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Two shooters to look at in Germany

January 18th, 2010 · No Comments

The German Bundesliga is still a US-dominated League but more and more young players are earning their minutes and showing good progress. Today, I discuss two young Shooting Guards that come from very different backgrounds. Both are having their first real impact season on the highest professional level and both are set for improving in the next years.

Karsten Tadda (1988 – 1m92 – Brose Baskets Bamberg) is the perfect example of a player that is earning minutes from hard work. The German SG is currently playing 20 minutes per game in the German Bundesliga and has the starting job for Chris Fleming’s team. Tadda has never played U16 or U18 national team and has only emerged on the highest German level during the 2008/2009 season where he saw his first regular minutes with Brose Baskets. He never caught one’s eye with athletic abilities or extraordinary talent during his young years. However, Tadda is an extremely hard worker, being the first guy in the gym and the last one to leave. Through these hard efforts, he has risen the steps of his career ladder one-by-one, from being a member of the local youth teams to the NBBL, Pro B, ProA and now Bundesliga. He is at the edge of the German senior national team and is probably the secret star of Bamberg

Tadda excels first of all as a defensive stopper. With his relentless effort, he can push his opponent full court and use him physically. He is not a outstanding ball stealer, but he can play the deny-defense at his best and run through the screens. He is also improving in drawing charges as he is not afraid to offer his body in the lane. Offensively, the shooting guard is mainly used as a catch-and-shoot player coming of the screens or in dish outs. He is feeling very comfortable in that role, nailing currently 34% (18/53) of his three-point attempts in Bundesliga and an amazing 66.7% (10/15) in the Eurocup where his team reached the Top16. While playing ProB last season with Breitengüssbach, Tadda also saw minutes as a PG and could connect for 3.8apg. Right now, he has not to fulfill these duties with Bamberg but he may grow in this role in the future with hard work. He is currently at the step from being a role player to become a team leader and it would not be a surprise see him reach that level in the next years.

Stefan Tapuskovic (1989 – 2m00 – LTi Giessen 46ers) is having a very different background as the Serbian guard has gone through the talent school of Partizan Belgrade, played with the Serbian U18 National Team and was highly praised as an outstanding shooter with great size. However, he never could crack the rotation of Partizan Belgrade’s senior team so that he played for the Junior team in the 3rd Serbian league until last season. He managed to lead the team to the 2nd division though and had a career game during the Serbian Korac Junior Cup Final with 48pts. Giessen’s head coach Vladi Bogojevic brought him as a total unknown to Germany this summer and he is now a member of the Bundesliga team of LTi Giessen 46ers.

Tapuskovic struggled a bit in the beginning of the season as he was benched a lot or even did not play at all. Even now, his minutes are really like a roller-coaster (26 against Oldenburg to DNP against Hagen), but he can always erupt with nice scoring efforts like he did in the heart-breaker against Frankfurt recently with 15pts in 19 minutes. His main offensive weapon is his long distance shot which he fires up with a nice quick release, even against the defense because of his good size for the SG position. He has very good fundamentals and recognizes well the situations when to alternate between drives and shots. He can attack the basket with both hands but mostly prefers to finish the plays in mid-range through floaters, jump-shots or with a pass. Defensively, he suffers in the athletic German league in one-on-one situations but compensates through good positioning and understanding of the defensive team concepts. Tapuskovic, who has signed for two years in Germany needs to improve his physical presence to become a more regular contributor on this level, something that he should be able to do in the next seasons.

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