These players all hit the ground running in their first appearances in the BKT EuroCup.
Five EuroCup debutants that made an instant impression in Round 1
The 2023-24 BKT EuroCup Regular Season got underway last week, with some thrilling performances across the competition. Notably, some first-year players took to the EuroCup like a duck to water, putting in dominant displays straight from Round 1.
Whether it was topping all players in terms of PIR, leading the way in scoring or being a pest on the defensive end of the floor, these five EuroCup rookies sure left their mark on the opening round of the campaign.
TJ Shorts, Paris Basketball
20 points, 9 assists, 3 steals, 30 PIR
There were a lot of expectations on Shorts’s shoulders heading into his EuroCup debut with Paris and boy did he rise to the occasion. He led the EuroCup in PIR (30), earning Round 1 MVP in the process, while he also had a competition-best 9 assists and scored the fifth most points (20) as Paris comfortably beat Wolves Vilnius 105-78 at home. If Shorts continues to play at this level, he’ll make Paris a very dangerous threat in the remainder of the EuroCup campaign.
Donte Grantham, London Lions
23 points, 7 rebounds, 1 assist, 25 PIR
London was without star forward Sam Dekker in Round 1, yet the Lions’ fans had a new hero to cheer for in Grantham. The 28-year-old, who spent the last couple of years playing in the French League, shined with a round-high 23-points on his debut as London beat Umana Reyer Venice 76-69. If Grantham is able to keep stepping up this year, it not only adds another option to London’s offense but it should mean that Dekker is fresher come the end of the season.
Georginho de Paula, ratiopharm Ulm
11 points, 2 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals, 2 blocks, 18 PIR
Georginho did a bit of everything as Ulm defeated Dolomiti Energia Trento 80-70 in Round 1. In just over 17 and a half minutes on the floor, the 27-year-old Brazilian had the joint third-most steals in Round 1 (3) and the joint second-most blocks (2). Playing in Europe for the first time, he also dished 6 assists and scored 11 points. It’s still early days, but it looks like yet another Brazilian is set to triumph at Ulm, following on from the successes of Yago Dos Santos and Bruno Caboclo last season.
Roberto Gallinat, Aris Midea Thessaloniki
22 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 20 PIR
It may have come in a losing effort, with Aris falling 66-82 at home to Dreamland Gran Canaria, but Gallinat has already made fans aware of his scoring ability. The 26-year-old finished with 22 points, the second-highest tally of any player in Round 1, which equated to one third of Aris’s points total. The fans at Palais des Sports created a wonderful atmosphere in Round 1 and if Gallinat can continue to score at this clip, his name will be echoing around the arena in no time.
Trevion Williams, ratiopharm Ulm
13 points, 16 rebounds, 1 block, 20 PIR
Just like teammate Georginho, Williams was pivotal in Ulm’s victory against Trento. Playing in Europe for the first time, the 23-year-old American dominated and was one of just three EuroCup players to record a double-double in Round 1, finishing with 13 points and 16 rebounds in the 80-70 triumph. Ulm has a great habit of finding hidden gems and in Williams it appears as though it has found a center that could cause a lot of damage in this year’s competition.