(Via Canada Basketball) Follow on Twitter @Canbball
TORONTO,ON-The Nike Hoop Summit’s World Select Team was announced today, with an unprecedented amount of Canadian flavor being named to the roster. Three national team members will be heading to Portland’s Rose Garden on April 9, 2011 including two rising stars Kevin Pangos (6’1″, Holland Landing, ON) and Kyle Wiltjer (Portland, OR). Roy Rana (Toronto, ON) has received the distinct title as the World Select Team Head Coach.
“This is a phenomenal honour and very exciting, not only for me but for all of the Canadians in the game,” stated Rana, who also serves as the Head Coach for Canada’s Cadet Men’s National Team. “I’ve had the opportunity to coach both Kevin and Kyle and both players represent Canada with a great deal of pride. We look forward to doing well in the game.”
The Nike Hoop Summit is one of the North America’s premier annual basketball events for senior high school-aged boys (U19). Unique to this match, the Nike Hoop Summit is an international game featuring the USA Basketball Men’s Junior National Select Team competing against the World Select Team, a 10-player squad selected from six different countries across three continents.
This will be the second time that there are two Canadians on the team. In 2010, Tristan Thompson (Brampton, ON) and Cory Joseph (Pickering, ON) both participated in the prestigious game, but fell to Team USA 101-97. In fact, the USA holds a 10-3 advantage in Nike Hoop Summit history. The 2011 World Select squad will look to claim the title, a tough challenge for the newly-named coach.
“The most important thing is to build team chemistry in a short amount of time,” added Rana. “My goal is to get all of these talented young international players on the same page focused on one thing, a win.”
Aside from being part of Canada’s national team program, the three are already quite familiar with one another from last summer’s Nike Global Challenge, where Rana coached a Team Canada squad that included both Pangos and WIltjer.
“I am thrilled with the selection of Canadians on this year’s International Roster” said Mark Bayne, the North American Field Representative for Nike Basketball. “Each athlete brings something unique to the table. Kyle Wiltjer will have the opportunity to demonstrate his all-around game in front of a home town crowd, while Kevin Pangos will be counted on for his on-court leadership and ability to run the team. As well, Roy Rana was a natural choice given his success with the 2010 Cadet Team and experience coaching at the Nike Global Challenge”.
Rana has an impressive international record with Canada’s age-group teams, his most recent success coming with a bronze medal at the 2010 FIBA U17 World Championship for Men in Germany. It was Canada’s highest finish at this tournament and speaks to the development of Canadian talent.
“Thank you to Nike for providing this unique and exciting forum to showcase the talent of both our players and coaches,” stated Wayne Parrish, Executive Director and CEO for Canada Basketball. “Over the past several years our cadet(te) and junior national teams have excelled in international competitions, helping to put Canada on the global map as one of the nations to watch.”
Kevin Pangos, who is regarded as one of Canada’s best young athletes, played an integral role in podium finish at the FIBA U17 World Championship last summer. Along with the bronze medal, he was named the top point guard at tournament, averaging a team-high 15.8 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.1 assists, while shooting 82.8 percent from the free throw line.
In his final year of high school at Dr. John Denison in Newmarket, Ont., Pangos led the Huskies to the provincial AAA championship game. The Nike Hoop Summit will be an appropriate send off for Pangos, who will attend Gonzaga University next fall.
This marks the fourteenth anniversary of the Nike Hoop Summit and the fourth straight time it will be played at the Rose Garden in Portland, OR. It is a fitting end to the high school career of Kyle Wiltjer, who will get the chance to play on his home court once more before heading to the University of Kentucky in the fall.
A member of Canada’s Junior Men’s National Team, Wiltjer was also selected to play in the 34th Annual McDonald’s All American Game (March 30) as well as the 10th Annual Nike Jordan Brand Classic (April 16), two other prestigious high school all-star games.
Wiltjer is very familiar with the international game, having excelled at the 2010 U18 FIBA Americas Championship, helping Canada to earn a bronze medal and a berth to the 2011 FIBA U19 World Championship later this summer. He was named to the All-Tournament second team after averaging 19.4 points and 6.0 rebounds a game while shooting 62.1% percent from the field.
Wiltjer’s father, Greg, was a second round draft pick of the Chicago Bulls in 1984, the year in which he also played for Canada in the Los Angeles Olympics and Greg eventually went on to win a European title with FC Barcelona. Kyle, meanwhile, led Jesuit High School to an unprecedented third straight Oregon state high school championship.
The Nike Hoop Summit has featured some American and international NBA stars over the years including: Kevin Garnett, Tony Parker, Elton Brand, Dirk Nowitzki, John Wall, Andrea Bargnani, Louis Scola, and Kevin Durant. Last year’s game featured 2011 NCAA All-American Jared Sullinger and Canadian collegiate standouts Corey Joseph and 2011 Big 12 Freshman of the Year, Tristan Thompson.
Tickets are on sale now for the 2011 Nike Hoop Summit, with reserved courtside seats priced $25 and $50 and all other general admission tickets at $6. Tickets can be purchased through the Rose Quarter Ticket Office, by calling 1-877-789-ROSE (7673) or by visiting www.rosequarter.com.
For complete Nike Hoop Summit rosters see below. For more information on the Nike Hoop Summit visit nikehoopsummit.com.
2011 NIKE HOOP SUMMIT ROSTERS
2011 World Select Team
Player/Pos/Hgt/Wgt/YOB/High School / Hometown/Country
Kevin Pangos G 6’1” /178 /1993/ Dr. J. Denison/ Ontario/Canada
Raul Togni NetoG 6’2” 195 1992 Pitagoras Minas Tenis ClubBrazil
Mateusz PonitkaG 6’5” 190 1993AZS PolitechnikaPoland
Evan FournierF 6’6” 185 1992 Union PoitiersFrance
Davis BertansF 6’7” 205 1992Union Olimpija Jr. Latvia
Dario SaricF 6’9” 190 1994KK Dubrava ZagrebCroatia
Kyle Wiltjer/F 6’9” /221/ 1992/ Jesuit High School/ Oregon/ Canada
Przemyslaw KarnowskiC 7’0” 269 1993Sport School CetniewoPoland
Lucas Riva NogueiraC7’0” 225 1992 EstudiantesBrazil
Head Coach: Roy Rana (Canada)
Assistant Coach: Marin Sedlacek (Serbia)