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Home - NBA's Finest European Imports




  NBA's Finest European Imports



The NBA has made household of many an American. People like Michael Jordan, LeBron James, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird etc. are all synonymous with the sport and are recognised worldwide. And while the NBA may be a prominently American sport it does have its fair share of Europeans, many of whom have been able to carve out stellar careers over in the States. So who are the best European players to have ever graced the American courts?

Dirk Nowitzki

NBA Stats: 22.5ppg, 8.1 rpg, 23.5 PER in 16 seasons.

dirk nowitzkiGerman born Dirk Nowitzki is not only the greatest European player to have graced the NBA, he is one of the greatest players to compete in it period. The Dallas Mavericks power forward is one of the best shooters to have ever played the game. Combine that with his seven-foot stature and you have a point scoring machine. The Mavericks were never considered title material until Nowitzki arrived, since then they have become perennial playoff contenders – they are currently priced at 16.00 with Betfair to win the Western Conference - while their 2011 NBA Championship was something they would not have fathomed just 10 years earlier. Nowitzki also holds the honour of being the only European player to have ever been named the NBA’s MVP, a feat he achieved in 2007.


Tony Parker

NBA stats: 17.1 ppg, 6.0 apg, 19.1 PER in 13 seasons

tony parkerAlthough his name may suggest that he is American, Tony Parker is well and truly French, albeit with a little American blood coursing through his veins. The point guard has enjoyed a very fruitful time with the San Antonio Spurs, his four NBA titles make him one of, if not the most successful European player to cross the water. Parker, alongside Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili form the “Big Three”, one of the most dominant offensive trios seen since the original Boston Celtics “Big Three”. For a point guard Parker gets to the basket incredibly well and his jump shot is something to behold.











Pau Gasol


NBA stats: 18.3 ppg, 9.2 rpg, 21.5 PER in 13 seasons


pau gasolFor a seven-footer Pau Gasol is very gentle. His soft shooting touch is marvelled. Originally arriving in America with the Memphis Grizzlies; he is currently their greatest player in history, he went on to savour success with the LA Lakers, winning two NBA Championships – he has also been named a four time NBA All Star. His length, athleticism, low-post game and mental aptitude make him a handful for any opposing defence. Away from the NBA, at the Olympic Games Gasol has lead Spain to two Silver Medals, which is as good as gold considering how America are unbeatable.


Drazen Petrovic


NBA stats: 15.4 ppg, 2.4 apg, 16.4 PER in four seasons


If it wasn’t for Drazen Petrovic the influx of European players into the NBA may never have happened. After conquering the European game with Real Madrid, Petrovic decided it was time for a change; it was time for the NBA. After originally signing for the Portland Timbers, a side where he spent far too much time on the bench, he was traded to the New Jersey Nets, and it was here that Petrovic showed America that European players can play. His winning mentality and ridiculous shooting ability made him the nemesis of any side he came up against. It is just a tragedy that his life ended so young; he died in a car crash aged just 28. Petro had a good 10 years left in him, so it is a real shame that we will never know just how good, and successful, he could have been.



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