 program in the nation, in my opinion. Recruiting will not be a problem!

Coach Hubert Davis oversees the squads charitable endeavours. It is well documented that Davis is one of the good guys. Someone with his integrity and character follows the tradition of the great men who have led our program before. Carolina Basketball is more than just basketball and Davis fits into that.

“I would like for it to be a Carolina guy, I don’t know if I have any say in it. But I want it to be someone with the same beliefs for what North Carolina has always stood for. For whoever it is, I’d like to see them continue that part of it.”

Coach Roy Williams in October 2019

I do feel that if the rumours are true and Coach Williams has been prepping Coach Davis for this role to be his successor, who am I to say no!

If I was Bubba Cunningham, I would choose Hubert Davis as the next coach of the University of North Carolina.

Source: keepingitheel.com

The Others Candidates…

The name a lot of Tar Heels want to see is Wes Miller, and do you know what… same here. Just not yet. I think Wes could be a future Tar Heel Head Coach, he played under Coach Williams and is doing amazing work in Greensboro. However, UNC Greensboro and UNC Chapel Hill are a big difference. I feel it is riskier to go with Miller now… but if he gets a move away to a major school, I see Miller being the captain of the ship in years to come.

Brad Stevens is probably one of the best coaches in the rumour mill right now, would he leave the Boston Celtics mid-season? Doubt it. He just turned down his native state Indiana (yes we’re a bigger program I know), that wouldn’t go down too well back home for him. I just don’t see it. He did do wonders at Butler, but this would mean it would leave the Carolina Family and that doesn’t sit right with me.

Keeping it within the family, Jerry Stackhouse. I actually wouldn’t mind this hire. Yes, Stackhouse is 20-37 at Vanderbilt, it hasn’t gone well for him there. Before that though, he was Coach of the Year in the NBA D-League and a D-League Champion. Stackhouse had a very successful NBA playing career too. I don’t think he will get the job, but I can see why his name is being put up there.

Kenny Smith, well… that would be… different. Bubba is not risking that.

Gonzaga are probably about to become National Champions and with you being friends with Coach Williams, therefore Mark Few has been put down as a candidate. I don’t see it happening. He’s a Bulldog legend, and it will stay that way.

Finally, interestingly… Dawn Staley, this coach is incredible, a genius and has built a program from the bottom at South Carolina. I just don’t see her becoming the UNC Head Coach. It would be worldwide news and hey, she deserves a call just based on her résumé alone. But don’t see it happening.

Over the next week or so, Carolina Basketball is going to start a new journey. Whoever is appointed, I know I’ll get behind them (it just may take longer with some than others).

If you missed it, you can read my “Letter to Coach Williams” and see my feelings towards Coach and everything he has done for North Carolina, and me.

Follow on Twitter at @britishtarheel and subscribe below for updates on Current Tar Heels and Tar Heels Overseas.