Bucks’ İlyasova named NBA Player of the Week

Bucks’ İlyasova named NBA Player of the Week

Bucks’ İlyasova named NBA Player of the Week

Milwaukee Bucks’ Ersan Ilyasova (7) has averaged 25 points and 10.8 rebounds during the four-game stretch between March 5 and 11. The Turkish international forward is having his best year in the National Basketball Association (NBA).

"Linsanity” is winding down but the Milwaukee Bucks fans seem to revel in “Ersanity” now. After a few weeks of Jeremy Lin of the New York Knicks taking over the league, now the Bucks’ Ersan İlyasova shines in the National Basketball Association.

The Milwaukee Bucks forward Ersan İlyasova was named the NBA Player of the Week in the Eastern Conference on March 12 to become the second Turkish player to win that honor.

During the four-game stretch between March 5 and 11, İlyasova averaged 25.0 points and 10.8 rebounds per game while shooting 63.8 percent from the field, 66.7 percent from behind the arc and 90.0 percent from the free-throw line. He recorded three double-doubles to add to his team-leading total of 11, and posted the first two 30-point games of his career (including a career-high 32 against Chicago on March 7).

The honor is the first of İlyasova’s career and the first for a Bucks player since Andrew Bogut received the award on March 15, 2010.

It is also the second time that a Turkish player won the honor after Hidayet “Hedo” Türkoğlu of the Orlando Magic was picked as the Eastern Conference Player of the Week in 2008.

Bucks on a good run
The Bucks went 3-1 on the week, posting home wins against Philadelphia and New York before capping the week with a road win in Toronto last night. Milwaukee began the week four games behind New York for the final playoff spot but trimmed that deficit to just one game by week’s end.

On the season, the Turkish international forward İlyasova is averaging career highs of 12.4 points and 8.9 rebounds per game while shooting a career-best 42.6 percent from behind the arc (15th in NBA).

He’s grabbed at least one offensive rebound in a career-high 31 consecutive games and joins Orlando’s Ryan Anderson as the only players in the league this season averaging more than three offensive rebounds per game while shooting above 40 percent from three. On Feb. 19, İlyasova racked up 29 points and 25 rebounds in a win at New Jersey to become the first Bucks player in over 30 years to post a 25/25 game.

He has averaged 6.1 points in his first season for the Bucks in 2006/2007 before moving to Barcelona to play two seasons.

His return from Europe to the NBA showed an improved İlyasova with increasing his numbers remarkably and this year he averages 12.2 points and 8.7 rebounds per game.

However, Ersan could produce only four points and three rebounds in his the first game following the Player of the Week honor, as his team beat the New Jersey Nets 105-99 on March 12.

Rampant Bulls overpower fading Knicks

CHICAGO - Reuters

The heady days of “Linsanity” are fading further from New York fans’ memories after the Knicks slumped to their sixth straight defeat with a 104-99 loss to the NBA-best Chicago Bulls on March 11.

Jeremy Lin, whose meteoric rise from unknown benchwarmer to NBA sensation set the Knicks alight last month, scored 15 points and had eight assists but his impact on the team continues to dwindle as New York fell into a tie with Milwaukee for eighth in the Eastern Conference.

Derrick Rose attacked Lin and the Knicks relentlessly for 32 points and seven assists while the Bulls (35-9) abused New York in the rebounding battle to keep control.

“The whole game they had us on the offensive glass,” Knicks coach Mike D’Antoni told reporters. “We played well for long stretches but the second-chance points got us.”

The Knicks (18-24), who enjoyed a seven-game winning streak last month, have struggled since Carmelo Anthony returned to the lineup from injury and their schedule has intensified.

Chicago, winner in 10 of its last 11 games, have had no such worries as they sit top of the NBA standings despite nagging injuries.

Anthony had 21 points and Amar’e Stoudemire added 20 for New York while Jeremy Lin had 15 points and eight assists.