Brian Beshara, a smooth transition to coaching - Apr 12, 2012
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Brian Beshara-Feghali (204-F-77, agency: Pro Management Agency, college: LSU), a name that hasn't been on the Lebanese basketball table for quite some time since he was pushed out of Sagesse in very strange conditions in 2010 while playing for free. Since then the former National Team Player (34 years), who scored 26 points in the 2004 Final win of Sagesse in the Asian Clubs Championships, has started a major shift in his career, preparing in the NCAA for a coaching future, while keeping in the possibilities a return to play in the Lebanese League in the right conditions.
Q- Hello Brian, its been well over a year and a half since you left Lebanon. What have you been doing?
A- Well I was offered an assistant coaching position at the University of New Orleans last year and I have always been interested in coaching so I decided to get my coaching career started. Our Head Coach moved to the University of Arizona, which is one of the very best colleges in the NCAA and I got a chance to move up a level also and go to Tulane University as their director of Player Development and Video. We just finished our first season last month and are busy as the host school for the Final Four which is going on this weekend in New Orleans as Im sure you know...so all in all it's been a fun great experience the last couple of seasons.
Q- What did you benefit from the College coaching experience?
A- The experience has been unbelievable...from reconnecting with all of my friend and contact in the NCAA and NBA basketball over here to the actual day to day experience of learning from some of the very best in the business. My head coach last year worked under Bob Knight at Indiana who is a Hall of Fame coach and coaching legend here in America and this year was another great experience watching and learning from our coach who had been an assistant at North Carolina St and Tennessee previously. It's really allowed me to evolve from the player I always was to start becoming the coach I think I am meant to be. Technically speaking, I have been consumed with the strategic side of the game and spent 1000's of hours watching and dissecting other teams and players so I just have an even deeper comfort level with the game to compliment my experiences and feel for the game I had as a player.
Q- Have you been practicing or playing any kind of basketball?
A- I have played in friendly leagues and pickup games just for fun and to stay in shape but coaching has been my priority and coaching here really dominates your time if you want to do it well. I still beat our players in shooting games and short games of 1 on 1 though from time to time just to not let them get too satisfied with themselves haha...
Q- Are you still following the Lebanese basketball news and teams?
A- I am actually...my experience playing in Lebanon was a real blessing and I will always follow how things go over there. It looks like things have not changed too much at the top of the league with Riyadi and Champville still apart from the rest but it's nice to see the some new teams show some ambition and positive results this year...it would be great to see Sagesse and Moutahed get back to where they have been in the past and where I was fortunate to be a part of some very good teams.
Q- How do you think can Lebanese basketball improve in the short term
A- In the short term I would just say to focus on the best interests of the game and only the game. No individual or group or team is more important than the game and I think some short sightedness and maybe greed has caused basketball to fall from where it was during the late 90's and early 2000's. We need to have an abundance mentality rather than a scarcity or zero-sum mentality...there is enough success to go around for everyone and the better and more marketable basketball becomes in general the better it will be for everyone.
I think it's a shame to be honest to see what happened with the national team for instance. As everyone knows, we almost beat China in my last time playing for Lebanon and I had not injured my knee severely in the beginning of the tournament we would have had a great great chance to win the whole tournament. We really had some high level talent playing together and the entire core of the team Jackson, Matt, Jean, Fadi, Ali, myself and others were all still capable of playing at a high level along with some nice young developing talent to draw from. We were on the verge of becoming dominant in Asian basketball if we had stayed the course and put the game of basketball before any other issue. Now nobody is afraid of Lebanese Basketball unfortunately
On the bright side I do see some positive things happening with the local league so I hope this can continue while we suffer through a difficult time on the National Team side. Basketball in Lebanon has an incredible potential and I hope it realizes this potential locally and on the world level.
Q- Any chances of seeing you again as a Player in Lebanon?
A- I would never say never...ive only just turned 34 and my body has been able to stay fresh from not playing 60-80 games a year for the past few years. But that said, my last year there was difficult after passing up a big contract to try and help Sagesse through the issues they were and still seem to be going through so it would just have to feel like a really good situation with a management that had the resources, ambition, and professional mentality to be champions. I dont feel like I have anything left to prove as a player but the challenge of helping to build a champion is definitely the next focus of my career wherever I am...as a player or a coach.
Q- What are you future plans for this coming season?
A- Right now, I really enjoy my situation at Tulane but this is the time of year a lot of movement happens in college basketball...pretty much every coach in the country is in New Orleans for the final four so I am looking forward to touching base with all of my friends in the business and seeing what everyone is up to and if any other interesting opportunities open up here at Tulane or maybe somewhere else.
Q- Any wish list you might have for yourself basketball wise?
A- Well I am looking forward to being a head coach one day as soon as possible...the last two years have given me confidence that I am ready to take this challenge. Im also definitely looking forward to coming back to Lebanon soon for vacation or professionally...either one is fine with me as long as I get to visit soon!
Review of Pepsi LBL Round 3 of Quarter-Finals - 3 hours ago
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Al Riyadi - Sagesse 86-67 Al Riyadi regained the lead in the series versus Sagesse. Al Riyadi made 17-of-19 free shots (89.5 percent) during the game. It was a great shooting night for Al Riyadi especially from behind the arc, where they had solid 52.9 percentage. The best player for the winners was Serbian swingman Branko Cvetkovic (200-84, agency: AproK Sports Group) who scored 26 points and 6 rebounds (perfect behind the arc making all six shots !!!). The former international swingman... [read more]
Al Riyadi regained the lead in the series versus Sagesse. Al Riyadi made 17-of-19 free shots (89.5 percent) during the game. It was a great shooting night for Al Riyadi especially from behind the arc, where they had solid 52.9 percentage. The best player for the winners was Serbian swingman Branko Cvetkovic (200-84, agency: AproK Sports Group) who scored 26 points and 6 rebounds (perfect behind the arc making all six shots !!!). The former international swingman Jean Abdel-Nour (198-83) chipped in a double-double by scoring 13 points and 15 rebounds. At the other side the best for losing team was American forward Calvin Godfrey (206-90, college: Memphis) who recorded a double-double by scoring 16 points and 10 rebounds and American-Ukrainian guard Steven Burtt (189-84, college: Iona) added 16 points and 5 assists respectively. Top scorers: Al Riyadi: B.Cvetkovic 26+6reb+3ast, M.Haidar 18+5reb+2ast, J.Abdel Nour 13+15reb+3ast, A.Aminu 9+2reb, O.Johnson 8+3reb+2ast, A.Saoud 7+4reb+8ast Sagesse: S.Burtt 16+2reb+5ast, C.Godfrey 16+10reb+3ast, M.Faye 13+5reb+2ast, M.Ibrahim 9+3reb+4ast, P.Bou Abboud 8+7reb+1ast, B.Ammoury 5+2reb
Byblos outgunned Tadamon to take 2-1 lead. The game was mostly controlled by Byblos. Tadamon was better in fourth quarter 18-17. But it was not enough to take a lead and get a victory that evening. It was a good game for the former international Jasmon Youngblood (195-84, college: Kent St.) who led his team to a victory with 25 points and 5 rebounds. American guard Clay Tucker (196-80, college: Wisc.-Milwaukee) contributed with 20 points and 5 rebounds for the winners. American forward Maurice Kemp (203-91, college: E.Carolina, agency: Duran International) answered with 22 points and 9 rebounds and Bosnian-Serbian center Mile Ilic (215-84) added 16 points and 13 rebounds in the effort for Tadamon. Top scorers: Byblos: J.Youngblood 25+5reb+3ast, C.Tucker 20+5reb+3ast, A.Traore 19+6reb+1ast, R.Akl 6+3reb+1ast, A.Kanaan 6+3reb, J.Aby Khers 3+5reb+2ast Tadamon: M.Kemp 22+9reb, M.Ilic 16+13reb+2ast, J.Khalil 10+2reb+1ast, C.Pigram 9+3reb+4ast, A.Fakhreddine 6+6reb, G.Hadidian 2+9reb+1ast
Homenetmen secured their semifinal birth as they swept Champville. Homenetmen looked well-organized offensively handing out 27 assists. It was a great evening for the former international swingman Fadi El-Khatib (198-79) who led his team to a victory scoring 24 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists. International center Ater Majok (208-87, college: Connecticut) helped adding 20 points and 16 rebounds. The best for the losing side was American swingman Brandon Thomas (198-84, college: Massachusetts, agency: Three Eye Sports) with 21 points and 6 assists and the former international forward Bassel Bawji (203-89, college: Tulsa) scored 15 points, 9 rebounds and 4 assists. Both teams had four players each who scored in double figures. Top scorers: Homenetmen: F.El Khatib 24+8reb+6ast, A.Majok 20+16reb+1ast, H.Gyokchyan 18+4reb, D.Jackson 14+6reb+5ast, E.Chamoun 8, K.Galloway 6+5reb+15ast Champville: B.Thomas 21+4reb+6ast, M.Cummings 18+3reb+3ast, B.Bawji 15+9reb+4ast, D.Orton 14+12reb+2ast, A.Farhat 7+5reb+5ast, J.Assi 3
Moutahed overcame Louaize to secure 2-1 advantage. The game was mostly controlled by Al Moutahed. Louaize was better in third quarter 20-17. But it was not enough to take a lead and get a victory that evening. They dominated on the defensive end, holding Louaize to just 4 points in second quarter. They outrebounded Louaize 42-25 including a 31-20 advantage in defensive rebounds. It was an exceptional evening for American guard Dewarick Spencer (192-82, college: Arkansas St., agency: Higher Vision Sports) who led the winners and scored 31 points and 9 rebounds (on 13-of-16 shooting from the field). His fellow American import guard Ramel Curry (191-80, college: CSU Bakersfield) accounted for 23 points and 5 assists for the winning side. International guard Geron Johnson (190-92, college: Memphis) came up with 24 points and 8 rebounds and American forward Alandise Harris (198-90, college: Arkansas, agency: Diamond Sports) added 15 points and 6 rebounds respectively for Louaize in the defeat. Both coaches used bench players which allowed the starters a little rest for the next games. Top scorers: Moutahed: D.Spencer 31+9reb, R.Curry 23+3reb+5ast, E.Rustom 10+3reb+4ast, C.Melvin 7+16reb+1ast, R.Akl 0+1reb, O.El Ayoubi 0+1reb Louaize: G.Johnson 24+8reb+1ast, A.Harris 15+6reb, M.Martinez 7+4reb, J.Salem 7, R.Bechara 3+1reb, E.Bechara 0+2reb
Byblos are one game away from reaching the Final Four, the 3rd game in the series between Byblos and Tadamon saw the home team controlling the game from the first minutes . Byblos started the game with a very big concentration to seal a win , the first quarter finished on the score of 21-17. The second quarter Byblos through the trio of Jay Youngblood , Clay Tucker and Ali Traoure managed to increased the dominance on the tempo of the game they finished the half leading 38-29.In the third... [read more]
Byblos are one game away from reaching the Final Four, the 3rd game in the series between Byblos and Tadamon saw the home team controlling the game from the first minutes . Byblos started the game with a very big concentration to seal a win , the first quarter finished on the score of 21-17. The second quarter Byblos through the trio of Jay Youngblood , Clay Tucker and Ali Traoure managed to increased the dominance on the tempo of the game they finished the half leading 38-29.In the third quarter Byblos continued from where they stopped in Q2 , they increased the tempo and managed to have a 20 points lead , the 3rd quarter finished on the score of 64-47. The last ten minutes of the game saw the same scenario of the 3rd Byblos trying to increase the lead and Tadamon trying to come back. The game finished on the score of 81-65. Jay Youngblood led all scorers with 25 points , followed by Maurice Kemp with 22 and Clay Tucker with 20.
Best Scorers : Byblos : Jay Youngblood (25) , Clay Tucker (20) , Ali Traoure (19) Tadamon : Maurice Kemp (22) , Mile Illic (16)
Sagesse - Al Hekmeh Beirut (Pepsi LBL) inked 32-year old Senegalese forward Mouhammad Faye (208-85, college: SMU). He started the season at Promitheas in Greek A1 league. In 23 games he averaged 11.5ppg, 6.1rpg and 1.1apg this season. The last season Faye played at Openjobmetis VA in Italian Serie A where in 21 games he had 9.3ppg, 7.9rpg and 1.0apg. He also played 13 games in FIBA Europe Cup where he recorded 9.5ppg, 7.0rpg and 1.2apg. In 2010 Faye was drafted by Rio Grande Valley Vipers... [read more]
Sagesse - Al Hekmeh Beirut (Pepsi LBL) inked 32-year old Senegalese forward Mouhammad Faye (208-85, college: SMU). He started the season at Promitheas in Greek A1 league. In 23 games he averaged 11.5ppg, 6.1rpg and 1.1apg this season. The last season Faye played at Openjobmetis VA in Italian Serie A where in 21 games he had 9.3ppg, 7.9rpg and 1.0apg. He also played 13 games in FIBA Europe Cup where he recorded 9.5ppg, 7.0rpg and 1.2apg. In 2010 Faye was drafted by Rio Grande Valley Vipers (D-League) in third round (7th overall). The former Southern Methodist University standoutis in his seventh season in pro basketball. Among other achievements Faye played in the final of D-League in 2011. He received also USBasket.com All-D-League Import Player of the Year award back in 2011. Faye was also a member of Senegalese international program for some years. He played for Senegalese Senior National Team between 2007 and 2015 and previously for U18 National Team between 2002 and 2004. Faye also represented Senegal at the Afrobasket Championships in Abidjan (Ivory Coast) four years ago. His team won Bronze and his stats at that event were 7 games: 9.1ppg, 3.1rpg, 2.1apg, FGP: 44.2%, 3PT: 12.5%, FT: 56.0%. Faye has quite traveled the world as his pro career brought him to three different continents (Europe, Africa and of course North America). Faye has played previously professionally in France (Hyeres-Toulon) and Senegal (JA Dakar and Rail). His game is described as:
True height is probably around 6-9. A lanky forward, with great wingspan, good ball handling skills and long range shooting ability. He's very active on the court, loves to attack the basket, can grab lots of rebounds. Very active in defense. Can play in the two forward positions, but his future is at the SF, thanks to his good perimetral skills.
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